Saturday, May 26, 2007

Kem Chhoo…Majja maa???...

I love traveling. Or so I felt…till I came to Ahmedabad. Not that I have anything against the place, but there is a reason to my feelings. Basically I was supposed to come here to complete my project. Initially I had to go to some far off places but then my company did not find it economical enough to let me fly on their expenses(!!!), so here I was taking a train to a place where I had never been before. My journey began on Monday night as I was boarding the train from Dadar station. My dad accompanied me to the station and in the half an hour I spent at the station I think he asked me at least a 100 times if I had taken my tickets, my ATM card and many other things which I actually should be carrying for a journey. I reminded him 101 times meanwhile that I would be off for less than a week only and that I was going only to Ahmedabad and not some far off country in Africa.

Anyway the wait for the train looked never ending and I heaved a sigh of relief when it did come finally. I don’t know why but I have got this fascination for trains, I remember as a kid whenever I used to cry my dad used to bring me to the railway station to show the train and I would immediately stop crying.
Trivia No 1: VT station was my all time favorite place as the idea that there is no train which can go beyond it seemed to amaze me for some weird reason. It somehow gave it the feel of being the mysterious end of the world.
Trivia No 2: I always wanted to be an engineer as I felt that an engineer was the one who drives a train…ok don’t be so surprised; kids are supposed to be stupid!

So now back to the trip. After some 10 hours of train journey, I did reach my destination. The train journey was made interesting by some three 40-something guys discussing every possible topic under the sun right from the pollution caused by chemical industry to the ideal age for their daughter’s marriage. Though I didn’t participate in their conversation, it was interesting enough to keep me awake for quite some time. When I reached Ahmedabad, I realized 2 things, first that the place was damn damn hot and secondly the people spoke Gujarati most of the time. It was expected but still I did think that some people would converse in Hindi. The fact that the auto walas did understand my Hindi was a consolation!

After checking in my hotel I took a quick bath and a small nap and then left for my office. Then began my real struggle, I wanted to make the most of my stay over there. But unfortunately work was moving at snail’s pace, in fact there was hardly any work happening. Two full days went by without me meeting any client. I tried calling up some industry people to fix up some meetings but was mostly met with a cold response from them, when I tried to pitch our product the standard response was “su cchhe, manne interest nathii” after which the other person would invariably hang up without hearing a word. So the entire thing started to frustrate me a lot and I realized that nothing great seems to be coming out of this trip. A friend told me that since I am already here rather than cribbing I could actually have a gala time, totally enjoy my time over here. This somehow seemed to make sense, so that’s what I did for the next 3 days. So though I wouldn’t say that I had the most awesome time, but things turned out slightly better. I roamed alone in the city, explored many new places, checked out the gujju girls, also tried out some Gujarati delicacies.

The one thing that I realized from my stay in Ahmedabad was that eating out is the national pastime out here. There would be 20 eating joints in a radius of 10 meters and all of them would be doing great business with customers flocking all the time. People really love eating over here, that possibly explained why it was so difficult to find a thin Gujarati. If the film “Roti, Kapda aur Makan” would have been made in Gujarat I am so sure it would have been called “Roti, Thepla aur Chivda”

Also few days back I had been to the XLRI alumni meet in Mumbai. It was great meeting almost half my batch again. It was just like one of those campus wet nights though this time the place and setting was vastly different. The food was great, the desserts were awesome and plus there was a DJ playing really foot tapping numbers. After almost a month of corporate life, dancing with friends and making so much noise with useless talk was a welcome change.

Another good thing to happen to me in past few days is that I did get my stipend which is actually my life’s first salary. Now I have always thought that it would be so great when I start earning, but I don’t know why there is no real happiness or delight I feel when I collect the pay cheque, I am totally confused as to the reason for this response of mine. Lots of things have been going on in mind over past few days, one of them being what I would like to do in the future. And I know everyone thinks of their future but it’s been playing on my mind now more than ever. I hope I do get some clarity on these questions by the completion of my MBA at least. As they say idle mind is devil’s workshop, going by the amount of idle time I have had in the previous month during my summer internship, I am sure the devils have settled down well in my mind and must have possibly developed a liking to it as well!

P.S: Theres this girl in my office whom I find terribly cute. I don’t know what I like about her, I mean she is not one of those awesome beauties, but I find her really irresistible. I have never spoken to her; I don’t even know her name. As she is not in my section, I do not know how to begin a conversation. Now I have got just a week left in my internship, just hope cupid would play some trick in this short span!