Monthly Archives: November 2006

Last date for receipt of Delegate fees

Yes. It is November 30, 2006. We will stop accepting payments at 12.00 Midnight…

 Accomodations: Please do not send emails to addresses other than as mentioned in the contacts page. Especially do not send it to This id is ONLY for registrations and confirmations of receipts.

 Secondly, please mention the date and time of arrival and departure and the trains. Helps us in booking properly. Also please do not forget the choice of rooms and mention if willing to scale down/up if the requested type of rooms are all booked.

 Thirdly, please mention if willing to share/extra bed requirement.


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We had their share of ghee too…

The meeting took place last Sunday as planned. The only unplanned situation was that except Sridhar and Adwaith, everyone else had prior engagements. But the pongal cooked nevertheless. And we made the most slurpy and delicious pongal for three utlizing all the ghee stocked up for a full house. Hmmm. I wonder if Adwaith had dinner. I did not. The cashews were fried brown in ghee before being added to the pongal.  Ground pepper and fresh curry leaves did their wonder. The ghee turned it into an ecstacy! Earlier, the Hinyana and the Mahayana schools of pongal cooking were at conflict. Sridhar wanted to add everything after cooking the rice and dal.  I wanted everything added before the cooking except ghee and cashews.  So we merged our schools and created a college..sorry collage of tastes. Overall it was my best pongal not prepared by my mother.

 The Convention? Well it was under discussion and we got down to the business and reconciled payments and receipts.


 ALERT: November 30 2006  is the last date for accepting payments. Thereafter we draw up the W/L number and go Early Bird.

 70 payments so far.

Accommodation requests are pouring in. Please note that acommodation at the Convention venue is limited.  Book today!

Electronic Clearances. I had contacted some of you about the confirmation of payments. The rest is a matter of time. No worries. Just book you tickets and accommodation.

 Reuqests for presentation slots are coming in. We are evaluating them one by one and preparing an exciting list. Please continue offering your ideas and material. Sneak preview: One gentleman has already taken the topic of railways in India: past vs present. Also something with respect to Google Earth and mapping railways. VSP garu is still silent. He must know that there is  an entire horde of IRFCAns who are going to compel him for a presentation soon.

 As usual, please contact Poochi for all video and photo exhibits.

2007 might see a good number of railwaymen attending the Convention. 

Finally, we are meeting again next week in full force. This time Bharath Moro would join us too.   A trip to the hotel for a dress rehersal of seating also in the pipeline.


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Contemplating Pongal this time…

The next meeting is proposed on Sunday, November 25, 2006. My place again. This time, I am considering pongal as the star dish. I must stock up some ghee, moong dal and cashew nuts. If it continues to rain, piping hot pongal would be THE thing to eat.

Today, I am going to Madurai. To do the Bodinayakkanur stretch of MG again. This time, Vivek Pillay and Bizzy Mishra will join me from SBC. Before I go, an update:

63 payments have been received

All snail mail receipts have been acknowledged by mail. If someone has not received a confirmation, please contact Gowri Shankar (See Contact List) .

All electronic clearings transferred to Sridhar Joshi’s account have been acknowledged. Same thing as above for non receipt of acknowledgements.

The issue is with the electronic remittances to Brahmma Features directly. We have received 6 remittances so far. The delay is with the bank. They have to tell us who have remitted. We have been dogging them for long for the names. Hopefully by tomorrow, we would know and Gowri’s deft fingers would shoot out the acknowledgements.

Wait List. Yes, IRFCA Convention has a wait list. No cancellations so far. Going by the count of the registration mails post deadline , there are 11 W/L . So the reservation status is WL/11/11.

Here is what we propose to do:

We wait till November 30, 2006 for all registered members to send in their registration fee. Thereafter, we shall abolish the registration chart, calculate the number of vacancies as Total Number of Seats – No. of Payees and declare it here on the website. From December 1, 2006 onwards, we shall register anyone on a first-cum-first basis provided we receive the delegate fee from them. So keep checking for the status.

As I said: 63 payments so far. 22 to go. 85 seats in all.

Remember the last date: November 30, 2006.

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MAS 2007 Contact Information

Delegate Fees, Bank ECS, Acknowledgements and Confirmations:

Sridhar Joshi –              +91 9444339333    email:
Gowri Shankar –            +91 9444081702   email:


Ranganath Eunny-         +91 9840564217  email:
Sridhar Joshi –              +91 9444339333   email:

Speaker/presentation slots:
Gowri Shankar –           +91 9444081702   email:
Ranganath Eunny-        +91 9840564217  email:

Rail fanning trips, suggestions and help:
S. Aravind –                 +91 9884258510   email:

Photography, videos and exhibits
‘Poochi’ Venkat           +91 9444023200  email:
General Queries:
Ranganath Eunny –       +91 9840564217   email:
Sridhar Joshi –              +91 9444339333   email:
Gowri Shankar –            +91 9444081702  email:


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Recipe for delicious vegetable upma

Last Sunday, Sridhar Joshi called. Meeting at Gowri Shankar’s place. Poochi and Aravind also arrived. In Gowri’s cramped room we discussed and discussed….lot of things; amongst them a few issues regarding the Convention too. Yes…it is quite difficult to focus. Rail fans have so much to talk! Gowri treated us to some excellent pakodas and tea. Poochi regaled us with his Andhra trips. Sridhar had to call his wife and have a tele-check of all the payments made so far. 

