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Monday, December 26, 2011

Hanging Out–Deep Sea Fishing off Kemari @ Saka 1 and Saka 2

Date – 25 December 2011
Departure Point – Kemari Port
Departure Time – 8:00 am
Wind Speed – 5 to 7 knots
Water Clarity – 0 to 2 foot
Waves – Ripple and Calm
Fishing Points – Saka 1 and Saka 2
Fishing Type – Bottom
Fish/Catch Type – Phuggia, Bream or Khapartaan, Rock Cod or Damba, Catfish or Khagga, Eel or Bam
Arrival Time – 8:30 pm

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Hanging Out–Deep Sea Fishing at Saka1 and Hara Makaan off Kemari Port, Karachi

We did it at last Open-mouthed smile

Click to enlarge

Alhamdolilah! we catch almost 60 kg – 70 kg of Fish. It’s one of the best fishing trip I ever had (out of 6 or 7 fishing tours in total).

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Special thanks to our Trip Organizer, Asim Siddiqui, who is fishing (as a hobby) for the last 18 years or so. He has all the necessary equipment, Garmin GPS locator, Sonar Fish Finder, Professional Fishing Rods, Tackles, Lures, etc. He guided us to the best fishing spots i.e. Saka1 and Hara Makaan using his Garmin GPS locator which contains all the “Numbers” (Fish colonies or concentration points) that he and others have found for the last 10 years or more using Sonar Fish Finder or practical experiences.

He also educate us with the terminologies, techniques and technicalities of fishing. And for the first time I get to know that all these years I was doing the Bottom Fishing or Legering. In this tour  we did the same although we had plan to experience Trolling as well, but we missed the ideal time i.e. before Sun Rise to do exactly that.

We were around 16 people or so and we left Kemari Port, Karachi at around 8:30 am. We travelled almost an hour and a half to reach Saka1 point. We did fishing for approximately 7 hours at Saka1 and another point called Hara Makaan. Its been an amazing experience, specially for us, because in all of the trips that we did so far, we weren’t able to catch much, but this one turns out to be Jack Pot!

Roughly we form 3 groups, our group of 7 people caught almost 18 kg of fish. Fish types include [ Name > English / Urdu ] Grouper / Ghissar, ?/ Khisi, ?/ Khapartaan, ?/ Dandiya. The biggest fish we caught was just above a Kg and majority of them were around half a kg.

Another first for us in this tour was that, we learned how to prepare fishing wires with reels, different weight sizes, different tackle types and their different arrangements based on different bite types Smile. Soooo much to learn!

During our trip we also heard large explosion sounds of Pak Navy War Exercise/Game in close proximity. We also spotted a Pak Navy Destroyer and a Frigate, others were too far but some of them can be seen as small spots.

All in all this trip was a great learning and entertaining experience for us and we enjoyed it a lot.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Hanging Out–Trip to Nagarparkar, Sindh

Saturday, 03 December 2011

05:00 AM – Departure from Karachi
06:20 AM – Fajir Prayers at Sunway Lagoon Mosque. See slideshow for complete pictures of the tour.
06:20 AM – Fajir Prayers at Sunway Lagoon Mosque
07:30 AM – Breakfast at Badin
07:30 AM – Breakfast at Badin
. Experience local breakfast dish called “Daal Khaagar”. See slideshow for complete pictures of the tour.

03:00 PM – Arrival at Nagarparkar
03:50 PM – Visit Jain Temple
04:15 PM – City View from Top of nearby Granite Mountain

04:45 PM – Back to our Rest House
04:50 PM – Asar Prayers
05:00 PM – Start cooking Chicken Karhai Gosht. See slideshow for complete pictures of the tour.
Chicken Karhai Gosht cooked by ourselves
. If you can not compromise on Quality and Taste of food than you have to either hire a cook for your stay or you have to cook it yourself. We bought the chicken from Karachi and marinated it in Shan’s Chicken Karhai Gosht Masala along with lots of curd. When we reached Nagarparkar the chicken was marinated for almost 18 hours and cooking it was as easy as heating the oil and dumping all the chicken and curry and leave it in mild flame for almost an hour. It was very tasty comparatively with what was available at local hotels/dhaabas, so much so that a local homeopathic doctor said that you won’t be able to find a dish in whole of Nagarparkar that’s as tasty as this one Smile
05:45 PM – Maghrib Prayers
06:00 PM – Tea
07:00 PM – Dinner
09:00 PM – Isha Prayers
09:30 PM – Went to sleep – Yes! at 9:30 Surprised smile

