Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mobile danger

Mobile danger

I always thought that using mobile phones while driving is a dangerous activity. I am now convinced that using mobile phones while doing any other activity is equally dangerous.

I read about two deaths that happened when those involved were crossing the railway track while listening to music on their earphones. They noticed only the train from one side and missed the fast one from the opposite side.

Here in the UAE too, I have read about a recent incident when a driver tried to send an SMS while driving, lost control of his car and perished in a collision.

It doesn’t end there. Just the other day, I was walking on the narrow corridors of a residential building.

A mother with a child in a pram and a daughter along with her were walking in a zigzag manner while talking on the phone. Whenever I tried to overtake and pass by, the mother  unknowingly blocked that side.

She was also not careful about her child who was walking ahead. The child rushed as the lift arrived and stood in the middle of the door before it opened.

Suddenly a man rushed towards the exit while talking on his phone. He hardly noticed the little girl and literally ran over her. There was total commotion, argument and blame.

Don’t you feel talking on the mobile phone should not be done while engaging in other activities?

Ramesh Menon

for SHORT TAKE, GULF TODAY Dt. 20.04.2013

To read it in original, please visit GULF TODAY online:

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Gold in short supply in Dubai

XPRESS reports:
Gold in short supply in DubaiBuyers come in droves to buy coins and biscuits

My comments as follows:

I believe the unexpected drop in gold price in UK market have forced the wholesale dealers in Dubai to hold their stock as reserves and wait for the market to move up again. If not, they will be incurring huge loss on stock they bought for high price which they have to release to the market to meet the demand created due to the current global scenario. I am sure it is the case in all the major gold markets, including India and in particular Kerala, where there is always a huge demand for gold. Those who have invested in gold, it is a time to hold on to it as prices will move up again. Those who have not invested in it, take advantage of the situation and buy some yellow metal for keep, only and only if you have reserve cash. However, caution to NOT USE YOUR CREDIT CARD for buying gold. You will regret heavily later.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

To read it in original, please visit XPRESS online.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Taxi ranks would beat queue-jumping

The summer is here already, and the heat is creating problems for those Abu Dhabi residents who have to wait for buses and taxis.

There are no sunshades available at many stops, and no discipline among those trying to board buses or taxis.

A lot of people jump the queue for taxis, while slower or more patient people have to wait forever.

I'd like to see dedicated taxi ranks in Abu Dhabi, with clear signage indicating where cabs should stop and where people should form queues.

Eventually I'd like to see state-of-the-art bus and taxi stops all across the city. And, if such a system comes, I hope all commuters abide by the rules.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
17th April 2013

To read it in original, please visit The National online.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Well done!

Well done!

(Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi) / 14 April 2013

Best wishes to Khaleej Times on its 35th birthday.

As a regular reader, I wish to congratulate the entire team for the excellent change brought in to the newspaper in print and online during the recent times.

The online edition is attractive and easy to read and save. Local and regional contents of importance are well covered in print. Sports coverage is one of the best with excellent tabulations and graphics whenever there is any prominent event happening.

To read it in original, please visit, Khaleej Times online.

An evening with Robert Rock

An evening with Robert Rock.

European Tour title at the BMW Italian Open in Turin - June 2011
 European Tour title Winner at the 2012 Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.

He is one of a few professional golfers that does not wear a hat while he plays, despite the sponsorship income it can bring!!!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Tips for emergency situations

Perseverance pays

Perseverance pays

I believe having good language skills is essential for building communication with people.

As for me, it is part of my routine to master different languages through painstaking practice.

For most languages, I’ve managed to achieve mastery by learning from books and from Internet courses, without having to take recourse to formal tuitions.

However, for some difficult languages, extensive training is required for which I try and attend classes.

At a particular language institute the other day, I happened to meet my teacher who taught me French some years ago. After finishing my course, it was the first time we were meeting.

Along with her, was a girl – a local. Conversation took off in French, and suddenly I found this girl was conversing fluently in the language. I was quite surprised, which my teacher picked up — from my reaction. 

With a smile she introduced me to the girl and said that in addition to French, she could speak in quite a few other foreign languages, including Urdu and Chinese, which she was now learning.

She added that it was as a result of the girl’s interest and determination that she could devote a minimum of three hours daily — after her work — to study new languages. It’s no wonder that she showed amazing progress in foreign language skills.

I am sure, the country will have a bright future with this kind of determined youth.

For Gulf Today - Short Take Dt. 13 April 2013

Friday, April 12, 2013

Am I Singing Right?

Manirang presents - Am I Singing Right? an extremely interesting and first of its kind in the history of Abu Dhabi programme by eminent musician Dr. Sreevalsan J Menon along with Dr. Preetha Menon, renowned Psychotherapist and academician on 12-13 April 2013. Open forum for rasikas tomorrow at ISC Mini hall from 1:30 to 3:00 pm. Closing ceremony follows with distribution of score cards and certificates.

For more information, please visit

3rd Overseas Indian Cultural Congress forum at Abu Dhabi.

ISC Abu Dhabi decorated for the 3rd Overseas Indian Cultural Congress forum being held at Abu Dhabi.

