Sunday, December 28, 2008

Bangladesh Election 2008

Within a few hours, Bangladesh Election 2008 will start. I think Awami League is a favorite this time considering the huge damage happened to BNP during last 2 years of emergency rules. But I am relieved that whatever it took, we are again going towards and elected Govt.

From Blogs

I watched Amir Khan's Ghajini last evening and admire it. He accted so well and the move reminded me what as a human being we are capable of.

Along with all these, I have been preparing to take the Silva Mind Control/Medication Training in a month or two. I think I need to re-organize my inner disciplines, specially time management and food habit, and this course should help me with that a lot.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sachin Wins 1st Test Against Chennai Chasing 387 with unbeaten century

I followed most of the first test and almost all of the fifth day's magical chase of Tendulkar winning the test against England in Chennai with a fine 103 not out. It was a dream come true for me like many others to see Sachin in this perfect role. Read the details here -

There are so many good batting points he wrote besides his yesterday and one of those are his 3rd fourth innings century where he is ahead of Lara, equal to Bradman but behind Pointing yet.

Last year, Tendulkar made a fourth innings half-century (56*) to defeat Pakistan as I observed that with intense as well like this time as I knew Tendulkar has a poor fourth innings record compared to Ponting or Gavaskar (and almost same as Lara). Not to the same scale worthy of mentioning that amongst all his fourth innings Tendulkar had 36* not out chasing 184 against Zimbabwe in 2001 and 32 * not out chasing 123 against South Africa in 2004. Here is a complete list of number of not outs in fourth innings of Test where Tendulkar is only behind Desmond Haynes and Rahul Dravid.

Also look for the top run chases link in cricket24x7 blog post. Don't forget to read the winning run and hundred that says Tendulkar's winning boundary that gave him the century from 99 to 103* and also won the test match for India, is only second time in Test history to happen so along with Ricky Ponting's over-boundary against South Africa in 2002 that gave him exactly 100* - both these are amazing feats indeed.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

How Much Can You Ignore?

It's so easy to ignore loss to others but so difficult to ignore loss to yourself.

Can you ignore bad events, losses happening to you easily? No? But you can do the same when it comes to others. I believe I have always been able to ignore most of the losses to myself throughout my life. It's not very good I know. But at least the first quote in this entry is not applicable to me.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Long ThanksGiving Holidays in Pismo Beach and Las Vegas

I had a long thanksgiving holiday this time without any turkey, first in Pismo Beach with friends and second in Las Vegas.

We started 27th November morning with Nitol, Ezaz, Wali Bhai and their families to San Luis Obispo where Noel joined us. We had nice fun together with girls and kids in one room and all the guys in the other room. We did a BBQ the very next day. On the way back home, we stopped at Big Sur Saturday.

Sunday went on packing for the Las Vegas trip. I spent the some part of the night in Ezaz's house and in Washington Hospital Emergency with Nitol as he kind of broke his leg while jumping. with his room mates for a photo session in Big Sur.

December 1st Monday we caught the SouthWest airlines at 6 AM in the morning for and landed Las Vegas in one and half hours. We stayed 3 nights and 4 days that Shusmita, Ahyan and I enjoyed a lot. After a rest day in the hotel Imperial Palace to cover up the journeys we were having, we visited Bellagio for water show, watched the Sirens of TI in Treasure Island, visited Madam Tussads WAX Musuem and took the Gondola Ride in The Venetian. We also covered a show in New York New York, visited the Luxor. The returngng day (4th December) we visited the secret gardens in The Mirage where we saw dolphins, white tiger, white lion, panther, chitah and so many other things and took pictures with those.

It was a great vacation pair indeed!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Napa Valley, Fort Bragg Trips with Roton

Roton came at 11th November Tuesday from New York to visit California for a week. He just called me 2 days prior and hence I was not enough prepared to take day offs from office. But as Shusmita now knows driving, she was able to drive him around the neighborhood when I was in office.

The very next day 12th November, I was working from home and we started for Napa Valley in the afternoon. Apparently Napa Valley seemed to be his most favorite place probably due to his long years of experience with restaurant jobs. After driving through Napa, we came back to Golden Gate Bridge at night. It was simply so foggy that we saw Golden Gate bridge hanging in the air like it's up in the heaven! It was simply too good...

