Thursday, December 29, 2005

What a bad exam at a B-school does to your desktop

Disclaimer: This is not a long post.

Reason: I had two exams today, both of which can be (not surprisingly) summed up in one word...DISASTER !!

This is how the scenario changed in a matter of 24 hours...



Monday, December 26, 2005

I've been thinking...

“Of late, I’ve been thinking…”, I begin.

“Good habit there, boy”, you might add, even before I finish.

“No, No.”, I reply. “Not that sort of thing. Unlike what people usually think about me, I do exercise my mental faculties once in a while. It is just that I’ve had some free time to think for myself. And I’ve been ruminating over things.”

A deep “Hmmm” escapes you and you begin wondering what sort of a fellow would use the word ‘ruminate’ over ‘think’ in this world of SMS language.

“I’ve observed that ever since I’ve joined this b-school, I haven’t been doing that which I liked doing best..enjoying myself. Reading Jeeves (by PGW), reading business magazines on a regular basis and keeping a track of international sporting events. In short, I’ve not been doing things that I enjoyed doing the most. Hence, I’ve decided to begin with these things again once my end-term exams get over on the 30th of December.”

“You’ve got your New Resolutions in place already?” you ask with an upturned eyebrow.

“Umm…well, not exactly New Year Resolutions, just planning to do stuff that I’ve wanted to do for a long time."


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

And the winner is...

A collective sharp intake of breath by the audience... roll of drums...."Marketing".

Applause, applause. No, not because I chose Marketing, but because I was finally able to make up my mind. I must admit, however, that I was able to take this decision due to the help of a senior who came up with a very simple formula. He mailed me the complete MBA syllabus for the second year. The document listed all the elective courses that one can take under the different heads of Marketing, Finance, IT, HR, Operations etc.

His advice? "Simply tick all the subjects that interest you; if most of them are under Marketing then Marketing is what you're doing your major specialisation in, the one with the next highest number of ticked courses is your area of minor specialisation."

I downloaded the file and a twenty minute study led me to the conclusion that I must take Marketing and Finance as my major and minor specialisation next year. Hmm. Not very different from what I'd planned when I entered this B-school.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

The rise of the Libran

Gosh! Am I confused!! It is said that one of the greatest weaknesses of a Libran is that he cannot make his mind up very easily when confronted with two or more options. In my case this ranges from the simple ("Should I have tea or coffee?"; "Should I travel by a bus or a taxi?") to the very complex ("Should I date the hot blonde or the sweet babe next door?").

Ok ok, I haven't been as lucky to have the latter debate with myself, but I take it for granted that you've understood the general dilemma that I face at times.

Well, here is one decision that will influence my career.

Should I opt for Marketing or Finance as a major specialisation?

Well, I have a good 3-4 months before I enter my second year, but the decision must be taken now since I must accordingly choose the company for summer placements. I have had numerous lengthy discussions with myself and my peers (I'm just returning from a hour long meeting with a senior regarding this very subject). Most tell me that I should opt for Marketing, because that is what suits my personality. And I must admit that I really like Marketing, but I haven't been particularly excited with what I've seen of Marketing thus far in my MBA course.

Now for Finance. Numbers hasn't been a strong point for me since school. All my mathematical competence seemed to vanish once I entered college. I can bet with my eyes closed that this was just due to neglect of studies, and given due dedication, I can easily do well in this too.

Plus, the Financial Management (FM) class today on market securities and portfolio management REALLY REALLY excited me (when I repeat 'really', and that too in caps, please understand that I, a guy who usually falls asleep in an FM class, was not only wide awake in a securities & exchange class but was also predicting correctly what the prof. was about to say next!!).

Another little thing which is tickling my funnybone is the fact that I just so wanna get into McKinsey, the consultancy major. The problem: McKinsey hasn't come on campus...ever. Although it is expected to come next year, the only major consultancy firm that is expected is Ernst & Young. Plus, consultancy firms usually prefer people with Finance majors.

*Sigh* Am I anywhere closer?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The Sound of Music

There is something intriguing about the love for movies that exists in each MBA student's heart. Hitherto the student may not have been a great fan of movies at all. But give him the incredible weapon named the intranet, and lo and behold! you have the great Indian movie fan. And mind you, this love for the movies can be seen even in the most unlikeliest of circumstances.

