Friday, 27 April 2018

Mango People in Banana Republic - Book Review

There are some people and books with whom you fall in love in first sight and there are even fewer which live up to the expectations. Mango People in Banana Republic by Vishak Shakti is one of such books.

As I read the acknowledgments on the opening page I knew I had many things in common with the author liking for Arundhati Roy, Deepak Chopra, Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev, S N Goenka, Swami Dayananda.

Mango People in Banana Republic is the story of Ravi who is depressed with the corporate life and politics skirting around it. The story takes him to village where farmers are starving and committing suicides, Maoist jungles and Ashrams in Rishikesh.

The writing is simple, lucid and superb. The pace is great. The scenes are riveting, though not linear. I really liked reading about the lives of Ravi, Devang and Anand. This novel is both dark and spiritual. Though I found the reference to chakras and Rama slightly out of context, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is about both India and Bharat, the haves and have nots and the struggles, of course on different footings of both these classes. Mango People in Banana Republic is a highly recommended book.


Sunday, 22 April 2018

#DefinitelyPTE Going abroad was never so easy


Going abroad for education is a lofty dream which every young mind cherishes. But unfortunately there are many hurdles in achieving this dream

Finances
Studying abroad is mostly expensive and students from the middle class and underprevileged backgrounds most often are unable to study abroad because of the exorbitant expenses. Even banks are unwilling to extend loan if the student wants to study out of India.

Fake Universities
Many universities abroad are not recognized in India. Many universities have a bad name in the job market. Many courses, like Medicine require a person to pass an eligibility test conducted by the Indian authorities and the passing rate in such examination is minimal. So another hurdle which the student community faces is how to separate the grain from the shaff, how to select a proper university to study.

Entrance Examination
Every university has a different entrance examination and applying for each of them is quite a task. The syllabus, the pronounciation everything is different and there is dearth of coaching in this space.

Passport
Though now you can easily apply for passport online, once you visit the centre often the experience is that you will have to run for some document, some xerox copy, some print out, which the authorities want and you don't have. Plus the ordeal doesn't end there. You will have to undergo police verification. The less said about it is, the better it is.

Visa
I have heard numerous horror stories about getting visas. Again each country has a different rule. In the light of terrorist activities even governments are becoming extra cautious while granting visas. This is affecting students too.

Home sickness
Many students are too eager to go abroad but when the time to leave actually comes they don't want to go. Also many suffer from bouts of home sickness once they land in foreign countries.

However when it comes to English Test I would say that the students have nothing to worry. Thanks to PTE Academic which is the world’s leading computer-based test of English for study abroad and immigration. Typically, PTE Academic results are available within five business days. PTE is a three hour test divided into different sections to test your Speaking Reading, Writing,and Listening skills. The entire test is computer based. So no need to tensed about speaking to a stranger in person.
#DefinitelyPTE
It is approved by the Australian and New Zealand governments for visa applications and accepted by thousands of institutions in the UK, Australia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Ireland, including Harvard, Yale and INSEAD. So PTE Academic has made access to higher education abroad easy.

The best part is you can take the test any time any where. For PTE Academic works for 360 days a year and has 200 centres world wide. You also get access to preparation course and free sample questions to help you with preparation of the test. Check out PTE Preparation Course for further details. So thanks to PTE Academic now our VISA wooes are over.

#DefinitelyPTE

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Why I love the world


Humans have always been inquisitive about knowing foreign lands. This itch to travel, to know the world is much more than sheer curiosity. We all humans are made of the same flesh and blood and it would be no surprise that we are drawn towards each other. The world is a family and that is the reason why I love the world.
I have travelled many places and my kitty of travel stories is filled with umpteen anecdotes where persons who weren't of my race, religion or nationality, who spoke a language different from mine, held a set of beliefs which I didn't share, went out of their ways to help me. Locating my hotel, a tourist spot which was hidden some where behind numerous alleys, these friends really helped me. The smiles on their faces were genuine, the warmth which they radiated stood in my heart forever, telling me that the world is a nice place to live. Strangers from the far foreign lands have now become close pals, with whom I share the ups and downs of my life. 
 

Can you imagine what the world would have been if the two Fs were absent – F for food and F for friends. Well I have already spoken about friends. Food is a very important, rather most important reason of my survival. I am a sport to try new gourmets. I love the world because it offers such delicious, mouthwatering recipes which I first devour with my eyes and than tongue.
I like the world because whenever the din of my everyday life leaves me bogged and heavy, I can leave it all behind and travel to another corner of the world. Travel lifts our spirits for we leave everything behind.