Saturday, January 9, 2016

Thank You, 2015!

Yet another 6 month period without a post on my blog, yet another resolve to update it more often and yet another promise to myself to be more active - in all aspects of life!

2015 was bad and good in a lot of ways. It started with a party with few friends, catching up with more friends and then it was back to the usual mess at workplace. Birthdays are no longer special but the one in 2015 was memorable for the wrong reasons - I got rejected at an interview on that very day and the  confidence of finding a better job in a better company took a dent. I can't remember what I prayed for on that day but I'm sure I've got more than that.

A week after getting rejected by HSBC came a 48 hour phase where I got interviewed and selected at my present workplace, Wells Fargo. It provided the much needed peace of mind at workplace. Things kept improving from there and I got the kind of work environment and colleagues I had always wanted.

Once professional aspect was taken care of, I could commit fully to marriage and as things turned out, I got married six months into my new job! The fact that I met my life partner online goes nicely with the way I like to handle my day to day transactions - online as much as possible!

A month into marriage:

Unique life event that it is, marriage deserves a special mention here. Both of us were unsure of marrying each other initially and we took a long time (reluctantly) making up our minds. I had never sat down and made a list of the qualities I wanted in my life partner so there was no "checklist" to fit her into. I said yes because she came across as a person with a clear heart and I strongly believe that is the most important thing in a life partner.

The excitement on both sides in the months leading up to  2nd December was infectious and when I headed home on 27th November on a 2 week break, I had no idea what to expect. I had decided to let things flow as they were meant to and at the end of it, everything went well and I now have another family. Friends keep asking me "How's married life?" and I have nothing but "better" as an answer.

It's always great to have someone to talk to at home, once you return after a day's work. The efforts she's taking to handle all the extra responsibilities is overwhelming. I've never been too expressive about my feelings and it works to my demerit here, as  I might end up appearing disinterested or unappreciative of her. I hope it all settles down with time, as we understand each other better. My primary concern after marriage was to make things comfortable for her here in Hyderabad. I had already shifted to our new flat and had the bare minimum stuff one would need. Once we returned from marriage, things like refrigerator, washing machine and basic furniture got added and now it looks like the flat belongs to a family.

On a personal front, I find myself to be more efficient after marriage, primarily because she's taken care of so many things at home. I have now decided to pursue my freelancer career with more seriousness and things have started well there. My dad's transfer cum promotion (and his acceptance) to Kolkata was a bit of a dampener in 2015, as he immediately faced health issues. Now that my mother has joined him there, I'm sure things will improve once they settle down.

Here's wishing everyone a happy new year. May our 2016 be better than 2015!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


It's funny - the occasions on which I get reminded to update my blog when other people mention theirs. Still, a quarterly update doesn't sound bad enough, considering the delays in the past.

A number of positives have happened since the last update, i.e. March 17th. My last 48-hr Delhi dash eventually got (over)loaded with Cricket. It was an absolute pleasure to turn up for the Annual Xavier's vs. Michael's cricket match on 22nd March. After having failed to win it on two previous occasions, it was satisfying to win the shield and turn in a Man of The Match performance at the IIT Delhi grounds. Sharing a few happy memories from the game here for my non existent readers and the future me:

Back to Hyderabad and that was when I put one final thrust into my job hunt. It had been a good 6 months of feeling like a square peg in a round hole at my previous employer's office and I was determined to redeem myself before I allowed my CV and intelligence to worsen any further. Got rejected by HSBC on my birthday but barely a week after that, things turned for good and by 15th April, I had an offer for a role and company I had been trying for since the final sem of my MBA - March 2014! Incidentally, I had just had my last (of a long series) of heated arguments with my 
then manager barely 48 hrs before putting my papers in.

I've never been the one to pick fight with someone (esp. in the professional world) but then, I've never taken a backward step either when people try to mess around. Professional, cultured managers (all employees, for that matter) have the courtesy and ability to diffuse tension through a calm dialogue but when someone tries to stamp his authority over you by raising his voice, it is only just to talk back and match his tone. That was one moment from my short 4-yr professional career that I'd put down as "most satisfying".
Keeping the grievances aside, I'm absolutely loving my time at the new job that I have. Colleagues here were generous enough to give a clear cut outline about the assignments lined up to me and allayed all my concerns. This is the kind of role I was looking forward to when I opted out of my MBA placements and decided to find something on my own in Hyderabad and it feels like the moment of redemption has finally arrived. Finding decent company for lunch in office is the only problem that has persisted from my previous job but that has more to do with my reluctance to be part of large groups (and end up wasting time) than anything else. Hopefully it won't be long before I find it.

As an icing on the cake, I got in touch with the people who coordinate cricket and chess in my new office so co-curricular activities should get rolling soon.

Now that things are moving on the right track (touchwood), it's about time I started working on my cooking. I never felt the need to learn it in a decade of staying away from home but when you mess up cooking rice (yes, plain, uncomplicated RICE!), a SWOT analysis is mandatory. Hoping to post improved news really soon!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Fun weekend ahead

Having spent the best part of the past decade away from my family members, the thought of spending time with them after months is all that is required to cheer me up. The period from 2005 to 2012 was distributed across Manipal, Mysore and Hyderabad - with a semi annual trip to home being my only solace.

Enjoyable as the engineering days in Manipal were, having a month long semester break was enough to recharge my batteries for the next semester. Fast forward to 2009 when I moved to Mysore to join Infosys for a 6 month training - there was no question of getting a week off in that period and the initial plan of sneaking in a short trip to Delhi before reporting to my Hyderabad posting didn't materialize, as it would have robbed me of the "travel reimbursement" worth Rs. 2000 (Yes, 2000 were more valuable in those days!).

For the next 3 years spending a week at home every 4-6 months was the norm. And now, I've to compress that weekly time off into a weekend. Websites like these do make house hunting easier in a new city but then, nothing like home!

Though any day off at home, away from the usual office chaos is wonderful, here's my description of what my ideal day at home is like:

The drawing room is my ideal spot, as it provides the perfect balance. A sofa to sit/stretch on, a TV right in front and a center table to place my legs and/or laptop on. All the auxiliaries such as charging point for laptop and mobile are within an arm's distance. It sets things up ideally to follow sport, have conversation with family members, play with my little nephew and keep an eye on the main door. To add to it, it is conveniently close to the kitchen which makes it easier for the screams for food be heard and acknowledged. Menu is already decided and the odd trip to the market to get raw materials for it is a small price to pay for the eventual outcome.

Typically, the day starts at around 9 am when all the family members have been awake for a while and I get the occasional luxury of sleeping till late. Newspapers have been placed at their usual place and that is one time I really feel like reading newspapers (can't explain how much I miss Hindustan Times here in Hyderabad). As the clock inches towards 10:30, my mother's patience starts running out and the initial requests to freshen up eventually turn into an order. Those are the times an otherwise punctual person like me loves to alter his eating habits at and enjoys the silence in the absence of continuous phone calls, e - mails and meetings.

The short, 2 day Delhi trip planned coming weekend promises to bring about more of such moments. And yes, throw in a bit of cricket on Saturday/Sunday morning and things cannot get better!