While coming driving through the San Francisco downtown, I was so sleepy that eventually at around 9:30 PM or a little later, I hit a truck from behind in front of Pier 9 just few blocks away from my office. My favorite Honda Civic's front side got completely damaged, the door broke, the radaitor broke but none of us were injured, thanks to Almighty. Shusmita and Ahyan was in the back seat while Roton was in the navigator's seat.

As a routine, I called roadside assistance and towed it to San Francisco Major Body Repair shop. Ezaz took Nitol and drove to pick us from San Francisco. We had the dinner in his house late night.

This is my second car accident and I am not scared still now. It's all upto Almighty and I better not freak out about it. So after attending Safwan's birthday Saturday afternoon, we started for Fort Bragg again with the rental car that my insurance company is covering me now. We stayed there the night and roamed around the city downtown next morning. We went to the handmade ice cream shop and the Gabrielle that we liked visiting last time. On the way back home Sunday, we again stopped at Napa Velley. Just in case I forgot to mention, we had another small accident in the morning at home when we forgot to turn off the stove of kitchen that was boiling 8 eggs. We went to tase different typoes of Dosa in Dosa Palace, Fremont and when we came back we found smoke smells everywhere in the house. Well you guess what, the fire department had to come into the house to stop the stove after it has been continuosly alarming for a long time. Big deal? No big deal!! This is life.

Roton went back to New york at Monday morning.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Bangladesh Chess Olympiad Team 2008

Chess Olympiad Dresden 2008 has achieved the highest level of registration in history turning it into the biggest Chess Olympiad of all ages. After the final closing of the registration list on September the 19th there were more than 2000 active participants announced. It will be held from November the 12th till November the 25th in Dresden, Germany. A perfect place to play big chess events after a successful world chess championship match in Bonn, Germany last month.

With 152 registered nations Dresden surpasses the previous Olympiad 2006 in Turin with 7 more countries. The participants distribute themselves to 275 teams, therefrom 156 in the main tournament including the second team of Germany and the teams of the deaf, correspondence chess players and blind persons. 119 women teams are starting.

The very popular Susan Polgar's Popular Chess blog provided an entry today on the Bangladesh Chess Team that left for Germany to participate this big event. I was proud to see Bangladesh's map in that entry. I know most of the players there personally and I wish success to this team whole heaterdly. I wish success to this team in the Dresden Chess Olympiad 2008. To see the complete list of all the chess participating nations and players, in this Olypiad, please click this link .

It may not be a known fact to some of you that the current World Chess Champion Vishwanathan Anand is only second when it comes to being the earliest Grand Master in South Asia (Indian Sub-continent). He is only behind Bangladeshi Grand Master Niaz Murshed and you may look at to know more about him. But in terms of volume, head count and number of years after independence, Bangladesh is quite smaller than India. It's the willpower of the people there, and count on us - we are coming up, slowly but steadily; not only in winning Noble prize or being a Test Cricket nation but also in other sectors like this.

Be proud of being a Bangladeshi !!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Anand Defeated Kramnik in World Chess Championship Match 2008

From Blogs
The World Chess Championship started this October 14th in the Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany in Bonn. The match consisted of twelve games between the defending Champion Anand (FIDE Rating 2783) of India vs the Challenger Kramnik (FIDE Rating 2772) of Russia.

Anand and Kramnik started out peacefully with two interesting draws, after which the Indian player exploded to score three wins - in game 3, game 5, and game 6. Especially difficult for Kramnik were the two loses with black in the same line which basically have decided the outcome of the match in early stage. Although Kramnik managed to pull a win in 10th game and Anand drew 11th game today with white pieces to win the match at a 6.5 - 4.5 margin.

The prize fund of 1.5 million Euro (approximately 2.35 million US Dollars) including taxes and FIDE license fees, and will be split equally between these 2 players. You can get a few more details on the match in the following links -

I have been following the games everyday in BART from my home to San Francisco or early morning at Chessbase, Susan Polgar's Blog, Chessdom, ChessMind and Official WCC Site, Chess Ninja Blog.

Except for today's drawn game the live rating at shows Anand's current live rating is 2791 (jointly topping the list with Topalov) and Kramnik's 2764. So for this draw I believe Anand may settle down 1 point lower than Topalov in the second position of the list. Here are few news on Anand's victory. So he now needs to prepare for another challenger next year - the winner of Topalov vs Kamsky match.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ahyan's Birthday & Habib's Concert in Bay Area

Last weekend we had 2 events to catch up with. We arranged Ahyan's 2nd birthday (with some delay) in our apartment's Recreation Center this 18th October Saturday. It was as usual a good gathering with my close buddies in the bay area.

