Where is everyone!

So the Jamboree that is the Summer Internship Process is done and dusted with. How little things change in an year! I remember reading a blog post a year ago by a super-senior which describes the process (I remember sharing this with someone *wistful look*), another one by a senior after our process. And then it was almost a repeat this year. Yes I know, record time and all that jazz but essentially more of the same. Despite actually wanting to and probably spending less time over there, one ended up feeling much more involved than I was last March with our seniors. Or so I think. I think you really care, that’s the cool thing about XL. Some people saunter out on the first day while some people keep adjusting their ties for 3 days. Yes, as VKG says..R is for Random process hai be and T is for Tera nahi hoga toh kiska hoga! But how do you not judge yourself through this entire circus for lack of a better word? Peer pressure cracks up the best of people.

It felt good to have a bird’s eye view of the process. You see the entire spectrum of emotions and you see yourself there, that faceless soul in a suit. You pretend not to care, you tell yourself it’s all random. Perhaps you even manage to convince yourself for some time that despite the randomness (an excuse?), the heartbreak and the heartache that generally ensues…you want to be there again. That you have some unfinished business with this process. Remember though, they say fools venture where angels fear to tread!

Life goes on though and time, tide & Ram wait for no one. Before the euphoria dies down, you can trust the Man with the Red Ink to bring crashing back to reality. So an assignment sees half the junior batch suddenly battling cr’s & dr’s. You run across a wandering soul in the library. Is tax charged after deducting x or before deducting y? I remember (know to be honest is the right word!) not a thing of that.  The futility of it all is quite striking all of a sudden.

On the last day of the process, did something I hadn’t done before in XL. Co-co’ing. Boy is it tough work or what! And awkward as well, when it’s the same company you interned with. The other side of the table is a tough place to be. Some surprises, but then who am I to judge?  Made a old friend a much better friend perhaps to the envy of many people from Services. Men will be men as Imperial Blue keeps reminding us :). It was an interesting end to the process though. Was standing in the well area with The Bumma when all of sudden one of the Gods in suits rushed in. Followed by another. Perhaps is a loud whisper. Shaayad shrieks another softly. Hold on, wait for confirmation. There is a group hug. A huddle. Finally is the cry. People troop in to watch these Gods in Suits jump with joy. Clapping. A god grabs the microphone. Don’t clap…they’re still on campus. Trust sanity to prevail even in euphoria. Later one of the hero’s of the evening revels us with his exploits. A mixture of admiration and disgust. One day you might be on the other side of the table. And you might be getting pwned as the kids call it these days. They say, everyone who’s come here is pretty much equal. It’s just about being the first among equals. Days like this shatter your belief in such talk. The level of condescension is shocking.  Yeh race toh ghodon ki aur gadhon ki hai as Sly once said. Couldn’t be truer. A slow horse or a fast mule? Who’d you like to be?

There was the usual Wet Night post the SIP. Not half as active and enthusiastic a participation as the last time around though. Perhaps to be blamed on the Man with Red Ink? The cake cutting was also a much more somber affair. The second all night session in a row, in the missing Flirty’s room and then to the JLT. So what happened? Some surprise regional jingoism ignited in the middle of the night. And MyMan barking his friendly advice 🙂 . I suddenly missed everyone who wasn’t there very badly that night. All the folks on exchange, all of those who’d gone home and everyone else who chose to ruminate in their rooms. But was fun nonetheless, thanks to all those who were there till the wee hours. A different wet night with interesting memories.

After 15 months in the town of Jampot, finally went to Maharashtra Mandal for breakfast. This must have been after going to MadSam (Madrasi Sammelan for the uninitiated) at least 20 times. 1800 kilometers away from home and the takeaway is marathi maansaala dhanda karta yetach nahi ! Promise of something different will take me there again, but not a place I will drag too many people along with me for sure.

Another night out the very next night! This is becoming a habit! In preparation for Ram ke Beti ki Shaadi, the first Sapphire night out. Which ended with another breakfast as MadSam. You form a routine even in such randomness…Good Grief as Charlie Brown would say!

It was Diwali today. Dhanteras. Such a ‘meh’ Diwali. Remembered the advice from the staircase at the end of last term. And speaking to someone about this in the evening did help feel better. Formulated a plan with the Ballistic One today, we looked up photographs from the first term, from the village exposure trips. How many relationships have changed ever since! Conspiring with the Ballistic One, also something I haven’t done for a while. Was fun though…big things planned at least up ahead!

Spoke to God or T-Man, the one from engineering yesterday. His life has gone upside down in the last 6 months. I haven’t seen him since April, perhaps won’t see him till next April. But felt connected  after a long time with him. I call my friends so rarely! Yes, we all have busy schedules…but is there anything, anything at all which is more important? Will be systematic about this as well from now….as always you can learn something from God even from halfway across the country 🙂

What a long and unstructured post this is going to be. It’s been start-stop, start-stop…up-down with para’s inserted all over the place. There are hyperlinks to be added as well, but that will be later now. We head for the Holy Grail of cricket in India..Eden Garden’s in an hour. I came up with the idea on a lark, talked to some folks about it and we’re actually headed there now. I’m not as excited as I’d have liked to be, is it cynicism again? Or maybe I’ve seen enough cricket matches and this one doesn’t mean anything. I almost feel as if it’s something to be ticked off the bucket list. But I’m sure, come 1430 hours…the adrenaline will arise. Till next time, adios!

PS: Clarification on the title of the post. When I started off, I wanted to write about the relative emptiness in the corridors. The keyboard took me elsewhere. But will stick to the title because it was something that struck me big time today…

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