Sunday, October 30, 2011

While I was waiting…

I was waiting for the train…an endless wait. I felt as if I have been waiting all my life without any sign of hope. I couldn’t see it coming. I couldn’t hear it coming, no announcement, no flashing light to mark its arrival. I was just waiting, waiting alone. My friend had to leave early, so here I was left alone to wait for it to arrive.

And while I was waiting at 11 in night on a comparatively deserted station, I entertained many eyes, targeted on your “you know what”. Then suddenly one uncle came, a middle aged healthy man and stood in front of me. Without saying a single word, he just observed me and my bag for good five minutes. So obviously, out of courtesy (read generosity) I stood up and offered my seat to the uncle (this is when I was unwell, so now you know why its generosity). He sat immediately (as expected). After a while he decided to pass on his hard-earned worldly knowledge. He spoke about everything, from suggesting me ways to get on to the train to cautioning me on being alone late at night. Blah...blah…and he continued speaking. I had to tolertae him not for long as train arrived after sometime, best timing ever. Before Uncle could say anything, I was shifted myself away from him and started getting ready to board the train.

But wait, I saw A2 amongst the first few coaches. I have stationed myself at the end, where all the a/c coaches generally are. So what do I now? hmmm, I started running.

Suddenly my uncle shouted from behind: beta a/c is here
Me: No uncle…A2 is there.

And I ran.

With my heavy bag (going by my standards), I ran. In that one minute (or may be less) of running, I decided many a things. First decision which I took was to go back and kill my friend if in case I miss the train (Oh don’t go for logic / justification, I was angry!). Pushing people apart, making way for myself, I pitied myself for being all alone (yes, I do get dramatic once in a while). Then I immediately congratulated myself for being so capable and independent. (capable- because I was running and carrying the bag...both at the same time!)

While trying to run and push peeple aside, I started wondering, whether I am running in the right direction or not. What if I have to run backwards? As I am exceptionally capable of getting lost, even in the simplest of the lanes, there were high chances of me running in the wrong direction. Yet I continued to run, wondering whom to ask. Then suddenly amidst groups of passengers, I saw an angel…an angel in black coat who uttered two golden words. When I went to him and asked which direction is the coach a2, he pointed in the direction I was running and said- “this way”.

And then again I ran…and I ran and jumped into my coach (quite literally!). While running, along with plans to kill and congratulating myself, I also dreamed of meeting some Sharukh on the coach waiting for me to board the train. But alas, there was no one. Sigh!

Friday, October 14, 2011

They live big in small towns…

I have grown up in a small town of Arunachal Pradesh Pasighat without the luxuries of modern world. I and my siblings have studied in lamp right as there used to be days without electricity. The life there is entirely different form the life I have been leading for past 6-7 years now. Last vacation, I went to visit my father who has been posted to Likabali, a small town on Assam- Arunachal border.

We are so used to living with all kinds of facilities and connectivity that it becomes difficult to imagine one’s life without internet and basic amenities. Isn’t it? The first day in Likabali was full of surprises. I got to know many important aspects of the life over there. My first shock was when my mom told me that there is no cable connection in the entire place. Residents have to arrange for DTH or TATA Sky if they wish to use television which can be done through the only electronic shop available in Selapathar town of Assam! It was also amusing to see how technology has connected people even in interiors.

Selapathar is the only source of connectivity for the people over here. If you need to mobile recharge or need to book tickets for traveling, you have to go to Assam to do it! But people have no complains. In fact they are enjoying their slow and easy-going life. There is no-brand consciousness, no materialistic competitions between neighbors. Jealous doesn’t seem to exit here.

Entire town or village (I am actually confused what to call it!), is like a family, where everyone knows each other. Your neighbors are your family. They will be with you even in the smallest of happiness and trouble. You cough and they will be in front of you to serve you. You come after marrying your daughter and entire town comes to congratulate you. If you go to visit your family, you automatically becomes everyone’s guest. They will shower unconditional love and will do their best to please you. They will come and ask you simplest and most stupid questions but with honest desire to know. They will be truly surprised to know that you can work on computers and can use internet!! They will amuse you, entertain you and help you in whichever way they can. This is the life over there. Slightly different from our usual selfish and self-centered world.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

That black robe…

In half mind to attend, I finally went for my convocation, mainly because of my friend’s and family’s insistence. Standing in the queue to get the robe, walking half a kilometer to reach the venue…wasn’t a good start I must say. But the moment I wore that black robe and hat, I felt as a different person all together. Those two years which I can surely call as the one of the most important phases of my life flashed back in my mind. I realized how much has changed in these 3 years.

My decision to join HCU (as we call University of Hyderabad) was also on the spot (like any other important decisions of my life!). My decision to leave my first job and the day I had put my paper down, my decision to not go back to second job, my selection of college for graduation just because I was irritated with other one, these instances are many. It is not that I don’t think before taking any step. In fact I think A LOT, mostly after wards! I just happen to always do exactly opposite of what I have planning for months and thankfully these experiences, not always good, have taught me a lot.

So, my decision to join HCU was kind of similar. I had told my sister, who was accompanying me for the counseling that I wouldn’t take the Ad and PR seat if offered. I went upstairs thinking of rejecting the seat and accepting only if in case they offer some stream. They offered Ad and PR and just for the sake of it, I said yes. I came down and told my sister that I will see for one year and if I don’t like I will try for a better university (what was I thinking? Better university than HCU!). And thankfully I didn’t leave the course or the campus which made me what I am today.

On the day of my convocation, looking at my fellow classmates, being with few close friends, listening to my favorite professor after one year, I was reminded of each and every moment I had spent in that heavenly campus. Experiences I had there, bitter and sweet, worst and the best, changed me to a large extent. I grew as an individual in those two years. Not just courses, sheer living there taught me a lot.
My perspective on life, relationships, responsibilities and work, almost everything has been influenced by the experience I had there. I don’t know if this change is for good or bad. I just know I am happy with the change and can’t thank those two years enough for this. I also know this change is constant. In last one year, as a working professional, in three different jobs, I have changed again. However, few things which HCU gave me have been imbibed so deep that I don’t think any change can change them.