Thursday, 30 October 2014

Chatth and Thekua

The Chatth festival has taken over the north Indian states like a wild-fire this week and I just had the finest Thekuas of this celebration. This crispy deep fried Bihari delicacy is something that I start my winters with.

In case you wish to know the recipe; click here!

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Relief from hypertension!

It was a bit agonizing moment for me when I visited my doctor this evening, for another checkup. This time my blood pressure was 130, which is substantially normal, compared to what I had on Monday. The doctor has given a green signal for running and exercise, but asked to refrain from consuming non-vegan food till this weekend.

I am not going to consume extra salt till this Sunday anyways, but next week onward; I shall be back on my regular diet.

Monday, 27 October 2014

Hypertension for real!

For the entire last week I was having severe headache and so I decide to visit our family doctor in Jamshedpur this evening. I was shocked to find that my assumption of having high blood pressure was confirmed by him. My BP was above 150 this evening and doctor gave me medicines to get it under check within next 48 hours or else he would commence serious medication. I am also being barred from indulging into running or into any kind of cardio-exercise till this problem is not sorted out. He also prohibited me from eating non-vegan food and any amount of salt; till every thing in not normal.

Now the way I see the cause of this health problem is my over indulgence in sodium rich food last week, sleep-deprivation and lower fluid intake. All of that made my body meet Ms. Hypertension. Nevermind, I should be fine in next couple of hours.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

In Transit: A Day With An Assistant Professor of Law in Bhubaneswar

The 18 hour bus journey from Hyderabad brought me to Baramunda Bus Stand this morning at 0900 hours and a good friend of mine, Alok; who has agreed to host me for the weekend was waiting on the other corner of the town. I was tired yet happy to cover more than 1400 km of road trip without much hassle and so went ahead to get an auto-rickshaw, so to reach where Alok was waiting for me. Just then I got a call from MKK, she was wanting to meet me from the time I came down to Bhubaneswar last week enroute to Hyderabad. Though, she had her classes, but she still offered to pick me up and drop me to the spot where my friend was waiting for me. Who was I to deny a lift, but on one condition; I would ride. She was not ready to allow me that because apparently I didn't have my helmet and she had no extra helmet with her.

Anyway, I reached to Jaydev-Vihar Chokko. "Chokko" is Odiya for roundabout or cross-roads in Odissa. So don't be surprised when someone screams Chokko-Chokko rather than Chowk. She was waiting there for me and when she saw me, she almost fainted because she could fathom the fact that I was traveling like an expat or foreign tourist; with a huge 70 ltr backpack as well as a daypack. She came next to me on her Scooty and I opened my backpack to pull out a full-face helmet. That was another shock for her, "Why would I keep a helmet?"

Once I had my helmet on and we rode off to Pattiya Chokko, the ride was smooth yet a bit uncomfortable for me. This was because this 75cc 2-stroke scooter has no gear and it runs like motorized bicycle. But who was I to complain, the ride was fun. We reached to the destination and found our friend staring onto something or someone. MKK went and surprised him; he did take sometime to get out of the shock because he was expecting me to come in an auto-rickshaw.

MKK rushed back to her college and I and Alok had Coconut-water to quench our thirst. I was definitely very thirsty because I only had a liter of water in the past 20 hours. Then we walked a kilometer to reach his 3 BHK appartment, where he lives. A huge place two kilometers away from Pattiya Chokko that he got for INR 7,000/- a month. Reminds me of my Mumbai days where I used to pay INR 8,000/- for a small garage like space. Anyway, I took shower and then we went out to have brunch, which was indeed delicious.

We ordered a simple Odia Thali, which consisted of Rice, Dal, Curry, Dry vegetable, Pickle, Deep fried vegetable chips. The curry in the small dish is Paneer-Aalloo (Cheese-Potato) Curry. On the left side is a sweet made of condensed milk, which Alok deemed absolutely heavy for him to eat.

After lunch we went back to his flat and had a little fun with GREEN. Then I had to go out see someone so I returned back around 1700 hours and then we went out to KIIT gate, which is the most happening place in the evening; in Pattiya. It was time for me to pack some food into my stomach and treat my host lavishly. 

