Our tour included two main destinations, Vaishno Devi and Patnitop. We were close to group of 5 people, reaching Jammu by train in the morning. First we went to Vaishno Devi via Katra. We returned from Vaishno Devi in the next day morning at 8am. After our darshan of Vaishno Devi and Bhaironath we were very tired and even we were not in a position to talk to each other. So we decided to take rest. We took a sleep for 4 hours then we have left for the Patnitop in the afternoon. A trip to a hill station was all that was needed when one wanted a bit of respite from the hasty rush hour and a memorable winter vacation.

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Patnitop Located 120 km from katra on the Jammu – Srinagar Highway (NH1A)and from there Srinagar is about 200 km. Patnitop (2024m) is an important tourist destination and since it is located on the Jammu side of Jammu & Kashmir state it is free of militant activities and can serve as a perfectly safe tourist destination.

Main attraction of patnitop is the top garden, a vast expanse of mountain slopes and tall trees. When snow fall starts in peak winter, the slopes turn in to skiing fields. In December it was fun walking for hours in pure air (although it was a little windy) and natural surroundings.

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Our journey to Patnitop kicked off from Katra at 3pm afternoon through Tavera. We started quite late because we have returned from the Vaishno Devi, same day in the morning. When we left Katra town and came to the highway, by that time we were knowing many things about Katra and Vaishno Devi but we were unknown to Patnitop and Kashmir rout, so we started inquiring about it from our driver and our driver started explaining us nicely. Since we were on the Shrinagar highway, two types of vehicles we saw on that road, tourist vehicles and army’s big vans and truck.

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As we entered the Kashmir the real scenic view started. Now the famous chinar and pine tree could be seen. Our driver was telling us about each and every tree and places.When it was nearly 25 km,we could guess that now we are closer to Patnitop. Now the dense forest of pine and river Chenab could be seen. It was exactly what I had read in the books or seen in the movies. We could not control our self and call the driver stopped the car and we started to take photographs.

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After a short drink break at Kud, we reached Patnitop in about 3 hours. It was already dark and started our search for hotels. Fortunately, we easily found one good budget hotel. This is the advantage of big group that you easily get good discounts. We checked in “Rose valley” hotels, as hotel staff told to us that they are famous for their expensive TV screens 😆 here we met Sanjay- The Service Boy of hotels. After more than 40 hours of train & road journey we reached Patnitop but sadly there was no snow and we were trying to enjoy in hotel room with…but we were lucky to be in Patnitop a day before it received its first snowfall of the season.Early next morning when we woke up all the areas are covered by snowfall and believe me seeing snowfall for the first time is such a fantastic feeling :o. The view from hotel window was definitely an energy booster that gives you the feeling of absolute serenity or the feeling of ‘so much yet nothing’ that you get as you begin to discover this town.

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We all set out to explore Patnitop…surrounding hills were covered with a fresh layer of snow. One such hill was Nathatop our first destination, which not only provide fresh snow but also panoramic view of the snow clad peak of the Himalays. Nathatop, located 14 km from Patnitop, is a hub of adventure activities like paragliding, skiing, sledging and pony rides.

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At Nathatop, We were out in the snow enjoying a snow ball fight :cool:. But it was bad news for adventure sports, the snow was not enough to start sledging. The sledges are nothing but indigenous version of the Calcutta hand pulled rickshaw, where you are pulled along the snow in a wheel less wooden carriage by a fellow human being. The only activity was skiing so we decided to enjoy the skiing. We spend about three hour on Nathatop enjoying the snow as well as the views and last but not least a refreshing cup of hot tea. This entire stretch of the road was covered with snow and made driving extremely difficult.

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This place is really a perfect place to appreciate the beauty of mother earth. It is a very small city with small population and there are not many hotels and resorts. That is why everything looks so natural here without human intervention. At such natural places, one can find very good quotations painted at different places on road about nature and its importance and that is always inspiring. This place was so beautiful that returning to Jammu was a painful process. But I must say that survivals at such places are really challenging and not everyone’ cup of tea.

There is also very famous place called Sanasar Lake 20km from Patnitop but we couldn’t visit it due to time constraints.

