Couple of days ago, I tweeted this little message. July 9, 2007 is a red letter day for me - for that was the day I started my career as a working professional. As I tweeted that, I was greeted over IM by few of my friends and colleagues. It didn’t strike me much as soon as I tweeted, but few hours later I was just amazed as to how fast time has gone by - and how far I’ve come. To think, I applied for this position as an afterthought (“should I really ? Well.."). That got me into nostalgia mode.
Lets travel back in time - nearly 3 years ago. I was just about done with my 6th semester in College. I was barely scraping through college, no thanks to me and a certain VTU (“V Torture U” - my university). 3rd - 6th sems were probably one of the worst phases of my life. I almost lost a year, with my overdues (“OD”) almost killing me. Almost - is the keyword - I didn’t. My folks were pretty supportive, as were my friends. My “escapades” through mid-college meant that I was ineligible for campus selections, and here I was seeing those people snapping jobs left and right because they were able to “cram” everything into their frigging minds and “vomit” them out onto answer paper - word by word, letter by letter, punctuation mark by punctuation mark. This cramming thing was something I could never do. It was rather disgusting to see these people (mainly girls - no I’m NOT being sexist here) spew out letter by letter things from the “prescribed” textbooks - ask them a Question and they would tell you which page, paragraph and line these definitions were there.
Come campus selection time, and it was cramming and vomitting all over again - only this time the “source” was different - aptitude books, C Programming books, lab programs you name it, these guys had crammed them all ready to vomit. It was also rather painful when these people would ask me why a certain function works this way, just minutes before the scheduled interview times, only for their good luck to be asked the same question, they’d vomit it out, get selected - and hey after that they get this air of “superiority” and snobbishness and sneer at people who helped them get the freaking job in the first place. I just let it go - didn’t even bother going to College during these scheduled test/interview days.
It was about beginning of 7th sem when I started to pull it together - the subjects got interesting ( to my liking anyway), got some good marks but not enough to salvage the damage caused initially.
This fine day - I saw this notice on our notice board about Aptitude test for another job. I was just about to dismiss it, but this clause of “required marks criteria” NOT being present got me thinking and I was like - probably my last shot - why not give it a try.
I mentioned this to few other folks - notably Neeths & Sid. The three of us, and few others from my college gave the test - and I cleared the test and the Interview (if you’re wondering - no, I didn’t “practice” for it) - and finally got a job.
Over the course of time after I was selected for the job but before joining, I started speaking to few of my would be colleagues, friends and room mates about where to stay and etc. Soon I was done with college - and the D-day had come. I had been posted to Chennai and hence I left my hometown of Mangalore for Chennai.
The memories are still fresh in my mind - I reached Chennai few days in advance as I didn’t have a place to stay there, and thought I’ll need a day or two to scope out few guest houses and mansions. Met Adi on July 6th, we went about hopping from Mansion to Mansion, speaking a mix of English, Hindi, Kannada, Konkani, Tulu to bring out pseudo Tamil - ‘t was a though time trying to communicate with the guest house owners. The next day Ankit reached Chennai, Shankar the day after.
2 years have passed by since then. We’ve had our fair share of ups and downs. The first 3 months of training - which was an absolute bliss. The pondy trip brought the Ruby gang1 closer than ever. Once we were assigned projects and teams it was different altogether. But we never missed our daily lunch and evening snack times - when all (well, most anyways) would join in, discuss on what’s happening around the organization and world. A practice, which is still continued today - I believe. Though about half of Ruby gang has moved on - some got married, some left for higher studies - but the memories still remain.
A big Salute - to the Ruby gang. It’s been an awesome time - and truly I’ve had the pleasure of having some cherished memories with the gang.
- Ruby gang - because Ruby was the name of our training room [↩]