February 2009

Eyes got full of dirt, Face got dull and tanned, Feet got tired beyond description, Back was hurting like hell, Tongue got sunbaked like a clay..But Still, Feeling light in my head and joy in my heart (or may be the other way round! ).
This is no poetry, or actually something I did not intended to but my Road trip description to Bhandardara in a nutshell. It took me no time to realize that man! I do like to travel. Fortunately I am blessed with friends who think alike. But my memory is a bit weak and the experience was first of its kind to me and my friends so after some wacky nights and turnovers in between I am afraid that I will forget the little things that gave me such joy during my journey. So then the idea came from aman that why not you post it on your blog, this way we’ll alwayz gonna have the every minute details of the fun time we had.

So our lukkhi wing once again came up with the ideas to do something this weekend thts 14-15 Feb. Fortunate thing is that we never fall short of ideas, and Unfortunate thing is that we never able to implement the same. So a night before we all sat and decide some rules and guidelines that no matter what we are not going to ditch ne plans henceforth, Emosanal Attyachaar to some mebbe! Newayz after so much jaddojahad we managed to arrange 3 bikes (2 Pulsars and 1 Thunderbird) and 5 people, including four of us, B1Lites (Aman, Sahil, Yogesh and Me), and Solanki. So when the stage was set to go, I found that because of that stupid Valentine’s day all the rooms in MTDC are booked so we had to alter our plans and planned to leave Sunday Morning. Isn’t it ironic that no matter how much you try to run away from this Valentine’s Day festival (to some!), you alwayz gets trapped into it. Its like God is having some sort of sarcastic smile on us. Okay, so atleast someone is happy.
So here we are, Sunday morning 3’o clock we all woke up, everyone had their stuff ready by then, Aman packed all his cosmetics, accessories while we were busy looking curiously at him then. Finally at 4’o clock we 5 left from H8 on three of our bikes to our maiden bike trip to some hill station.

So, Lying 170 kms from Mumbai and 70 kms from Nashik lies a beautiful spot in North of Maharashtra called Bhandardara. Famous for its scenic beauty, this place, though not developed enough, lies close to Igatpuri.
Okay then, So I began my journey of a 200 Kms with a broken rear view mirror and a leaky tire. We reached the thane junction of NH3 (The mumbai – agra highway) at 5 am. This was a slow and relaxed ride since we had hardly 180 km to cover. We took our morning tea halt at 6am at some dhaba on the highway and a another 20 mins halts along the way where me and aman tried our hand at some photoshoot. NH3 was in a bad shape for a majority of a portion. NH3 is a 4 lane highway, but there was road work going on everywhere and as a result, there were just 2 lanes free with lots of diversions and roadblocks. We had to keep switching from the left lane to the right lane at many places.

We found some signboard of forest region in between and as we thought that we are already ahead of time so we decided to go over there. After we climbed ghats of somewhere round 1.5 Km dawn was just broke. Sunrise time, it was awesome! The stillness of the early morning scene enables me to take in and enjoy many things which pass me by during the bustle of the day. First, there are the scents, which seem even more generous with their offerings than they are in the evening.

A ride through the craters of NH3 we reach the Igatpuri village..where we had our morning breakfast there at some punjabi dhaba. We thought that Igatpuri ghats would be fun to ride on, but it was full of heavily loaded trucks struggling to climb up at a snails pace and us bikers winding our way between them. So after some more hustle bustle we reached Bhandardara crossing Ghoti on our way at around 10’o clock. Thanks to the interstate highway system, it is now possible to travel from coast to coast without seeing anything. We got our room at MTDC at about 11. Again then the planning phase begun. What to do now, Where to go, Should we rest or straight forward go for some adventure. Once again fortunately we didn’t fell short of ideas, and once again unfortunately we lacked anticipation to implement them. Finally it was decided tht we’ll go to the Island in the evening. We went for a country side walk to collect some stuff to carry to the island. The Island, this was the place in particular which made us to choose Bhandardara in first place, as we heard a lot about it from seniors. We fixed the boat for us at Rs. 600 to the island and back initially but later on tht boatwala screwed the deal and demanded us Rs. 1000, I bargained and as we had no other option we fixed it for Rs. 800 and from 4-9 in the evening.
We all 5 sat in a rowing boat with some 20-25 odd villagers sitting around us. The moment made us think of the scene from Swades. The worst thing about being a tourist is having other tourists recognize you as a tourist. All of them were looking at us with utter curiosity and some with disguise. When the boatwala was leaving us at the island we make sure to tell him to collect us back at 9’o clock as our very first look of the island was surprised, scary and awesomeeee!