Here are few albums that hold some pictures of the events.

The following day 19th was the BABA Eid Reunion where Habib's Concert show was the center of the attractions. There was not enough space to dance and hence at the last song of the day, Nitol first jumped into the stage momentarily followed by Shahriar. And yah, I joined them immediately after that taking the below video.

Other than those, I had a colognoscopy at 9th October and thanks to almighty nothing came bad out of that. And yes Sachin Tendulkar became the leading run scorer in Test Cricket too on the way to cross 12000 runs in first test against Australia. But Bangladesh lost to New Zealand in first test even after coming very close to victory.

To my great pleasure, Anand is winning against Kramnik in World Chess Championship 2008 that is being held in Bonn, Germany. In the twelve rounds match, half of the games are already played and Anand won won third, fifth and sizth games brilliantly drawing the other three to crash Kramnik whom a lot of people thought a superior match player than Anand.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

My Parents Went Back Home

After a little more than 2 months stay in USA, my parents went back home to Bangladesh today. They had a schedule to go back yesterday but the flight got canceled due to a hurricane in Hong Kong and rescheduled to today.

While it's sad to say good bye even if for a short while to your family, it's inevitable if you are living abroad. It was a pleasure to have them with me these days and traveling around USA with them. My father had some land and jakat related works pending back home, so they left before the Eid-Ul-Fitre. I wish they would have stayed until Ahyan's birthday next month but I understand their involvements back home are equally important. During his stay, my father became a popular person in my community and I knew he would be.

I feel now coming to USA with job was a right decision for me and I have succeeded to fulfil my long cherished dream of showing them USA. Now it really doesn't matter to me if I further stay here or go back home or whatever. It would be even better if I could have my 2 brothers Rasel and Rizvi in this trip with them whom I miss so much.

May Allah give them peace and give me chance to meet them again soon.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

LA, San Diego, Las Vegas Trip

We started for our grand road trip of LA/San Diego/Las Vegas at 29th August Friday afternoon. We reached Los Angeles downtown before midnight and stayed in Ramada Inn. The next day we covered Universal Studio where we enjoyed Terminator 3D, Water World, Universal Studio Tour and Jurassic Park Tour. The most horrifying one was The Mummy Ride that I and Shusmita went for. It's simply terrible and breathtaking for it's speed, darkness, turns and reverse directions even though only for 5 minutes. We had our dinner Saturday night at Aladin where I got my Magi chicken corn soup packet that I couldn't get anywhere else in USA, not even in New York.

The next day we drove to San Diego Sea World (120 miles from LA) and came back by night. This time we enjoyed the Shamu Whale show, Rope way and a ride to the height something similar to the ride we had in London 2 years back.

Monday we started for Las Vegas from LA, a pleasant drive through the rocky desert. We reached a little early in the noon at Las Vegas Hilton hotel. That night we roamed around the Las Vegas streets, ride monorail, walked through Hotel Paris, MGM, saw a last few seconds of a Bellajio water show and drove through Luxor. It's very difficult to say if we liked Las Vegas more or The Universal Studio Tour in LA.

We started driving back to Fremont from Las Vegas (a close to 600 miles drive) Tuesday morning. One the way back, we stopped in the highway for Iftari. We reached back home at night to have dinner at Shalimar completing our 1600 miles amazing trip. This, along with our Niagara Falls, Washington DC and Manhattan trip that we had in mid-August is one of the best trips I ever had.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

New York Trip 2008 With My Parents

At last my parents, I, Shusmita and Ahyan went to New York this summer. It was my 4th New York trip, the last time I came was in Winter 2007, not so long. The tough time was to get the proper air ticket at a very short time and getting leave from office. The good thing was we visited Niagara Falls in Buffallo and Washington D.C with Kakku (my Uncle in New York).

Monday, August 25, 2008

Reno, Lake Tahoe & Yosemite Road Trip

The 22nd to 24th August weekend, I took my parents, wife and son to a road trip to Reno/Lake Tahoe and Yosemite. We started at Friday afternoon for Reno. My parents were amazed to see the big Grand Sierra hotel having casino, mall, theater inside. Saturday morning we drove for Lake Tahoe and missed the first cruise trip that we bought for 2 PM. But we could marginally catch the 2:PM Queen Marina cruise instead using that same ticket. This 2 and half hours cruise was relaxing to us.