Our first pick was delicious chicken kabab, which was available on the street right next to the KIIT gate for INR 20/- a stick. It was a bit over grilled, so the juices were dried and the kabab was a bit dry as well as hard.

Then we headed a bit further and found a chain of small shops, which were actually budget eateries. One of them was serving Shawrma, which was for INR 50/- each. We had to had that without fail because I had it last in Bangalore with my cousin. 

We ordered two and the shop next to it served flavoured soda. I had a Fruit Beer soda and Alok had a Cola soda. Later we again helped ourselves with a second serving of Fruit Beer soda.

Then we rushed back to his place and Alok called for an auto-rickshaw to drop me to Vani-Vihar Chokko, from were I was suppose to catch my bus back to Jamshedpur. He was also helpful in calling the agent to book a seat for me and I had to pay for it in the bus after boarding. The auto-rickshaw charged INR 170/- for a distance of 7 km, which was reasonable for night. The bus trip costed me INR 350/- which is good considering the distance from Bhubaneswar to Jamshedpur is 450 km.

Tomorrow, I'll be back in Jamshedpur and from Monday; I shall start running again.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Hyderabad: My First Day Of Adventure With Decathlon and Hyderabad Biryani

The train reached right at 07:30 hours to Secunderabad Railway Junction. Now let me tell you something about this place. It's on the East side of Hussain Sagar lake, which could be marked as a major landmark on the map as well as this is the separating point of the twin cities of Secunderabad and Hyderabad. Now I was to go to see an old friend Ashwini, with whom I was to stay in Hyderabad. He stays close to Gachibowli Stadium in North Hyderabad, right next to the Hyderabad-Bangalore Highway; so a ride of an hour was assured.

I caught a bus to his place and the ride begins. I must say that the AC and luxury city buses of Secunderabad-Hyderabad are amazing. They are tidy and are well connected to every corner of this twin city. I had to fall in love with the public transportation instantly; I did. Ashwini was expecting me. Hence he came to pick me up and it was a pleasant sight because I was seeing him after almost 5 years.

We went to his home, which was cozy because of his hospitality. I must admit that it's not the materialistic things that someone offers me, which makes me happy; but the emotions with which it is offered to me. And he is one of the finest people I have the privilege to know of. At his place I met another old friend Ashutosh. They both briefed me all about the city transportation, while I listened carefully.

Now they were gone for work and I quickly freshened up to get going for Decathlon Store, which is situated close to Hyderabad Airport.

Reaching Decathalon

Though I was told by Ashwini as well as the store guys to catch the City-Airport Connecting Bus, which would have costed me INR 200/- for one trip. However, adventurous me; I wanted to try the alternative route. Hence, I took a share auto to Gachibowli Flyover and then took a bus from there to Mehadipattnam. Then I caught another bus to the nearest neighborhood to the airport; which was a highway. Then a shared cab to the airport, after which an 800 meters walk to the Decathalon store. I reached the store drenched in sweat, but the moment I entered there; I was mesmerized.

It was a HUGE STORE for professional athletes and aspiring athletes. Each and every item over there was meant for some sport or other. I took a round of the store and then went into the "Runner's" section meant for men. I would have just ended up buying a cap and the running shorts, but then I met the store manager Tribhuvan Reddy, who gave me an insight into the various running products and also helped me buy the Dry-fit long socks. The bill came a whooping INR 3975/-.

Session of Supercoach Bill Pierce

One of the Decathalon store staff, Bhuvan told me about the particular session; which was to be held in Banjara Hills. Coincidentally, the venue was right beside the Marathon route. Hence, I was more excited and so Bhuvan took me on his bike to the seminar and it was a good session that I had in a long time.

Hyderabad Biryani

Post talk, Bhuvan took me to Hyderabad House at Hitech-I. That eatery is famous because many celebrities come there for good food. Indeed, I had to try it out and ordered chicken biryani for myself and he ordered mutton biryani. I must say, I couldn't finish the biryani, but the flavor was out of this world.

