Digital Marketing, Life

Doubt #Day 27

The serrated landscape of Dubai become an array of visual splendor at night. Bright yellow dots neatly arranged in rhythmical lines, appear as a mammoth inescapable labyrinth when the flight descends to one of the busiest airports in the world. What is find so fascinating about Dubai is the strangeness of life. It delivers surprise in every inch. Paranoia about the infrastructure and architectural perfection is evident in every tower built in the middle of this spectacular desert city. These buildings are massive, sometime gazing many hundreds of feet above your head, looking down upon your minuscule existence. As a runner, I have seen yet a different Dubai. When a runner cuts through the streets and covers the serpentine alleys, Dubai reveals a new face, a discovery akin to diver hunting for treasure at sea. Unexplored spacial scenarios appear, while you try to cope with the exasperated existence in a hot and humid environment. I met Vijay during one of these runs while preparing for Dubai Marathon in 2016.

Vijay is from Hyderabad and has been living in Dubai since 2005; 13 years of stay in Dubai will make him a veteran. He is also one of the most unassuming person that I have met and my reasoning would concur with most of others. Always ready to offer help in every possible way. When we were away with my father-in-law and my niece alone for few days, I had given them Vijay’s number in case of any help needed. Vijay used to be very fat, he shows me a few old unrecognizable pictures in support and also used to smoke profusely. He is now a reformed man, a runner and a very fine one. When I met Vijay for the first time, he was to run his first marathon in Dubai in 2016. A day before the marathon, he had fever and still ran the full distance (42.2 kms), medicines keeping his temperature in control. Since then, he has never looked back and has excelled in each new marathon and bettered his timing. What differentiates Vijay is his will and determination. He is doubt-less. His soft interior hides this side of him.

It was one of the usual Friday mornings, during one of our runs that I got an invaluable gift. We were on our way to the Club runs and we were late. The banters of the weekend Thursdays in Dubai had got better of us. I was driving, and had recently got my driving license. As a new driver in a foreign land, I built a rule that I couldn’t compromise with. When the green traffic light blinks, I had to stop. To the wrath of many around me, I follow this rule religiously. In Dubai, you should pray that I’m not ahead of you because even in the most urgent of situations, I would not go further, while you go on honking behind me. I’m shamelessly proud of my callous honest adherence. However this specific morning, my rule was to be put to a test. Vijay & I were late for our Dubai Creek Striders Club run. In the wee hours of the morning, if we didn’t reach the meeting point on time and we would be left to wonder where did the pack go. Thankfully, Vijay and I kept ourselves busy debating the choice of final destination and therefore the thoughts didn’t reach unwarranted conclusions. We were 3 minutes away from the start, and therefore I increase the speed of my Ford Explorer, the vehicle grunts and picks up the throttle and at the same time I can see the approaching green light. We are at a confusing distance; my mental calculation says that because it has been green for sometime now, it would start blinking any minute. As I come closer to the traffic signal, it does happen. The green light starts blinking, though I’m still away, I don’t stop. But this time, the ghost of the green light doesn’t bother me, I keep going on, crossing it in the nick of time.

In normal day and sane circumstance, I would have stopped. That was truly my first reaction. But I jammed on the accelerator. This was first exception of my holy rule to stop. Why? Vijay told something to me that made a lot of sense. Not just in this one instance, but I would refer to it in many more such scenarios. The words became like a flash card which I would use again and again.

When the lights were blinking and Vijay saw my confusion, he said, “If you doubt, you are done.”

Precisely, in the moment of crucial importance, the doubt impedes judgement, reasoning and could be greatest folly that you can commit. It doesn’t let you act and negates movement. Doubt is an ill that ails the will and determination. In most defining moments, I would reflect these words and the instance. Never to be at the cross roads on indecision and doubt. Else you are doomed to be in the limbo perpetually. Truth disguised as plain sight and beckons you unannounced.