Sunday, 04 December 2011

04:00 AM – Woke up
04:15 AM – Breakfast
05:30 AM – Fajir Prayers
05:45 AM – Leave Rest House
06:30 AM – Ranpur Dam

08:00 AM – Choorio Village near Indo-Pak Border

10:30 AM – Kasbo Village

11:15 AM – Trekking on Karoonjhar Mountains
11:50 AM – Arrival at Saldaro Temple

12:00 PM – Departure from Saldaro Temple
12:50 PM – Arrival at Rest House
01:30 PM – Departure from Nagarparkar
02:05 PM – Arrival at Bhodesar Mosque

02:15 PM – Departure from Bhodesar Mosque
05:05 PM – Arrival at Khanqah Imdadia Ashrafia, Naukot – Asar Prayers. See slideshow for complete pictures of the tour.
Asar Prayers at Khanqah Imdadia Ashrafia, Naukot
05:20 PM – Departure from Khanqah Imdadia Ashrafia, Naukot
12:15 AM – Arrival at Karachi

Click on the image below to open slideshow in a new window
Click to open slideshow in a new window

Friday, December 2, 2011

Hanging Out–Trip to Rani Kot, Sann, Sindh

Deewar e Sindh or Great Wall of Sindh is a beauty to watch and trek along. Unlike what we expected, proper roads lead you to the very entrance of the Rani Kot Fort. However, because of under-construction bridges, the two internal forts Meeri Fort and Shergarh Fort are accessible only via 4x4. We tried to move further inside to reach Meeri Fort but Cultus didn’t make it. Civic and Alto can go through but Cultus can’t. Nevertheless, inshaAllah we will try next time with a 4x4.

Please carry along enough drinking water and snack/food with you because the nearest shop is almost 30kms away on Indus Highway.

We also tried Palla Fish at Al Manzar Hotel on our way back. Over all fish taste was good, but the spices/recipe used by Al Manzar, wasn’t an experience to remember.

Click on the image below to open slideshow in a new window.
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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Al Sajjad Restaurant, Beach View Road, Do Darya, Phase 8, DHA

Phone Number – 021 32005036

Mobile / Cell Numbers – 0332 2001222 & 0333 2228111 & 0301 8290958

Email Address – sajjaddayo@hotmail.com

Hanging Out: Trip to Hyderabad and Muhammad Rehan Rana’s Valima

Special thanks to Muhammad Rehan Rana, that he invited us in his Valima Ceremony and provided us the chance to plan a short trip to Hyderabad.

Click on the image below to open slideshow in a new window.Click to open slideshow in a new window.

Bombay Bakery, Hyderabad

Asli Haji Rabri Wala, Shahi Bazar, Hyderabad

Sindh Museum, Hyderabad

Sindhi Handicrafts, Hyderabad

Kotri Barrage and Al Manzar Restuarant, Jamshoro Bypass, Hyderabad

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Eating Out: Grill House, Near Naheed Super Market Chowrangi

Grill House is a new outlet opened a couple of months ago. Besides very good Quality, their entrees are good on Quantity as well. I have yet to find an eatery that offers BIGGER burgers than them. Imagine, someone like “me” get contented with a single burger! and some of my friends broke in the middle Smile

Grill House offer a variety of Appetizers, Soups, Sizzling Steaks, Burgers, Pasta, Margaritas. A variety of flavorful drinks, Frozen Deserts and Coffee.

GRILL HOUSE
#5, Ground Floor, Iqbal Arcade
Main Shaheed-e-Millat Road
Karachi, Pakistan.
Tel: (92-21) 3-438-2055, 3-438-2056

Location:


View Larger Map

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Hanging Out: Port Grand, Karachi

Port Grand turns out to be a very good addition to Karachi’s Attractions. Very well managed, beautifully crafted;

Open to families only and offers a variety of food and snack outlets. Play Area for children. Elegantly planned path ways, greenery, sitting areas.

Entry Fee is PKR 300/- per person
Old age greater than 65 years have FREE entry
Children below than 12 years have FREE entry
Out of PKR 300/- Entry Fee. You will receive Redeemable Coupons worth PKR 200/- which you can utilize within Port Grand to either buy Food, Drinks or Rides.

Cleanliness and Security Staff were vigilant and active.

For further details please visit Port Grand Website.

Click on the image below to open slideshow in a new window:
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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Eating Out: 2011-11-04 @ Hardees, Near Hyderi, Karachi

Beef Burgers are far more delicious than Chicken Burger. Unfortunately this time Beef Burgers were not on the Menu, so we had to opt for Chicken Burgers.

Classic French Fries are better than the Rings. And taste, crispiness and softness of Classic French Fries are superior to equivalents available at KFC or McDonalds.

