As Mumbai and Delhi exceed pollution limits, I realise there is a master plan behind all this: That even as we teach the world, through different modules and methods, meditation, yoga and a host of other techniques, now our leaders want every citizen to excel at what we teach the world outside:

"Hold your breath!" says the desi instructor in New York as he shows his breath control.

The bearded village chief and his bald deputy walked to the edge of the village for their weekly conference. This way they kept away from prying eyes and snooping ears. His bald deputy was a little disconcerted, “Did you have to treat that village chief from the cold village across the seas so badly? Now many of our youngsters can’t go there to study and their visitors can’t come here!”

One day while walking in the park I accidentally brushed past a man. "Sorry!" I said.

"Thank you!" he replied.

I walked on a little puzzled, wondering whether I'd heard right, and then slowed down waiting for him to pass, "Why did you say thank you?" I asked.

"Because you're the first person who's ever spoken to me in this park!" he said.

I was surprised to see a friend’s wife grinning at me this morning. My friend, a retired colonel, was a friendly sort of fellow, but his wife acted as if I were a foot soldier, too junior to converse with.

"How's business?" she asked after the grin.

Many years ago I found that the best way to conduct a meeting was to remain calm when harsh words were thrown at you, and I learned a lot from trying to feed my dog who was not too interested in eating "Eat!" I would shout at my German -Shepherd, "Come on eat I'm getting late!"

And my dog would stare with a stubborn look on canine face. That's when I found a method, far better; that when I remained calm, Jeff obliged and polished off his meal.