Who’s The One Who Brought The Jungle Fame?

When I was about 8 or 9, Kuwait’s national network started showing a cartoon series on their Channel 2. I hadn’t known that they would be showing a new cartoon but when I switched on the tv, this white, energetic drawing appeared and I was a fan.

Kimba The White Lion was a Japanese anime series from the 1950s. Created by Osamu Tezuka and based on his manga of the same title which began publication in 1950, it was the first color animated television series created in Japan. The English series started in 1966 (which were the ones that I saw). It’s the story of a young cub Kimba (Leo in Japanese) whose parents were captured by a hunter and after his father was killed, his pregnant mother is sent on a ship to be taken to a zoo. Kimba is born on the ship.

After a storm wrecks the ship, Kimba finds himself alone in the ocean, guided by fish & butterflies and encouraged by the face of his mother formed in the clouds. He is found and cared for by some people. He learns the advantages of human culture, and decides that when he returns to his wild home he will bring culture to the jungle and stand for peace like his father. The series follows his adventures as he grows up.

It wasn’t just a cartoon, it has a message and also tackled death. That was rare in cartoons that I saw and I just felt nostalgic for this series when I saw a photo of a white lion in Flickr. I think I’ll try to watch some of it online.

Offsite On Koramkotta Dweep

Like stated yesterday, from the office many of us were to go for a workshop followed by a party in the evening with drinks & dancing. This is an inter-departmental outing between Ops, Quality, Training and the company even sent along a girl from HR & a Security officer. Just in case things get a little out of hand, you know.

Our destination was Fortune Isle Resorts in Korramkotta Dweep (Islet) near Chitoor ferry – only thing is the resort is not longer under the Fortune Group umbrella. A individual business venture has bought the place and renamed it D resort. It’s basically unchanged except for the name and a few personnel changes.

Beautiful day in Marine Drive, Ernakulam town.

Well due to a few issues, we couldn’t conduct the workshop and a few people also couldn’t join us. But the party was still on. Initially we were to meet at the office by 11:30 am, take the bus to Marine Drive where we’d hired a houseboat to take us on the 45 minute ride to the islet resort. Well it was a little after 1pm when we boarded the two mini buses that took us on the ride to Marine Drive.

Once there us hungry people decided to buy a few packets of peanuts that were being sold by the vendors who sell their wares on the seaside walkway that is such a tourist and local attraction. We waited for an hour before the remaining members of our group reached after buying a few cases of beer and some vodka. Then we boarded the houseboat and off we went towards Koramkotta Dweep.

The bow of our houseboat

There was a loud music system on the boat that proceeded to play these stupid Hindi, Malayalam & Tamil songs that most people think are so cool. Nonsensical lyrics – words put together just to rhyme – and dumb repetitive words and annoying attempts at rapping. Anyway, the beer was opened and so was the vodka & 7up. I took two glasses of vodka & seven up and enjoyed the cool breeze that blows in from all direction of the house boat.

A huge ship

RFNS Moskva

On our way we passed many ships & boats near the shore. We also saw the RFNS Moskva, a guided missile cruiser docked at Cochin port. There were many Russian sailors & navymen on the deck and some of my team waved to them and tried to get them to wave back. Suddenly one of the missile  guns moved a little and I shouted “Look they are gonna blow us out of the water” and a few people screamed..but it was just me pulling their legs! Ofcourse they were not going to be bothered by a few people in a houseboat. It was just the vodka talking.

Pretty soon we reached the resort and once we docked, all of us got out and went to the garden/lawn area of the resort. They have some tables and chairs set up for either a meal or just tea and snacks if you want to. Unfortunately it was getting quite hot and I needed some rest and something cold to drink. They have a shack setup as a cool bar as well as they served beer there. Some of us went to quench our thirsts.

I had a bottled cold apple drink and then also got a glass of lukewarm beer. I told the guys that a) they have to get a couple of big fans out there and b) they definitely need to keep their beer ice cold at all times if they wanted more business from their shack.

Then there were some silly games being played but it was a lot of fun. The scenic beauty of the place is something else and I like a few others were spending most of our time enjoying watching the sea and the waves and people on boats as they passed us by.

The place also had a few animals & a bird; the resort personnel are raising two bunnies – a pure white one and a brown one – an eagle and a dog. I first saw the dog and went to him. He was a friendly, excitable little fella, a yellow colour like a lab but I’m not sure of his breed. He was tied next to a big round table and we noticed that he was thirsty as hell. One of us gave him some water in a bowl and he lapped it quickly. So we gave him some more and he lapped up half of it.

After playing with him for sometime, I noticed that some of the others were excitedly talking about something and had gathered around one of the tables. It was a bunny, a pure white bunny that was so cute and sweet looking. The poor thing had a broken ear, no doubt caused by some careless people who had handled him badly. A few of us put him on the table and fed him some leaves and petted him for a while.

We turn around and see that he was not alone there – there was another one. This one was a brown one. Sorry I couldn’t get a picture of him. But then they also had an eagle. No not Don Henley or Glen Frey, an actual eagle! It was a pretty young eagle and kept screaming at us. Everyone wanted to hold the eagle but then it was decided that it probably wasn’t a good idea.

After lots of splashing in the water (some guys stripped to their shorts and dove in, while the others only dipped their feet), we went into a shack that they had converted into a discotheque. A small room which some laser lights and loud music systems blaring similar dumb songs. But everyone got into the act and started dancing their asses off. Everyone, even people who I didn’t think would be dancing. Including yours truly.

About 90 mins of that, with a few drinks also being downed, people were hungry as hell. Most of us not having had lunch we were beyond starving. But dinner was served at 7:30 pm and we dug in like we’ve never dug in our lives. There were chappathies, fried rice, beef fry and chilly chicken, salad and pappadom. Everyone had atleast 2 helpings and some had more. Then we had ice cream.

That was followed by some really bad sing-a-longs of the loud nature. It was raining, lightning and pouring like hell by now and we were gathered in a hall that had a roof & ceiling but was open on the sides and got a little wet ourselves. That didn’t stop the enthusiasm with which they were singing. This went on till a little after 8:30 pm. The rains had lulled by then and we got into the houseboat and made our way home. We got off at marine drive and got into out buses which took us home. By 10pm I was in my room drying off.