18 December, 2008

Winter cheer

Snap. A year went by. One year ago, I had just finished packing for moving back to India. I was saying my goodbyes to my friends, colleagues and to the city and was getting done with that as well.
I knew I would come back often. I knew that my time in London will never come back. Memories are made with the place, the people and the present. Each one of them changes constantly, people changing the least I guess and the present changing all the time. I miss my time there - From Camden to High St. Ken to Hampstead and even the time spent in the Docklands - there are things about each place which I miss. Each place I stayed there had its own flavour. In the beginning, it was all about settling in and roaming around with my IIMA friends 100% of the time and learning how to cook. It changed into numerous cookins, anda-paranthas, walking up the hill with Nautanki and haggling like two middle-aged housewives, the Heath and the village. It also meant finding new friends and reading new books as older ones got married or got busier. West Hampstead had the flat screen TV and playstation and snow and weekday night outs followed by dreadfully long days in office.
Moving back to the present, the wedding season is in full flow. Almost all my friends are married - RG is my only hope in ensuring that I am not the last one to get married - which is also not a bad thing. It is not a bad thing because if something is so good to spend your entire life in it, it must be good enough to wait for. Also, I love my (almost) complete control over my life and space and interests, which I think reduces a bit with marriage. As AS tells me – “You will lose all the controls. But you will like losing them.” If he was not married, I would believe his intentions but not his veracity. Since he is married, I doubt his intentions.
Any how, my ex-manager from ebookers has gotten me in touch with some new companies - we should be able to last out this recession with such friends, but let us see how this story unfolds.

08 December, 2008

NK ties the knot

So this one is going to be about NK - friend, counsellor, 'ex-gamer', foodie, gymboy and fat-mate, super-geek and/or misplaced CA....
  • Friend - A few years ago in London the three (AT, NK and I) of us colectively endangered our livers in our quest to make me see light at the end of a tunnel. All I could see during this time was an unending stream of Jack and diet coke (of course!). Both of us believed in compartments of information - it was a lot of fun to let him into a few compartments and for him to share a few with me. it is even more fun when you meet someone else with an access to other compartments of NK's life and you get to exchange notes. So much fun. NK listened when he had to and said stuff when he had to. I remember him helping out when AT had a back problem and stopped moving for about a week - NK moved in with us to ensure that AT was moved around - not something which any person can ensure easily. He has supported quite a few of his friends with his work, brain and even money. He has lost some money in the process but has continued to do so. That is rare in today's world.
  • Counsellor - He started off by radical suggestions like flying down to New York on New Years eve. Other highlights included trying to make me read the Game, subsribing me to various email alerts and weekly journals which varied from job alerts to dating advice.
  • Ex-gamer - There have been many an occasion where NK' s way with the ladies has floored me. His way has done much, much more with the ladies in question. NK's work was an inspiration, in the way the sun is an inspiration to travelers - it shows you the way and gives you your bearings. It shows you things you never thought were possible. What was very cool about all this was also the fact that he believed that this was an a talent which can be taught. After reading the 'Game' and other books referenced from the 'Game', he came to the conclusion that such talents could be learnt and taught, much like the way you learnt to become a doctor or an engineer. I understand this bit. At the same time, there are always doctors and then there are good doctors. NK was a good 'gamer'.
  • Foodie/gymboy and fat mate - there is picture of AT and NK from one of these jack and coke sessions on my phone. My sister refers to both of them as flat mate and fat mate respectively. NK likes food. His consumption is not governed by demand but is constrained by supply. He was a staunch supporter of my cooking - good or bad and a good end point as well. His love for food and his regular gym sessions were a delicate equilibrium - a steady and constant struggle between two equal and opposite forces. His gymming continues unabated in Mumbai even today, only to keep up with his nutritional tendencies.
  • Supergeek, misplaced CA - He is good with his work - thorough, well organised, consistent and persistent. I do not think that there is anything he can not do. He is not a nerd - anything he reads is for a purpose and to "add value". I love the way there is a reason behind every thing he does. He manages all this without appearing to be a stuckup idiot or a bore - which is something he should be proud of. He is a web 2.0 enthusiast - there are so many thing which I use on my computer due to him. Given that he is a CA and from SRCC, and I am from KREC, I should be somewhat ashamed and I am. I only feel better by praising him for being a supergeek.
He had a super wedding - I was only too happy to be part of it and share the happiness with him, his wife and his family. I danced at a public function under normal lighting - which was a first for me. My movements were coordinated and any complaints for the same need to be forwarded to our choreographer. NK also managed to get his sister married the very next day - every thing went to plan and there were no mixups. I loved every bit of it.

Congratulations NK!

04 December, 2008

Symptoms of complacency

I had an interesting conversation with RG and am summarising it here. I am back in India for almost a year now. My life is repetitive. I can predict where I will be and what I will be doing given a time and date with a large degree of accuracy. Office, Client office, car or home will explain 100% of my weekday. During the weekend, most client offices are closed.
Of course, there are times when I meet friends - but someone usually is getting married for that to happen. Such is life. Strange thing is, I am happy.
Free will has led me into this and free will is keeping me here. Some common indicators of happiness - money, partner, career are all missing. If a few years back, if I would be told that I would have almost no money, no body to share anything with and no real career, I  be very scared. Right now, I am living it and am happy.
This brings me to the main topic - Am I being complacent? I have a long and varied history of being complacency. Complacency is second nature to me. In fact, it is my first response to anything. However, this time I have my doubts. I have doubts both ways. It is irritating.

Raj uncle

A thousand words. Done.