We did try hard, but the pack had left the moment we arrived. Fortunately, we could catch them and the efforts didn’t go in vain. As the delicate atmospheric effect of sunlight permeated the early hours of the day, Dubai reveled in yet another glorious day. Wisdom illuminated like the bright sunlight for me, while my exhausted self was screaming inside to stop. Vijay went on and on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Digital Marketing

Choices #Day 25

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I had a very eventful childhood, the vivid memories of places far and wide that I have lived in have not yet banished from my mind.

I was born in Dhanbad, earlier a part of Bihar, but now in Jharkhand. The closest reference to the city were the coals mines depicted in movies Kala Patthar & Gangs of Wasseypur. When I look back, I feel blessed because my life was predictable and simple; I didn’t have to go to a fortuneteller.

Starting with education, I had two choices of schools- missionary or convent school and Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV). Since my father changed city every three years, Kendriya Vidyalaya was a convenient option. The CBSE board was standard across the country and had elaborate syllabus. However, during my early years, I went to convent schools such as St. Joseph’s in Allahabad, Bishop Conrad in Bareilly & Good Shepherd School in Siliguri. In those days, there was an emphasis on learning and conversing in English and convent schools were visibly better at making students more proficient in the colonial language. Such grounding helped me in making the transition to Kendriya Vidyalaya. I had best of both worlds during my school days. Selecting a school was never a problem, making new friends every 3 years was. Unlike my wife, I don’t have friends that I have grown up with.

My summer breaks were in Patna, where both of my grandparents lived. My brother and I generously shared the two month holidays with our cousins, many of whom didn’t have the pleasure of moving across the cities. As far as I remember, the city remained largely the same, only at times road became better or the traffic became worse. We had the same set of shops to buy articles from, same store to pick up books, same place we would visit to eat at least once once during our 2 month holiday. However our experiences differed in every visit. As we grew up, tried different activities. I have fond memory of listening  to Pink Floyd on the ghat of Ganga river near the university and having Golden Ice Cream Orange bar after our visit to Patna Zoo.

The only option available for us was to travel by train. We had to change two trains, when we were in Siliguri, a halt of almost 8 hours. My father would roll out a type of luggage called Holdall, which had a soft mattress and a pillow. It was offered only to my mother. In those days we would use the station floor to roll out Holdall to take rest, while my father watched out for the train. The train tickets was to be purchased in advance, since many people traveled through trains. Going to Patna was filled with excitement, while coming back was sad. I loved meeting my grandparents and enjoyed time with the cousins. In fact for a very long time, I didn’t know the definition of cousins, I always thought we belonged a one big large family of brothers and sisters.

Though I didn’t realise how much we relished food, however the flavor is still fresh in my mind. Both my grandparents had very distinct flavors. My Dadaji, paternal grandparents were larger family, 3 sons and 3 daughters. The food preparation had to reflect the tastes of each and during holidays, the grandsons and grand daughters. The gathering on the table were in shifts, first for our parents and then for the rest of us. Lunch was mostly dal, rice, vegetables and cut onions. We eagerly awaited the day mutton was made, which was mostly Sunday, because it took a long time to cook. My grand mother used garam masala and ghee very liberally. Night was roti and vegetables. The big gathering on the table was filled with discussions, while we played in the courtyard outside.

My Nanaji, maternal side grandparents had smaller family and therefore were more experimental with food. The lunch had an elaborate spread of chutney, mashed potatoes, papad, tilori (made of urad dal), vegetable, fries, and dal. We ate rotis first followed by rice. Saturdays were special, because my Nani (grandmother) made Khichadi, a preparation where rice and dal with spices is cooked together. Evening snacks was another delight. We were offered a range of snacks such as fried potatoes, chops, chana etc. Here too we ate mostly at home. Our Nanaji always insisted to eat with his grand children.

We did all this religiously every day of our holiday, until we visited one of our cousins, where the food taste would change, but the offering would remain same.