It was a small, tiny uninhabited and isolated island which had no sign of even flora-fauna on it. We thew our stuff at some place and started seeing what this Island has in store for us. We again started photographing each other, making sure that no one gets missed on ne backdrop we cover. In hardly 20 mins time we covered the whole space. There wasn’t enough dry wood for our campfire plan, so then we started getting some scary thoughts that soon there will be dark, what are we going to do then, in a matter of time we fell short of water, fortunately we had pepsi and some other stuff so was relieving to some extent.We were just hoping tht someone will come to our rescue. Discussed the technique on how to catch the fish if in case we have to live on this island only :).
Well, in the meantime we photographed us in very disturbing poses and aman somehow tricked us in stripping and he definitely had a gala time photographed us 4 in those poses which are hard to forget. After having some fun for a while in water we started searching for woods for campfire. We managed to have a nice luking fire in no time, started singing and dark starry night covered us. We all forget the tough time we had so far, no one was any more worry about nething. That night i saw the more no of stars that i ever saw in whole of my life. That night was looking amazing. Its like I’ve randomly been smacked up the head with awesomeness. Totally wasn’t expecting the night to be like this!

At around 730 we heard some sound in water and soon we found 3 men carrying lartens in their hands walking towards us. Those were boatwalas. We were delighted! On our way back to the shore, for whole 1 hour we keep on singing all 70’s ,80’s hits to keep the water alive. And even the stars in sky chorus sings, a celestial melody to the water below.It was a scintillating memory to see our fire still burning deep into the Island. We reached the land and happily handed over the 800 bucks to boatwalas. To be true the effort they put in riding tht thing was worth more then that. We reached our hotel, had dinner and came to the consensus that we can’t afford to have trek now as we all were damn tired and we still had to cover 5-6 hrs back to Mumbai on bikes. Some mean forces made me to sleep on bed with yogesh, i was all terrified and sleep on the edge of my bed the whole damn night. We left at around 830ish in the morning after having breakfast from the hotel. Had lunch at BTC in thane on our way back.
We reached hostel happy and sound at around 230 in the afternoon. Everyone was tired so no one realized how beautiful it is to travel until each one of us came home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow.

It was my longest journey on bike with my friends and i really enjoyed it, we really enjoyed it. We all knew in our hearts that time the longest journey must take is the eighteen inches from our head to our heart. So We surely gonna have much more of gala time together, doesn’t matter where we go and what we do. So i guess i already broke my keyboard enough, that’s it for now, will keep posting later on.


When the placements haven’t started and actually in the last placement i saw tht many people follow many totkas and all kinda superstitious stuff before their interviews, i always felt it a bit stupid..But now im in ring..though i didn’t followed all the stuff that feel is crap..
Its just that i wore same shirt which i myself tagged it as my lucky shirt for some no reason, over and over again. After first few interviews it got sweaty and ironed over and over again. Did few more things which some of you nerds might think of as crazzy but whatever. Not writing here for some manoti copyrights and censor issues.

Okay enuff crap..now back to business..after having the first interview i waited for next seven days to face interview..it was the choice  i made to wait skipping few interviews in bw..Unfortunately and to my surprise and adding to my tension this decision was  right according to few and was wrong according to another few..

Mistake was that i talked with many people(read irreverent) and unnecessary busted my mind and in bw got hold of few special friends who really helped me in my decision making process. All this time i knew that im going to get into company i like but was worry and tensed from inside that wat my parents wud be thinking of me right now. I don’t know how to pour this into words or say this but whenever im in trouble and needed to boost up my confidence i got a call from my parents. This time was no exception. Dad talked with me for like 20 mins with me on phone and and as soon as i hang up i knew what i had to do and all my trouble went in a blink. He just told me, not to worry or panic and just prioritize your parameters, you already have a job you wanted so just wait till you find a company with better work profile than this one.
One of my friend also has told me the same thing sometime back but when dad said this thing, i got relieved.

So I was in for Market Rx’s on 7th day. I gave this interview keeping in mind tht i don’t want this one..and it  worked..He asked me 2-3 puzzles..Two of them were some probability based and one was of river crossing..after solving them he gave a sentence to fill in.
It was : I is ?
I thought and first wrote alphabet and after crossing it out i said vowel..he smiled..
i knew tht i was half way through..in between i messed up with company name.. said market research instead of market rx..he laughed..
His face transitions in this 20 mins told me that im in for 2nd interview and within 5 mins he called me for tht..now this  guy was bit more serious. Interview went for 30 mins where he was trying to convince me that i have skills for all the sector but analytics and all this time i was doing otherwise.. so in the end i  didn’t got through..was sad as soon as i heard this but as i got my senses back i realized tht its good for me only..

Was shortlisted for Sony Japan and just before it was scheduled to arrive, news came that Sony is shedding 80,000 jobs worldwide. Still those 15 Japanese came to India. It seemed much that they came to party then to select candidates.

We(wing mates) as sincere descendants, followed the ages old legacy of our wing’s forefathers. Our wing was jinxed that no one would going to get a job as long as the person who has already got in near past has left the wing. It was said and written and we started justifying it with full faith!