Whether you have a mid/end term examination the next day or project assignments in 5 different subjects, the way to unwind is to watch a movie rather than going off to sleep, which in any case is in short supply. Beats me how people do it. Because I take the easiest way out, I watch movies AND sleep like a log. :D

Anyway, a friend forwarded "The Sound of Music" to me today. I realised I had 3 huge assignment submissions tomorrow. So, I proceeded that with which was simplest for me: I saw the movie AND went of to sleep promptly. I must confess that this was one of the most peaceful sleep that I've had in a long long time.

The reason is very simple: "Sound of Music" is home. The last time I saw Julie Andrews and the Von Trapp family on screen was when I was barely 12 or 13 years old. I still recall asking my Mom for explanations about some scenes and my Mom trying to simplify the setting of the film. My mother, who has done her schooling from a simple Gujarati medium school, finds the film extremely enchanting, and till date regards the movie as one of her all time favorites. "Sound of Music" is one of the few Hollywood films she really likes and remembers.

"Sound Of Music" to me is like a beautiful dream gone by, a dream I call the "Innocence of Childhood". For any middle-class Indian children of my generation, Hollywood movies were a strict no-no. Reason? They symbolised all that was bad with the outside world, namely, sex, skin-show, violence, men who smoked cigarettes and drank "wine" (at that age, all alcohol could be categorised as "wine". *Sigh* If my parents were to find out today what I know about alcohol , they would be in for a major shock). This used to continue till the day Dad would decide to get a video cassette of movies like "The Sound of Music" or "The Guns of Navarone" from the local video library. Mom would prepare 'bhajias', a staple snack for the entire family and we would all settle down to watch the movie. And if by the end of the movie, I wasn't already asleep, Dad would take me down to the 'paanwaala' either for a drink of Maaza (remember? These were the days when Coca-Cola had still not re-entered India and the mango drink Maaza was still everybody's favorite) or an ice cream.

I do not remember exactly what dreams I had while I slept today, but I'm pretty sure it had something do with home, something to do with Mom lovingly brushing her fingers through my hair and something to do with the flat that we shifted out of almost a decade back; because the old flat is where I saw everything through the eyes of a child.

Hmm..Perhaps I'm getting too nostalgic. But then, what the heck? I enjoyed the movie and I've slept peacefully for a good 6 hours. Plus, it is almost 1 in the morning and I must prepare a Financial Management report, study a Goal Programming case, prepare an Operations Management case and do the pre-reading for the 3 classes that I have tomorrow. That shouldn't be too much of a problem, what with the Innocence of Childhood shining brightly.


Monday, December 05, 2005

Confluence 2005 and "Ambani vs. Ambani"

Well, Confluence 2005 at Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A) was awesome. I missed out on some of the speakers that I really wanted to hear, like Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia (Chairman, Indian Planning Commission) and Mr. Mukesh Ambani (Managing Director, Reliance Industries Ltd.). However, the high points for me were the speeches of Mr. Arun Shourie (former Disinvestment Minister) and Mr. Vijay Mallya (CEO, United Breweries).

The speech by Mr. Mallya was particularly interesting. There are plenty of reasons for this. First, he is one of the most exciting entrpreneurs India has seen. Second, he is known as the Richard Branson of India for his high-flying lifestyle. Third, not only is he originally from Calcutta (like me) but also did his schooling in my alma-mater, La Martiniere for Boys. He spoke about the challenges he has faced during his career, and about the number of times people told him that he was done for. On a number of occassions he was told that he'd hammered the final nail in his own coffin, but every time, he proved his detractors wrong. One key learning from the speech was that we should not expect a father-like figure or a 'guru' to come and teach us the tricks of the trade in today's world. "The buck stops with you" was his mantra. You must take decisions on your own in the world of business, try everything to make it succeed, and if it doesn't, learn from your mistakes and move on. Food for thought for the entrepreneur which is rising within me.