My father was in a transferable job, which was rare in those days. Government job was preferable to private, since stability, perks and retirement benefits compared to private was better. The epitome of success was getting through an engineering examination or Indian civil services exam (read as IAS). A large number of my cousins were rank holders in civil services exam and now advise the government on how to better run the country. Fortunately liberalization opened new avenues and I never took any government service exam.

If I reflect on my lives today, I have plenty of choice. With the advent of technology and internet, I have the information that I need to find out solution for my need. Sometimes the most difficult decision is make is to which restaurant to go to. Or which hotel to take while on a holiday, which earlier was provided by a travel agent, which my father knew of. Technology and internet have given us scale and right to information, but have they made our lives more easy?

Do choices restrict us or liberate us? Are we more happier with choices or without it?

Image & Layout Courtesy: https://www.canva.com/

 

Digital Marketing, Life

Apollonian & Dionysian #Day 26

Homes have uncommon aesthetic power and reflect the material and spiritual splendor of people who inhabit it. Few homes that I have seen reflect riot of creative and visually captivating designs and are surprisingly beautiful. However say very little about people who live in those enclosed space. “Classic question of convenience vs time. You cannot have both.” Priya’s response for those who fit aptly in favor of this logic. Irrespective, I belong to the school which proposes that the design ensemble, of bits and part of self and the experiences, creates rhythm.

Apollo and Dionysus are both sons of Zeus. Apollo is the God of sun, of rational thinking and order, and appeals to logic, prudence and purity. (Shamelessly quoted from Wikipedia). Dionysus is the God of wine and dance, of irrationality and chaos, and appeals to emotions and instincts. Although contrasting in nature, the Greeks never considered the two Gods to be opposites or rivals. The two reflect the duality of life, a harmonious form cannot be without chaotic artistic sensibility. A captivating home is never divorced from interestingly layered chaos. Or maybe inspires it.

Very few close friends have been honest enough to provide a stellate outline of my appearance. None of the accolades have anything memorable that I can boast about. Understandably, I have 3 pairs of jeans with the latest 5 months old, my t-shirts 4-5 months old (Priya has gifted most of them). Also all wedding occasion that I have attended have my photograph in the same suit (dark grey & shiny maroon shirt). I don’t give up on my clothes easily or get bored with them, unless in dire circumstances they get torn. So, what is common to my inordinate appearance and the place that I inhabit? None of the shine, glitz, or the art in my contribution. I’m Apollo from every perspective. Also because the Dionysian, king of good times, is my wife Priya’s forte.

Priya’s passion for design and art reflect in her sensibilities and appearance, quite contrary to that of mine. She is like a teacher, who knows where to put the comma so that the words display true meaning. At the same time, she is like a CEO, who has a participative approach towards management. Put the options on the table, before making the choice. Each choice is carefully evaluated, screened and dismissed for lack of purpose. Many treasures in this world won’t be able to allure her, each choice has to have a reason and a motive for it’s existence. Getting to talk about the house had all the makings of a thriller.

From the start I was never in favor of giving our house to an interior designer; I’m quite stingy that ways. I figured out, the fee could easy fetch me an article more material and real. My hard earned money, why should I gamble with it? Priya had a different line of thinking. She wanted a part of us in the house where we live, our child to see where we came from and what we believed in. She wanted it to be an extension of us. Easier said than done. My only demand was it should be easy on pocket. We don’t make rushed and immature decisions and end up regretting, as if there were less things to fight about in our daily lives. So, I wanted less things in the house and things which could be multi-tasked, and therefore more return on our investment.

A compromise, and the result was quite spectacular.