It gave hard time to me to get out of Lake Tahoe and reach Yosemite as we started at 5 and mobile GPS was showing confused directions and eventually died out of battery. I got the 2 iPhones just a day before this trip and so I still didn't have car charger with me. We reached Yosemite after midnight where Ezaz was already there with his parents and family. On the way we lost directions in Tioga Pass at midnight and I enjoyed the uncertainty and the adventure. We roamed around a little in Yosemite the Sunday morning before coming back to Fremont at night.

Shasta Dam/Burney Falls/Lassen Park Trip

I took my parents to further north in California in first weekend of August. Shahriar and his parents joined us from Klamath Falls in Shasta Lake and Dam in 2nd August Saturday. That night we saw Sundial Bridge before going back to Holiday Inn, Redding hotel where I booked 2 rooms for us. The next morning we say Burney Falls and Lassen Volcanic Park. One the way back home I lost roads in Mount Shasta and the car fuel went down with no mobile or GPS coverage for a while. But at last we have returned safely with an approx 700 miles trip. It was a good one! Here are some of the pictures -

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Amitabh's The Unforgettable

The last weekend of July was usually full of events. Saturday (26th July) morning Nitol, I, Shusmita, Ahyan & my parents went to San Francisco Zoo with Shahriar, Sochi, Safwan & Shahriar's parents. From there, we went to Darbar restaurant in San Francisco for lunch. Then we went to the world's crookedest street (zizag in Lombard street) in San Francisco. It was a quite a risky route while climbing over to the zigzag entry point rather than the zigzag road itself. As Safwan was crying Shahriar had to leave for home at that time without going to the crookedest street. From there we went to Golden Gate Bridge vista point. From here the view of the bridge, San Francisco and Alcatraz Island was quite clear.

The very next morning, we (the same group as the last day) went to Santa Cruz to take the one hour Santa Cruz Steam Train journey to see the giant Oak, Sequoia and other trees. From there we drive to Hayward Pakwan for the famous Sunday only buffet lunch where Ezaz, Shaki & Mahi also joined us. Everyone liked the various dishes.

We went back to have a quick rest before Amitabh's The Unforgettable show in the evening. Ahyan threw up several times when we tried to feed him and hence we started a little late for the show. Nitol, Shahriar & his group all we reached Oracle Oakland Arena about 7: 30 PM. But the show started way after 8 PM instead of the scheduled 7 PM, so we didn't miss anything. It was a privilege to see Amitabh performing for us. Of course Abhishek was good, Ritesh performed well, Aishwarya and Madhuri were amazing and Prity Zinta sweet while Vishal & Shekhar were rocking. It's a lifetime opportunity to see them all with my parents. A really good memory to be cherished in future.

Monday, July 28, 2008

My Parents Came to USA to Visit us

By all means and parameters, July 18th 2008 will remain as one of the most significant dates in my entire life. Because that was the day when my parents landed in San Francisco airport from Cathay Pacific Airlines. I was working from home that Friday and rented a 7 seater Ford Explorer van to receive them in the airport. I needed this big car to handle 4 full size luggages (70 lbs each). They got USA visa at 2nd attempt after a long 7 months of backgrounds check. While they were supposed to come 6 weeks back, at last they reached here to spend the next 3 months with me, Shusmita and their grandson Ahyan whom they never saw earlier.

Me and Shusmita planned a lot before they came here. We bought new sofa, new bed to fit in our second bed room, new LCD HDTV and so on. We were worried of the little high temperature here although so far it has been good.

Shahriar and his parents, Ezaz, Nitol came to see my parents in the afternoon and we shared the fresh Bangladeshi foods together. The very next after my parents landed, we attended the Bangladeshi People's Picnic in Fremont Lake Elizabeth park. At night I took them to show the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. It was too cold there and so we didn't stay more than few minutes. Sunday (the next day) we went to Monterey Bay Aquarium and we had lunch in Ambrosia Indian Cuisine nearby. We saw all the creatures there, took photos and videos. This time we were lucky to catch the session of feeding the fishes in afternoon. There was around half an hour demonstration that we enjoyed a lot and wondered why the sharks are not attacking the lady who was trying to feed them despite her skuba diving materials and masks. We covered 17 miles drive, Pebble beach and the gold course where Tiger Woods come to play. It was a 216 miles drive the whole day and no one seemed overwhelmingly tired including little Ahyan.

