"When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great, and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be." - Patanjali

Monday, October 31, 2005


An extraordinary innings took place today in the picturesque city of Jaipur today. Chasing a difficult 299 set by Sri Lanka, India was carried to victory by a stunning kock by Mahendra Singh Dhoni. He made 183 of only 145 balls, which included, 15 fours and 10 sixes. About two-thrids of his runs came with out having to run, and he was on the field for the entire duration of the game bar the first five balls of the Indian innings.



Firstly, happy Diwali to all.

Secondly, here is an article from the editorial pages of the Indian Express. It captures the mood of the moment and the spirit of the people. Below is a complete recitation:

Spirit of Diwali
Heinous acts of terror will not extinguish it

Over the years, Delhi has been the historical site of great violence. It has also been the natural target of those who wish to attack the idea of India. The three calibrated acts of mass murder that disturbed its Diwali and Id preparations on October 29 must necessarily be read as part of that continuum. Once this is understood, it becomes easier to examine these events more dispassionately and respond to them with the resolve, courage and action they demand.

The intention of the faceless perpetrators of these acts of terror were three-fold. First, to spread mass panic and fear among Delhiites. Terrorists, by making ordinary helpless and defenceless persons their victims, expose at once the brutality of their project and the cowardice that marks their moves. Second, to attack the democratic republic of India with the aim of weakening it. Third, to undermine its unity by pitting community against community at a time of heightened tension. In none of these intentions did the perpetrators of the recent outrage succeed. In that lies India’s victory. The people of Delhi, and its institutions, rose as one in the face of the assault. The man on the street rushed to rescue the injured and dying; fire brigade squads and hospital authorities worked indefatigably to mitigate suffering, the police succeeded in restoring calm quickly. Greatness is sometimes thrust on the most unlikely in apocalyptic moments. The bus driver who threw the explosive device out of the vehicle, hurting himself grievously but saving innumerable lives on the bus, or shopkeepers in the affected market areas who decided to go back to business the very next day because they did not want to give the perpetrators the satisfaction of having paralysed Delhi, these are the unsung heroes of the hour. Together they demonstrated that heinous acts of terror will not extinguish the lights and spirit of Diwali.

The inevitable question as to why the Capital was not adequately secured at a time of great vulnerability needs to be asked. Bali happened just the other day; London, just the other month. The presumption that Delhi will some how be spared such strikes is a dangerously flawed one in a country that witnessed the serial Bombay blasts of 1993. If that was an old story, how about the recent storming at Ayodhya? Or the Delhi cinema blasts some months ago? Or the recent spurt of attacks in J&K after the earthquake? How much more evidence does this country need that it is in the line of fire? The resolve of terrorists can only be defeated if we display an even greater resolve to defeat them.

Well said.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A space for hope

The norm for sport stars these days is to live a life of luxury and excess, dining in fine restaruants, holidays of the most exotic nature, and cars swimming in the latest technology.

So with that back ground it has heartening to read of some stars spending their off season in more meaningful pursuits, giving back to the community, despite having no obligation to do so.

The most famous Australian celebrity to do so has been Steve Waugh, whose work in India has raised headlines through out the cricketing world. It would be great to see many stars be a credit to themselves and their country by adopting more of these initiatives to level the playing field, and to provide hope to those less fortunate.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Banglores Woes

The second topic is with regrads to Bangalore, and how the city has failed to capitalise on the IT boom. The Express is running a series of reports on the problems plaguing the city and state, at whose heart, the issue of the Bangalore-Mysore expressway lies.

The project has been running for almost a decade now, and still has long way to go. It has been beset with legal challenges, accusations of land grabbing and gross impropriety by members of the government. In the mean time, other cities have picked up the baton, while Bangalore's advantage slips away.

The end is nigh?

Reading the Indian Express this evening, I came across a couple of articles which truly indicate the distance India has to go, in order to wipe out corruption and the part "influence" has to play in the running of soceity.

The first deals with Sourav Ganguly and the supposed end to his tenure in the one-day team. The article concludes with the following:

"Then again, there’s always that one man who can turn Indian cricket over with a single phone call—Jagmohan Dalmiya. But Dalmiya is caught up in a whirlpool of court cases and the crucial BCCI elections scheduled in November. If he wins, he’ll be back in the middle, batting for his favourite player. If he loses, the Ganguly chapter is well and truly over."