"Storms in the Sea Wind: Ambani vs. Ambani" is the name of the book that I have just finished reading. It is authored by Alam Srinivas, the business editor of the Outlook magazine, an extremely popular magazine here in India. In it, the author describes the battle-scene that was fought behind the media curtain in the most powerful business house in the country, that of the Ambanis. "Sea Wind" is the name of the building that the Ambanis occupy in Mumbai, the commercial capital of the country. The Ambanis control Reliance Industries Ltd., India's biggest privately owned company. Of course, the founder of RIL is Shri Dhirubhai Ambani, of whom I am an ardent fan (see my previous post "Am I a maverick or plain silly?"). Love him or hate him, he is responsible for building India's biggest business house, from scratch , under three decades.

The book discusses the fight for the control of Reliance by Mukesh and Anil, the two sons of Dhirubhai. The book is interesting as it not only provides a look at how the war was fought in front of media-persons but also in the boardrooms. The book also highlights how most family-owned business globally break-down during the second or the third generation. The house of Tatas in India is the only example one can see where they've managed to keep the house intact, and yet a huge power in the business community.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Picture this

Here at Nirma University, our computers / laptops are connected with a LAN. Students use a software called IP messenger, over which we can exchange messages and documents. Of course, the IP messenger is THE great communicator post midnight when the boys and girls have to stay restricted to their respective hostels. :D There's no roaming around on this beautiful 110 acre campus at night. This is one of the few things which I feel is not right about the institute. I firmly believe that post-graduate students should be treated like post-graduate students and not school kids who are not mature enough to take correct decisions.

Getting back to the IP messenger. One of the features of this software is that of sending multicasts, i.e. the same message to all/selected people who are online. Sometimes, these multicasts can be extremely annoying (in fact, most of them are). But it is also where people play anagram, i.e. the guy who hosts the game puts up a jumbled word and those who unravel it can send their replies back to the host. There is usually good competition between the juniors and seniors on this one. I tried my hand at it, but it proved I was just about average.

The other day, a very interesting pic was multi-cast to the entire batch. The picture circulated was this one:

I opened the file and saw the above pic. I kept looking at it for about a minute or so (trust me, 60 seconds of silence can be long) and a number of thoughts went through my head. How long had it been since the child had had his last meal? When did he get his next proper meal? DID he get a proper meal next? Obviously, the food he is getting to eat is not very safe. Did he have to suffer any disease because of what he ate? Where are his parents? Are his parents alive at all? If they are, what must be going through their minds when they see their child eating like this? How terrible must it feel to know that you are unable to feed proper food to your child?

This problem of poverty and malnourishment doesn't exist in India alone, its a worldwide phenomenon as the divide between the rich and the poor widens. This has almost become a cliche in all the economics classes that we attend in colleges. What are we doing about it?

Quite frankly, I don't know how I could do a great deal about the problem. Perhaps, someday in the very near future when I begin to earn, I'll make it a point to keep a portion of my salary to help the poor. But as of now, there's something which I have decided to do, something which is very simple. STOP WASTING FOOD.

This is something so simple and easy that each one of us can follow it. How often have our mothers told us when we children not to waste food? And yet, we continue to do so, unmindful of our duties towards the society. I have stopped wasting food from the last few days, I only take a small amount in my plate during lunch or dinner and don't mind getting up for another helping; but wasting food is a complete no-no.

Tomorrow onwards, I'll be headed to "Confluence 2005", the annual fest of IIM-Ahmedabad. IIM-A, being the best B-school in India, attracts the industry leaders and the best thinking minds, whose efforts change the way India functions economically and socially. It should be a fantastic 4 days ahead.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

How far that little lamp throws it's light

I've been extremely eager to write about the following experience. Not because I want to have praises heaped on me. It is just that this apparently small and simple experience has had a tremendous effect on me.

This was about 2 weeks ago. (I could have blogged about this earlier, but time was a crucial factor then and I wanted to give this post plenty of thought.) I was in a bus and was travelling from one end of the city to another when at one particular stop, an elderly gentleman got onto the bus. He was almost bent double with age and had a frail body. He was walking with the assistance of a walking stick; in fact, the bus conductor made sure that the driver stopped for ample time so that the old gentleman could get onto the bus safely. Someone soon offered him a seat and the rest of the journey was quite uneventful.