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We saw some most famous gardens of Patnitop. Wow! What a nice garden and picnic spot it was, full of flowers and tall straight pine trees. As we entered the gate of the garden we saw stalls of Kashmiri suits, shawls and stoles in the garden and all of us went near the stall and quickly purchased some shawls and we moved around enjoying random sceneries and the apple garden (with no apple at our time of visit!) then we left for the “Naag Temple”, a local temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. It was a very famous temple, I think all the visitors of Patnitop goes to visit that temple. Here again you have many Handicraft stalls that requested to see “Bulbul Ka Baccha”. Why should we leave those stalls untouched, so we have visited those stalls and saw famous “Bulbul Ka Baccha” 😳 Now we were getting late for Katra because we had our train for Delhi from there at 7pm. We with our packets and smiling faces got into our cars. Now we told the driver to take us to some nice place for lunch because we were hungry and after that we will go straight to the station.

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Finally, all good things have to end 😦 (that too end quickly!!)  We reached at Katra at around 5pm soaked in memories of Patnitop and started shopping at then moved to railway station to board our train for Delhi and from there, back to day to day life.

Indeed the Beatles were successful in putting words to the feelings that one gets in fascinating Rishikesh.  The emerald green water, the equally green hills and the shimmering white sand… I thought only Goa could spur such magic…But I was completely wrong.

“Bungee Jumping! Cliff Jumping! Rock Climbing! Fox Flying! Rappelling!” I could hear these words off and on in the office; in hushed voices most of us were planning on what we were going to try other than white water rafting. Our office trip was scheduled for April 15th, the third weekend of the month and may I say that it is one of the best months to go rafting in Rishikesh, when water temperature is moderate (still cold) and the weather is neither too hot nor too cold; other than that for best rafting experience one can either go in the months of March to May or between October and November.

Oye it’s Friday… Weekend Fun Begins Now!

After finishing office on Friday, we planned on leaving for Rishikesh. Our cab from New Delhi to Rishikesh was scheduled for Haridwar at 11.45 PM.

Rishikesh is an ideal weekend getaway from Delhi the place leaves you completely rejuvenated, and helps you conquer your fears and fulfill all your adventure fantasies. So, the best tip for a Rishikesh tour is to leave on Friday evening, reach Rishikesh on Saturday via Haridwar (Har Ki Paudi), enjoy the rafting and other adventure activities and then return on Sunday. You are guaranteed to start the new week with a fresh mind and lot of enthusiasm.

Journey to Haridwar…

The four-five hours journey to Haridwar left us with little scope for sleep, so we decided on taking pictures, chatting and Playing Antakshari…We managed to get some sleep and being right on schedule we reached Haridwar at 5AM, Cool air had started to cast its spell on us, and we craved for tea and a pair of uppers as well. Haridwar welcomed us with sugary tea and…beckoning a sweet start to a spicy journey!

After bathed at Har ki paudi we feel fresh and more energetic for our adventures destination!

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Rishikesh Calling…

Rishikesh is about 20-25 kms from Haridwar. The dark sky hindered the view, however, and the cool breeze was telling us that we were heading closer to the hills. Our 45 minutes journey was definitely a delight, especially for Yatharth who was sitting on the middle sheet with his…Rohit with his usual cheerful spirit and clown like acts entertained us all through our way.

We ran and cut through the meandering alleys of Rishikesh, which were almost empty at the moment with few small dhabas and restaurants open. The first glimpse of River Ganga stunned us…WOW! Was all I could say… I am certainly not a morning person, but if every morning would allow me to get such a spectacular view, I might just stop sleeping at all…LOL. The emerald green river accompanied by lofty mountains takes its usual walk. The pebbled path, along the river added to its beauty. I finally dared to soak my feet in the water, Gosh! there was nothing that I can compare the feeling with. Just like the Beatles said it…

“I’m just a child of nature, I don’t need much to set me free”

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River Rafting Camp… Sun, Sand and Beach!

The view of the camp from the trail was spectacular, I mean it was something that I hadn’t seen before because most of us, this was our first camping experience. An array of tents on the white sands overlooking the gorgeous green Ganga… now I know, what is BREATHTAKING! The set of stairs were utterly dangerous, however the view and the excitement to reach such a beautiful location made us forget all hassles. So, here we were, stepping on the white sands, walking in the sun, greeted by the other group from Delhi. The camp was beautiful, the location was beautiful and the ambiance was even more beautiful, Paradise Unparalleled!

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Beach Fun … Tan TanTan!