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Quite chilling

On a serious note, I came across this site and its given me the creeps. Apart from the "progress" being made in Iraq, the number of people, both military and civillian, who have lost their lives is reason enough for the United States to fast track an exit strategy out of the Middle East.

Many of the faces belong to bodies younger than mine, or only slightly older. All of these people would have been like me - they have ambition, they want to make something of their lives, to serve their country, and all they have served in is a point less occupation, which more and more seems like Vietnam, and later the Russian invasion of Afghanistan. The others, 30 plus, must have left behind wives, children, parents, siblings...what a tragedy.

Stupid funny?

...only on Non-Sequitor

My fav pic atm...

...taken in China by Chromasia.

(view it full size for the total effect!)

Competition in the TV world

Ordinarily competition is between companies who are after increased consumers for their airlines or retail stores. Here is an example of its use in the global television industry.

Cynics (such as me) may even suggest that this is a way to influence the popular Islamic masses by propogating the messages in a form that is easily understood, to head off, firstly, any signs of ignorance, and secondly, to send a Western point of view on many issues that would ordinarily be a free hit to those sympathiesers of the Islamic cause.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

A Little Something About...Ben S. Bernanke

...the govenor-elect of the Fed Reserve and also the new Worlds Most Powerful Man.

A nice, but brief article on the man in the NY Times.

Rosa Lee Park

All news agencies the world over are covering the death of Rosa Lee Parks. Rosa Parks was the inspiration behind Martin Luther King's civil rights movement, using her experience on bus in Montgomery, Alabama as motivation to achieve parity amongst all races of people in the United States.

In fact she refused to move to the end of the bus for a white passenger. Reverand Jesse Jackson eulogises:

"History knocked on her door, and with quiet courage she answered with non-negotiable dignity," Jackson said. "Her light in darkness illuminated the path for the majestic leadership of Dr. King. Together, they changed the course of American and world history."

God is back

Guess who's back?

An inexperienced Indian team put up a better than expected showing against a more experienced and talented Sri Lankan team. In the end India won my a massive 152 runs.

Anand Vasu decribes Sachin on cricinfo:

You would scarcely have believed it has been six months and eight days since Tendulkar had a hit in international cricket. More recently, he went under the surgeon's knife and suffered a rehabilitation period so debilitating that he could not pick up a cricket bat for the best part of it. There are few more cruel things you can do to Tendulkar than prohibit him from batting. The earliest indication came off just the second legal ball he faced - a fullish ball outside the off stump. Tendulkar reached for it a touch more thanhe would perhaps normally do, anxious to be back in the mix, and limed the ball through cover to the advertising hoardings in front of the Kimji-Phiroze Bilimoria Pavilion, where not one person was still seated. Then came a pick-up shot that could not be played by a man with one good hand - the ball sailed high for six over midwicket. A trademark on-drive, just about a push, raced past the bowler, and one journalist could not conceal his glee in the press box. "God is back."

Let normality return.

Monday, October 24, 2005

The state of our information

These days I rarely watch the evening news. Last night however I was home ana the TV was unoccupied. So I switched on Channel 9: the quality of journalism is far superior than the other commercial networks.

Leading the bulletin was the tragic news that celebrated rugby player Phil Kearns accidentally ran over his youngest daughter in the drive way of their Mosman home while driving a 4WD. Following this were stories on the latest hurricane of the coast of Florida (which included four league players being trapped in an underground carpark while deluged by rising waters); the perilious state of a young Australian in Singapore who is facing the death penalty for exporting drugs; and the (quite literal) rotund shape of people in the state of New South Wales.

That, of all these important stories, the episode of Kearns' calamity should headline the news, shows the level of tabloid journalism which afflicts the commercial networks. Its not to say that what happened was not sad, however, given the other events of the day, and in some case, the many more lives destroyed in fates administered by fellow members of the human race, the case of Kearns should have been relegated to the lower ranks of the news.

This case was not limited to Channel 9, but also to the Sun Herald, and its more respected broadsheet, the Sydney Morning Herald, where the case received the same level of prominence.

What does this point to? What does this say about society and its direction? Do we seek refuge in the fame of others? Are we unable to place importance where its due? Perhaps this is the result when even the Prime Minister of the country also makes mention of the tragedy in a press conference. His actions are slightly permissable given the nature of politics.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Red Fort...

...courtesy of Saad Akhtar

PS Looks even more incredible when viewed full size (click on the pic), you lose yourself, you immerse yourself as though you were there...

A change

So I had a post saying why I used the nic indianbookie. Well I decided to ditch it. Time to grow up and admit who I am!!!

