Ushering In A New Day...

Its 5:00 am. I'm semi awakened quite lovingly by my phone alarm which sends out a muffled tring tring from under my pillow and somehow manages to vibrate my entire head from underneath. I switch it off and resume my sleep, quite unperturbed , when all of a sudden I receive a rude shock... Usher somehow blasts his way into the room at full volume. My first thought is that its all a weird dream and will get over soon. But as Usher continues to blow my eardrums to bits, I realise its Ash's phone alarm. These new gadget phones- n number of fancy features, including personalised alarms which manage to alarm everyone but the possessor. While Usher continues to ruin my sleep, Ash sleeps on apparently undisturbed. A few minutes and several pleas from me later, she awakens and switches it off. I sigh in relief... but not for long...

By this time, Usher has been ushered out by two new voices - one coming from a nearby mosque and one from a nearby Gurudwara. While the two stentorian voices battle it out in what seems like an Inter-faith Prayer Challenge, matching their tonsils and stretching their voice boxes in long drawn out calls to the Almighty, I give up all hopes of sleeping and say a little prayer of my own for regaining peace. My prayers seem to have been unheard among the much louder and more elaborate ones in the vicinity... coz the voices have now turned from two to three. The pujari in the Saraswati Temple has issued a bugle call of his own. Literally. A loud blast from the ceremonial conch signals his entry into the Battle of Vani-pat. It seems like pujari ji has a throat infection, because he switches on a cassette of Mata ke bhajans in all the latest tunes instead. At this point, the atmosphere is rent with three different calls to Him. God alone knows what He heard in the cacophony. I give up trying to make sense and wake up instead. Suddenly, studying for the exam to be held in 2 hours seems like a good plan...

I'm greeted at the breakfast table with a hollow and dull "Jai Mata Di" by Harry. Poor thing slept at 3am, with the night session of Mata ke bhajans ending at that time and woke up at 5:30 with the morning session of MkB's. As we both discuss who the winner might be, I reflect that silence is probably the best prayer. At least He'd be able to hear it...

Wintery Thoughts



I love the winter sun. There's nothing I find more relaxing, yet stimulating, than the warm winter sun falling on my back, with a cool breeze playing with my hair, and a nip in the air that makes the atmosphere seem alive...

We had the first mist of the winters yesterday. The first sight I saw when I looked out of my window in the morning was a world blanketed in pristine whiteness. It was as if the mist had cut off all the noise. The silence was so complete that for a moment the world seemed to have stopped still, and I had the illusion that I was suspended in white space. And then through the mist came a tinkling of bells...probably from the Saraswati Mandir. And the spell was broken...

There's something about the crystal clear night sky in the winter that leaves me breathless and awestruck. Orion is my favourite constellation. Every night I look up into the vast expanse and immediately spot Orion in the star strewn heavens. There's an unexplicable majesty and beauty in the Hunter, with the belt of three stars marking its presence among all others. I want to be like Orion - one who stands out from the rest, seeking my Destiny and seizing it where it lies... okay getting a little too philosophical...

Un-Presentable


Through with our final presentations for the semester project today...
What can I say.. it feels like a load is physically off my head... feel free... floating on air...
However, today I got a fresh insight on the sham that they call A Presentation.

The questions were ridiculous. For a student who has worked for over 4 months, trying to figure out complex equations, model complicated and intricate shapes, optimize, factorize, predict the nature of obscure data and make difficult programs in hitherto unknown softwares, to be asked something as trivial as "Reference number 7 does not give the year of publication" or "Listen me,'Great gratitude' is wrong English" (right, like YOUR English is the right one!) is degrading and downright insulting.

When the esteemed panel didn't have a clue what was going on (they were busy having chai-biscuit), they bounced back during the question round with the above mentioned bouncers. It was hit wicket everytime. By some chance of Fate, I was spared the ignominy of being asked if I knew my referred authors personally. But there were others who were subjected to the torture. It was like a pack of hounds hounding a goat just waiting to be slaughtered.... painful is the word to describe it.

Add to it a certain back biter who went crying to his guide complaining about how his time was cut short (he extended his time by over 10 minutes) and how someone else was given more time (she ran through her slides, I swear!!)..and we had a day of revelations.

As it happened, I got off very well comparatively. Though I was asked a few questions about twins and Tanzania and the darkest regions of Africa... I am yet to figure out where Tanzanian twins came up in my discussion, but as long as I wasn't asked about reference number 3.421.....

My God !!!!

Yup! I talk to God. Don't ask me why this sudden spiritual streak in me...but it just so happens that I have a God I can talk to....

Who listens to all I say and doesn't talk back ;
Who gives me consolation without me asking for it ;
Who hears me out patiently when I'm down, then always pulls me up again, without even letting me know ;
Who says the right things without speaking a word ;
Who always tells me what to do when I'm unsure of myself ;
Who points me in the right direction, but doesn't push me to follow it ;
Who always supports me, even if I end up being wrong ;
Who sees my tears and lets them run... but gives me a shoulder to cry on ;
Who hears my laughter, and joins me in the celebrations ;
Who loves me unconditionally, even when I don't give it back ;

My God is all around me... in the people that I know and love. My parents, my friends who have stood by me for years and always will. I know this sounds ultra senti and soppy, but I truly believe in God.