After changing clothes and having a refreshing breakfast, everyone started to splash in to the water… followed by screams… uhhhhhuhuhu…the water was DAMN cold and the sun was merciless. Abhishek was now a Superman Redefined!! Anyways, I don’t want to go into the details of this…let me give you few tips on essentials of camping in Rishikesh…

If you are planning to go to Rishikesh and staying in a camp, here are few things that you must carry, first, a sunscreen (of course if you don’t want to get tanned as you are going to spend an entire day in the sun), sun glasses, portable mobile charger (although, few camps provide these), flashlight and lip balm (as the dry air gives you a lip-crack!)

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Beach, Bonfire and Buddies!

In the evening, The camp was dimly lit with two bonfires, one was for us and the other for another group from Delhi. The other group was drinking, singing and lighting up … what a beautiful view it was!

After changing clothes, we circled around the bonfire, sharing experiences and laughter with…. The night had started to become cold and we could hear the sound of the river. The multitude of stars was shining brightly, a rare sight that we don’t get to see in cities…

After exhausting ourselves in water with body surfing and kayaking, we headed for a sumptuous buffet. There was no greater feeling than sitting under a shed and munching on some delectable Indian cuisine with….while we chatted, played Antakashari and laughed crazily.

At 3 AM, we were finally go for sleep because next day morning we have to go for raf..f…f…f..ting.

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River Rafting… Facing Life

We reached at Marine Drive through our SUV, from where we had to start our 24kms rafting expedition. There are four major stretches for rafting in Rishikesh, Brahmpuri (9kms stretch for family and beginners), Shivpuri (16kms stretch for youngsters), Marine Drive (24kms stretch for daredevils) and Kaudiyala (36kms stretch for experts). Our rafting expedition was from Marine Drive to N.I.M Beach with 4 major rapids (grade III+) namely, Money Maker, Three Blind Mice, Club House and  Roller Coaster.

we all geared up for the final adventure… River Rafting in Rishikesh!!!

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By now, the sun started to go down, with patches of light here and there on the river and mountains. Cold breeze welcomed us on the raft, and everyone was ready with essential rafting gears like helmet, lifeguard and paddle. I on the other hand was given the privilege of only sitting with the rope to control, NO ROWING!  That sounded nice, we started with some gentle rowing, laughter and smiles…The first rapid was a mild one…the best was about to come! I could hear the sound of the second rapid and it seemed dangerous, our guide instructed that we need to row together and faster when we reach the rapid…that was alarming… We finally faced the second rapid that gave us the taste of extreme adventure; the front of the raft dived in to the river, with Amit, Rohit and I literally drinking the water of Ganga with both mouth and nose…BIZZARE! We were out of the rapid and were alive! On the third major rapid the raft completely turned towards the right, I once thought that Amit might fall off, but he survived, he was rowing hard, with his eyes closed, which made me laugh…he was doing everything he could to survive in this particular rapid. By the fourth rapid named Roller Coaster, which was the longest, everyone was a bit tired but DAMN the monster rapid put everyone in an alert position, Abhishek again rowing with closed eyes and Rohit waiting for the tide to come to him, as he didn’t want to row in the air and after all he is the captain of the raft..”Captain Jack Sparrow”…LOL! I felt someone was throwing bucketful of water on me, the warm weather and cold water made for a strange combination. It was at least 10 minutes of fast rowing that pulled us out of the gigantic rapid…the quite water followed with few minor rapids to N.I.M Beach…We had just faced death and lived a life!!

 

The best part is to experience Cliff jumping in between of rafting, cliff-jumping point is towards the end of the rafting route and is also called the “Maggi Point” where we were enjoy tasty Maggie after the faadu.. jump.

 

By the time we finished our rafting adventure, it had got dark. Drenched, tired and cold, now we desperately wanted to return Delhi. We managed to reach Delhi without breaking any of our bones and teeth.

I was in love with Rishikesh, not love at first sight, but love that has grown and multiplied in the course of time, love that may become unconditional someday…

Virender Sehwag’s retirement from international cricket also brought the curtain down on a glorious chapter in Indian cricket.

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In the history of game, Virender Sehwag will be remembered as one of the most impactful batsmen of all time.

Thoughts from the cricket world on one of the most fearless batsmen the game has seen.

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“I have to learn from Sehwag how to play in the nervous 90’s”

->Sachin tendulkar

“No matter how good and experienced you are, he can kill your attitude”

->Brett Lee

“Sehwag is the most unpredictable batsman i have ever seen in my career”

->Glenn Mcgrath

“Having scored 298 and still hitting a six is something unimaginable and you need to be a genius for that”

->Waqar Younis

“I would always have Sehwag in my team. I want to watch him bat but not bowl to him hahaha”

->Shane warne

“When Viv Richards retired I thought it was end of entertainment. But then came Sehwag, the King of entertainment!”

