In 2010 May, mainly due to my pc dying on me and I having to wait 3 weeks to get enough money together to buy this current laptop that I’m using, I started watching a lot of tv. By that I mean actually sitting in front of the tv and watching shows on the various cable channels. Lucky for me they advertised that they were going to show Season 1 & 2 of Castle on Star World and for the next few weeks (they were showing the series Monday-Friday) I watched amused as Richard Castle (Nathan Fillion) gets called by the NYPD when they find a killer offing people in similar manner to deaths in his novels. He is asked to assist in solving the case and the killer is caught. I started getting my own copies of the first 3 seasons.
Castle is a famous & successful crime novelist who found himself with a case of writer’s block after killing off the main character in his novels, Derrick Storm. Using his friendship with the mayor, he gets himself to shadowing lead homicide detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic), going along and using his insights to assist in solving crimes. He waives off the NYPD as to be held responsible if he is is injured or killed during the cases and uses Beckett as his inspiration for the new character of his books – Nikki Heat! Beckett, is a first-class investigator who has gained a reputation for being intrigued by unusual cases. She joined the force after her mother was murdered in an unsolved case.
Watch as Castle proves to be useful in solving cases and his wit, personality & charm endearing him to the captain & other members of homicide, including a reluctant Beckett. Season 1 is only 10 episodes long (shameful) but proved to be a big success and by the end of the season we see Castle firmly entrenched as an unofficial member of the homicide squad but did he go too far in re-opening the case of Beckett’s mom’s unsolved murder? The season ends on that suspenseful note as he brings up the courage to tell her that he has found some new evidence that could shed new light into the case.
Ironing! I hate ironing but at times I just must do it. Every Monday morning a Tamilian ironing vendor (iron man?) comes around to our building, just like he does to a few other residential buildings & houses nearby, and collects the shirts, pants & mom’s sarees if any for ironing. When he is not around there is a small shop diagonally opposite our building where you can give clothes for ironing or for dry cleaning.
Now I never give cloths for dry cleaning (haven’t in ages) but on occasion I have needed to depend on that shop for pressing clothes. Usually I get by with the Monday ironing but I do find myself having to iron shirts atleast once a week or so and I hate it. I hate it because I can never get it done as neatly as the Tamilian or the shop guy downstairs, who do it like professionals. I just can’t do it the way they do it.
After hearing of many promises since 2007-08 of the coffee giants Starbucks finally coming to India, looks like the wait is almost over. Last evening I first heard the news, from a Canadian on a 1 year work project in India, via Twitter when she sent me the link to a NYTimes article. After the government loosened rules about how single brand companies can invest here, the Seattle based Starbucks has entered into a 50:50 joint venture with Tata Global Beverages for starting retail operations in the country, a year after it inked a coffee sourcing agreement with Tata Coffee Ltd.
The retail venture, Tata Starbucks Ltd, will own and operate Starbucks cafes, which would be branded as Starbucks Coffee — A Tata Alliance. The two companies are investing Rs400 crore in the venture, which will function as a separate entity and have three directors from each company. Starbucks’ decision to go with a partner comes despite the fact that the government recently allowed 100% foreign direct investment in retail. For 2012, Starbucks has an outlook of opening 300 stores in China and the rest of Asia-Pacific. India will see 50 Starbucks outlets by end-2012, with the first outlet coming up in August or September, in Delhi or Mumbai.
For the record, the largest coffee chain in India, Cafe Coffee Day, currently has 1,200 outlets and will be 2,000 outlets strong by 2014. Other prominent chains, Lavazza Barista and UK’s Costa Coffee run 200 and 80 stores, respectively. This year will also mark the entry of US-based cafe chain Dunkin Donuts in India.