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Posts Tagged ‘mauritius’

Miles to go before owning a car

In Events, General thoughts on October 7, 2012 at 1:53 pm

This is the story of an adventure I went through before actually owning my own car. Sit back and enjoy it, I think it’s quite a roller coaster ride!

Approximately 1 year ago, I took the decision of buying my own car. No need to mention how much I was excited about the idea of finally getting some independence through possessing a car! Little did I know the road was going to be bumpy at times and even totally unusable, at other times!!!

The first stop on the journey – an old mortgage on the house blocking my loan application. After investigation, it’s been discovered that this mortgage is over since 20 years ago but no official paper was issued to testify it. Incredible as it may be, it took one whole month to get that simple piece of paper to be issued!

Next stop was eventually signing the loan papers which fortunately didn’t take much time and the money was received by December 2011.

As per logic, the following milestone would be to go for a car ‘hunt’. The initial choice was to go for an imported reconditioned car. My first choice was a Honda Civic Type R. Too bad though, there were none available with automatic transmission. The next available choice was a Honda Fit but the design didn’t quite appeal to me. After much thinking, the idea and decision to go for a new car sprouted up.

So, there I was, gearing towards a new direction, that of Kia Motors, for a Kia Rio (hatchback model). Oh, let me point out here that by that time we were already nearly end of January 2012.

Ordering the Kia Rio was not much hassle, I should reckon, but little did I know that ahead of this smooth track, there was a very long journey of full nine months of wait coming up!!!

One bright morning, an sms arrived saying that my Kia Rio would finally be received. However, few days later, a phone call announced that the model I had ordered was not on the consignment they just received. Instead I was being proposed a Kia Sedan – not to mention that the price also was changing!!!

The decision was clear, a full U-turn was absolutely necessary. Hence the new path headed straight into a crossroad where a new decision and choice was to be made…

A special offer on the new Toyota Prius C eased up the matter and so I was now moving towards Toyota hoping for a better service and expecting for a more economic and environment friendly car.

Therefore, on the tenth month of wait and almost 1 year of a long journey, my car was finally here!!!

Oooh but hold on your horses, the story ain’t over yet!

One last stop on the way before actually getting the pleasure to drive my own car – the official religious rituals. For those who don’t know, Hindus actually perform a special prayer before using a newly bought car.  It may sound very superstitious but when you’re investing so much and when you know your life is at risk on the road, it kind of becomes normal.

I guess that now you’re thinking – “Yeah, well go ahead do the rituals and get going girl!” Well, things are a little bit more complicated (even taunting !!!) According to the Hindu calendar, we are currently in a ‘not-so-auspicious’ period. It ends on October 15 and before this, I can’t drive the car…

Sooo until then, I satisfy myself with the feeling of having it there, in my garage, shining bright new, awaiting its divine blessing to hit the road. The journey to have it here has already been quite hectic, let’s take it as a well deserved pause before crazy adventures begin with that car…

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Island Girl’s Vision

In General thoughts on June 21, 2011 at 4:27 pm

The cool blue of the sea at far, the soft greenery of mountain ranges outlining the landscape…

This is my darling island in the sun.

Appeasing my tormented heart, my restless mind.

Calling me for rest and peace.

Showing me the way to rise and shine.

Giving me hope to find a new reason to smile.

Warming up my cold soul.

Waking up these numb emotions.

The magic of such a beautiful place, inviting me to live again!

Positioning Mauritius on the Web

In Events, General thoughts, Technology- our black magic on March 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm

On this special date, I have been thinking what article I could write to celebrate my beautiful island in the sun. Then I also remembered having a conversation with my ex-director about the various Mauritian sites I’ve had the chance to work on, when I was at Netgroup. Hence the idea of writing about how Mauritius is being represented on the web through different local websites and more specially those I’ve developed.

To begin with I must say that Mauritius is being slowly and surely better represented on the web now. With the emergence of several web agencies in the country we can now see local sites of better quality may it be graphically or functionally. Besides I seize the occasion to also mention all those Mauritian bloggers who have also brought their participation in giving Mauritius an identity on the net.

Apart from websites, we also have social communities, the most famous one being Facebook, which has subtly taken its place in Mauritians’ everyday life. And local companies have very well understood the extent of this phenomenon! Hence the creation of many Facebook pages about local organisations, companies or events.

We therefore see how Mauritius, despite being late in technologies, has been able to reach the internet and make its position. Mauritian companies are understanding the importance of having a web presence in the sense that they are moving with the trend and that if they wish to go international, the internet can be a key success factor. Concerning, our local people, they have also grown an interest in the internet not only for research but for leisure and social purposes. Thanks to the web, Mauritians are being able to work for international companies without leaving their country as well as keep contact with family and friends abroad.