It so happened that both he and I had to get off at the last stop. Although getting up the steep steps was not much of a problem (thanks to the handrails), getting down was. I was right behind him and supported his arm while he slowly got down. I followed. As soon as I stepped down, he requested me to help him cross the road. Nothing unusual. I agreed and he put his hands on my shoulders and I guided him across the busy road. It took us roughly a minute to get across the road, owing to the evening traffic.

As soon as we had crossed the road, he promptly said "Abhaar" (Gujarati for "Thank You") and followed that with "May God bless you". I mumbled "Not at all" and something along the lines of it being my duty, but by then, the gentleman was already on his way. But here, the heart took over.

Now, dear reader, you would do well to remember that this was the time when I was under great stress owing to the (then) upcoming examinations and the project presentation. But the wonderful feeling that had come from helping the old man cross the road had put a new spring in my step. Even in the then quickly failing evening skylight, I could feel an unmistakable glow within. I couldn't stop smiling to myself as the words "God bless you" resonated within me. For a second, I was selfish. I wished to God that the old man's blessings may be transferred to good luck for my presentation with which I was facing extreme difficulties and pessimistic thoughts by the truckloads.

But the very next moment, I realized my mistake. Hello? What had I taken God for? A manager of some Swiss bank who, instead of currency, transferred blessings from one account to another? And, in that one moment that I wished to God that I was happy with just the simple blessing that the old man had given me, I realised something very important.

I realised that life and love are way above the success/failure of an MBA degree. It cannot be measured by any percentile, nor any Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA). Both, life and love, can be experienced either during the length of a heartbeat... or the length of a lifetime. I do not wish to be the next spiritual guru, but I appeal to you to do some kind deed today.

Go, find Love; find Life.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Wassup folks?

Hello people,

I'm back!! Well, not as emphatically as "I'm back from the dead", but yes, back from a week full of tension and turbulence. Wow. The exams are a rollercoaster; you don't know when you're on a high and when you're staring into the pits of hell.

Anyway, I had thought that my first post after examinations will be a long one. Unfortunately, it won't be so. I need to rush since there is a CEO lecture at the institute in an hour's time and I really need to catch up on some studies before that.

However, I thought I'd make it a point to edit the template a bit and add 2 blogs to my all time favorite list. One is titled "Youth Curry: An Insight on Indian Youth" and the second one is "Fotosia". Both are absolutely refreshing blogs. I visit them often, either to read Ms. Rashmi Bansal's blog (Youth Curry) or just view the pics on Gosia's site (Fotosia).

Do check these blogs out. They are real nice.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Sorry folks...

Hello all,

I'm sorry for not being able to post for the last few it the Vicious Circle of MBA education. In fact, this post is just to inform you that it should be quite some time before my next post. I've got my mid-term examinations from 15th November and a couple of other things to attend to during the next two weeks.

Once that's over, expect fireworks.

Take care. And all those in India who are preparing for CAT, especially to my pals back in Calcutta, best of luck people. Go for it !!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Happy Diwali

Hello Folks,

HAPPY DIWALI to you all. This is the first time that I'm spending my Diwali away from home and family members. Yup, I've opted to stay back at the hostel during the Diwali vacations too. Really didn't make any sense even trying to go home, it takes 3 days by train to go home and another 3 while coming back, leaving me only 2 days with my family members. What's the point? And I would've missed Diwali anyway. So, here I am...

Hey, I need to update you about Saturday. Around Thursday last week, Anil Sir (our librarian) asked me whether someone could make a book review on "Who Moved My Cheese?", the bestselling book by Dr. Spencer Johnson. I admitted that I'd read the book and hadn't liked it too much. He said it didn't matter. The moment I heard that, I jumped at the opportunity, for he was talking of making a presentation at Zydus Research Centre. He wanted someone else to present alongside me. I looked around for options, but most people were leaving by Saturday evening, i.e. when the book review was to be done. I finally got Rohit Srivastav to agree, although I doubt he would've agreed had I asked him when he was awake. (I woke him up in the middle of a deep sleep, mumbled some gibberish about some presentation, and he said it was ok, thinking that the presentation was the regular Wednesday book club meeting in the campus for students.)

Finally, on Saturday, we made the presentation. Srivastav covered a general review of the book and I looked at the practical applications of the book. I spoke of the Crossword Bookstore and Amitabh Bachchan as examples to how corporate entities and individuals can change.