The weekdays are going good with my parents company. Shusmita started driving car in my absence keeping Abbu in the navigator's seat. She is doing better driving job now and dropping me to BART and picking me off.

I have always wondered whether it was a selfish decision to leave my homeland Bangladesh for a better career here in USA and what else I am achieving here staying away from home. It's true I am getting exposure, reading some good books, traveling new and fantastic places, securing my child's future partially. But the flip side is that I am not seeing my parents, brothers, relatives, friends for a long time. Now as my parents could come to USA through me I feel my decision to come to USA is justified. Now I will have no regret if I have to just leave back to Bangladesh after finishing my job here in USA.

Life is beautifully strage!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Study On Religious Thoughts

I have read Quran, our holy book in Islam, once in Arabic language. I was a teenager that time and didn't understand the meaning and it's impact. Later I attempted to read the Bengali translation of Quran but stopped after making some progress. Few months back, my friend Nitol was talking to our another friend Emon who started reading and telling everyone to read a very good Bengali translation of Quran with Shan-e-nuzul. This is exactly what I was looking for and it ignited in me the desire to finish Quran with proper understanding.

Sometimes early this month I proposed my friends in Bay Area on a systematic and combined study on Islamic history and events from Quran. Some of them seems really got interested with this proposal. Then I started looking for resources considering the following objectives.
  • Resources on Quran, Hadith that are accessible electronically or via internet. I am an IT guy and I have very less time available in a day when I can afford to stay away from computer.
  • Bengali as a reading language to make reading and understanding better.
  • Accessible from mobile so that I can use my train time, waiting time in shops, vacation time from hotels etc that doesn't require me to find new time from an already very busy life in USA.
  • The objective is to learn, have knowledge not only to gain some sawab so that when we talk to the outside community many of whom are non-muslims, we can talk enthusiastically. It's true even when we are talking in a Muslim community.
I have compiled a few resources below.
  1. Athan (Installable Software) - - You can easily install and set your city in this software and you will here Athan on your local time. Also it always tells in your dektop status bar when is the next prayer time. I like this very much.
  2. Bangla Quran (Installable Software) - you may download it from - It is so good that accelerated my energy to read Quran in Bengali. Thanks to Amin who sent the link to me. If I can;t read it from mobile then as an alternate I plan to use the web version here -
  3. A general purpose Islamic portal -
  4. Tafsir of Quran may be found here -, but the problem is to quickly find out which surah is in which link/URL. This is courtesy of Shahriar.
  5. To print out and read at home (although Bengali translation in book format is widely available and hence there is no point of printing it for us) - . This is also thanks to Shahriar.
  6. The hard copy of the holy book that Emon (Sazzad of Atlanta) has that includes Shan-e-nuzul and explanations.
I hope this time I will really be able to finish Inshallah, even if it takes few years.

Update: Another friend of mine in the same group sent me the following 2 links.

6 Minutes Daily English Quran -

In Bengali -

While surfing in the net for MP3 formats of Bengali translation of Qur'an I found this link -

So I should be able to record those in a CD to listen in the car and also I can listen to individual files (each for one Surah) from iPhone.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Today iPhone3G came out in the market

When I checked after lunch in San Francisco near my office in Embarcadero, all their iPhone3G were already sold out. I am not surprised because I know the stories when iPhone came out first time last year.

As I will buy 2 iPhone3Gs this coming 1st August when my Verizon contract will finish, I took some effort to figure out the rough estimates for 2 years’ plan prices for iPhone3G from AT&T -

1 iPhone3G Individual Plan:

$70 (+ tax) * 12 * 2+ $200 (+ tax for phone set) + $36 (activation fee) + $30 * 12 * 2 (+ tax) = $2636 (+ a lot of accumulated tax)

So if I apply a flat tax of 8.75% on the total it becomes $2866.65 for next 2 years.
2 iPhone3G Family Talk Plan:

{ $70 (+ tax) * 12 * 2 + $10 (for 2nd line) * 12 * 2 (+ tax) } + { $200 * 2 (+ tax for 2 phone sets) } + { $36 + $26 (activation fee) } + [ { $30 * 12 * 2 (+ tax) } * 2] = $3822 (+ a lot of accumulated tax)

So if I apply a flat tax of 8.75% tax on the total it becomes $4156.425 for next 2 years.