After the dinner, I took a bus to the nearest walking point to my friend's place and called it a fulfilling day.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Bhubaneswar To Hyderabad

I reached Bhubaneswar at 03:30 hours and the train to Hyderabad was at 08:00 hours in the morning. To top everything off, there were mosquitoes and I needed to get some more sleep without missing the train.

Well, I had some sleep and an early morning breakfast before I boarded the train. This train is to take me to Secunderabad railway station by 07:30 hours tomorrow morning.

Since I already had a heavy breakfast, I was not much keen on having anything anymore. Hence, I slept till noon and woke up to the chattering of few girls on the next birth. They seem to be students from some college and going back home. In the meanwhile the pantry car attendant crossed offering Biryani of various flavors. Though, I am going to the land of many things and especially Biryani, but I had to eat something; so why not start with Biryani itself. So I asked for Egg Biryani, which was for a descent INR 70/-. I had it hurriedly and I was still hungry. In one of the stations, I bought another Egg Biryani from the station vendor, which was for INR 50/-; equally delicious. My last meal was again an Egg Biryani at night from another station vendor somewhere on the boarder of Orissa and Telangana, for INR 80/-. A lot of difference in price, while the flavor and quantity was almost the same.

Well, that was all for the day and night in the train. Tomorrow I shall be with a very old friend of mine in the city of Nawabs; Hyderabad.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Traveling To Hyderabad...

After a year of many mishaps and efforts to get my life back on track. This is the beginning of a good travel for me. Today I board a train to Bhubaneswar from Tatanagar Junction and tomorrow I shall catch a connecting train to Hyderabad. The entire journey would be a bit more than 24 hours, but since i am to do a break journey; it would be convenient.

The reason I am going to Hyderabad is to participate in the Airtel Hyderabad Marathon, which is considered as the nation's toughest city marathon. I have no idea what is there that makes it so tough, but the anticipation of something great lies within me. Let's see what happens this Sunday morning.

For now, I have to pack and get ready for the train that will depart from Jamshedpur this evening at 2000 hours.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Chicken Sandwich at Cafe Regal

Sometimes climbing stairs are excellent, if its towards Cafe Regal; for Chicken Sandwich with potato chips and Coffee. That's what I did after a crazy Sunday spent on writing articles and press-releases for my clients. A break was what I needed desperately and I had to try a new place. What would have been better than Varun's Cafe Regal.

Well, I reached there by 5:35 PM, climbed up and the entire staircase was giving me the same feeling as if I was in an old building; somewhere in Mumbai. The door was open and through the transparent glass panel I saw that the cafe was empty. Perfect! That was the word, which popped up in my head. I could have something delicious without being compelled to listen other people's conversation.

The staff was exponentially courteous and brought what I ordered within a couple of minutes. For the first time in days, I had the pleasure of being with myself and enjoying good snack. The place certainly has a charm that will attract me to itself again and again. Another important thing, which impressed me was that the prices of everything in the menu are absolutely affordable, but even if it would have been expensive. I would have still paid because the experience is priceless.

I would certainly like to sit in the corner and read the next time I visit!

Next time, it shall be Pasta!!!

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Cafe Regal: Step Back In Time With Coffee And Parsi Cuisine

Jamshedpur has been missing a laid back cafe that offers not just a cup of coffee and some confectionaries, but also a vintage charm with incredible hospitality. Varun Gazder, a young man who worked in the hospitality industry for three years and realized that his own hometown needs a place for young and old.

And so an entrepreneur with a dream was born in the first quarter of 2013. The entire thing finally materialized after a year, when the top floor of Bharucha Mansion, which is also known as Regal Building among the Jampotians; was ready...

The modest cafe, in a minimalist layout was introduced to the coffee aficionados on the 10th April, 2014. One would get the vintage feeling the moment he would enter the building and start climbing the stair to the Cafe. Upon entering the cafe, the first thing anyone would notice is the reading corner, iron beam ceiling and a huge bar counter that pays homage to hospitality during the great depression.

Sitting arrangements are classy and comfortable; Varun started the cafe with an idea to introduce the authentic Parsi meal to the food aficionados of Jamshedpur. The Parsi menu would be available every Sunday. It will be cooked as per the traditional recipes that have been passed down through 5 generations into his family.