Tempting - not to cut but to click!

Putt with Robert Rock

Putt with Robert Rock, European Tour title winner at the 2012 Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship,
Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
11 April 2013 @ Emirates Palace Hotel, Abu Dhabi

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Tremor reminds us of the need for emergency drills

I felt the tremor at Abu Dhabi Mall on Tuesday (High-rises evacuated amid quake tremors, April 10), and I would like to make some observations.
If ever such an alarming situation happens again, and instructions are given to evacuate, people should not prolong their stay within the premises by asking questions such as “When can I come back?”, or continue with their meetings, coffee or telephone conversations.
They should leave immediately, taking the suggested route to the safest location in the open.
Equally important is that people should not rush towards the basement car park to move their cars out of the building.
This created chaos and confusion. I think the doors to the car park should have been blocked.
With the number of high-rises increasing, I think building owners and the civil defence authorities should conduct regular exercises to educate people how to act in such situations.
Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi


An old man relaxing at one of the benches at Abu Dhabi Corniche

High-rises evacuated amid quake tremors

Roundabout raises curiosity

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

High-profile meeting will discuss Indian expats

High-profile meeting will discuss Indian expats

Non Resident Indians (NRIs) from UAE keenly observe and participate in all progressive activities happening in India.

It can be visibly observed by the number of print, online and electronic media and associations that are operating within this region actively discussing the day to day actions.

Economic air travel facility is the first and foremost item of interest for the middle and lower income class population of the NRIs. The government operated airlines have turned out to be not reliable due to several reasons. At times, they have seen to be operating at costs higher than the competing airlines.

To ease up travel tensions to Kerala, the promised Air Kerala is looked up on by all malayalees. The assurance of having it set up and operated by Vishu (Malayalam new year) is two days from the date of this meeting, there are no signs of it taking up. Probably the CM of Kerala cleverly did not mention the year it will begin. So, how and when it will materialize and how far it will effectively reduce the cost of travel is to be seen as it happens.

Voting rights for NRIs from their country of work, if given will definitely bring about a phenomenal change to the outlook towards their demands and actual requirements.

Abolishing strikes or stoppage of educational hours should be a solution thought about and promoted by OICC and sold across to all parties to bring in a smooth flow of classes and curriculum once a student is enrolled. Peaceful protests and expression of freedom of thoughts should be allowed without interruption of classes should be implemented by bringing out an all party consensus to the current situation.

OICC should also work on measures to bring strict legal frame work to have a strict no-no to public damaging of properties by any protesters. This should be enforced by a joint political consensus discussed and finalized within shortest time of legal and legislative framework.

A single window processing channel for NRI investments which monitors the entire life span of each project and assist them till it become a success and after should become a reality.

Road, transport and infrastructure facilities are in pathetic conditions in several parts for a long time.  Considering the plight of Kerala roads, conditions of the roads connecting the border states are deplorable causing huge loss in terms of time, safety and convenience of lakhs of commuters every day.

On the health sector, NRIs and general public look forward to availability of quality medical services. Medical assistance for emergency and critical care illness should be made available at affordable cost and guidance cells should be created to route patients to such facilities with least hazzles.

Quota for NRI students in educational institutions should be increased and appropriate measures to safeguard them during the initial years to better adapt them to their home country should be taken care by Human Resources Development.

Hygiene issues and waste management problems in all major cities.

As this forum is being lead by Kerala Chief Minister and as Kerala State government is promoting various lotteries for developing different projects. Why not a lottery specific for the welfare of NRKs? It could be sold at all Airports and regular distributors and funds could be utilised for the overall welfare of activities aimed at NRKs and NRIs in general.

Collection centres should be opened within UAE for the processing of Pravasi Identity cards.

On a lighter note, through his Janasamparkam programme, we wish to see the Kerala CM periodically to interact and familiarise himself the actual problems related to NRIs/NRKs.

To read it in original, please visit Gulf News online

Emirates flies more Indian passengers than Air India

Nothing special in this high acceptance by international passengers towards Emirates. It is just because of the quality and quantity of service provided by Emirates is way above reach than Air India could cater. Operating to most of the major destinations in India and then from Dubai connecting to all the major work and tourist destinations worldwide, Emirates offers a reliable and dependable option with service quality. Many occasion of fare comparison between Emirates and Air India, one get to see a better fare with added travel value for opting Emirates. Timely departure and arrival with extra offers for transit are added attractions. No wonder, majority or even all the Politicians, celebrities and government and corporate employees prefers Emirates for their travel from India to different destinations. If one gets to see any of these parties opting Air India as their first choice, that will be the big news to read.

To read the Gulf News article related to this post, please visit Gulf News online.

A note on the Iran earthquake of April 9, 2013

A note on the Iran earthquake of April 9, 2013

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Old boats rested at Mina, Abu Dhabi.

