Looking China

In November of 2014 a professor of mine sent us an email about a film screening event at the College of Communication. Of course I wanted to be there. I even thought I’d make the most of it and write a blog post on it for the COM Grad blog. Now if you’ve clicked on that link you already know that it involves an all-expense paid trip to China. I knew from that moment that I had to somehow be part of this program.

So in the Spring of 2015 I took a Documentary Production class and began toying ideas for my story proposal. Lucky for me I have a good number of Chinese friends at BU. I thought about and discussed my proposal with one of them in New Orleans over Spring Break. She mentioned something about a dragon boat race and it so happened that the festival was happening at the time that the selected students would be in Hangzhou, China. This was exciting.

The theme for our proposals was ‘Individual, Family, Nation,’ and I learnt that 27 students, nearly all of whom were from the film department, were applying for the 8 spots available for BU. More pressure.

Now my friend and colleague, Jun Tsuboike was in my documentary class too. He was to graduate soon and was looking for a job. I was to begin summer break and was looking for an internship. We both needed something worthy of looking forward to. It had to be China.

If not China, I wanted to go to Peru. Prof. Poister informed us that someone he knew wanted two students to fly down to make a documentary on a diseased dog. Desperation was creeping upon me and I was ready for any sort of opportunity. I raised my hand as high as I could when he asked for interested volunteers. “I’d like to go to Peru Prof. Poister!” Poister has a slow manner of speaking. I find it humorous. But now was no time for jokes. In his slow pace he told me, that I couldn’t go to Peru…because, I was going to China! And so was Jun! We were both partially relieved, but didn’t want to be fully so until we got official confirmation from the Chinese sponsors. Word spread among friends though and one of them posted the following on Facebook.

Looking China_first reaction

Not only were Jun and I not ready to announce China, this Facebook post also made it seem like we were…erm, engaged or something. So Our friend took it down, but not before I could screenshot it. It was hilarious.

The official confirmation came a week or so later, and Hangzhou happened in June. It was a thoroughly enriching experience and I truly realized my potential, levels of dedication and made memories to last a life time.

The food probably deserves its own blog post but I doubt I’ll get down to it. Find a gallery of them below.

And finally, don’t forget to watch what I made of the trip!


Pumpkin drop at BU’s Physics department

On the morning of October 31st, nobody passing by the physics department would think anything special was to happen there in a couple of hours.

Inside the building, scientists were busy filling pumpkins with paint, adjusting their witch costumes, and creating concoctions that would spurt out of carved pumpkins.

The Physics dept. annual pumpkin drop turned 10 this year.

Here are some pictures from the event.


9 A.M at the Metcalf Center


11 A.M. The setting up of the scene


The 10th Annual Pumpkin drop


12 P.M. People arrived, some in costumes


Scientists found novel ways to entertain the crowds


12:30 P.M It began raining pumpkins


Could these pumpkins have been made into pie instead?


The audience waits for the biggest pumpkin to drop


The biggest pumpkin that weighed over a 100 lbs.


The aftermath

The eve of Eid, August 2013

It is quite a pity that in all these years I’ve lived in Hyderabad, I’ve never visited the old city during the holy month of Ramadan. The only way I joined in the festivities was by eating copious amounts of ghee-laden haleem.  Anyway, I was happy to have been at Charminar this year, minutes before the clock struck Eid.

The place was swarming with people and buzzing with activity. Young sales boys standing atop chairs screaming out discounted prices over mikes, babies looking over their mother’s shoulders, their bed times long forgotten. An array of things were on sale in pushcarts – from belts and buckles, bangles, attar and surma to neatly stacked khari biscuits and rusks.

Here are some photographs I took that night between 22:30 and 00:30 hours.


First, some haleem (for energy to push our way through the hundred thousand people there) from a ginormous handi. Mum thought the haleem in the city was much paler in comparison to the fare here, ‘too much wheat and hardly any meat’ she complained.

Little salesman

This little sales boy thought he might pose for me. Look how sweet he is!

DSC_0516 (2)



Surma and attar


Taqiyas or Topis


Bangle shopping at Laad bazaar


Colourful dupattas


Charminar, at 23:30 p.m.