This will be on top of my Blackberry that I get from my office with unlimited voice and data plan. But I like iPhone not Blackberry!

How does it sound to you?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Fireworks and Shopping In San Francisco

This independence day long weekend, I along with my wife Shusmita and son Ahyan stayed overnight in San Francisco to watch fireworks and to shop in Union Square. My friend Nitol joined us at 4th July noon when we started in a relax mode. We reached Club Quarters in San Francisco (in Embarcadero) and parked my car in a nearby garage. Then we caught BART for shopping in WestField. In the evening we came back to Ferry Building to watch fireworks, but we couldn't watch well from there. So we started walking towards Pier 39 with Ahyan in Stroller. There we could watch the fires very closely. Ahyan was scared of the sounds and hence started crying loud. We finished our dinner just opposite to my office in market street and then Nitol went back to Fremont while we headed towards our hotel room.

The next morning we went to Naan N Curry in O'Farrell street. Shusmita did a lot of shopping from Union Square and we returned Fremont in the evening.

It was a pleasant short vacation and my wife is more inclined to rent in San Francisco for 6 months or a year. :-)

Last week I watched Will Smith's Hancock in theater with Nitol and Amin. Also there were 2 surprise (?!) birthday parties of mine. My parents will be visting us 18th July of this month and so I am planning lot of trips now for next few months.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Two Bengali Events in Bay Area and Sarkar Raj

Last 2 weekends we attended 2 Bangladeshi events. The first one was Sadi Mohammad's Robindro Sangeet & Others songs arranged by Porshi in Sabir Vai's house. I, Shusmita, Ahyan & Nitol attended that a little late in the afternoon as we were late to get back from Pakwan Hayward. Shuvojit, Saneyat joined me and Nitol in Sunday lunch Buffet in Pakwan and Saneyat brought the old Notre Dame College's journal where we saw our 16 years' old pictures.

The second event was a Bangladesh-Kolkata Natto Mela in Pleasanton where Nitol, Ezaz, Shaki also joined us. Sayeem and Shorno came late in the evening to catch the Bangladeshi performance "American Dream: Bela Shesh Edition". It gave me a clear picture of typical NRBs living here.

Sarkar Raj came out last week and Shusmita was ready to let me go alone leaving her with Ahyan at home. Thanks to her, I sent an email for Guys Night Out to watch it in Fremont Naz initially for Wednesday. But people need at least one day time, so we later moved it to Thursday night. Nitol, Shahriar, Ezaz, Hasinur and me watched the movie at 8 PM show last night. It was the first and so far the only good Bollywood movie in 2008. It's as good as it's previous episode Sarkar. Once again it proved what Amitabh is capable of showing at his old age. Abhishek was good and Aishwarya didn't get enough chance to perform due to heavy weightege of the movie on Amitabh-Abhishek. The other guy I liked was Chandar. I believe people like Chandar are the base of an empire or Don.

Tonight we have a dinner invitation in Pakwan on the even of Tufail Bhai buying a Lexus S 250 few weeks back.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend Trip to Fort Bragg/Mendocino

We didn't want to loose the long weekend for memorial day and hence had a quick trip to Fort Bragg, Mendocino which is 200 miles drive from San Francisco Bay Area. Nitol joined us in the trip and we took his car as it turned out to be a good driving experience for him in his first long trip in his new car.

The idea to choose a less tourist-crowdy place was because as my parents are coming within next few weeks, we will anyway go to many tourist places in California. So we picked this area where our chances to go more than one is very less. Here are some of the pictures of our trip -

We started at 9 in the morning of 24th May Saturday. The drive through the Highway One was amazing. Ocean and Beaches in the one side, hills and trees in the other side. And every half an hour the road and sceneries change. That evening we went to Glass Beach from our hotel. We had nice dinner in Mendo Bistro.

Sunday morning we covered a light house in the Fort Bragg area. Then we went to the Skunk Train BBQ journey. There we saw one of the tallest, widest and longest living trees in the world - Giant Sequoia and Coast Redwood. It was a good experience and arguably the best part of our trip.

Monday, on the way to Drive Through Tree park in Leggett, we stopped for a while in Seaside Creek Beach in Mendocino and this beach was a unique one among many we have seen. We reached back around 9 at night. When we reached Fremont, we saw Tufail Vai's Just Bought Lexus IS 250 car. Good one to finish the trip with! Overall, it was another good trip!!

