A consultation with the Doctor never stops with a solitary visit, we are subjected to a series of follow ups and similar is my post on reunions! For those who missed out on the first part you can read it here . A chance mail from one of the old batch mates ensured that the school one would have a spin off, like a derivative in Math, yes, talking about school and college should touch upon subjects that we adore or abhor, at least briefly.
The proposed homecoming of the TSMites will finally happen in dynamite December, the first month of winter and the last month of this calendar year, so we are all meeting after 25 years, a silver jubilee celebration in store. A double joy to behold and when it rains, it does pour; now I have more than one string to fiddle. There is a feeling of a greater return on a long term investment, more bang for the buck and good things do come to those who wait patiently for two and half decades!
The incredible unforgettable two glorious years at a management institution in the early nineties are ready to be dug up and re lived, a treasure trove of memories that can be looked back and summoned at the snap of a finger. A pedigreed motley best of the breed youngsters, variegated by culture, society and diversity came together in the summer of 1990 in the hot temple town of Madurai in Tamil Nadu, happy as a clam, to be away from parental predominance and the associated rigours and regiments.
The budding enthusiastic centres of excellence with core untapped competencies, consisted of only 5 bevy of beauties with about 15 hulks who waded through critical path methods, business models, paradigm shifts on behaviour, peeled onions with quantitative techniques, business environment, portfolio and investment management, became proactive with man meets, an integral part of the life and times of a business graduate!
We were at 30.000 feet surfacing new ideas and concepts that grudgingly took us to the next scalable level, while the school continuously spewed jargons and clichés that sometimes meant nothing at all, to some, and a few became Samurai warriors equipped with them and a handful like me faked it to the very end! Our everyday language did see a couple of changes like down the line, win – win situations, at the end of the day, wrapping our heads around…and we had successfully transformed ourselves into wannabe management graduates.
Not to be left out on the local funda, we did have our fair share of merriment, courtesy the jigardandas, the cinema talkies replete with gigantic cut-outs of the heroes worshipped with fervour and the thrill of first day first show, the kothu parottas licked clean from Prem Nivas culinary kitchen, the fragrant Madurai malligai adorned and bowing down in absolute reverence to the reigning deity, Meenakshi Amman. It is sheer ecstasy to look back on the bosom friends with their hallmarked traits and headliners; from the bullet rider Alfi, the oh so brotherly Ahmed bhai, the jinxed Jeri, the Kuwaiti emigrant Magi, humara bajaj Srini, enigmatic Rajiv, prim and proper Girish, seasoned politician Suresh, ever so enticing and stupendous Sujee whose prefix “Sweet line” meant exactly what she was meant to be, a girl who never minced her words and walked the talk, the tall lanky local lass Uma, fondly called as Puma, the ‘long hair’ Preetha endowed with a hush hush under wraps boy friend which made all of us snooping and speculative, our rudimentary stock broker Jacob who taught me the nuances of trading with mock scrips and imaginary funding, the erudite looking Thiru, who was on the Forbe’s list of campus placements, the elusive Raju, the charming pearly white teethed Shakti, the witty rotund Satish who had everybody in high spirits, rugged Rueben, our own Google at that time who taught me the difference between an air rifle, a pistol and a Kalashnikov! At the bottom of the barrel, verdant and unspoilt, and who remained difficult to catch were Renga, Ganesh, Raja and Raghuram!
The adda was Pandian’s tea kadai in the campus where the creative heads rolled over dozens of cuppa and hordes of cigarette puffs, either loaned out or sponsored by the charitable, a battleground with the good, bad and the ugly debates, the crude haphazard stone seats of learning the basics of life, a cosy joint to blow one’s cobwebs away, a footloose nook to chill out and take a swipe at the teachers too, a meeting ground for the common and the extraordinary, a confluence which paid off in “synergy”, our very own blockbuster management fest that was an ace up our sleeves and brought the house down with the innovative events. I had the rare privilege of having two elite guests for the mega bash, my dad and my hubby who were at the receiving end of Ahmed’s hospitality and Reuben’s marketing tactics!!!
Today, on the virtual chat room with all these sidekicks, each one of them making a distinct mark and a niche for themselves as successful corporate honchos, bankers and investment managers, businessmen and women, firmly rooted entrepreneurs, academicians, marathon runners, clergies….an immense sense of pride at my Alma Mater, the grit and determination of the elite cronies, who strived hard to achieve and accomplish, my emotions are running sky high and I venerate the teachers and put them high on a pedestal as they had ample say in the moulding of our character and career!
As the covert operations are on for the D day offensive and we gear up for the re entry into the old space, albeit heavier, baldier and greyer, humming “yaadon ki bharaat ..”the lovely readers can stay tuned for more action… rekindled friendships often burn more brightly