So if you made it this far, you have the address...

A glimpse at the new Team India?

The potential of Greg Chappell outlined really well by Sandeep Dwivedi in "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

Saturday, October 22, 2005


With anything of great magnitude, a measure of one's committment to the task can be what is given up to achieve it. I look at my situation, and see what I have gien up, what I am giving up today, and what I will be giving up in the next half year or so.

For the last five or six months, more often than not, I would be at work on a Sunday, plying away, by myself, all so I can charge double time (would I do it for anything less?) for those hours. I've effectively worked a six day week. I missed out on classes I could have gone to, time at home with the family, time with friends. In fact, I could have changed jobs, earnt more, started a "career", yada yada yada...

This afternoon I was at CK's place, and aftre biksha with the Brahmacharis, there was a camp meeting. Had I been around, this is one thing, I would almost be running. Similarly, theres the Intensive, and it would have been great being there. I will most certainly miss this place and all these people when I'm away.

The simple argument, though, is that I will be experiencing and doing so much more than what people ever get the chance to do. That I find it ok to stop my routine life for this time period and go on an adventure, is unique, and given the chance, almost everyone would do it. So I'm fortunate to be in this position. The only thing though, is that I could bottle up the events of my familial and friends lives, and keep it with me over there. Its selfish, for sure, but these are the reasons why I will come back.

So to all those with weddings, engagements, 21sts, I'm sorry I can't be there, but I assure you that I'll make up for it when I return. You can also live with the knowledge that I'm having the experience of a life time, and it takes such a thing to keep me away from you all....

Friday, October 21, 2005

Editing pics...

Recently, I put up a post on pictures and sites and blogs such as Chromasia, and Lonely Planet Images and so on.

Well, a constant dose of all that, and now I've started playing around with images, to see what I can get. I took a pic tonight, and I'll show you my handy work. Its not a particularly poignant pciture, or one that has great meaning or depth, but a picture, greatly altered. I used Picasa, and here are the results...


So the net effect is that I want an SLR! In my current state, thats well beyond my means, but in the meantime, I'm more than happy to play with my Powershot!

A Little Something About ME

So by now, I've been at this for about a month or so, and you're probably wondering who is this person, this writer of the pathetic, a patron of the moronic, a carrier of journalistic pestilence????

Well, let me then begin with the story of the Indianbookie. How did I get this name? To my cricket loving fans, the term Indian bookie is synonymous with Shane Warne, Mark Waugh and countless other highly esteemed cricketers, all under the omnipotent umbrella of match fixing. Essentially, it was a msyterious Indian bookmaker who provided cash payments of about US$100,000 or more to these high profile players for "information" on the state of the pitches, the weather, and other easily accessible material. In some cases the players were found guilty of actually accepting money to throw a game, or affecting the out come in some way.

So, one day, in the January of 2000, when India toured Australia after an absence of seven years or so, I was standing under the score board of the Sydney Cricket Ground during the third test, minding my own business, when, at about 5pm, a couple highly inebriated, larrikin Aussie blokes, looked at me, the colour of my skin and decided to ask a couple of questions...

yobbo no 1: yeah so this should be good...whats your name? I bet ya, it takes him about 20 minutes just to say it [laughing hysterically to his fellow yob]
yobbo no 2: hahah nah, I reckon its Sachin!
yobbo no 1: yeah, hows things the dressing room? couldn't hack gettin flogged???
yobbo no 1 & 2 are now in hysterics
yobbo no 2: or you know who he is???? he's the Indian bookie...hahaha...carn mate...how much did you pay em????

All the while I'm just standing there, hanging out, trying to avert embarrassment, as many eyes were pointed at me...I left the area just then and went home and sulked about losing and also about being made fun of, but then, with those of guy's I should have expected it.

At this point, I bet you're probably expecting me to come blazing with fierce determination to fight this racial profiling and make a stand and so on...but alas...no...I just adopted the name cos it sounded cool, and I couldn't be stuffed being another "star_prince15" or "w_a_r_r_i_o_r" or some other bull shit.

So here it is. Not flashy, not comendable, but a name, a nic...an identity, a me.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The Navaratri Garba is...