It was great fun and Anil Sir has promised more such outings for us. I hope I am a part of many of them, for I just enjoy speaking in public. And the bigger the audience, the better. I just relish at the idea that I'm going to be talking to so many people at a time. It is almost a feeling of power, the power that you wield over them over the duration of your speech. Boy, is it fun.

Anybody shares the same? Would you like to share your experiences about public speaking? And what of the book "Who Moved My Cheese?". Did you like it at first go, or are you a convert, just like me? Comments welcomed.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

And this helps...

And just to make my life a bit more interesting, I get a completely distorted page for my blog when viewed on Internet Explorer and a page that is perfectly fine when accessed on Firefox.


When did that week go by ?

I'm seriously confused, what happened? Students here seem to be suffering from an acute case of temporary amnesia (ok, "appologies" for the bad paradox). But it's true. With the kind of workload one witnesses here, the day is over even before you realise it. You're just caught wondering "What the....??", and before you know it, you've faced 5 lectures from 9.30 am to 5.15 pm, with a 45 minute lunch break where you spend 40 minutes editing documents, reading cases, preparing for quizzes, borrowing books required for the next session and the remaining 5 minutes having lunch with whatever is left on offer at the Mess (for once the Englishmen got this one right, 'coz it sure is a messy affair having lunch at one).

Suffice to say that I'm dead tired right now and really would appreciate just going off to sleep, but don't see that happening for a couple of hours since I still need to drudge through 2 cases that have been assigned to us, not to mention the presentation that I'm supposed to make in the "Analysis of Cases and Written Communication Class" tomorrow..... And oh, I've omitted the Financial Management presentation my group is supposed to make on Friday. Gosh !!

As expected, this has taken a toll on me. I don't think I've become thinner (most people who look at my thin frame don't think I could better my own record), but yes, I've almost become an insomniac and can't get myself to sleep before 6.30 in the morning, which results in just 2-2 1/2 hours of sleep in order to get ready for the classes.

Moreover, my personal life too has been victimized. I last spoke to "her" on Monday. Couldn't speak to "her" either yesterday or today (I'm still counting 'today' as Wednesday, though technically speaking, it ain't so). Sad...real sad...especially because I wanted to tell her that I dreamt of being with "her" just today morning during the precious 1 1/2 hours that I slept. What's worse, I think my SMSes have offended her.

On the other hand, I'm really fighting to keep afloat as far as my studies are concerned. I know, I know...everyone tells me the same story. I am from a Commerce background and I should be finding the going relatively easier as compared to the engineers, but the truth is that I am lagging behind.

I know this sounds like a real sad post, but it isn't helping that I've been feeling terribly homesick the last 2 weeks. I can only dreamily-eyed see my room back home in Calcutta, all while the prof. tries to explain what 'penalties' are to be allocated while considering the cost of sending 'x' no. of goods instead of 'y' no. of goods from location 'abc' to location 'xyz'....

Do I not sound like a worry-bag ?? Extremely sorry for this post, but had to let go somewhere...

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Whew...finally, a book review !

I've just come back from the Institute. Finally got a book review done this week. I have been really worried about the fate of "Sumantra", the book club that we've founded this year in our Institute. Things were really going kinda ok, but the problems that crept up were impromptu scheduling of classes on the day when we would have our book review. As a result, lots of people couldn't come and we would only have a handful of them.

We'd not had a book review for a month and a half. So, finally when Reema presented a book review on "The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari" by Robin Sharma, it was a great relief. To think the faculty-in-charge Anil Sir had actually contemplated scrapping the book club !!!!

Anyway, had a good discussion on the book. One thing that I really found interesting was (this was also pointed out by lots of other people who'd come) that this book didn't really contain anything new. You would've probably read similar material in The Alchemist or some other management self-help book. But what is important is how much of it can we apply to our daily lives ? Can we, for example, just be a bit more judicious while spending time, being more disciplined towards our work ? Food for thought.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Our campus

Well, everyone goes ga ga about it. One of the most beautiful campuses in the country. Visitors to the campus never go unimpressed by the infrastructure. Even Businessworld ranks us highly. Wanna know why ? Here's why.

And mind you, these are just views from the balcony. You can well imagine what it would be like to stroll around this place !!