Coming to the different local sites I’ve developed as a web developer at Netgroup, I have made up a little list. It’s like my own hall of fame, I would say, because I particularly feel proud to have had a role in building those sites. It is a pleasure to have contributed to bringing more Mauritian sites on the internet and thus make Mauritius better known to the world! So, here’s my little list, hope you have a visit on the sites:

  • Maurilait – the website of our local dairy products manufacturing company
  • Mauritius Villas – a local website about villas offers in Mauritius + other services
  • Dodolidays – the very first local website I’ve developed incorporating an e-commerce module, it’s all about renting, buying residential properties as well as other services
  • Harel Mallac Technologies –  the branch of Harel Mallac dealing with technological services
  • Harel Mallac Bureautique – the branch of Harel Mallac dealing with bureaucratic services
  • LMLC – the official site of Les Moulins de la Concorde
  • ADS – the official site of Aventure Du Sucre
  • Compare Prices – the very first site in Mauritius enabling local people to view products from different suppliers and get price comparisons
  • Connections – the very first Mauritian website built by Netgroup concerning Connections Tourism Management Ltd (CTML)
  • Cargotech – my first Joomla website

So this is my salute to my beautiful country, where together with the Netgroup team, we have been able to promote local websites and on behalf of that same team, I wish all those for whom we have worked, to keep their websites alive and thus keep the Mauritian presence on the net. And I hope more and more local websites will emerge and that soon e-commerce becomes more popular among Mauritians…

Till then let’s celebrate our nation, our freedom, our dynamism in wishing to make this country progress and achieve heights even if it is just a little dot in the Indian Ocean.

The Green Attitude

In Events, General thoughts on June 4, 2010 at 8:22 pm

Being the World Environment Day today, I have been thinking about what to write exactly to make it sound like cool and interesting. Because, let’s face it, it’s common behaviour to drift off on hearing about sensitisation campaigns, alarming news about our planet Earth, ecological disasters etc…

My father being an officer at the Ministry of Environment, I have been brought up with a very different view – a green view – of the environment around me. I do admit that I might not be fully green but still I have been used to taking certain eco-friendly measures in my everyday life. Yet, this post is not again a list of eco-friendly gestures you may take, these can be found everywhere on the net you just need to ‘google’ it 😉 I ‘ve decided for this year, to bring forward some of those NGOs or other organisations in Mauritius that have taken as challenge to preserve our  ecosystem and their achievement so far. Thus, it could also help us  to have a better view of what is being done in our island and what has to be done for the welfare of our future.

1. Mauritius Marine Conservation Authority (MMCS) – NGO existing for 30 years in Mauritius, its main goal is to promote the protection of marine mammals and coral reefs through several ways like:

  • games and booklets to raise awareness and educate young people about the marine environment and its preservation
  • information signboards and posters on dolphins thus displaying rules and regulations to follow while going for dolphins watch
  • creation of artificial reefs to promote an increase in the population of marine creatures which depend on coral reefs to survive

among other several activities which can be found on their site. MMCS also has a Facebook page where updates about recent activities are posted and you can follow.

2. Mauritian Wildlife Foundation (MWF) – NGO actively involved in the protection and preservation of endangered endemic species of plants and animals in Mauritius. It has successfully been able to save species like the Pink Pigeon, the Mauritius Kestrel and the Echo Parakeet from extinction. A struggle which started in 1970 and became one of the world’s most succesful conservation stories.  The MWF has also undertaken the restoration of  Ile aux Aigrettes and Round Islands, both being important global biodiversity hotspots. The organisation also encourages University graduates to join in as either employees or volunteers. Another interesting point is their online shop where one can buy souvenirs and the money goes to the organisation’s fund.

3. Build Green Consulting –  The environment is not only about plants and animals but it is also the integration of man-made structures (buildings for instance) in the natural scenery. This is a bit what Build Green Consulting aims at. It offers consulting services to provide solutions in the field of Built Environment. It has become imperative nowadays to take into consideration the use of natural resources to make a building more environment friendly. It concerns using methods like:

  • Daylight / Solar analysis– a full analysis of solar access at different points of a building thus giving the opportunity to the project team to optimise the use of daylight.
  • Water consumption analysis – an analysis of a building’s monthly and annual consumption of water and devising strategies to save , re-use or recycle water.

More information about their services can be found here and also on their Facebook page.