->Ramiz Raja

“If he is in the field for more than 10 overs, i am sure the bowlers are going to have a tough time”

->K Srikanth

“The baller might be good but when Sehwag thinks he wants to hit, God forbid anyone standing in the way.”

->L. Shivaramakrishn

“A batsman like Sehwag is never out of form”

->M Hussey

“Players like Sehwag bring crowd back to test cricket”

->Kapil Dev

“No one can maximise the first 10 overs better than Sehwag”

->Rahul Dravid

“Sehwag is a miracle, Sehwag is an institution”

->Navjot singh sidhu

“Will go miles to see sehwag bat”

->Sourav ganguly & Arun lal

“I say it again! I never saw Sir Viv bat but I’ve seen Sehwag bat!

->Yuvaraj Singh

“Sehwag achieves his Landmarks because he Doesn’t Worry about Achieving them”

->Commentator Harsha Bhogle

“If there is a Sinatra in cricket, it’s Virender Sehwag”

->Ravi Shastri

“Didn’t see Viv Richards bat in person but I can proudly say I have witnessed Virender Sehwag tearing apart the best bowling attacks”

->MS Dhoni

Overview of some of the most useful Google search tricks, from basic tips to new features just recently released.

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1. Use quotes to search for an exact phrase.

This one’s a well-known, simple trick: searching a phrase in quotes will yield only pages with the same words in the same order as what’s in the quotes. It’s one of the most vital search tips, especially useful if you’re trying to find results containing a specific a phrase.

2. Use an asterisk within quotes to specify unknown or variable words.

Here’s a lesser known trick: searching a phrase in quotes with an asterisk replacing a word will search all variations of that phrase. It’s helpful if you’re trying to determine a song from its lyrics, but you couldn’t make out the entire phrase (e.g. “imagine all the * living for today”), or if you’re trying to find all forms of an expression (e.g. “* is thicker than water”).

3. Use the minus sign to eliminate results containing certain words.

You’ll want to eliminate results with certain words if you’re trying to search for a term that’s generating a lot of results that aren’t of interest to you. Figure out what terms you’re not interested in (e.g. jaguar -car) and re-run the search.

4. Search websites for keywords.

Think of the “site:” function as a Google search that searches only a particular website. If you want to see every time TIME.com mentioned Google, use the search “Google site:TIME.com”.

5. Search news archives going back to the mid-1880s.

Google News has an option to search over 100 years’ worth of archived news from newspapers around the world.

6. Compare foods using “vs.”

Can’t decide between a burger or pizza for dinner? Type in “rice vs. quinoa,” for example, and you’ll receive side-by-side comparisons of the nutritional facts.

Google Search Tips Tricks
Courtesy of Google

7. Filter search results for recipes.

If you search your favorite food, and then click “Search Tools” right under the search bar, you’ll be able to filter recipes based on ingredients, cook time and calories. It’s the perfect tool if you have certain dietary restrictions.

8. Use “DEFINE:” to learn the meaning of words—slang included.

Streamline the dictionary process by using, for example, “DEFINE: mortgage.” For words that appear in the dictionary, you’ll be able to see etymology and a graph of its use over time alongside the definition. Google will even sift the web to define slang words or acronyms. Try out “DEFINE: bae” or “DEFINE: SMH”.

9. Tilt your screen by searching “tilt.”

This is one of the fun additions built in by Google engineers. Try it out yourself (search without quotes).

10. Play Atari Breakout by searching it on Google Images.

The legendary brick breaker game is available for easy access on Google. Just search “Atari Breakout” (without quotes) on Google Images and enjoy.

11. Search images using images.

Ever come across a photo that looks strangely familiar? Or if you want to know where it came from? If you save the image, and then search it on Google Images (with the camera button), you’ll be able to see similar images on the web.

12. Press the mic icon on Google’s search bar, and say “flip a coin” or “heads or tails.”

The feature released last month lets Google flip a coin for you when you don’t have one on hand.

Courtesy of Google

13. Press the mic icon on Google’s search bar, and say “give me a love quote” or “I love you.”

The love quote generator is also a feature released last month for those in need of a little romance.

Here are 10 important links that every Google user should know about. They are tucked away, somewhere deep inside your Google Account dashboard, and they may reveal interesting details about you that are known to Google. Let’s get started.