I know a lot of you are wondering what happened to the cheque or DD you sent. Apologies.  We are all a bit busy as we have some mundane lives to live apart from rail fanning. Gowri and Sridhar are handling the payments party. Expect acknowledgements soon. By the way we have received payments from 59 people so far. The updates from the meeting were posted here till date. 

 Today is Sunday. Meeting at my home. This time Krishna Kumar also turned up.  As usual it was videos and discussions amongst the discussions and action plans on the Convention. In the mean time, Sridhar Joshi raided my kitchen and whipped up a delicious ghee and vegetable loaded upma and coconut chutney followed by hot coffee.  A few jokes and funny videos later, we were back to the big event.  Here are some updates from the discussions: 

 59 people paid so far. Numbers are not encouraging as of now, but hopefully by November 30, we would have 100% paid up capital. So please remember to send in the payment if you haven’t done yet. Remember there is an eager wait list for the event ever since we stopped registrations. 

T Shirt idea is alive. We are pursuing another alternative. The earlier one required a minimum number to place an order that was not met from the T shirt registrations, even including requests that came post deadline. Send no money now. But we will try to have the T Shirts ready on the convention day. 

Requests for slots for presentation are not coming in yet. A few have sought suggestions off line on other media. They have been advised. We have already lined up a few sessions involving railway people coming in as guests. A sneak preview: Expect something on the Nilagiri Mountain Railway’s heritage status. There is also something from Perambur Loco Works. We have left it to the gentleman we have invited, but expect a techie session like say, the POH of a WAP4 or something similar. Probably something from Mr. VSP no less. All your queries on PQWL and RQWL. Say how about a session on tips on how to beat the reservation system (legally of course :)) for that confirmed seat/berth. We have an expert in the man mentioned. But a sincere request….please persuade the shy gentleman on our behalf to present. Then there is the loco road number game that came to our mind. Is anybody game to do this? A quiz like the last time is confirmed. A Debate is being considered but not finalized yet. Perhaps a more moderated and serious one this time. 

 We are also planning a video and photo session similar to the first convention. A half hour slot for each. Members can send in their videos and /or photos on CD for the same.  There will be a selection made here of course. But a word or two of caution: No footplate video or photo please.  Also please give some consideration to the quality and the USP of the work. Preferably footages and photos unpublished so far would be considered. Please send a synopsis of what you plan to exhibit before you actually send the stuff.  

Poochi is considering an exhibit of photo prints. Anyone with a great pic could contact him for the same. 

Once again, if you have something in your mind about a presentation, do contact us.  

OK…the recipe as promised in the title: 


A cup of Semolina, ghee, 3 cups of water, a carrot, a handful of fresh peas, An onion and a potato, 2 green chillies, a small piece of ginger, ghee, a pinch of asafoetida, a teaspoonful of mustard seeds and urad dal each, curry leaves, salt and Sridhar Joshi. 


Have a rail fanning meet at home. Invite Sridhar Joshi. Show him into the kitchen and provide the rest of the ingredients.  

Upma will be ready….eventually. Meanwhile have a Diet Pepsi. 



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Speaker/Presentations Slot

Folks, it is the Sessions time now. If you would like to speak/present at the convention, please do write to us before November 30, 2006 with a synopsis of your idea. If chosen, you will be asked to send in support material by January 01, 2007.

The slots are for half-hour each. A typical presentation would be for 20 minutes with 10 minutes for Q&A with the audience.

Projector, white screen and Lap-Top would be available along with the audio equipment.

The emphasis this time is on typical rail fanning activities. So if you have some good gyaan on say, loco road numbers or coaches or signalling or even track alignments, this is your forum!

If you require two continuous slots, please let us know. But please keep in mind that the half hour slots were made keeping the average audience attention span in mind. You need to have a really exciting idea for an hour slot.

We also welcome ideas that depart from typical presentation mode. If you have a highly interactive and participative event in mind, do suggest. We already have a quiz. We are also contemplating a debate.

Contact Gowri Shankar or Ranganath Eunny. Email ID and telephone numbers are filed under Files of the mailing list.
Looking forward for some bright ideas 🙂

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Added some info on rail fanning tips in Chennai. Remember the convention is held during a great weekend with 3 straight days of holiday. You might as well add a rail fanning session .

Check the FAQ Page for the tips.


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