Goodbyes and all that…

Its been a month and a half since I last wrote anything here, and more than two since anything substantial. The single longest break I have taken since I started blogging. But then I am back. I had written the post below a day before I graduated but hadn’t gotten around to posting it. Anyway, this one extremely long vote of thanks if I may say so.

It was just about a year back that I was writing about leaving Evalueserve, and how I would miss them so much every day. To be honest, I did miss like crazy for a month or so. And then the schedule of ISB got the better of me. There was very little time to miss people, or reminisce about old days. Yet whenever I had a good chai (thanks a ton Megha), watched an F1 race, a football match, or a tennis game, used Excel or Word, and in general had a good time, those memories came flooding back! I still miss you guys a lot!!

I hadn’t been psenti about ISB so far. But then a friend sent a mail today that made me realize that there are just a couple of more days to go for what has been an amazing roller-coaster of a ride that is ISB! It’s been just about a year, and as promised, it has given memories and friends to last a lifetime. There are so many people to thank for it that using names is going to be difficult. But some must be mentioned.

My quaddies. Much like the wingies in Pilani, quaddies at ISB are your safety net. These are the people you end up spending most time with, and in general having a lot of fun with. Sam – my partner in crime, be it movies or music. Shared so many brilliant moments watching crappy movies before exams with him that it almost became a ritual. What F.R.I.E.N.D.S was to Pilani, House MD was to ISB. Good movies too were watched together. Raj – the nawab of the group. He taught us what alfresco dining was, but could never convince us about the difference between cartoons and animation though. Avin – the most reclusive of us all, also perhaps the smartest. With his cap and shades, Avin was the man to watch when we went for treats. He was the one responsible for a lot of aching muscles when he got the quad addicted to Wii Sports! Damn you man!! And don’t get me started on his choice of places to take his girl to 😛

My study group. My family at ISB. Kirti, Megha, Malavika, and Sunil. Love you guys! Kirti – the smart guy of the group. No academic problem was too tough for him. Sarcasm his best weapon, I gelled a lot with him, and we accounted for the most time pass during team meetings. Best of luck for married life dude!! Megha – the organized girl. As someone said for her, seems like she has Hermione’s Time Turner. Also known for her fabulous voice, amazing mimicry skills, and awesome chai making skills. Sunil – CA sahib, was the source of most gossip on campus. Wrote the most formal emails ever, and coined the term “Megha’s chai quad”. We will miss you on graduation day dude! Malavika – the dreamer, poet, and our very own IT person!! She has been a source for sanity in the group. The only one who understood FB, Twitter, Reader, Harry Potter, FRIENDS, and much more. The most enthu person in the group, she was the driver behind most group outings.

The extended study group. Gogo – the taller of the two Goyals. With his amazingly correct Hindi, and Rajasthani, he was the source of most comedy!! Supra – boodhi haddiyon mein abhi bhi bahut jaan hai. With endless stories, the old man of the group usually gave us a lot of gyaan. Jasnoor – the other IT engineer. Shared most geekery with him. Also, introduced me to the dhaba, and we went out for food a lot. With his almost alien vehicle, he was the most unlikely of Sardars one can ever meet. Kshitij – CP partner. We had a lot of common courses, and made life miserable for many. Also, his quad was the source of many get togethers. Diwali, New Year, CTB meetings, you name it. The lovely Radhika – ensured that we were well fed most of the times. Also, worked harder than most of us for the CTB.

RockEE – my section at ISB. Full of wonderful people, to single anyone out would not be fair.

CTB – the final study group, and most fun assignment. Kshitij, Radhika, Malavika, Sarosh, and Renu. One of the most fun group to hang out with! Sarosh – the One! This girl had so much energy and enthu that she spent most of her time at ISB ensuring that we enjoyed every moment of it. And always had fun doing what she did. The CTB was her brain child. Thanks for everything Sarosh! Renu – she ensured we worked, never ran out of chai, coffee, or Maggi, and wrote the most difficult write-ups of them all!! Hats off to you girl. Based in Mumbai, be sure that I will keep dropping in once in a while for some grub, and lots of psenti-putting sessions 🙂

Various study groups I had in electives – Mummyji, Mayank, Ashish, Yev, and others. You guys were awesome! Need to mention Mummyji & Mayank – you two were sooper fun!! INMK and MGCP was so much fun because of you. Thanks!!

Modi – I have become so used to him being around that it just seemed poetic justice that he also got a job in Mumbai. Thanks for hanging out with me at Apollo and all the help here at ISB. See you soon in Mumbai 🙂

Everyone at ISB I have missed. There are people from my SV, my ELP team, various elective sessions, the clubs, and many more! Thanks for making it one memorable year!!