...the most ideal place to meet someone...a likely situation...

opening line: (innocent, concerned tone) hi, this is the first time i've been to a garba and i don't know the steps...can you teach me?
him: oh yes yes ...this i've been doing my village for so many years in garba in
gujarat (or he may even say London)
you: oh really? you must be such a pro! can you show me the steps...and please go easy!
him: oh anything for you, anything!!!

and then you dance the night away...

you occasionally stop for a break to have a drink, while he pops his blisters (although if he were a true guju, instead of blisters, they would be polished metal, so he can dance better), while telling you how he milked the cows back at the farm...

the midnight hour strikes and you flee in your
mazda 3, and he chases you...you think you escaped until you realise your name is on your number plate...he searches and searches, all to no avail...one evening you go to Taj in Harris park for a quiet meal with the family...as you approach the counter, you find a waiter beaming his crooked teeth at you...they would be bright enough to blind you, but as he opens his mouth, he emits a toxic gas, also known as his breath....the yellow hue of his breath saves your eye sight, but now you're choking in the fumes...he asks "will you want some marry?", but in your terror of the fumes, you think he says "will you want some pani (water in Hindi?)" and you enthusiastically answer "yes, yes, save me!"...he pulls out a ring - kept just for this purpose - from a secret location in nipple high jeans and slips it on your finger all in one motion...at the same time you still yell "water, water", so he gets some water, and splashes it on your head, as a mark of a blessing...you're married the next evening and within 9 months your kid has popped while you lament the late arrival of the monsoons so your crops don't die in the wild gujarati heat...

so maybe you shouldnt go to the

Quite stupid...

...but still pretty funny!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Harriet Miers, please stand up...

...for Non-Sequitor, has immortalised you.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Thank goodness I'm a guy

Well, I bet that was an attention grabbing head line. And its true. To be honest, I had actaully decided tonights post was to be on things more deep and spiritual than the shallow sludge I'll shortly dribble out, which you will no doubt read and try your hardest to comprehend, what part of me may actually constitute "spiritual".

Well, anyways, the subject is true for a quite many few things, but what I'll say now, I only learnt of in the previous 30 minutes, so consider yourselves blessed for the front page is now swimming in a headline hot of the wires.

My bone really, has to do with invites. As you may know, my dear sister is due to be married shortly, for which our whole family of five - my Grandad doesn't count: he's probably the most resourceful and takes away as much as our excesses add - will impress upon the soil of Inida, our Western footprint, which, in real terms is probably equal to about a hundred or so Indians.

Back to the invites: when we last went to India, we went trekking, to a part of Bangalore, whose notorierty is not for IT, but for invitation cards. The place is stacked and crammed with all manner of shops and outlets, each having about 568743595 or so different decorations for the thirsty wedding parties. We were just another. So we trudged for about five hours, trying in vain to go through the multitude patterns colours and most importantly, Gods. Along the way there were conversations about how everyone has to make moeny, about how stingy the Guju's are, and along the way, we also lost a couple of the stragglers. While my Uncle and I sat for a rest to recover, my Dad and Sunita surged ahead, dancing around the crevaces to reach the Everest of invitation cards.

At the summit, still not happy with the choice, they too came back, and together we found base camp and refereshed ourselevs with some Thumbs Up and the usual favourite, Foorti (which incidentally, may also be a form of liquid food, because it is THICK!!!). In the end we selected the card from base camp, which has the unique distinction of being the FIRST CARD WE SAW.

So now, lets fast forward to the present day. I'll admit the cards look damn good. Infact, for my wedding I'd even risk being called unoriginal, and use the same style of invites - of course the girl I marry would probably slap me for it, but hey, I'll risk that as well!

But tonight, we were putting the inserts in the pouch - or "case" if you wish to be fashionably Western - which then go in the envelope. The pouch is almost the buffer between the inserts and sterile envelope. It adds a touch of class, or gives the inserts a superiority complex, for the inserts are protected from the outside world for they have Something More.

But these inserts - one for every different fucntion - are damn hard to get in to the pouch, which are then harder still to get into the envelope. All you people who recieve these invites better appreicate the skill with which we got them in. Actually, you probably will. After the invite has been opened, and you try to re-enter the inserts into the pouch into the envelope, only then will you see the master class required to handle these invites.

So the reason I'm thankful I'm a guy is cos all of this belongs to the girls side. I love the person who made this Decree. "Yep, you can do it!" So easily said, and damn, are we thankful we got in first!!!

Having said all that, the reality of the situation will probably be that she would complain that I take no interest in the wedding, and then I'll be dragged along to the selection rounds and, chances are that, cos she has so much else to organise I would do the slave labour of putting the inserts in the pouch and the envelope, but at least I'm armed with a Decree going back through the ages, although by the time I pull out this weapon, she'll throw some rubbish about a glass ceiling at me, and I'll be compeled to do the time...