I have discovered the power of God ... Coz frankly, nothing else could have completed that damn project of mine in time!!!!

Chowmein For Breakfast...

8.55: Entered the mess late as usual... just to discover a mile long line starting from the door and extending away beyond the scope of my vision. As I joined the column with an empty (and semi-dirty) plate,I was informed of the presence (or rather the absence) of chowmein for breakfast and hence the formation of a queue of hungry,impatient girls who were getting late for class. Some were panicky ("I have a quiz!!"), some impatient ("Bairaji, Chowmein!!"), some quite nonchalant (those with classes from 10 and beyond), and yet others like me were resigned to their fate.

9.00: As we stood there,waiting for what seemed like an eternity, we hungrily eyed the lucky few who were a bit early and had piled their plates with the elusive noodles (the early chicks got the worms). Noone dared to leave their place in the line, trusting Murphy's Law to work its wonders (the moment you leave, Bairaji would enter with the chow). A daring few took the risk of nipping out to get a piece of toast, and then nipped back in, chomping hungrily.

9:05:... and the clock's ticking away, but no chowmein to be even smelt. As the 9 o'clockers slowly disappeared, having had just bread, I stuck it out yet.

9:10: I decided to give it up and have my (burnt) toast. Just as I finished with my paltry meal, who else but Bairaji (motivated by Murphy) made his grand re-entry, welcomed with relieved sighs by the few stolid ones who'd stuck it out in the line till then. As I passed the tureen of chow, I could not let my efforts go to waste, and decided to have a helping at the last moment.

9.15: And me shovelling down a spoonful of stringy, half cooked, over vinegared noodles, wondering what I had done to deserve Chowmein For Breakfast....

Overheard....

Sometimes you overhear some gems without intending to. A few selections from my treasure chest of overheard conversations:

Girl to her boyfriend, on the phone(Time:00:00hrs, Venue:Hostel corridor, on a night when we're trying to study for an exam due that day) : "Keep na... no you keep na... no no... you keep na first... (giggle)... keep na..I won't keep no... You have to keep first, then only na.... hey, keep na...."and so it continues.......aaaaaaaaaarggghhhhh.... Please SOMEONE keep na !!!

Girl to (presumably) her boyfriend , on the phone (Time:02:00hrs , Venue: Balcony near Water Cooler, also known as Panghat): "Arre, why didn't you wash your shirt?? There was such a big spot on it..I felt like just washing it then and there. Tomorrow, give me all your shirts that need to be washed, I'll do them for you..." how about MY clothes too???

Typical "Tere Naam" type guy with oily hair tied in a pony, accompanied by perfectly matched girl in latest styled suit, sit in an adjoining bench at Nesky, while I am making futile attempts at last minute studying for a test to be held in an hour: "Main tujhse bohat love karta hun... (holds her hand)... pehle jaake dekhne de yahan khane peene ka kya system hai, tu baith yahan pe ...(gives me a look over, probably making sure his girl is safe.Girl spends next 10 minutes staring at me while I peer into the depths of the two pages held in my hand, while discreetly looking for an escape route.Guy returns in a while)...Main na kabhi apne dukh ko jaahir nahi hone deta tere saamne...tera ek bhi aansu mujhse bardaash nahi hoga...(by this time I'm red up to my ears, and collecting my stuff in a hurry. Guy is apparently disturbed by the flurry of activity and pauses to give me a nasty look. I cease disturbing immediately. A few uncomfortable minutes later, girl decides its time to leave)..Mere jaane ka waqt ho gaya hai...Nahi tum 5 baje tak aj mere saath hi rahogi..nahi..haan..nahi..haan... mujhe jaana hai jaan.." I pick up my bag and literally run. So much for my studying...embarassing!!!!!

Overheard while running to a class, late as usual: " Don't tell me that assignment was due yesterday, I thought it was due today, so thought I'd submit it tomorrow!!"..." Arre nahi, it was due day before yesterday, but noone did, so extended till yesterday, again noone did, so extended till today, and I daresy noone will, so......" yup, IITians, punctual to the dot!!

My classmate consoling another one:"Tensionize mat ho!!" philosophizing on Life and coining new terms in the same breath...

Project Frustration

Okay, right away let me tell you this one is not going to be the usual cheery post. I'm depressed and frustrated right now, and just needed to write it all down. My semester project is going absolutely nowhere. I have bene trying for the past hour to get my code to work, but the computer absolutely refuses to concur with my logic..in fact its still running a seemingly endless loop even as I type this.My professor expects a lot from me, and he admitted he wasn't over the moon with my performance. I told him very honestly that my codes don't work. He was quite sympathetic..he always has been. But I've been feeling really low because I could see his disappointment in me. The algorithm is clear in my mind.. I know exactly what is to be done...If only I knew how to do it....

The wall before me I blankly stare
My mind is numb, full of despair ;
A screen full of zeros..without end..
Mirrors my life, what fate portends
An endless loop I see day after day
Nothing works, to my dismay ;
Sad eyes follow me everywhere,
"I've let him down", my heart says...
So much to do, and don't know how
So little time, nothing left now ;
Supposed to detect a face
How??when I've lost my pace...
MATLAB haunts me in the night,
Can't work try as I might;
How I wish this was all a dream
And I could wake up with a scream...
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