For 6 months after moving into the house, there was nothing in the house, except for our bar. I loved the spartan look, dazzling marble flooring, nothingness created the vast empty space, the lightly colored walls amplified it further. We would get ample sun light in the house and it lit every corner of our living room. Dhriti, our daughter loved it, she had recently started walking and for her, it was a playground. As pieces came together bit by bit, each corner and furniture, our home looked more complete. In the 6 months roughly, we saw through our new home as a little child, being very careful about each and every element it imbibed, and watched it grow.

It was beautiful. And I never had a sweat over the spends.

There is a certain reluctance in appreciating “wildness” as it being opposed to the “orderly” nature, that we are, or at least I am, more likely used to. The Apollonian is the basis of all analytic rationale. Everything that is part of the unique individuality of man or thing is Apollonian in character;  Rational thought is also Apollonian since it is structured and makes distinctions. And is that complete? Charles Lindberg, who made the first non stop flight from New York to Paris quotes and reflects an aspect of truth…

If we combine our knowledge of science with the wisdom of wildness, if we can nurture the civilization, through roots in the primitive, man’s potentialities appear to be unbounded…, he can merge with the miraculous – to which we can attach what better name than ‘God’? And in this merging, as long sense by intuition, but still only vaguely perceived by rationality, experience may travel even without the need to accompany life.    

Such is the conflict between Apollo and Dionysus. The motive for “intuition” in our lives is not discerned readily, “chaos” cannot be good and “wildness” not a a part of natural order. In this duality, there is a compromise, a balance that I’m happy to live for, while still searching its meaning.

Maybe the most irrational thoughts are the most sanest ones.

 

Digital Marketing

Farmer #Day 24

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All fathers will find their child’s notions often well expressed, and very interesting. The conversations are overwhelmed by specificity, mindful carelessness and genuine curiosity. These moments will come unannounced, for a brief flash of time. All you know that you are in it. Now. These questions are many and trivial. I would have ignored them because it never made sense to me. Yet, for these little ones it is a matter of great awe. I’m also amazed at the observation skills, and after listening to the questions, I would wonder why didn’t I think of it before or Hmm, this is also possible. The common element across all such questions is honesty of ignorance and determination to know the why.

When Dhriti was 5 years old, in her school, she was taught about professions. Her school, Shree Ram stressed on values and included many from real life. I didn’t know about this till Priya pointed out an observation. It was a honest answer and noble purpose.

Dhriti, what do you want to become when you are older?

I want to become a farmer.

Why?

So that I can grow trees and make oxygen.

Dhriti is 8 years this year and has still maintained her ambition of becoming a farmer, though this time she also said that she wants to become a Rockstar at night.

There are only two professions, a man is either a hunter or a farmer. Yuval Noah Hariri’s book, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, marks the agricultural revolution, which started in about 10,000 b.c. as one of the milestones in our evolution. Increasing number converted from foraging (hunting and gathering) to farming. Harari writes, “Before this, they (humans) were insignificant animals with no more impact on the environment that gorillas, fireflies, or jellyfish.” Now we had more time to think and plan because now food such as grains could be stored. Therefore, everyday hunting for survival was not required. Humans became more interested in studying all the patterns responsible in detail to become better such as, knowledge about soil, seasons and water, so that output could be similar or better. We became more settled, protecting the land and our produce. However, according to Harari, the agricultural revolution did more damage, “A faustian bargain between humans and grains” in which our species “cast off its intimate symbiosis with nature and sprinted towards greed and alienation”. It was a bad bargain: “the agricultural revolution was history’s biggest fraud”. A bit sensational, but it would do. I could finish Sapiens in 10 days, because it was very entertaining and well expressed.

Not just Dhriti’s answers, but also Yuval Noah Harari, poses fundamental questions about happiness for us as a race. Were we happier being farmers or as hunter gatherers chasing the game and feeling accomplished for the day? Or it is our quest to seek beyond the unknown, such as fathom death. Some of these questions will encourage you to think more about us and our future.