Hand-made creamy Shakes were as good as that of McDonalds.

Also, get a chance to try complementary Chicken Tenders. A very good addition to their menu.

I personally believe McDonalds have insulted some thing as delicious and delicate as Burgers. And before Hardees, I prefer Mr. Burger over McDonalds. But now! Hardees have taken the taste and quality at a different level far more better than its competitors in Karachi, Pakistan.

Had a chat with the acting manager @ Hardees and they have plans to open 10 new branches in Karachi. A new branch near Kublai Khan will be opened shortly.

Overall, Hardees has an edge on taste and if not better than equal quality in comparison to its competitors.

~SMH

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Some more pictures of Karachi Startup Weekend @ IBA Karachi University

Second Day - Me and my team with one of our mentors, Mr. Azhar Rizvi.



Second Day - Tea Break




Third Day - The Final Presentation


All About Karachi Startup Weekend @ IBA, Karachi University

Day 1:

I’ve posted two separate posts one about the Idea that I pitched on day one and the other about all of the 21 pitches.

It all started with this :)



Board which contains names of all Pitches and Votes against each one of them:



Final 12 Pitchers which were short listed to form teams and work on their Ideas:



As per the rules of the event, I was able to form a Team during Networking phase and thus got a chance to be the 13th team in the line up.

Day 2:

We were given dedicated rooms with all necessary equipment to work on our Ideas for 54 hours in 2.5 days.

Me and my team with one of our mentors, Mr. Zahir Ali Syed.





Going to Auditorium to attend one of the Guest Speaker Sessions:



I was explaining my Idea to one of the judges, Naveed Qazi, VP Engineering, Folio3, sitting next to me and during that, one of the Guest Speaker started his speech:



Having tea and snacks with my team during the Tea Break:



Day 3:

We have to present our idea with proposal plan and prototype in a 5 minute presentation.
Introduction of Judges and Prizes to be offered to the winners:



My Final Presentation of the idea "Unified" (we renamed it from SPAM after getting an advice from one of our mentor that SPAM has negative connotation)



Winners:

1st – Social Guru
2nd – Islamopedia
3rd – (Tie between 2 teams) Namaz-Qibla Direction & Teen Tappar

I am sorry I was not able to record the 1st Winner Prize because my mobile battery was exhausted by that time. I can only wish if Karachi Startup Weekend guys upload it some where and I can link it, because I know, 1st position holder team was the highlight of this event.



OFFICIAL VIDEO of Karachi Startup Weekend held at IBA, Karachi Univeristy - Courtesy Khizer Iqbal.




Concluding Remarks:

I never thought a single event would change the way I see my professional life. It was so damn eye opening that my direction is almost changed to 180 degrees. Living a 9-to-9 professional life is no more the way I'll pursue. Innovation and Entrepreneurship is definitely the way to go forward!

A thanks of appreciation, to all those brilliant and hardworking people who make it possible, our facilitators, organizers and our mentors. You help us experience the spirit of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Thank you!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Pitching my Idea, “SPAM” @ Karachi Startup Weekend in IBA, Karachi University

I pitched my idea “SPAM – Software Project Artifacts Management” System on 21st of October 2011 @ Karachi Startup Weekend in IBA, Karachi University. My idea did not make it to the final list of 12 short listed ideas Sad smile. However, I was successful in forming a Team during the Networking Phase and will be working with the Team in next 2 days to come up with a comprehensive Proposal Plan for the VCs and Judges Smile

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hanging Out: 2011-07-15 From Karachi to Khunjerab by Road

Yes! from Karachi to Khunjerab by road…
Karachi to Khunjerab

Car – Suzuki Cultus 2010 with Rooftop Carrier
Number of Persons – 4
Tour Duration ~ 10 days (15-Jul-11 to 25-Jul-11)
Total Cost per person – 25k/person
Majority of the amount was spent on transportation (fuel, rent, oil, etc)