First Sahil got job in db, he was in wing for next 5-6 days and left for home. Just after that aman got into market rx..when he left yogi got into sabre and when he left dhakad cracked mecon..and just when i was hoping its now my turn guess what happened..yogi came bak to wing..hona kya tha..how cud i disobey the age old tradition..companies came and went and i didn’t left the ground.. :((

Neways then this company came and i didn’t believe it when i saw its jaf. It has precisely the contents i was looking for. I gave its written test and got a place in 30 shortlisted. While i was waiting for my turn for interview one person came out after his interview and told that they were asking nothing but mathematics.. statistics.. expectations.. probability and all.. as soon as i heard this my eyes got flashed and i knew that this is the chance i have..as tht was the course i had read recently and was good at. I knew that very few people over there were familiar of this. My turn came and they asked me something like 3 dozen questions on Stats..  Probability.. Analytic Maths..after this interview i had no doubt tht i won’t make this round. And i did..9 selected out of 30 and went in for more grilling mathematics interview. This time panel has got more people and far from my expectations this was a stress interview. They asked me questions mostly on resume and general knowledge and watever i answered they said that its wrong..but i stick to them. After interview i was all tensed and had feeling that im not going to make this one. Felt relieved actually when all candidates who went thru that panel came out feeling the same.

Finally list came and i found my name on top. Mission Accomplished. So happy ending for the story.Thanks to the stars for favoring me in time. Except a little less pay package everything was exactly i dreamed of!

Came back to hostel, met wingies..and yea i broke that jinx our wing has got 😀

I know it has been really long since I wrote something and probably no one reads my blog now but i guess thats the way it is…
But here i am back to this hoping again that i will actively pour in something everyday here.. The idea here is to capture all the light–soft-dark-lucky-fun-happy(with their respective antonyms) moments that i came across or was forced into in these last two hilarious months. Why hilarious? Because this ride of this placement season was no less then the intraday snapshot of the BSE index. Full of up’s-down’s of state of mind, this small brain of me has seen so many transitions in this little time. It is actually ironical that the company i got placed into derived its name from the word Brain.


Anyways first of all a few updates….before a tormenting placement season started i had a PPO from one financial company i did my intern into and surprisingly i liked the work over there, the money that was offered to me also good so all cards were on place that time. But then September came and it burned all the dreams into ashes, actually it tried but still few tits-bits of that still hovering over my mind. Still i had this thing in mind tht watever be the case i now going into finance.

Uncertainities of I-Banks in placement made me think whethere i need to buy the traditional i-banker suitss or not. But unfortunately i did. Phase 1 over…Pockets empty…The grand total neared 8 grands. Then comes uncertainties,well there was only one – whether you are gonna get the job or not?!! Well despite of me being positive i voted for a “no” as the only preparation i had for an interview was based on keeping financial companies in mind, read a course that i did on statistics (had no idea why i read this course particularly).

Even more interesting was the interview preparation season.Two days before the interview u can see people carrying a “Be Prepared”, “HR interview questions ” . Preparation ranges from Case Study and Finance to Coding and Tech(there is no go dear,the resumes are already prepared and now we gotta justify it). There were many companies for which i gave aptitude test and was waiting fr shortlists. Just 2 days from starting of placements a shortlist of P&G came. and surprisingly i saw my name on it, thogh i did good on my aptitude test and was truthful on psychometric test but to be frank was not expecting to clear that tedious process.

Neways i was in for day 1, and then my stupid comp got busted. Somhow i prepared for it n went for the interview. The D day…Everyone dressed up in formals,some looked cool ,some looked boring while some(like me) looked struggling to breath some air.

My first interview, was feeling nervous to be frank- all i had in mind was man! its P&G, it was all so much hyped in my mind that i started sweating and perspiring. Just before my interview my managed to get out of tht phobia though. He (The Interviewer) called me, the guy was so soft spoken and told me tht this is going to be the most casual and simple interview of your life. He cracked a joke, we started talking casually, he asked me about my family and stuff..this initial conversation really help me get hold of my bourses. The questions he asked were purely situation based and behavioral. Few of the questions that i remember that he asked were-

  1. Tell me about yourself.
  2. Describe a situation where you have faced a difficult situation and came out of it successfully
  3. Achievement you are most proud of?
  4. Were you had led a team and delivered result
  5. Were you had faced time-resource constrained
  6. Where you didn’t live up to people’s expectation
  7. You were wrong and ur teammates were right and failed/ still got good result

There were some 8-9 grilling questions that he asked. When I got out of the place i felt that now i know more about myself than i did before. The only thing in doubt was whether i must go home now or i shud wait for solanki to finish his Interview. Finally the results were out. I thought i’ll get through this but unfortunately i didn’t. Was dissappointed but nothing can be done then. It was an unforgettable experiance, those 45 mins gave me hell lot of learning that i can carry whole thru my life. So Day1 was over. Sahil (my wingmate) managed to crack DB, wing’s first job…actaully hostel’s first and only job on tht day..

Now the waiting game begun, faced no interview for next 6 days. Mumbai attacks add on to it after the recession hit. Many companes back-out from the campus recruitment, many postponed their visit. So the dream of getting into good financial company was getting diminished. Coz of the PPO in hand denied interview to few companies and didn’t signed the jaf of many companies for which i regret for next 15 days.

Will post the remaining placement scene in my next post. Till then Xo Xo!