Monday, October 17, 2005

That Pic

I was actually proud of that pic...I took the shot at my mum's birthday party in the gleaming India Quay restaurant. I resized and lightened a very dark the background. Her smile is what makes this great, as well as the hands casually placed below her chin...

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Every guy's got to have a pic of his mum...

The trip

So the trip: Essentially, I'm going to India on Nov 20, for my sisters wedding, and in the process, decided to stay back for a few months to travel, and to do some sewa, on the Himalayan foothills.

I've always wanted to do something like this, and now is a better time than ever. I'm resigning from my job, putting Life on hold, to lead and create another world, during which I can be freer than normal, to explore the land and myself, to learn and - hopefully - teach.

I've been to many of the places to where I'll be going. I've seen the sights, revered the history, floated amogst the frageneces, and sat dazzled at the confusion. I've also been comfortablly lapping it up, the hand of parents not far away, their correcting gaze a safety net awaiting use...its without these that I wish to test myself, so see if I'm able to live and survive in, essentially, a foreign land.

I don't speak (any of) the languages well. I never went to school there - I have been a mere tourist. I know I will be taken advantage of, made a fool of, duped, but on the same token, I want to over come these. Or try and see where it takes me.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

An update...

After much consideration, and much less emotion, I have decided to not go to Kashmir to help with the earthquakes. Apart from the logistical problems, the personal ones have been more prominent in this decsion.

Its not something I regret at the moment, but something which was a responsible decision.

The trip will continue regardless, and inhabit the same path as before. I will still see the devasted regions when I visit Kashmir but not at such an early juncture.

Actually its high time i shed more light on this Trip...not much can be gained from the shadows except that i'm going on this fantastical journey to somewhere doing something...slowly i'll try and open the door to my thoughts and motivations for going, what I hope to accomplish and what I expect my experiences to be.

So it shall come.

Stay tuned (with a little less angst)...

Monday, October 10, 2005

Nice article...

...on jazzing up domestic cricket in India


The ideal time to help

The devastation as a result of the earthquake in the Kashmir region may well prove to be an opportunity on the national scale, where two countries can unite despite conflict and history. In the vision for humanity, insignificance will be seen for what it really is.

On an individual level too, there is an opportunity to rise to the wants of the needy, do ones bit. To donate money, to send blankets, old clothes. A more direct way is to go there. To be part of the efforts. To get ones hand dirty in helping the survivors. To aid and assist the Lifesavers, for they too need assistance. One could help themselves as well. To open ones heart and mind to the concept of sewa, that is, slefless service.

This is what I feel I too should do. I am currently confirmed for a Malasian Airlines flight on the 20th of November. A little under 6 weeks to go. I could quite possibly pre-pone that to two weeks away, fly straight to Delhi and make my way to the Indian north west.

As usual, though, there are BUTS…quite a few…how do I get there – landslides cover many roads. What will I do once there? Who will I stay with? I hope for an influx of foreigners, but what if that doesn’t happen? Is it safe? There are many questions here in Sydney as well: do I have enough money saved for the remainder of the trip? Will my parents be convinced of my safety? There are many hurdles, but then, there were many on the path to this point.

To get where I am, the seed was planted a while ago, and soon, with time, the idea manifested to an action, and now the last 6 months of my life centred around this Trip. Could I possible add an extra, completely unforeseen, exciting, redeeming, dimension to an already amazing plan? I certainly hope so. Like those who remain trapped under the rubble across the two countries, my fate may well be decided in the next 24- 48 hours.

Stay tuned…

Sunday, October 09, 2005

An opportunity

On 8 October 2005 a massive earthquake has struck India and Pakistan. The epicentre, seems to be in Pakistan, with POK - Pakistan Occupied Kashmir - taking the larger share of the damage, both in terms of lives and physical structures.

In this calamity, lies a distinct opportunity like no other. In cooperation, the two countries have the chance to develop enormous good will and faith. Already India's PM, Manmohan Singh, and Pervez Mushareff, the Prez of Pakistan, have spoken on the issue and authorised commication at all levels of the goevernment machine. This is a promising start, but no doubt much will need to be resolved.

For example, the issue of whose territory Kashmis belongs to, will come to a head during reconstruction efforts. Which country foots the bill development? Who has the authority to approve and disapprove buildings. These things will certainly test both nations and it is up to the leaderships of both to determine once and for all what the status of Kashmir will be.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

A picture tells a thousand words...