Special mention of the entire ISB staff in general, and housekeeping in particular, for making the ISB experience an exceptionally smooth one. The levels of service this guys provide is just mind-blowing. I still wonder how I will get used to life in Mumbai without the serviced apartment 🙁

Akanksha – can’t believe that you weren’t present for my graduation. The first known face in Hyderabad, ISB experience would not have been the same without you. Thanks for driving me around, the Batman poster :P, home grub, getting me all the stuff I needed from the city, and always being willing to listen when I cribbed about life at ISB. Thanks a ton!!

I know I will be in touch with most of you, but it will not be so with a few others. For them, something I remember from long back,

सितारों को दमन में छुपा के रखना
बड़ी दूर तक रात ही रात होगी
मुसाफिर हो तुम भी मुसाफिर हैं हम भी
किसी मोड़ पे फिर मुलाकात होगी

Dead as a doornail!!

The past week has been super hectic, even by ISB standards. I attended an equivalent of at least 18 classes (2 hours each). Read so many cases and papers that my head hurt. And was showered by as much information as can be humanly digested, and then some more.

ISB and Wharton hosted, perhaps a first, joint course on Healthcare Innovation in India. Attended by 30 participants each from ISB and Wharton the course was compressed over two and a half days and talked about all aspects of the healthcare sector in India, from lifesciences to delivery, and from insurance to social investment funds. It was like a crash course, just a little faster.

Though the course was a lot of fun, it was very demanding too, and I spent the entire day today going through motions and somehow dragging myself through it. Almost know how zombies move around.

And have a dunking to attend to at midnight – so no sleep before that. With the placement season coming up, blogging will be sparse, unless of course I get one quickly 😛

PS: Cricket is a wonderful sport. I connected so much with a South African exchange student, talking almost only about cricket. And he was as avid a follower as anyone else, and ’twas a nice long chat with him 🙂

The year that was…

So I thought that I would do a customary year end review of the year that passed by in, what seemed, like a flash!

Professionally it was a mixed one. I was selected for a conference and I could not attend it due to visa issues. I took a sabbatical to complete the MBA. A lot of people from the team I was a part of have since quit, and it would be almost like joining a new place. The job search here at ISB has not started in earnest, but the things are looking positive so far and I think it will be a good 2010 for all of us on that front.

The biggest news was the ISB admit. After a lot of consideration, I decided that I wanted to join, and boy am I glad. The time here so far has been brilliant. Met a lot of new folks, made some life long friends, and learnt a lot of new stuff. In between the hectic schedule, also found a lot of time to party!! I know I will carry some fond memories from here even though I have spent very little time here. Special mention here for my study groupies – Kirti, Malavika, Megha, and Sunil – you guys were awesome. Almost forgot my quaddies here – Sam, Avin, and Raj – keep rocking!!

Another big change was that a lot of close friends decided to join the dark side to get married. Misra and Parul, Sudeep and Divs, Yatharth and Akanksha, and Kaustubh and Shubbu jumped on the marriage bandwagon. Congratulations and best of luck all of ya!! A few others are joining it in 2010 and the trend seems to be on the upswing 🙂

One major upside of all the marriages was meeting all the friends after a long time and loads of fun was had. Misra’s wedding trip was one I will never forget all my life!! The look on Sudeep’s face when Thax flew down for his wedding was another priceless moment.

As Misra RTed one of his friends –

Beginning of the decade – Started college, making new friends and aspiring for a great job! End of the decade, still doing the same! Life comes a full circle.

Happy New Year people!! May it bring joy, happiness, and health to you and your loved ones!!

Staying Alive…

Has been a long time since I wrote anything. Have been just too tied up with loads of stuff to think about writing. The sleep cycle has gone for a toss, and I don’t at times know what day of the week it is. The rescheduling of classes has just made the task that much more difficult.

However, it is in times like this that some totally unexpected thing happens and pleasantly surprises you. One such thing was the surprise thrown for Nikhil (batchmate) and his wife for their wedding. Complete baarat with ghodi and band baaja. Totally loved it. Sohel and Sarosh – kick ass work folks!!

More details on ISBWeblog.

We are like that only…

I sometimes wonder if we will ever be able to get rid of “free riders“. At least on two occasions here at ISB, a team member has shirked responsibility and contributed nothing to an assignment. Nada.

Then someone in the group suggests reporting the incident to the ASA, and somehow we decide against it. Once I was against it, because the past record of the team member was good. After all we are humans and are allowed to make one mistake.

This time, I wanted to report the matter and others suggested that we drop the matter. It might cost the person the course grade and eventually might hurt placements. Is it too large a punishment? Should we have behaved differently?

I guess a part of the problem is that such incidents are not reported too often, and when they are, the culprits are generally made examples of. This prevents others from reporting them any more. Is the solution to deal with the offence differently? Maybe instead of effecting the grades you could have some other punishment. Like wearing a t-shirt saying “I am a douche bag and don’t do my work!” for a day or so. Or some public service like preparing a course summary alone and sending it to everyone – and grade that instead of the said assignment.