The Silent Ones...

The quiet, unassuming but brilliant Rohit Srivastav (top) and his roomie, the ever-smiling / laughing Kamlesh Sharda (bottom), occupants of room 719. Applause for Kamlesh, these pics are courtesy his ... oops. These gizmos aren't allowed on campus you know. :)

A few good men...

Folks back home have been worried as to the kind of people I've been spending time with.

So, here's a snapshot (from hell ?)

Proudly presenting before you, Vikram Chandak (left) and his roommate, Achin Jain (right). They're my neighbours, room 716.

Before you pass any judgements about them, please also consider the fact that these pics have been taken at 5 in the morning after these folks have been up the whole night doing QTM assignments (presumably).

Am I a maverick or plain silly ?

The jury is still out on this one. Going by popular vote of the people around me, however, it seems I'm the former. There are many idiosyncratic habits that I've got which make me a branded maverick. Take for example what I did last night.

After the two extremely 'low' mood posts, I was down in the dumps...mentally of course (not possible physically, I live on the 7th floor of the hostel). And what did I decide to do to get myself high on life again ? I surf the Net for info on.....Dhirubhai Ambani !!

For the uninitiated, he is one of my heroes. His rags to riches story never fails to excite me and I always end up having an adrenalin rush after listening to / reading episodes from his life. Gita Piramal's "Business Maharajas" certainly had a big influence on my young mind a few years ago. Hence, last night, I decided I would just surf the Net and save some pages on Dhirubhai. It took me half an hour to get up and excited and "bullish" (Dhirubhai would've been happy at the use of this term) on life.

Since then, life has been rocking. I've been trying to finish work quickly. I tried thinking of what Dhirubhai's response would've been to my condition. I could literally hear him shout instructions to me in Gujarati (must admit, being a Gujju helps).

For example, as far as my friend's problem goes..."Koi vaandho nahi, tu e saaro manas cho ane ee pand vyajbee chokri che..Be divas ma pacha mitra thai jasho. Aani upar chinta nahi kar, kaam upar kar." (Nothing to worry about, you're a decent fellow and she's a reasonable girl. You'll be back to normal friendship in 2 days. Quit worrying about this and concentrate your energies on work.)

Do you have a similar habit or trait (or am I the only crazy person who tries to emulate his / her hero) ? What do you do when you feel "low" ? How do you manage to get your spirits high again ? Please do post a comment. It could come in handy, not only to me but also to those who happen to go through this blog.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

I saw her again

I left for dinner immediately after the last post. Saw her there again. She was laughing, beckoning to a batchmate. I quickly directed my gaze to the floor and walked right past her. How long is this gonna continue ?

I'm almost dreading Monday 'coz I'll be with her for the classes. How awkward is it going to be ?

"She" is fine. She called yesterday and we were extremely excited to speak to each other after so long. Like I mentioned earlier, she's in Tirupati. Funny how things turn out. Just the other day I was thinking myself of taking a short trip to Tirupati if something I wish for works out fine. Next thing I know, she's there. Are we made for each other or what ?? :)

I must return to my books. Progress must happen.

Someone is upset with me

I know, I know. I haven't posted in like....ages. But have been extremely busy.

What prompted today to finally log on and post is the fact that I've done something terribly wrong and hence hurt a friend...a very dear friend. Wouldn't want to name her...yes, its a her, but not "her". "She" is away, off to Tirupati for a quick visit. However, the friend that I've upset has every reason to be. The only problem is, she is one of the very few close friends that I've made after coming to this B-school.

Perhaps I'm posting this blog in the hope that someday in the future she'll go through this blog and know how upset I am with myself. One doesn't find good friends easily, and those that you do should be taken extra care of... period. Even Shakespeare wrote so; refer to Polonius' advice to Laertes in "Hamlet".

Anyway, I've never been this upset with myself at having hurt a friend, because, in my memory, this is the first time I've ever hurt a friend. And it is bad. Never been in a more pathetic situation. Soon after I realised my mistake, it was difficult to even muster up the courage to go and stand in front of her. For the last two days, during the HR conclave, I've been catching glimpses of her...either while she's having lunch in the mess or in the auditorium while the presentations are being made. When alone, she seems upset and lonely, which scares me further from approaching her..what if she gets even more upset ? And when she's talking or laughing in someone else's company, I'm scared I'll ruin her mood.