...or so the saying goes, but one that I trully believe in. Recently I updated some of my links and more than some reference sites where one can find different pics, of different things, in different places.

I began this visual festish through the SMH, at work in the mornings. Its one of the first things I open to when I get in. It fills me with imagination through the multitude of different images which then lead to different thoughts, giving a differnt perspective of what Its all about.

Then there was this afternoon. Time magazine had a thing on the top 100 internet sites, and one category belonged to blogs. So I checked it out, finding the best picture blog to be Chromasia. It blew me away. The pictures are amazing, and theres a new one each day. Check it out if you have the time...

About an hour ago, while browsing Lonely Planet, I came across their pic site, Lonely PLanet Images (it never struck me to think a trvael guide company may actually have pics of the attractions visted: duh!) Brilliant piece of work. The database for their pictures is second to none. Under a search for "India" alone, it came back with approximately 6000 pics...thats decent...and I wasn't waiting forever. Each picture comes with a brief discription, the photographer as well as the location. Well woth visiting.

So give your eyes a feast, and let your imagination wander...the best thing you'll do in some time...

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Blame Game...

Nice little commentary on the New Orleans situation...

...courtesy of Non-Sequitor, of course.

Indian Railways: Part II

With great glee and enthusiasm, I issue an apology to Indian Railways. My faithful readers have emailed in hordes to inform me the site works. And so I too gave IR another chance and they did not let me down.

So it may well have been my computer at home or that the site may have been temporarily experiencing difficulties. But it works and query was satisfied.

Thank you to my faithful followers for saving me from the habit of ignorance to the guidance of knowledge…

Monday, October 03, 2005

Indian Railways (damn then!!!!)

So I thought I would finally sit down and do something about this trip of mine, and at least try and figure out where I'm going, when I get there, where I stay, what deodarant I use to fit in with the locals...

My major form of transport between cities will be train. They're a reliable (most of the times - this last time when I went to India, my train arrived in Delhi from Cal only 6 hours late; in 01, we were hangin out at Agra station for about 4 hours doing not much), efficient, cheap, not-so-clean, cheap, form of travel, where its quite easy to chat to a villian, who's probably trying to rip you off, or a business man on a business trip, who's probably trying to rip you off...

In anycase, I began by going to
http://www.indianrail.gov.in. Now if you want a word of advice, heres a couple. Don't go to this site! It took me forever to load, and once it did, the links of the pages led to nothing. Had I not actually been on a train in India, this really would not inspire any confidence in their trains. So I've given up on the webiste. In this day and age, I'm actually trying to find someone who may be coming from India in the next couple of months, so that I can use the hard copy - yes a 300 page book with all the times of every single train going from the one remote part of the country to another. But the website can't.

NRL Grand Final 2005

Sitting high in the perch of level 6, we zoomed in below to view the biggest game of the year, by a couple of the most unlikely teams to be there. Wests Tigers and North Queensland Cowboys. The Tigers were working of a shoe-string budget - or so the saying goes - and came out on top to defeat some of their more fancied rivals.

The Cowboys were smacked 50 - 6 less than 3 weeks ago, and then came back, with an unchanged line up, to beat Melbourne and Parramatta. The Eels were also minor premiers.

So this game then, was supposed to be a tad unpredictable. How could the Tigers handle the big game pressure? What if the little moments didn't fal their way, as it did when they played Brisbane and the Dragons? These aspects did show in their game in the first 20 minutes. Scott Prince and the Tigers team seemed distracted, and disorganised. They weren't going forward, and their kicks went straight to the man. Accordingly the Cowboys took advantage and scored first.

Again, this was not part of the usual game plan for the Tigers. But they stuck it out, and scored through an error by the Cowboys. Scoring a try proved to be the magnet for their concentration. They realised they were in a Grand Final and played accordingly. From then, till half time, the arm wrestle was slowly falling the way of the Tigers.

After half time the Tigers scored immediately, and that would have killed of any team. Yet the Cowboys tried again, and brought it back to a six point difference. In what was probably a mental blow, the Tigers hit straight back and kept the difference to 12.

Eventually the final score was 30 - 16, and a fairy tale was written. I found the whole thing surreal. The crowd, in their noise reminded me I was there, but it almost didn't seem to happen, or what was happening was merely the show after numerous practices.

It was great to be there, though, and having been to many Grand Finals and struggling to recall what happened in what, this one will definately stand out.