And today, Shusmita passed her DMV road test to get the driver's license finally.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

An Amazing San Diego Trip

Last weekend of April was one of the fast ones when I, Shusmita and Ahyan went to a 3 day trip to San Diego. It was a great trip in all sense. We had a little more than one hour flight in United Airlines from San Francisco at 25th night. By the time I got a Toyota Avalon from Alamo and checked in Holiday Inn Quality Suites in San Diego it was almost 2 AM there. Here are some of the photos of the tour.

The first day (26th) we went to Sea World. We watched the Shamu show in the noon and again the late evening. I would not believe a Whale can show such kind of gymnastics with other whales and it's trainers if I would not see with my own eyes. We also saw the dolphin show, Elmo's 3D show and many other booths.

The second day we spent in San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park which are about 45 miles apart. As I had the 5 day unlimited entry ticket fro us, we didn't have to worry about the queue or any additional charges for bus tours etc. While the zoo was no suprise, I liked the Africa Safari in Wild Animal Park. Ahyan enjoyed the beasts watching so closely, specially the lions when we were no more than 20 feet far in open land separated only by a 10 feet deep trench. This kind if distance a man eater Royal Bengal Tiger can easily jump even taking hunts in their shoulder. But may be lions are not as string and clever as Royal Bengal Tigers and that's why even this 20 feet distance is safe enough. Jewel and Mumu came in our late in the evening and propose to go for a long drive to LA for dinner. We were in a mood to accept the wild idea and Jewel drove us to Swadesh in LA that took hours. By the time we were back it was around 3/4 in the early morning.

The 3rd day we went to Sea World again as we were convinced that it's the biggest attraction in our trip. We had dine with Samu for lunch where the whales were within our touching distance. We had to catch the late afternoon return flight to SFO to end what was one of our best trips ever.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Calling Generation Bangladesh

Today is one of the rare days when I am sad. I just heard that my younger brother Rasel's new car got damaged in an accident in Dhaka with truck last Friday. Fortunately, no one was injured. Rasel is already running on edge after returning from London to settle down on business and finish his MDS in BRAC University. He just bought the new car with extreme desire by 16.5 lakhs taka only couple of months back. He is now running in garages and insurance companies the whole days and nights leaving his semester final and business in this crucial time. This is definitely a major blow to him.

And now while I am reading the article below I am feeling better when I read: Generation Pakistan is near the exit. Generation Middle is still running the show. Generation Bangladesh is here and rising.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Filed Tax Return for 2008

I filed tax return for 2008 last night in H&R Block. Although a little expensive, it didn't take much time and I will get some good (!) refund from both Federal and State this year as well. On top of it I should be getting some George Bush money as well in May like others. This money will be a good source for the staffs we are buying (LCD HDTV, Sofa, Bed etc) as a preparation for my parents visiting us in June. :-)

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

A Fantastic Yosemite Trip & More

Lots of things happened pretty quickly in last few days. Emon (Sazzad) and Saiful came from Atlanta to visit us last Thursday night (28th Feb). I & Nitol picked them from San Francisco Airport late at night. Liju and his newly wed wife Deepthy were waiting for us back home with Shusmita & Ahyan when we reached after midnight.

Nitol rented a Pontiac G6 the next morning that took us to Silicon Valley. We picked Sayeem from EBay first and then visited Google's office. Shahriar was waiting in Starbucks near his Cadence office. By the time we came back home and started for Yosemite, it was 1:45 PM afternoon. I booked a 2 bed room fully furnished resort in Bass Lake (15 miles from before Yosemite) via my trial time share for this weekend. Yosemite is one of my favorite places in California which is couple of hundred miles from Fremont where I live in. The roads to Yosemite are a little curvy and so Shusmita was anxious while we were driving at night.

The first night's stay was full of playing cards (29), random chats - specially the Therap time, so we woke up late in the morning. After having breakfast in the restaurant near the lake we reached Yosemite at noon. Here are some pictures from Nitol on the trip including Silicon valley and Bass lake.

This is the 4th time in last 3 years I have visited Yosemite. It's still the same beautiful El Capitan rock and Yosemite falls there. Although Bass Lake was new to me in this trip, I still liked the tunnel through which we enter the Yosemite rock area. El Capitan looks different at different times of the day based on the reflections of sunlight. And the first time I went just at the bottom of the Yosemite fall that was full of water - very very cold water. Fortunately the weather was excellent despite a snow storm couple of weeks back.

