Thursday, November 25, 2010

Some days are remembered always

Unchahaar Express (4217) is a convinient and direct train for travelling from Kanpur to Chandigarh. Scheduled to leave Kanpur at 8:30* PM, it reaches Chandigarh at 10:15* in the morning; so a night of travelling and the entire distance is covered (*conditions apply).

On 25 November 2005, I was visiting my parents at Chandigarh with my family (wife and two children aged 4 yrs and 1 yr). Reassured by the information dished by the computerised railway inquiry, we headed for the railway station. Bhaaji and Major NT were dropping us at the railway station. I have already introduced Bhaaji in my earlier post. Major NT is my colleague at the Bank, elder to me by ten years (by army seniority).
By the time we reached the railway station, the train was declared to be late by one hour. Having full faith in the system, we went to the waiting room; as there was no point in going back home and coming again.My friends who had come to 'see us off ' preferred to spend some more time with us. Exactly after one hour, it was announced that the train is late by another one hour.We cursed the railways for a minute and straight headed for the nearest tea stall.
(Years later, I think it was naive to have faith in the system. It would have been worthwhile checking the train status from the originating station to avoid spending the entire night on the railway station)
Coming back to where I left at the railway station on a cold night in 2005; we were discussing one thing or the other, there were so many things which kept our attention alive. I thanked my friends for coming with us to the station and requested that they should return and that I would catch the train when it comes to the station but my friends refused to go stating that I may have problem getting on the train with small kids.
To cut the long story short, the railways lived upto its image by faithfully announcing the delay hour after hour and we kept waiting at the station till 5 in the morning when the train actually reached Kanpur. Bhaaji and Maj NT helped us to board the train and we were onboard the hospitality of the Indian railways.It was some time later when we were comfortable in the train, we realised that we had missed an important thing.
We immediately called up Bhaaji and wished him a very happy birthday (26 November). At the same time, I also felt guilty of causing discomfort to him by keeping him awake the entire night. In circumstances like these; friends, colleagues or even relatives may take a different recourse, one has to be extremely lucky to have such steadfast friends. This incident may be of little consequence to any other person but it has a very special place in our heart. Kind deeds of dear one's always leave a lasting impression in our lives.

A picture with bhaaji when he visited us for a day at Trivandrum last year

Friday, May 14, 2010

A Skippers Inning

' The speed of the boss is the speed of the team.' I couldn't have agreed more with this Lee Iacocca quote till I met Sh S Ramaswamy. Proactive, beating the stereotype,overtaking the convention, here was a boss who is a sport both on and off the field. I still remember my first meeting with him when I joined the Thiruvananthapuram office on transfer. Alive to my 'alien-culture,alien language' apprehensions on being posted to extreme South, he was the first person to welcome me to the new place. Arrangements were already in place even before I could collate and project my requirements. To help overcome the language handicap, classes were organised for all the new transferee officers. I found the work place engulfed with vibrancy, the best part of which were the numerous sports competetions, outside excursions, even the mundane office activities had a buzz of live involvement of everyone. The office excelled in its functioning as per the statistics of the higher headquarters. At the end of the day, as Charles Erwin Wilson puts it; "A good boss makes his men realise they have more ability than they think they have so that they consistently do better work than they thought they could."
Sh Ramaswamy relinquished the office of the Regional Director of RBI for the State of Kerala & Lakshadweep in April 2010 on his transfer to Mumbai. We wish him all the best in his new assignment.

Sh S Ramaswamy

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Luck by Chance

Style Plus is a lifestyle store near our house. A few days back my wife had purchased some items for children from this store. All this was when I was away to Chennai for work; much against my wish, as it was my daughter's B'day on the 13th March. I got a call a few days back from a lady informing me that I am the winner of a prize for making that purchase from the store. The prize was a week long stay at any of the Resorts owned by Royal Resorts at Goa/Jaipur/Kovalam/Bali(Indonesia). I was clueless about the purchase or the scheme and took it to be some promotional call and told her to call in the evening. We were invited at the Sagara Beach Resort, Kovalam for a presentation on the company.i.e.Royal Resorts. The purpose of the presentation was to introduce us to the membership option of the Royal Resorts which I declined politely. We were handed over the prize which is valid for one year.
Not bad,isn't it,even if it is promotional offer!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Of endings and new beginnings..

Every year we welcome the new year with hope that it will bring all good things to us. Some of us also take indulgence in new year resolutions for all the things we intend including in our lives for our betterment (or percieved betterment).Concurrently it is also the time to look back on the time gone by, a time for retrospection of the highlights of the past year/decade.The past decade can be credited with bringing the world much closer;wide accessibility of mobile phones,greater communication through networking sites, bridging the demand supply gap by proper sample matching through computers. Technology has truly penetrated our lives. Important decisions like marriages are also arranged through matrimonial sites not to mention the everyday decisions which also get a nod of approval after the 'internet research'.
Everything seems to be progressing. Mobile towers are the new symbols of progress of an area/district. The signals emitted by these towers help millions to streamline their everyday affairs. At the same time these towers also interrupt the navigation capability of the 'honey-bees' who innocently start their day to gather nector from flowers, little realising that the powerful signals from these towers will deprive them homecoming in the evening. Unable to navigate and wandering, the end to their tiring day of collecting nector results in their death.The population of honey-bees has dwindled in the last decade. It is only a matter of time when our coming generations will ask us the meaning of 'honey'.