I bet, it's going to be a treat!

Do check out the Facebook Page of the cafe...

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Draft Of Financial Future With Little Savings

At times I do find few things amazing and full of sense over the internet. This graph is also one of those tiny little important things that matter the most; MONEY!!!

Now go through the entire graph and let me know what you think about it.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Why I Am So Strict About Seat Belts And Airbags?

It has been a really long time that I have been through any unpleasant incident, while traveling in a four wheeler, but I do make sure of one thing; fastening my seat belt. It's not that I don't trust my friend driving it, but I don't trust the intelligent morons who are zooming past from us, as well as my luck. The fundamental idea here is to be safe from the prospective dangers in the event of an accident.

Though, the seat belts have been there for many decades now, but the inclusion of airbags in the vehicles has made commutation safer than ever. I sometime think, how it would feel to have something pop up right in from of me and save me from flying out through the windshield? However, I won't ever want to experience that. So the seat belt and airbags work for me.

I wonder, what would happen if the people who think that they would never meet with an accident or even when they do, nothing would be as serious as I think. It takes only once and a person dies!

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

I am on Twitter!

I don't know what came into my mind, but I created my account on Twitter and I am loving it more than Facebook. It's nothing compared to Facebook, neither the privacy settings are that great, but I must say that the unnecessary postings and notification are not there.

Viva la Twitter!!!

You may follow me at

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Sunday, 2 February 2014

How I Started Using Facebook as Communication Tool

I was addicted to Facebook sometime back, but now I hover less on it and keep myself busy with working out, work and travels. I am living more in the real world and less in the virtual. All of it seemed to be almost impossible for me, considering I am a content writer and a social media expert. Yes, initially it was extremely complicated for me, which needed a change and I had to do it because I was not living full.

You must be wondering, how I did it? I didn’t give up my Facebook account, nor did I give up going online over Facebook. All I did was to limit myself from using it less frequently and only to communicate with someone, who would be online or check his/her Facebook inbox. The idea is very similar to TV, you watch only those programs that interest you and save precious time for productivity. Or else you just watch anything and everything that’s being aired. Just so you know, I don’t have a TV in my room, which keeps me away from the idiot box and whatever I need is always available on the web. My family thinks that this is abnormal behavior, but I am the most happy person and creative for that very lack of apparatus.

 Though, there is something that you must know, Facebook has to be handled in a certain manner that it becomes less invasive. It is indeed a very proficient tool for letting you keep in touch with your family as well as friends who live offshore. But you certainly don’t need to be hung on the Facebook all the time.

Here I am enlisting some suggestions for the Facebook Addicts to get over this fever and start living the way I did.

  1.  FriendsOnly keep the people in the friend list of Facebook, who you personally know or who are your business connections in the real life. Rest are mostly spammers, who will like your posts or share them at the most, but they won’t be there for a meaningful conversation. I had more than 4,000 people on my Facebook friend list and I ruthlessly deleted most of them. Today I am happy with a little more than 1,000 friends, who respond to my messages and comments. So start deleting, who you don’t know or who don’t respond.
  2. Pages and GroupsSeverely put a limit on how many Facebook Pages you tend to like and how many Facebook Groups you join. Most of the stuff, which isn’t relevant to you will fill up the news feed on your Facebook wall and make you feel that a lot is going on. That’s just a mirage and junk, which you don’t require on any given day.
  3. Time for Log in and Log outFix a time for log in and them log out within a fixed time frame. I log into Facebook thrice a day for 10 minutes, considering I work full time on the internet; this is still a lot of time that I spend on Facebook in an entire day. If I am having a conversation with my friend or uploading photos, then the time may extend, but that happens once in a blue moon.
  4. Traditional Modes of CommunicationI have started to make phone calls, leaving voice messages on WhatsApp, while texting has become very limited. The best that I do is to call and go see my friends in person. Face to face conversation is more fruitful and it strengthens the bond between two people.
  5. Stop Posting Every MinutePosting every thought and emotion over Facebook isn’t good at all. Limit your posts to as minimum as possible, so you don’t get too many notifications and people appreciate any important news that you share.
  6. Stop Playing Games!!!This is the most necessary and significant thing that you must do at once. Playing Facebook games are the most time wasting activity that one can indulge into. Though, it will please you with the achievements, but it will eat your productive time.
In a nutshell, be absolutely strict with yourself on what you use Facebook for. If it’s just fun and frolic then set a time limit, if it’s for communication then again set the rules.