  • Fri, 15-Jul-11
    • 02:00pm Gather at Gulistan e Jauher
    • 05:40pm Karachi Toll
    • 07:10pm Hyderabad Toll
    • 10:55pm Moro
  • Sat, 16-Jul-11
    • 01:15am Rohri
    • 02:00am Panu Aaqil
    • 02:30am Ghotki
      • A huge flame of the Qadirpur Gas Field is visible from here.
    • 03:20am Entered Punjab
    • 03:50am Rahimyar Khan
    • 05:30am Khan Bela
    • 05:50am Tarinda M Panah
    • 07:00am Bahawalpur – [ Slideshow ]
    • 08:10am Stopped at Lodhran for Breakfast – [ Slideshow ]
    • 09:00am Exit Lodhran
    • 10:20am Khanewal
    • 11:00am Cheechawatni
      • Almost an hour was wasted here Sad smile because the main highway was blocked by people, who were protesting against the electricity outage. After waiting for some time, we took an alternative path way to bypass the blockage.
    • 04:15pm Faisalabad
    • 05:30pm Entered Motorway M3 – [ Video ]
      • No doubt this highway is a jewel among the road infrastructure of Pakistan. Breath taking natural views and exceptional facilities.
    • 09:00pm Exit Motorway M2
    • 11:30pm Stopped at Abbottabad – Overnight Stay – [ Slideshow ]
      • When we reached here, all shops were closed. We checked in at:
        • Comfort Inn Hotel
          0992-334159, 0992-333964
          0345-9511712 – Sajid Hafeez
          0334-8954410 – Waqas Ahmed
      • Instead of ordering the dinner cooked by the Hotel’s Chef, we went to the hotel kitchen, on the opposite side of the road, and planned to cook by ourselves. We prepare delicious Winking smile Chicken Karhai (out of K&N’s Mince Chicken Meat). It was a wonderful experience, just the four of us on the deserted road with 3 or 4 Hotel staff helping us getting what is required to cook the dish.
  • Sun, 17-Jul-11
    • 06:30am Exit Abbottabad – [ Slideshow - Video ]
    • 07:20am Mansehra
    • 09:55am Balakot
    • 10:40am Kewai
    • 12:05pm Kaghan
    • 01:30pm Stopped at Naran – [ Slideshow ]
      • Parked our Cultus on a rented Parking Lot for 5 days against PKR 800. Hired a 4x4 Jeep with PKR 2,500 rent per day excluding Fuel and Oil. Driver’s meal (alone and not accommodation) was our responsibility too.
    • 04:15pm Exit Naran
    • 06:45pm Stopped at Babusar Top/Pass
      • It was very cold up there and we also had to offer Asir Prayers because time was running out. Even the boiling water for ablution didn’t help much, as the breeze was so chill that we were literally shivering. Two cups of hot tea under a makeshift Tea Shop made out from a “Choldari” Tent was a blessing at that time Smile
    • 07:10pm Exit Babusar Top/Pass
    • 09:00pm Stopped at Chillas
      • We come to know that the main route in and out of Chillas is not safe. And there were several incidents of looting vehicles and passengers. On multiple complaints, government deployed police mobiles which now escort people coming in and going out of Chillas. All vehicles are stopped at police check post and after every hour, a police mobile escort the caravan of vehicles safely to the police check post on the other end. From there vehicles carry on by themselves as the route is considered safe after that.
    • 10:30pm Exit Chillas and travelled on Karakoram Highway (KKH)
  • Mon, 18-Jul-11
    • 01:00am Stopped at Raikot – Camped Overnight @ Shangrilla Park’s Lawn – [ SlideshowVideo ]
      • Here, we had to close our deal with the driver, whom we hired from Naran, because the people of Raikot do not allow vehicles other than their own to travel between Raikot and Fairy Meadows. When I inquired about the reason, they said that the villagers of Raikot build the pathway by themselves and therefore we will not allow any other to benefit from the transportation business on that road.
    • 06:15am Exit Raikot and towards Fairy Meadows – [ Slideshow ]
      • We had to pay PKR 5000 for the round trip on 4x4 jeep from Raikot to Trekking Start Point towards Fairy Meadows and back.
    • 07:30am Stopped at Trekking Start Point towards Fairy Meadows
      • Unfortunately, we met a mudslide in between which washed away the path created for 4x4 Jeeps and Trekkers. There was an incomplete wooden bridge structure at the same site which suggests the frequent spill of the mud slide from that junction point of the two mountains. We waited for some time, on request of our driver Musa khan who said that the villagers will fill the gap with large blocks soon and we would be able to cross it then. But the mudslide continues making things difficult for the villagers waiting for the mudslide to stop, so they can begin filling the gap.
      • So, after waiting for some time, we had to return. We also noticed visitors on the other side of the pathway waiting to cross the damaged path for their exit.
    • 09:55am Exit from Trekking Start Point towards Fairy Meadows