The next day, after spending another round in Bass lake restaurant to have breakfast, we started for home at 12:30 PM. On the way back, I was driving with high speed and as Nitol was following me, both of us got speeding tickets.

I hosted a small dinner party in Gulistan that (Sunday) night where Sayeem came with Shorno and Shahriar came with Sachi & Safwan. We left for airport at 8:30PM to drop Emon and Saiful.

Last night (Monday) when I, Liju & Nitol came back picking pizza from Pizza Hut, Shusmita gave me the great good news that my parents got visa for USA. They had to wait almost 7 months for FBI name check clearance but at last it's done and over successfully. It's so wonderful a news. I am very happy today!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Good day for Bangladesh Cricket

The first day (yesterday) of first test Bangladesh tour of South Africa, despite Bangladesh getting all out for 192 runs, Bangladesh managed to rip off top 4 South African batsmen only for 76 runs. Good fightback from us. At this stage, we want fighting cricket whether it ends up in win or loss, we want good cricket for long term improvement of Bangladesh cricket team.

Meanwhile in U-19 world cup Bangladesh defeated England in n exciting low scoring match to go into the quarter finals undefeated as the only other team than Pakistan. Incidentally, the Quarter-Final will be held between Bangladesh Under-19 v South Africa Under-19 at Kuala Lumpur - Feb 24, 2008.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Nobel Laureate Yunus on Bangladesh Achievements and Vision

Bangladesh is moving ahead in the right target despite many drawbacks. Dr. Younus talks about some of the socio-economic parameters supporting this. And let me tell you a few others.

* Bangladesh got Nobel Prize in 2006
* Bangladesh could reduce corruption and terrorism in last year
* Bangladesh is one of the top cricket playing nations having several achievements recently.

Listen to the video to know some more.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Sachin Tendulkar's 154 not out against Asutralia

Embedded Video

I watched the full innings of Sachin Tendulkar's 154 not out against Asutralia in the 2nd test, 3rd day of India-Australia mathc. I like Sachin like anything and this innings was very special to note because of his ability and willingness to partner with the tail enders to cross Australia's first innings total of 463 and take a 69 runs lead. Here are few links to know about him more.

Blogged with Flock

Thursday, January 03, 2008

New York TripThis Winter

Last half of the last month of the last year (2007) was full of events for me and my family.

Liju, Nitol and Shahriar dropped us at JetBlue counter in San Jose airport at 19th night. We had 4 luggages and 4 handbags as well as Ahyan's stroller, car seat. JetBlue exceeded my expectation being a local airlines, lots of leg space, very smooth take off and landing. Our flight started 10:30 PM California time and reached 6:30 AM New York time. Kakku was waiting for us to recieve and we could somehow pick all the luggage in his highlander. It was Eid Ul Azha as well. So once we reached Kakku's home at Elmhurst, Queens and met Aunt, my cousines Abir-Asif, we went for Eid prayer.

Before we came back at 25th in JetBlue, we had roamed around many places in New York. Kakku took us to a Manhattan drive at night. We went to Jackson Hights, Statue of Liberty in Liberty Island, Jamaica, Brooklyn. One evening we spent with Shusmita'd bosom friend Nandita and others while I had a nice time walking in Manhattan (Times Square, Medison Square, Macy's) with my friend Ullash there. Ullash kept big hair and surprisingly it was going well with him. At m y first visit in Jackson Hights, I bought lots of books and CDs from Muktodhara and in my second visit I bought some more. I was happily having Dunkin Donuts in New York (which I miss a lot in California), had Sagor's biriyani, Kabir Bekari's pastry/tea, Alauddin's tea as well as regular Bengali foods in my Uncle's house.

I had a gorgeous official party in San Francisco 14th evening where I and Shusmita went keeping Ahyan with Nitol, Liju and Meena behen at home.

My parents were having hajj in Saudi Arabia, so far without much trouble.

Our plan was to have the 31st night in Reno/Lake Tahoe. But Ahyan got suddenly a bad fever and we canceled the program. We had to take Ahyan to emergency when he was having ceaser, jerking and shaking. Ahyan is doing fine now although the fever is moving around from him to Shusmita to me now. The 31st night, we gathered in Shahriar's house and here some pictures from that.

Thoughts on Life, Death, and Overcoming Fear

I've been pondering a topic that's universally relevant yet rarely discussed - death and the anxieties it evokes. As I delve deeper ...