1. Create a new Google Account using your existing email address. The regular sign-up process uses your @gmail.com address as your Google account username but with this special URL, you can use any other email address as your username.

https://accounts.google.com/SignUpWithoutGmail

2. Google creates a profile of yourself based on the sites you visit, your Google+ account and other signals. They try to guess your age, gender and interests and then use this data to serve you more relevant ads. Use this URL to know how Google sees you on the web.

https://www.google.com/ads/preferences/

Also see: Secret URLs for Google Drive & Google Docs

3. Google lets you export all your data out of the Google ecosystem. You can download your photos, contacts, Gmail messages and even your YouTube videos. Head over the the Takeout page to grab the download links.

https://www.google.com/takeout

4. If you ever find your content appearing on another website that is using one or more Google products – say Blogger, AdSense, Google+ or YouTube – you can raise a DMCA complaint with Google against that site to get that content removed. This wizard can also be used to remove websites from Google search results that are scraping your content.

https://support.google.com/legal

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5. Your Android device may be reporting your recent location data and velocity (are you moving and if yes, how fast are you moving) back to Google servers. Head over to the Google Maps website to see your entire location history and you also have the option to export this data as KML files that can be viewed inside Google Earth or even Google Drive.

https://maps.google.com/locationhistory

6. Google records every search term that you’ve ever typed into their search boxes. They even keep a log of every Google ad that you have clicked on various websites and if you are a Google Now user, you can also see a log of all your audio search queries. OK Google.

https://history.google.com
https://history.google.com/history/audio

7. You need to login to your Gmail account at least once every 9 months else Google may terminate your account according to their program policies. This can be an issue if you have multiple Gmail accounts so as a workaround, you can setup your main Gmail account as the trusted content for your secondary accounts. Thus Google will keep sending you reminders every few months to login to your other accounts. Not available for Google Apps.

https://www.google.com/settings/account/inactive

8. Worried that someone else is using your Google account. Go to the activity report to see a log of every device that has recently been used to log into your Google account. You also get to know the I.P. Address and their approximate geographic location. Unfortunately, you can’t remotely log out of a Google session.

https://security.google.com/settings/security/activity

9. This is a complete list of web apps, browser extensions, Google Scripts and mobile apps that have any read or write access to your Google data. If the permission level says “access to basic account info”, it basically means that you have used your Google account to sign-in to that app.

https://security.google.com/settings/security/permissions

10. This is important URL for Google Apps users. If your Google Account ever gets hacked, use this secret link to reset your admin password. You’ll be asked to verify your domain name by creating a CNAME record in your DNS.

https://admin.google.com/domain.com/VerifyAdminAccountPasswordReset [*] Replace domain.com in the above URL with your own web domain name.

Marketing Concepts

Posted: November 5, 2013 in Mrkting N Mngment

This is how a Professor explained Marketing Concepts to a class:

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1. You see a Gorgeous Girl at a party. You go up to her and say: “I am very rich. Marry me!”

– That’s Direct Marketing.

2. You are at a party with a bunch of friends and see a Gorgeous Girl. One of your friends goes upto her and pointing at you says: “He’s very rich Marry him!”

– That’s Advertising.

3. You are at a party and see a Gorgeous Girl. She walks up to you and says: “You are very rich! Can I marry you?”

– That’s Brand Recognition.

4. You see a Gorgeous Girl at a party. You go upto her and say: “I am very rich. Marry me!” She gives you a nice hard slap on your face.

– That’s Customer Feedback.

5. You see a Gorgeous Girl at a party. You go upto her and say: “I am very rich. Marry me!” And she introduces you to her husband.

– That’s Demand and Supply Gap.

6. You see a Gorgeous Girl at a party. You go upto her and before you say: “I m rich, Marry me!”, your wife arrives.

– That’s Restriction for Entering New Markets.

I hope Concepts are clear!!!

The Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) has been bringing out one of India’s most creative and compelling advertisement campaigns covering the entire spectrum of the country’s business, politicians, sports and entertainment.

The Federation, which markets its products under the brand name Amul, has been running catchy advertisement campaigns since 1966.Amul’s longest running advertisement campaign has also found a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. The ‘Amul baby’ in the ad is a chubby girl usually dressed in polka dotted dress.

Sylvester daCunha designed the first ad campaign for Amul Butter. Thanks to Dacunha Associates, these punchy advertisements have been entertaining us since the last five decades.

I’ve always enjoyed Amul Butter’s ads. Did you know you can view most of the Amul ads right from beginning to the present on Amul’s site