While I pondered over these questions about farmers and existential questions on happiness, few events hinted at harsh truth. A boy approached my car, while I was waiting at the red light. He was carrying books, including Sapiens. The boy was not tall, about 3.5 feet in height. Thin structure, determined to sell, sharp eyes. His prominent jawline defined his face. My book of choice “Elon Musk” was wrapped in plastic and would cost only Rs.350. I negotiated and the deal was struck for Rs. 160. “What if pages are missing?” Priya asked him as he delivered the book. Proudly, the boy took the plastic cover off and said very confidently, “I would replace the book if any pages are missing”.

I probably bought the book, not because of the title, but because of the boy and his accent. I was also intrigued to find a small boy selling books, which I’m sure he couldn’t read. The boy looked very young and from my home state in India, Bihar.

Because of the long queue, I was not able to get through the red light and met the boy again. This time he came to check if we found any pages missing. Instead, he had to face Priya’s questions, ranging from where he came from to whether he studied or not.

The boy was not amused with the questions. He came from a village near Patna, the capital of Bihar and had ran away from home. He didn’t like staying in his village because they were poor. He came to Delhi to earn money. He also said that there were many people who offered him opportunity to study, but he has no inclination. He only wants to earn to make a good living.

No matter how much we debate about the sensation aspect of Sapiens, the reality is different. When I look around Gurgaon, place I used to live, I can see only tall building. Farmers are selling land, because their crop doesn’t earn them enough to sustain. Farms could be found in patches, more likely it would be because of short term interest than for actual reasons.

Trading land for cash isn’t a bad bargain. If it helps you survive.

“Mr. Cooper, we need more farmers today than Doctors or Engineers.” (From Interstellar)

Life, Transformation

Connectedness #Day 23

EVERY BALL COUNTS (2)

It was my last day in Mumbai, as a person seeking admission to a college. My dear father had gone back after the formalities were done. Big city, much bigger than I was used to. That day I roamed alone, a day alone with the city, where I would spend the next 6 years of my life. I decided to take a double decker, and got on to my favorite seat, the front row. I could see everything on the road, as a driver would. I could see the sea and Haji Ali on one side and skyscraper and traffic jam on the other. I would be lost, the city is too big, I thought. I felt like a dot on the planet, while the horns blew in the background, red lights flashed in front of me and BEST bus revved in heat. I felt lonely. The bus conductor asked me for the tickets. And he also told me the stop that I would need to get down. He tried to explain me in as much as he could in his Marathi accent.

I was on my way to catch the train from Dadar central station, exactly two days after my father had left. He had an important business to attend to. He filled me up with every essential. I was a grown up man, enough to travel alone. And yet, I felt small, the city seemed too big. My only luggage was a small bag, which I was holding close to me, to mitigate any mishap. I had also put my wallet on my front pocket, which otherwise I would use my hip pockets. Bombay is very crowded, you should be careful about the pickpockets, I was told, you would never know when your wallet disappears especially when you are in a crowd. The eventuality of losing my wallet was scary. How would I reach back home, better keep close attention on my items. I was very careful. The man in front of me kept reading the newspaper and the one standing next to me, kept looking at me. I offered him my seat when my stop came, he smiled and nodded in approval when his patience paid off.

I was on Dadar station, it was evening, didn’t know what time it was. I had a bag and wallet in my front pocket. I had to cross over to the other side to get to the train and as a matter of fact, I looked down. Not an inch of space on the platform. I could only see people everywhere. It was the evening time when every one is rushing back home. Like a ant colony, I felt small again. Probably, I won’t survive. In the midst of this chaos, there was a sudden realization that I needed to get to the train; I could afford to miss it. I wanted to get away from Mumbai, as fast I could. While I was walking, I asked a person who was walking by about time. “It is 6.30.”, he didn’t look at me and walked on. He was in hurry, to catch his local train, but had heard me. He helped me as much as he could in the time he had. I remember he also said, “Get off the last platform to get to Dadar Central.” I didn’t ask for his last piece of his advice, but I guess he saw my luggage. He walked on and didn’t look back or expected anything in return. I never met him again and he left memories that made me fond about the city & people.

