After a routine security check, the two of us went to the seventh floor of the building, where the meet was being held. The dark tunnel to the hall was a nice touch, and we were met at the other side by Vineeth Rajan who welcomed us and directed us to Rashmi and Diana who were assisting with the registrations. The formalities done, we took our seats. Shravan didn’t know anyone there, and neither did I as yet. It was nice when the guy next to us introduced himself, and it turned out to be Rajesh, a master photographer whose blog I’d visited many times through ABC Wednesday meme. He recognized me when I told I was Leo, and we had a little chat before Dexius(Avada) joined us. Yet another first time meet, and she looked good. I thought I’d seen her somewhere before, but I can’t quite place where, or who she looks similar to 😉 Nethra joined us soon, and it was good meeting her. The meet hadn’t yet started, and already I’d seen 4 friends. Rachna was the next person we spotted, but before we could call her, she went to the back and sat with her husband(we came to know this only later). Then the India known blogger walked in, and well, even before we could call him, the Indiblogger people and others greeted him. Shows how popular Tavish is..! 😉 along with him was Hitesh Rawat. I’d spotted Saraswathan sir also, but wasn’t sure it was him.
After a quick introduction of the Indiblogger team, and the owner of the hotel, Varun, announcing unlimited booze for Rs.550, it was time for the 30 seconds of fame, where each of us had to introduce ourselves. The best intros would get a prize from HP. Some talked for less than 30 seconds, many for more, introducing their professions and talents n what not! 😀 This segment also made me realized I suck at speaking in front of large audiences, because I ranted on till I realized I was boring myself, and handed the mic over to Avada next to me 😛 (Lord, if I’d a bit more firmness instead of stammering, I might have walked away with a printer!! ;)) The introductions showed a wide arc of bloggers there.. as young as 14 and as old as 62 🙂 from poets to technical bloggers, from software engineers to social workers! It was amazing seeing over 275 bloggers there, though the intro segment went on for a bit longer than it needed to! The printers went to Harsha Chittar, Saraswathan and Aparna, all three of whom I knew! There were a few more who won, but I don’t remember their names now(pardon me!). The intros concluded, the HP people explained why they were gifting the printers, and what was the features in the printer! I missed quite a bit of this part, the sound and heat getting to me and giving me a headache! In between, I met another pal, Anil Sawan! It was fun! The intro and further intro done, it was time to interact, as we went through the room, meeting people and getting their comments/thoughts on a banner behind our back! I talked to Rachna, Saraswathan sir, then Muddassir, Hitesh, Amit, Harsha, there was Swetha Tiwary who I knew by name(through Blog-A-Ton), of course, my former WL teammate Aparna Lanka, the bossman of the BPL, Lakshmi Rajan aka LR, Pujitha who I’d read during BPL(I knew the name was familiar, but realized I’d not commented for your Gaia’s Lament later on).
Time to hog the food then(as Avada put it), and we proceeded there. I had sandwiches only(PS: Avada, I’m NOT on diet). Tavish and I went and introduced ourselves to Rachna’s hubby and then we all sat talking, and taking pictures.(Damn, I’m not photogenic!! ;)) I was quite tempted to grab Aparna’s printer and go off, since she’d kept it unattended and gone for hogging the food 😉 The meet went on with Anwin(I think it was him) telling about mobile blogging. Then there was a session about Civil Defence and what it does, another session of gifts for the best Bangalore photos! Saras sir got another gift for being the eldest/goldest blogger! I think this will be a meet he’ll not forget for many reasons! 😀 The forum session debated whether or not topics not related to blogging directly should be allowed in the Indiblogger forum. I think it will be allowed, with suitable guidelines as decided by the Indipolice team.
The meet concluded, it was time to head home. We collected our T-shirts from Rashmi & Diana, said our goodbyes to friends, and went on our way. It was an eventful day for me, and I hope there is another Bangalore Indimeet quite soon! Maybe next time, I’ll meet Raksha, Saravana, Zainab, Dhiman and Hasna who weren’t there this time!
PS: If I’ve missed anyone’s name after meeting n talking, its purely by accident, do tell me!