And yes, if you can manage to stay away from Facebook for a week at a stretch; you won’t miss it the same way; I don’t miss the TV in my room.

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Friday, 31 January 2014

More Goodies from

Last day of the month and I am bestowed with some goodies worth praising. I ordered a protein powder and a pair of performance socks from, which has come home by courier today. I shall test them tomorrow or may be day after tomorrow. Though my primary preference is performance, ease of use and storage as well as maintenance, if it's an apparel or accessory. 

So this is Ranbaxy Revitalite Protein Powder, which is a pure veg product. The market has been abuzz with its nutrient properties as well as lot of other qualities. The ease of consuming it is another matter, which has attracted me to it. Let's see how it test tomorrow and what kind of result it gives me in a week.

Mizuno No-Show Performance Socks, this should go very well with my Nike Free 3.0 running shoes. Will give a review by this weekend. Till then, hold your horses.

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Practice Run of 5 km

After I finished my first Full Marathon of this year, almost 3 weeks ago; my comeback has been pretty satisfying. I have been running a full round of the Kadma-Sonari Link Road and the Airport, which total the distance to 5 km. The non-stop running for 30 minutes each day has relaxed and soothed my leg muscles to a large extent. However, I need to get a regular massage therapy or I am scared that my lower back pain will emerge once again.

Lately, the JUSCO has been upgrading some parts of this walker's path with raised soil bed for beautiful grass, which does look very appealing. Wait till it gets all green. As for running, from tomorrow, I shall extend my running to 10 km or may be more, let's see how it goes tomorrow.

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Review: Kalenji Belt 2 Water Bottles

Rear view of the Hydration Belt
Today I received Kalenji Belt 2-Water Bottles that has a storage capacity of 260 ml each. I have been longing for something like this for my training runs. The product costed me INR 698/- with INR 99/- for shipping from; making it a total of INR 797/-. However, the product is really worth the money that I have spent on it. The material is really good, supportive on the lower back, adjustable strap, plastic buckles, reflective lining. Here are couple of pictures of the product.

The mesh base with reflective strap confine 
Now the best part with this accessory is that it not only carries 520 ml of water or electrolyte mix or energy drink, it also has a zip pocket on each side to keep loose change and keys.
Zip pocket
However, the only problem here with these pockets are that they are just too small for a mobile phone. Though, a small ipod can easily be adjusted in there. Now let's review the bottles.
These two bottles are very sturdy and don't leak when they are hanging on the belt. Though if they are being pressed hard, water may drop out from its neck. The top can be pulled with teeth and fluids can flow out, while the bottle has enough grooves that it will not slip out of the hands.
Left bottle container
What you see here is the left bottle container, which is pretty strong and hold the bottle tightly. There is an elastic loop that goes around the neck of the bottle once it sits right in the container, to ensure it stays perfectly in its place.

Pros: Perfect accessory for the runners, though it has to be adjusted properly so it doesn't shake while running.

Cons: The zip pockets on each side are pretty small for mobile phones.

My Take
The piece if perfect for everyday 21-30 km training run, but for a full marathon one must use a camel-back hydration pack that can store water from 2-3 liters and has a pipe to sip it on the run, without risking the balance.A runner may start his training with this chic accessory.

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Content Writers

With a huge flood of novice content writers, who are ready to compromise on the rates to get a break; have messed up the entire writing scenario of the industry. The industry is not only affected in terms of rates, but also quality. Since the novice writers have no understanding of the format, they just execute a make-do work on the assignments given to them. This in turn makes a bad impression on the end client and the middlemen who have no clue of how things work, end up having no business. Ultimately the expert content writers are left without any work.

This trend is dangerous and I have no clue when the scenario will be all right for us to work smooth.

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Friday, 10 January 2014

End of Rest!!!