There are many other organisations which also indulge in the protection and preservation of our environment but this article isn’t enough to bring them in the spotlight. I have picked 3 of them and again the few words I’ve written about them is just like the tip of the iceberg. Take some time and discover the wonderful work these people are doing. It is worth the stop. It can also make us much more aware about the different struggles being held in our small island to preserve its nature… And who knows, it might encourage us to be more responsible towards the protection of OUR environment and develop the ‘green attitude‘.

Mauritians by luck

In Events, General thoughts on March 12, 2010 at 10:56 am

I was going to post the message I sent to the staff club members (on behalf of the staff club committee) for this Independence Day but then while reading it again some thought crossed my mind.

I was thinking how indeed beautiful is our island and how lucky we are to be island peeps. We have been able to merge both exotic/rustic and modern in our lifestyle. We are exposed to new technologies – the internet, mobile phones etc. but we have also kept our traditional habits – “ene bon bouillon brede, satini coco ek chips”.

I’ve been also realising that we have integrated both modern and natural structures together in our local landscape. You may very well see long mountain ranges from your office window (some even see the sea). It makes you feel like you are surrounded by nature not only concrete. When I drive back home, I like to admire the evening sky, see people back home dressed in their “linze lakaz” like removing their working mask and becoming carefree islanders.

Mauritians are truly versatile people. They have not only been able to adapt to various cultures in the country itself but they have also been able to merge foreign cultures/habits to the local lifestyle.

It is absolutely wonderful to find a parallel of worlds co-existing in such a little country. When you leave the town for the country side or for finding nature, you actually feel the change of atmosphere!

Yes, we are indeed lucky to live in Mauritius. For a few hours'(at times minutes only) drive we already reach natural places – the beach, forests, mountain ranges or lakes and we feel connected to all this even if we lead modern, hectic lives.

May we learn to preserve our natural treasures for coming generations. Let our children also discover the beauty of this island, its kaleidoscope of cultures and its ever welcoming nature.

P.S: My message mentioned earlier can still be found here (for those who like to read 😛 )

Mauritian colours in logos

In General thoughts, Technology- our black magic on March 11, 2010 at 6:59 pm

This post has a less serious note than previous ones. Some crazy thought that came to my mind. Have you ever noticed how many logos there exist that actually include our national colours? Let’s have a look together:

Number 1 on the list is the number one search engine itself – Google

Number 2 comes with another good old friend (though not so favorite :-P) – Microsoft Windows

Number 3 here is related to Windows again, it’s the Windows Media Player

Number 4 brings another common software used – AVG antivirus

Number 5 lists down one of Google products – Google Chrome

Number 6 brings the award winning open source CMS plarform  – Joomla

Number 7 (suggested by Prerna) is none other than our dear dear MSN’s butterfly

Well that’s it! If you have others in mind let me know 😉

Actually I don’t know how you peeps will find this article but it just was a lil tribute to our beautiful national colours 🙂 (in a developer kind of way).

No more sweets!

In Events, General thoughts on January 11, 2010 at 7:25 pm

As from this year, school canteens in Mauritius are prohibited to sell any sweets, crackers or any type of oily snacks. The government has emitted a list of products allowed for sale as follows:

  • Water
  • Tapioca,sweet potatoes,maize (boiled)
  • Dholl puri
  • Farata
  • Idli
  • Nuts (grilled / boiled)
  • Crêpes
  • Puddings: bread/tapioca/maize/wheat
  • Pulses
  • Poutou
  • Stuffed bread (no oily stuff though)
  • Fruits

Out of all these products, I find only a few that children might like. The rest might be very difficult to make them accept. Unless some canteen tenants come up with original ways of presenting the products to children.

This step was taken to promote a better eating habit among children and thus reduce diseases like diabetes, atherosclerosis etc to spread in our society. The intentions are good, noble too. Yet so drastic! And we wonder how effective. The products listed above won’t cost less than Rs2-3. I think the minimum price will be at least Rs5 since the ingredients themselves are not so cheap. Will every children be able to afford for this? My mother being the Officer in charge of a school, often tells us that the children at her school are so poor they cannot even afford for a sweet daily. How do we expect then, that such children will buy those products? Some have debated that the list contains no yoghurt, even if it did, the question rises again – would all children be able to afford for it?