My first few recollections of Mumbai were of concern, full of anxiety and sense of loneliness. And it took just about few days to settle in. The people, the food, the language, exuded warmth. I found spirit of people inimitable, it was grand and connected to each Mumbaikar. The culture and love is extended to strangers and the new. I miss Mumbai, so much so that when I went back to Delhi, the place I have spent longest time, I felt shallow. I couldn’t identify with people, I took me 3 years to feel at home in my  home city. We seemed to be running all the time in Delhi.

We were a group of 9 people in a yoga session and none of us know each other. My first exercise was to approach every single person in the group and tell him, I belong to you. Didn’t make sense to me at all. We did this every day of our course. Sincerely, even by the last day, I wasn’t able to truly say, I belong to you. We would leave after a week and none of us would connect again. We do belong to each other, even if it is for a fleeting microsecond. But it may take many years for us to realize it. I haven’t realized it yet.

And it is difficult, and takes courage to say, I belong to you, and stand by it. It doesn’t come naturally, as it comes for our siblings, parents or children. These boundaries, in our minds, are created by us and difficult to break. Irrespective, connectedness is one of the strongest virtues, that empower us and give us hope and strength. For the sake of simplicity we would just let it be. If it doesn’t affect me directly, it is none of my business.

Kids understand it the best. They have amazing 6th sense to know who is genuine and feel connected to them. First few interaction with a new person would tell you how genuine you feel with each other. There is an invisible bond amongst all of us, essential like air; we will feel suffocated if there isn’t any.

And it is all so powerful. Connected people make good families, teams, society and nation. Where each one respects the existence of the other, where there is a dignity of life in every individual, where there is strong connectedness.

Do you feel it? Slowly, one day at a time is all it takes to truly and sincerely say, “I belong to you.”

Photo & layout courtesy: canva.com

 

 

 

 

 

Life, Transformation

How to become a millionaire in 10 steps #Day 22

EVERY BALL COUNTS (1)

A humble submission and resolution for next half of the new year.

  1. I won’t read any self help books
  2. I won’t read any blog or article that begin with headers such as “How to become a millionaire in 10 steps.”

This is at the cost of the blog not being popular or my inability to simplify life and experiences for the mass majority. I guess we lack patience and the rigor to go through the drill. Or possibly, the life too short to be enjoyed as a journey. I feel, we all have unique experiences and each of which makes this planet a better place to live in. If there was a formula, commercialization of this idea wouldn’t have been a problem and it would been biggest funded venture capitalists startup.

Such articles follow a typical methodology

  • They start with a successful personality and trace his life. Put in perspective all his/her hardships etc.
  • They look at few common traits such as courage, optimism, risk taking, etc and comment on the traits. “Taking risk” would be by far the most citied term. And encourage you to take risk and follow path.
  • Celebrate and equate “Risk taking” to amount of wealth generated, the most respected symbol for success.

Reading autobiographies are better because at least it is first hand. At the same time, we are assuming that all the facts mentioned in the memoir are true and verified. Whatever be the consideration, the success outweighs any other factor. By another argument, “Failure”, though a celebrated word in our context, won’t be seen as a successful plot; will have few takers. Have you read memoirs of anyone who has been failure? Probably none, because the chances are more likely that such stories wouldn’t have been written. Though such people in normal life would have demonstrated the same set of traits, courage, optimism and risk taking, however there exists a fine line between success and failure.

I was inspired by one of the section in Malcolm Gladwell’s book that I’m reading, David & Goliath, underdogs, misfits and the art of battling giants. He dedicates a section to a Hollywood personality, who had been very successful. He began working very early in his life because his father would ask him to fund half of everything, pester him if he left the light switch on, “We are paying for you being lazy.” His father had a scrap metal business, where he worked and swore that he would never get back there again. So left with no choice he had to chart is own journey of being financial independent. His father had 3 sons who were motivated and did well in their work. I’m sure, few would be interested in the father’s side of the story. And even after reading, they may wonder where is it going. Unfortunately, what is learnt can never be taught.