Today is the last day of resting post-marathon. From tomorrow I shall start with some walk, stretching, cycling, weight training, calisthenics and some yoga before I make a full comeback on the track to train for my next marathon.

I am also looking for a professional coach or trainer in Jamshedpur to keep a check on my progress. If you know of any, please let me know at the earliest.

~ Raghu Raj Murmu 

Sunday, 5 January 2014

42.290 km Marathon Across Kolkata

Wake up at exactly 4:30 AM by Deep da, which was very nice of him. I took less than 20 minutes to freshen up and take a hot water bath. A lot of things were going on in my mind while I packed my daypack with the necessary things post-marathon. A bit nervous as I did not know what to expect here. Anyway, I went down the stairs with my daypack and found Suhana bhabhi at their door. While I was having a little chat with her, Deep da came out and we were off to the rendez-vous point for the Bullet riders who were to be the race marshals for Kolkata Marathon. Another 10 minutes to reach there and to my surprise, Bharat Ladsaria AKA Mad Teddy was there. Though he was shell shocked to see me there; I know I have that affect on many people.

After exchanging pleasantries, the entry and passage stickers were stuck to the Bullets and we rode to Red Road, from where the run was to begin. It was almost 5:50 AM now, whereas my reporting time was 5:30 AM. Deep da dropped me right before the start/finish line and I warmed up, stretched before I got out of my track-suit. Then I called him to ask where he was so I may give him my daypack. He was right after the stage where Usha Utthup, the brand ambassador of Kolkata Marathon was signing. The announcements for the gathering of the 42.290 Km marathon participants was going on and I was getting a bit nervous again. But I found Deep da, gave him my daypack and equipped only with my phone I ran to the gathering point. 

First Impression

After 20 minutes we were all hurdled towards the starting line and again a wait of another 10 minutes gave us all ample time to warm up. Hence, the marathon actually started at 6:30 AM rather than sharp 6 AM, which was the schedule time. To my surprise, there were only 80 runners present there when 150 registered for it. Either this run was the hardest or the most idiotic, for any athlete to run. I was about to find out soon.

Flag Off at 6:30

Flag off at 6:30 AM, I took off sprinting for the first 100 meters to avoid the crowd. Deep da and other riders of Eastern Bulls were on the right side of the road. They cheered me, while that was the last time I was to see them for the day because I knew, only Deep da would be there to 'collect' me in whatever condition I'll reach to the finish line. My energy level was gone a bit down with that initial sprinting, but I did leave at least 30 runners behind me, now I was among the top 50 runners out of which the elites were far ahead of me. By the time I crossed first 2.5 Km stretch, my breathing had become adjusted to my pace and I was overtaking other runners smoothly. Crossing the 5 Km mark was a piece of cake when I saw Deep da riding beside me, offering me to take a life. Right behind him was Bharat Ladsaria AKA Mad Teddy, he also offered me the same. But that was a joke, however, Deep da took my mobile and it was a good things because I was to grab bottles of water and run free.

My first flyover came after a mark of 6 Km and when I reached the 10 Km mark, the volunteers told me that an athlete was hit by a moving vehicle so I need to be careful while running. Dangerous Kolkata, I say...

After another flyover,  I crossed 15 Km mark without any hassle. At 17 Km mark I saw a man in black tights over taking me. He did overtake me, but I slowed down because my legs were hurting. That was a big mistake, my heart was telling me to run, but I denied that voice my attention and it costed me 30 minutes in the overall run. After 20 Km mark I was very happy, because half the distance was almost covered. Though I saw two athletes catching a cab and running away.

30 Km Check-Point

30 Km mark was exhilarating and very painful because now we were in the traffic zone, but the people were cheering us nonetheless. One more runner was shadowing me by now, his excuse; you inspire me because I don't want to run as my legs hurt. Bloody hell, it was certainly very irritating since wherever and whenever I would stop, he too would do the same. And whenever or wherever I start again, he would do the same. I wanted to bash him black and blue, but being a gentleman I couldn't do anything. However, he did catch a bus at 35 Km mark, which made me happy because I got rid of an unpleasant shadow with a negative aura, but I was sad since another athlete gave up.