God !! Am I thinking too much on this issue ? Or should I just brush the matter off ? Should I do something about it ? I've already apologised, in fact, also sent a mail to a particular authority that I'd earlier thought I wouldn't (although, haven't told her this yet). But will all this help mend the bridges ? Kya hamaari dosti phir pehle jaisi ho jayegi... Keep your fingers crossed, I know mine are.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Happy Independence Day

Happy Independence Day India...

Never before have I been so thrilled to celebrate our Independence. For starters, I've never celebrated Independence Day at midnight. Now when I look back, I wonder why not ? It makes perfect sense since the first one was celebrated with much joy "at the stroke of the midnight hour", when the world slept and India awoke to Independence and freedom.

At midnight, all the guys landed up on our floor. Slowly, chants of "Bharat Mata Ki....Jai" filled the air and before we knew it, we were called to the ground floor by our seniors. Under normal circumstances, this call would've been seen as an invitation to lessons in hostel rules. But the nationalistic fervor was so high, that the entire junior batch marched downstairs singing songs dipped in patriotism.

Once gathered at the front gate, we realised that the meeting had been gathered to celebrate Independence Day and not to advise us to keep quiet at late hours (the same being the case a few days ago when a particular gentleman's birthday was celebrated on the 7th floor).

What followed next cannot be described by words. I experienced the joy of being an Indian for the next one hour as song after song was sung by a group of to-be-MBAs. To hell with 'babudom' and to hell with 'parliamentary politeness'.. We were here to proclaim, and proclaim loudly, to the entire world that we were Indians.

The songs and dances went on for an hour and even the poor hostel guard, whose sleep was hampered by all the shouting and chanting, was a quiet spectator to scenes of jubilation. By now, the loud shouting and singing was slowly making the voices hoarse, but nobody seemed to care and continued singing at the top of their voices.

I have just one message for the politicians and the ever oh-so-remorseful-for-the-country aunts and uncles. Don't ever say that this country doesn't have any hope or that you don't see the same sort of nationalistic pride in the younger generation. Perhaps, there haven't been challenges which have been apparent, whenever the challenge presents itself, you can be sure of one thing... we, the youth of India, shall be up to the task.

Signing off on a patriotic note....Jai Hind

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Time flies...

Whew !! Finally the weekend is here and we can bid goodbye to the first week post mid-terms. "Laidback" is a term which defines the attitude here after the exhausting midnight studies we needed to do for our mid-terms. Everyone is on the "Chilled Out" mode right now and mentions of pre-readings evokes sentiments of dismay/anger/bewilderment. One has but little option.

Not that this relaxed attitude has been without results. Twice in this week has the class been told about the severe repercussions we might have to face the next time the 'janta' attends a class without doing the pre-reading.

This caused me to wonder. When and how does time fly ? There have been numerous occassions when one has returned to the hostel from the institute building around 6 in the evening but isn't able to get down to 'serious' work before midnight or 1. Why ? Where does all the time go ? We surely aren't working on our assignments or pre-readings for the next day or researching stuff in the library or on the Internet. So, is it just our extra-curricular activities, the different clubs that take up so much of our time ?

It would be interesting to see the comments I get for this one. As far as I'm concerned, I'll post my thoughts about where I end up spending time as soon as I figure it out myself.... :)

Thursday, August 11, 2005

My first post

Hi. So, this is how one does their Organisational Behavior assignments !!

Before I get into the technical nitty-gritties, let me introduce myself. I'm Shekhar Ruparelia, currently pursuing my MBA at Institute of Management, Nirma University, Ahmedabad. This is where the story begins....

I logged onto the Internet at around 3 to try and find some relevant info on the OB assignment. Ended up creating a blogspot of my own. That's my life for you. Unpredictable, fun...and some seriousness thrown in for good measure.

Haven't got an audience in mind. I shall mainly attempt to write whatever I think is worth mentioning and thereby not turn this place into a morose jungle of personal tribulations. And yes, I shall definitely mention why I chose "Adventures of a Traveller" as a blog name.

Till then, ciao.