Education is an admirable thing. But it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught- Oscar Wilde

Mr. Nassim Nicholas Taleb, in his book, The Black Swan, calls such phenomenon as the Silent evidence. He cites the story of drowned worshippers to further elaborate. One Diagoras, a non-believer in Gods was presented with a tablet which had portraits of worshipper, who prayed and survived shipwreck. Diagoras asked a very pertinent question, “What about the people who prayed and then drowned?”. The chances are likely that the dead worshippers won’t be available to pose as model or share the experience. To establish the truth we will take the part of reality that appeals to us the most. According to Mr. Taleb, the neglect of the silent evidence is the endemic to the way we study comparative talent, particularly in activities that have winner-take-it-all-attitude.

Phoenicians are credited to have invented the first written script. They were merchants and need a method to measure commerce. As it is said about the Egyptians, who used tablets to keep a record of treasury. The utility of these method was to facilitate the understanding and not just rely on memory. This wasn’t art, plain simple arithmetic. It served a purpose, it helped us count. It was real.

We may enjoy what we may see, but there is no point in reading too much, because we don’t see the full picture. The only complete picture that we have is of ours, which maybe ordinary, but is true and real. It requires courage to accept it as is.

And there couldn’t be better learning about success than from our own. Each day and every hour and the celebration of the ordinary, the mundane and the inconsequential. It is the most influential story that you can ever write.

Photo & layout courtesy: Canva.com

 

Life

Goal #Day 21

EVERY BALL COUNTS

The England Croatia match would be probably one of the worst semi finals. I was in a sports bar watching a match, where the English fans were outnumbered, not in their voice or spirit. I wish their players played like one.

Good part about being from a country which never makes it to world cup football is that I can support any team I like and at the same time I can change my favorite. England clearly started off as favorites, with the star players amongst whom, Harry Kane would be considered one of England’s all time soccer stars. I have found England to be a one man army. I can recall only single players from memory – Gary Lineker, Paul Gascoigne, Alan Shearer, and Wayne Rooney, with no recollection of any other member. However, this time, was different. England had few other players, other than Harry Kane, such as Marcus Rashford, Dele Alli, and could be considered one of the better England teams. I though they had a chance.

Sadly, England gave the game away, they didn’t go after the ball. They lacked finishers spirit & celebrated victory too early.

I started watching the game, when England had already scored the first goal, brilliant free kick by Kieran Trippier in the 5th minute. Thankfully, I was happy I didn’t see the goal, else I could have changed my mind about England. The English team did pass the ball and had about 4 great chances. Right fully, they could have been 3-0 in the first half. However, it felt like, England had already won the game in their minds. None of the players went after the ball and trying to score another. They didn’t have pace, they didn’t have the spirit. The game went on in insipid fashion; I was only hoping that the game doesn’t go into extra time, which would have been extra waste of time. Credit to the England team, they dominated the first half of the game.

On the other hand, Croatia was much spirited. It took them some time to get their act together, but you could see that they didn’t give up. This was their second semis and they wanted to make it a special one. Croatia team had many misses, but kept on creating more opportunities. Croatia in the 68th minute with Ivan Perisic scored the equalizer. Though their attack was not as fast as French, but they kept the momentum. The English team didn’t see it coming and still played the same way. Harry Kane missed an important pass, he couldn’t see the ball come. Lazy body language.

In the extra time, the better team triumphed. Croatia won 2-1 and deserved every bit of the game. They went after every opportunity, after every ball.

Maybe France will win the world cup, but today was Croatia’a day and the victory of their never dying spirit.

Layout & image courtesy: Canva.com