    • 10:55am Exit Raikot and towards Astore Valley
    • 01:30pm Stopped at Astore Valley – [ SlideshowVideo ]
      • Astore Valley turns out to be one of the favorite spots of our tour. It was all lush green with great scenic views. People were friendly and welcoming. Locals said that since the disturbance started on the Swat side, people have started coming to this area more and tourism has started to pick up momentum here.
    • 05:00pm Exit Astore Valley
    • 06:00pm Stopped at Trekking Start Point towards Rama Lake – [ Video ]
    • 06:50pm Rama Lake
      • Unfortunately we were unable to capture snaps or videos of this lake, because we reach there after Maghrib and it was too dark for camera to capture some thing appealing. I guess, at Rama Lake, we were closest to the Nanga Parbat Mountain, over looking the lake. Very beautiful!
    • 07:30pm Back to Trekking Start Point towards Rama Lake
    • 08:30pm Back to Astore Valley – Overnight Stay
  • Tue, 19-Jul-11
    • 09:25am Exit Astore Valley and towards Deosai National Park
    • 01:00pm Stopped at Shausar Lake in Deosai National Park – [ SlideshowVideo ]
    • 01:45pm Exit Shausar Lake
    • 04:00pm Stopped at Sadpara Lake – [ SlideshowVideo ]
    • 05:00pm Exit Sadpara Lake
    • 05:30pm Stopped at Skardu – Overnight Stay
  • Wed, 20-Jul-11
    • 06:35am Exit Skardu – [ SlideshowVideo ]
      • Upper Katchura Lake
        • Upper Katchura Lake is far more beautiful and in its natural condition as appose to all-famous Shangrilla Resort Lake or Lower Katchura Lake. This lake is more lively with natural fauna and flora.
      • Lower Katchura Lake / Shangrilla Resorts
    • 11:05am Back to Skardu
    • 11:20am Exit Skardu
    • 06:35pm Stopped at Gilgit – [ SlideshowVideo ]
    • 07:30pm Exit Gilgit
  • Thu, 21-Jul-11
    • 01:30am Stopped at Aliabad, Hunza – Overnight Stay
    • 08:00am Exit Aliabad, Hunza – [ Slideshow ]
    • 09:00am Stopped at Attabad Lake – [ SlideshowVideo ]
      • Local people were very angry and concerned about the situation at Attabad Lake because several villages has been drowned with their homes and properties . Although administration has created a spillway to maintain the current level of the lake, but the slow work pace clearly shows the unwillingness of the administration to clear the lake completely. There were rumors among the local that government is planning to build a dam over here which means they will never be able to see their homes, properties, etc again.
      • This lake has also became a bottle neck for on going construction work on KKH and locals said that the work on this part of the KKH has been stopped by the contractor because of this lake formation. And, as the rumors goes, there was a conspiracy theory that US/India is somehow involved in this incident to block the construction work on KKH to de-link this only vital land route between Pakistan and China.
      • The life was already very hard on locals due to un availability of necessary infrastructure. And then, we have this incident, and on top of it the lack of commitment and willingness of the administration. This is one more example of why Local Government should be the way to go forward and why MPAs and MNAs should be dumped away.
    • 10:10am Boat Start Attabad Lake
    • 11:40am Boat End at Hussaini
    • 11:55am Exit Hussaini
    • 02:30pm Stopped at Sost – Overnight Stay
      • Sost is the last border town towards Pak-China border. As locals said, before the floods and Attabad Lake incident, KKH was in a much better shape and Chinese people from bordering towns used to visit Sost for trade and transport. But these days this town is deserted and we didn’t saw any Chinese people except those working on KKH.
  • Fri, 22-Jul-11
    • 08:15am Exit Sost
      • On this section of the KKH, the reconstruction work was on full swing and we did travelled over the newly metaled portions of the KKH. There were friendship tunnels in between and patches high concreted walls on both side of the KKH to prevent it from land sliding, which seems to be a very common phenomena there.
    • 11:45am Stopped at Khunjerab Pass, Pakistan-China Border – [ SlideshowVideo ]
    • 12:15pm Exit Khunjerab Pass
    • 03:10pm Sost
    • 04:45pm Stopped at Hussaini
    • 05:30pm Boat Start
    • 07:00pm Boat End
    • 07:10pm Exit Atabad Lake
    • 08:30pm Stopped at Aliabad, Hunza – Overnight Stay
  • Sat, 23-Jul-11
    • 11:20am Exit Aliabad, Hunza
    • 03:30pm Stopped at Gilgit
    • 05:35pm Exit Gilgit
  • Sun, 24-Jul-11
    • 12:00am Stopped at Chillas
    • 03:05am Exit Chillas
    • 07:05am Babusar Top/Pass
    • 11:00am Stopped Naran
    • 12:15pm Exit Naran
    • 01:15pm Kaghan
    • 02:15pm Kewai
    • 02:50pm Balakot
    • 04:50pm Abbottabad
  • Mon, 25-Jul-11
    • 01:30am Gulistan e Jauher, Karachi