Having a healthy diet is therefore somehow costly. Yes, there were children who were abusing on sweets, snacks etc but still there were those who dreamt of having at least one sweet per day while going to school. Today, in the attempt of making our children have a healthier diet, are we thinking of those who cannot? When we talk about a healthy diet it is not only about reducing the amount of sugary and junk food but it is also in bringing a well balanced diet to the child. I see mostly carbs food in the list above…

And as far as I know pupils, this is never going to stop them from buying sweets and all sorts of junk food. This is only a restriciton within school premises. Outside it is another story. Anyway the food habits of children are not only the school’s responsibility, it is that of parents too. And no matter how much we can try to prevent them from eating sweets and junk food, they will end up some day in eating it. It’s only an education about how to eat and when to eat that needs to be done. We ought to change our eating habits first of all and children will directly follow, since they grasp habits right from their early years.

Celebrating our Motherland

In Events on March 11, 2009 at 4:25 pm

Photo montage by Sou

Photo montage by Sou

To every Mauritian, the 12th March means not only the Independence day but also a special time to think about our nation, our daily lives in our country and also the different cultures present in our little island.

Far from all the political aspects of the event, the 12th March for us is, according to me, a time to rejoice about our Mauritian culture. Yes, we should be grateful that today we are free and independent but I believe more emphasis should now be put on the new generations. A bigger focus on how we are to live this freedom together, how we are to bring this nation forward on the world map.

Above all, I believe it should be a day where we celebrate each and every Mauritians. A day where we really enjoy the fact that we live in this little paradise. A day where we try to pay a tribute to our special Mauritian culture…In short it should be more of some big celebration among ourselves, fellow Mauritians – maybe on the beach, at sunset with grilled chicken and beer 😛

We are to at least realise our luck of living in our little island in the sun and therefore to really grasp this, why not go out, discover it, enjoy it and appreciate it to its true value?

Also, it’s a time to ponder about how to make our nation progress because mind you politicians are not to be relied on. If we want to go further, we will have to bring our own contributions. And it all demands some effort from us all – some sincerity in our work, for example, would really help us all in improving our quality of life! If each and every Mauritian employee (specially in the public sector) could show some dedication to their job, we could reach better quality of service and therefore happier clients and healthier businesses.

Those are of course things to think about. And since I’m talking about ways of making our island a better place, have a look at this Google Moderator website – Ideas to make Mauritius better! – where fellow Mauritians have posted their ideas of how to improve things in our country. Together, we could really make a difference so let’s just take some time to think about what we can do at individual level…

I’ll thus wish all of Mauritians a happy national day and may our cultures always flourish together!

Cheers to Mauritius!

Cheers to all Mauritians!!!

My First Steps Towards My Career

In General thoughts on September 19, 2008 at 6:19 am

Career Girl by ~henares

After some 3 months of biiig vacations, here am off to start my career ! It’s a huge excitement and though some might think: “Why on Earth she didn’t go for a scholarship and continue her studies?”, I feel I’m on the right track- going in the right way. It’s not just a question of feelings but also a decision taken after much thinking. There are stages in life where you come at a standstill, a crossroad rather, and you have to decide where to go. You’ll get advices from so many peeps around you but in the end it’s more like what you want and what you decide that counts.

So after such a long break from everything, the decision was taken. I might have very well gone for my masters but still I don’t feel ready for these. It’s a matter of maturity and experience which I reckon to lack to go further in my studies.

I believe the most important thing in life is to feel comfortable with whatever decisions you take and feel independent of what others might think. Though it might not be an easy task every time – specially when you’ve always been like the focus of the family: “So what’s next now for ya?

Anyway, here I am all ready for a brand new career, the road to make my own place in the field of work, a great adventure that awaits me indeed! All I wish is that the plans I have been making shall become true – they are so far so let’s cross fingers 😛

With this post I’d also like to state that it’s quite a pity though in Mauritius that we don’t have much career guidance. It’s not always as such to find peeps with a clear idea of what they want to be – I myself was in the shades a year ago. It would be great if our youth could have a better insight of job prospects in our country and not only have so-called career guidance fairs where the real goal behind is to market your university or institution to potential students. How are they supposed to chose when they don’t even know what they want to do?

Usually children here get their inspirations from their parents who most of them encourage their children to become doctors, lawyers, engineers and the most recent trend – IT officers (I’m saying IT officers because parents rarely know exactly what jobs the IT field offers). It’s nothing like having your own ambitions – it’s just a race to fame and glory. We have to understand that a person’s success is not only his salary but also how much happiness he is deriving from his life. So, it’s high time to encourage our children in developing their talents and in discovering the different opportunities they have. Then later on they might not end up in opting only for what’s trendy and see if they are lucky enough to succeed.

On my part, I have been lucky enough, I have found my path in this IT field. I have no regrets in my choice so far and I wish it to be so for all of you there!