Now I was running parallel to the river Ganges and I could see the water flowing coolly. Though I was the only runner now, who was running non-stop and no one to follow, so i had to ask the cops on the way for directions. I made it to the 37.5 Km mark water station. The volunteers over there asked me if I can run or else they would arrange the pick-up vehicle for me. My body was telling me not to run anymore, but the heart wanted to finish it no matter what. I smiled and continued my run, close to the red road, I again asked a cop for the direction and he stopped the entire traffic to give me a pass. That's being done almost everywhere on the route by the generous cops.


I reached Esplanade and the cops again helped me cross the junction. No there was the last flyover I was to cross, which was an awesome 3 km long endless and the longest flyover so far, but it was the last one. Towards its end, I saw two faint figures in green; two more tiered athletes. I wasn't alone anymore, but where was Deep da? Anyway, I got down the flyover running and again asked the cops next to the bridge for the finish line. They directed me towards the Victoria, now I was sure that the path is correct. 

Deep da waiting for me

Right outside the Police Park on Park Street road I found Deep da waiting for me, it was the most pleasant sight of the entire marathon since I started. Now I wanted to have the Sattu drink made by Suhana bhabhi, then some coconut-water, may be a chicken puff in Barrista and a lot more things to eat. He told me to finish the remaining stretch and he would meet me at the finish point. I was happy to oblige, last 2 Km to cover, but it was the longest crazy stretch to cover as both my legs were paining as hell. If I would walk, I wasn't able to pick-up my pace again, but since Deep da was to be there for me at the finishing point, I had to make it before he did. That last 2 Km was to be done at my best for him.

It took me another 5 minutes to get hold of those two runners who were hallucinating more worse than me and walking slow. I tapped on their shoulders and they were surprised to see me, I asked them to run with me, and run they did. We made our way through tarmac and confusion; asking cops and people for the finishing line. Another 10 minutes and we saw the stage at the red road. I picked up speed while these guys were hesitant to run, so it was I alone running towards the finishing line and Deep da wasn't anywhere to be see. I reached the finishing line and saw the man in black, Amit Mitra from New Delhi who is a regular runner. He told me that I finished in 4 hours and 30 minutes, just 5 minutes later than him.

Deep da arrives

Amit Mitra left and on the other side of the road, Deep da arrives. I somehow manage to cross the road and hug him. I have never been so happy to see him in the past two days. To sit on a chair was the most difficult task now, squatting would have been a punishment. I stretched my legs as much as I could and then got into my track-suit. We immediately left for home then, only made a brief stoppage to have some sugarcane-juice. That's all.

Blister-Blister/All Swollen

We reach to his store, I wasn't in a condition to climb up the stairs so I had to sit there for a while. Met Suhana bhabhi over there and after a brief talk I somehow managed to climb the stairs up to the second floor. Something was wrong with my sole so I opened my shoes and removed the socks, the left foot sole had a massive blister that was filled with blood. The blood was moving whenever I flex my sole. The right ankle was swollen to such proportion that my ankle couldn't be seen. I called Deep da and he took me to the doctor and I ended up getting a titnus shot in my arm. The doctor told us not to do anything to the blister and only apply Betadine cream to it.

That was it for the day.

~ Raghu Raj Murmu

Saturday, 4 January 2014

First Saturday of 2014 in Kolkata Preparing for Distance Running

I reached a bit late last night to Howrah and so to my host's place, but he was there to welcome me. The moment I walked into the alley, a dog came onto me and sniffed if I am a potential threat or not. I and my host walked up in a 100 year old British building, which has his store, a political office and a boy's dorm with couple of more rooms that are unused for now. There I met a young man with whom I happen to chat till 1 AM. Well, I had to sleep early to get up early for a jog in the morning, so I did at 1:30 AM.

Morning is always beautiful in City of Joy, the yellow cabs, tea hawkers on the corners, fruit vendors, newspaper hawkers, labors and all the hustle-bustle that one can imagine here. So I started to run, after 4 km it was traffic, so I had to come back. On the way I found some delicious fruits and bought some. The city certainly starts very early in full throttle because there was a lot of movement on the road. Anyway, I came back and freshened up; by 9:30 the breakfast came, which was a surprise for me for many reason.