WYSIWYC - What You See Is What You Click - Daily Passionate Clicks of Abu Dhabi - Old boats rested at Mina, Abu Dhabi

A reminder to the days when my mother in law recovered after her chemo treatment and we used to go for evening walks at this beautiful side of Abu Dhabi from where we could see a major part of the Abu Dhabi Cornichse. Memories - please Rest in Peace…

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Hurray - Its raining in Abu Dhabi - 6th April 2013

It started with dust storm and now it is raining. Good to moderately heavy rain with thunder and lightning, unusual for all Abu Dhabi residents. Enjoy the rain, but drive safely if you are on the road.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
06th April 2013, 09:40 pm

Caution – Foot over bridge work in progress! - Kadugodi pedestrians over bridge issue update

Caution – Foot over bridge work in progress!

It’s an interesting site to note. At last the foot over bridge work in progress..

A big caution – as announced in the sign clearly. We all do not know how long it will take to finish.

As written wrongly, there are several wrong things associated with this construction project taken up by the authorities. It may continue for a longer time than we all expect.

So, watch your way. There are no barricades, no protection, no safety measures to safeguard public who move around towards the railway and bus station.

I am really amazed by the service standards and approach towards safety of one of the leading government organisation of India!.

With absolutely no lighting at night, I wish this project site does not become another accident spot.

Please Take Care, and also call all those who supported in the cry for this foot over bridge to continue watching and keep our cry loud and clear till it becomes a reality.

Ramesh Menon
Picture courtesy : Jayanth Bhat

Celebration time is approaching

Celebration time is approaching

On April 17, The National is going to be five years old. It's a date all news lovers in the UAE remember as they received their first copy of the newspaper and saw it online for the first time.

The newspaper stands out by virtue of its excellent content, both local and global, as well as clear presentation.

I am happy to have been a reader of The National from the very beginning. All of us should celebrate this milestone.

I wish you all the best.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

To read it in original, please visit The National online.

Stub it out

Stub it out 

Smoking is an addiction. Several times we are in a work environment where colleagues like to smoke. For some, it is difficult to quit for whatever reasons. These days, fortunately, we have special smoking zones located away from the building entrance.

I have a colleague who is junior to me in age. Whenever I see him going out for a smoke, I request him to stub the habit out. He merely smiles and proceeds his own way. Our office is situated in a high-rise. We operate from different floors, his being in a lower one.

One day, as I was waiting for the elevator to go upwards, this colleague came rushing to go down for a smoke.

The lift that arrived was going up. I told him to join me up first and then go down to the basement. I continued, “You don’t stop smoking. By holding you back for some time, at least I could prolong some precious moments of your life away from your self- inflicted suicidal habit.”

He smiled and has promised to try quitting the habit.

Ramesh Menon

To read it in original, please visit GULF TODAY online

Friday, April 5, 2013

Mandatory GPS

Mandatory GPS Many of the leading airlines in the UAE provide the limousine service to pick up and drop off their business and first class passengers. However, recently it has become a nightmare to deal with the transport companies that carry out this service on behalf of the airlines. The guests are confirmed and then reconfirmed of their booking and address, two days prior to their departure. It is then followed up with a phone call, when the guests are given the contact number of their driver. Beyond all this, on the day of travel the driver usually finds it difficult to reach the passenger’s given address at the promised time, which leads to worries about the delay in reaching the airport on time.

Guests sometimes hire a taxi or ask a friend for an emergency drop off. This happens, I believe, when the transport companies use drivers based in Dubai to pick up passengers from Abu Dhabi or vice versa. I humbly request all major airlines functioning in the UAE to make it mandatory for their service providers to install a Global Positioning System (GPS) in their vehicles. This would save the hassle for both drivers and passengers. In addition, an effective implementation of GPS in all taxis within the cities should also be thought about and incorporated soon to make our transport system much more efficient.

From Mr Ramesh Menon,Abu Dhabi

To read it in original, please visit GULF NEWS online

​Run to fight cancer

​Run to fight cancer

The Pinkathon movement promotes awareness about breast cancerwhich has a high incidence rate amongst Indians. It is the second most common form of cancer with the number of new cases being reported rising yearly.

A majority of the new cases are caught in advanced stages, thereby increasing the mortality rates. Most of these cases are reported fromurban India with the metros of Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata figuring prominently. Breast cancer in these areas is three times more than in rural India.

Apart from genetic causes, women with higher educational qualifications and an adaptation of the westernized lifestyle are more at risk of contracting breast cancer. A point to be noted is that breast cancer when detected in the early stages, is one of the most curable forms of cancer. Self-examination, clinical examinations and mammographic tests are the basic steps involved.

The Times of India presents Pinkathon in association with Times Foundation

To register SMS TOIBFW PINK YOUR NAME to 58888
Date of Marathon: 7th April 2013
Venue: Sree Kanteerava Stadium
Time: 6.30 am Free:
First 500 registrations before 29th March
Registrations close on 31st March 2013

My comments as follows:

I sincerely wish it create the awareness in the most genuine way. Most of the time, these runs create only momentary awareness and all forget the danger that is slowly affecting most of the women. Awareness on Breast Cancer should be taken to all level through continuous Corporate and Social participation. Regular presentation to schools and colleges to make young girls and working women understand how to do a self examination and how to monitor if there is any signs of it. They should be also encouraged to pass on this knowledge to their family and friends. Let no life be lost due to Breast Cancer

To read it in original, please visit Times of India Online.