Anyway, after the breakfast I went downstairs and met my host and his lovely wife. We chatted for sometime and thereafter I had to go to Park-Street to collect my bib and t-shirt. My host had to go for a rider's social responsibility event, so he dropped me close to where I needed to go. I reached to the designated place, but they redirected me to another location, which was right beside where my friend dropped me. It was definitely irritating because I had to walk around 3 Km to find out the location. Anyway, I registered myself with the invoice mail that I received when I deposited the money yesterday. I also got a green t-shirt as well, I wonder; why on earth someone would have green t-shirts for marathon. Couldn't they come up with something else; like blue, sky blue, purple, black, white. At least it wasn't pink, or else I would have fainted :-P

I texted my friend that I got it and I headed to see a very old friend to Kalighat. It was more than 10 year that we saw each-other, so it was exciting for both of us. I met him and we chatted for very long. The late lunch happened in a restaurant, which apparently has the painting "Gaja-Gamini" made by M. F. Hussain. Hard to believe but I saw it with my own eyes.

It took me sometime to reach back home because I was lost in the small alleys of Kolkata. With a busy day behind me, the night would get over soon, while the day will start early for me and my friend tomorrow.


~ Raghu Raj Murmu

Friday, 3 January 2014

Cut to Kolkata Marathon 2014

All the writing work executed, now it's time to travel to Kolkata to participate in the 42.290 km marathon, which is scheduled this Sunday, 5th January 2014. My art of staying fit and in shape this entire year is running my way through it. The route map is below and the way it looks like, it's actually a marathon tour map on foot. 

Let's see what happens day after tomorrow at 6 AM, when the race starts. I am keeping my fingers crossed. Everything is happening at the very last moment, even my online registration materialized today. Hence, now I am only left with one task; collect my bib and T-shirt.

Kolkata, I am reaching by Janshatabadi.

~ Raghu Raj Murmu

Thursday, 2 January 2014

52 Week Rupee Challenge

It is everyone's attempt to save some money and do anything that they have long desired for. However, saving through the conventional methods become a bit boring. so here is something that one may give a shot, it's easy and takes very less to begin with, but ends with a fine sum at the end of the year.

In order to save properly and more, I'll be depositing the weekly amount in my "Post Office Savings Account" because doing so it easy, withdrawal is hard as they don't have ATMs.

52 Week Rupee Challenge x 10

This is interesting, very interesting and absolutely feasible. All you have to do is follow the above schedule for 52 weeks straight, by saving the exactly same amount of your money for the particular week you are at right now; according to the weekly calendar. For example, in the first week you would save INR 10, second week INR 20, and further on. So by the end of 52nd week of the year, you’ll have exactly INR 13,510 in your savings account. It doesn't seem all that huge, but it happens when you don’t tend to take it out of your earnings directly and only put it in the savings account or a box at home. 

Now the chart shown below is with a different amount, which is appropriate for serious saving enthusiasts.

52 Week Rupee Challenge x 100

Here you start with INR 100 in the first week and reach to a savings amount of INR 13,5,100.

Enjoy saving and spending!!!

~Raghu Raj Murmu

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

First day of the year!!!!

So the 1st day of 2014 has arrived and I'll be working as usual. But when I look back to the year gone by, I realize that I have again lived a fabulous 365 days of my life that was packed with endless adventures and a lot mess as usual. Can't expect anything less from me. I have rode the entire west coast from Mumbai to the Southern most tip of Indian land; Kanyakumari. I did part of it solo though and rest with a beautiful companion. Had a fight with a very excellent friend of 8 years then became friends with some jovial people. The riding has been very limited for the past 8 months, but the adventure will begin very soon.

The resolution for this year is simple...

  1. Travel as much as I can...
  2. Strengthen my career in writing and allied field (Read more & Write more)
  3. Run marathons and stay 'Absolutely' fit
  4. Experience life by meeting more people while I travel
  5. Contribute more to my tribal community
Though people may say that the number 5 should have been on top, but I say; without the above four it wouldn't be practically possible neither I'll be qualified enough to contribute.

~Raghu Raj Murmu