Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Tour That Was!

So after all the hardwork, the hard work of sitting through for three hours staring at the question paper, neighbours, staff, watch, hall ticket, calculator, miscellanea and everything except the answer sheet, it was time to have fun and we got off to the tour on Tuesday night, 23rd of November. To the surprise and shock of the general public the train departed on time and almost arrived on time!(Jai Laloo ki…) on the Thursday morning, 25th of November.

We left straight to the Taj after breakfast and it was a wonder – a wonder that while people today make so many “small houses” even when their better halves are alive, Shah Jahan built a monument and lived and died in the remembrance of his love. May be that’s because people starting with the name Shah are all good.

Then we moved on to the forts and how strange – on one side we had the symbol of love and on the other, the symbols of war, obsession with power and violence, gore. We left to the pink city in the evening and that was a night remember and before that, Did I tell you about our driver ustaad, an amazing fellow – he doesn’t dance while driving, but drives when he is dancing and he celebrated Diwali in style – Burst the tyres – one for breakfast, one for dinner and one for fun! . So this left us a chance to spend some three hours at a Dhaba, exploring the midnight culture. And as mentioned above delays are inevitable – we were late to Jaipur.

Pink isn’t Jaipur. It has all blackened - maintenance at its worst. Though Raja ManSawai Singh’s palaces and collections were well maintained as they are still a private property. And we had a ‘English confusing Tamil Killing’ guide who explained at one of the portraits that in those days every women had the power of nine elephants( think of their poor husbands) and now it has got reduced to one( Thank God!). Every “The Feel Macho Face of MIT” was annoyed by this. But I unconditionally endorse this – ‘Women are like Elephants, just stare at them. Do not try to own one!’ You know what I mean, I had given the data on the spending patterns of women on thyself and men on women, which I was collecting throughout the tour to McKinsey India and the McKinsey Report says that you need at least two fulltime jobs and three part time jobs to maintain an average ’Engineering doing, English speaking, Cosmetics using, Bollywood following ’ Indian girl.

In the evening we were taken to a shopping plaza, where an ordinary Kurta costed my spending on Xerox for an entire year! So I took off and went back to a local Mandi and WOW! there were fresh Tolis being made everywhere. Its aroma was nose piercing, colour was eye catching and the oil used was Medical Insurance demanding! and I rushed back running all along before I could catch a rickshaw and reach our bus. Everyone started shouting at me and I don’t know why, I was late only by an hour or so. And the journey began again, this time to Chandigarh.
We reached Chandigarh by the noon of Saturday, 27th of November and were taken straight to lunch ( Organisers, we paid for breakfast too…) and at last it was rest for some three hours after which we left for Rock Gardens. Its known or admired for the creativity of an ordinary man called Nek Chand, who conceived and created this – an entire park out of industrial waste (Please Google it). But let me tell the public, we pioneered this concept way back in 1978. We have created an entire college out of waste ( or is it the other way) where the resistors to the - hostel tap to the – smart card reader to the - room light to the – watchman to the – internet to the – maintenance department to the – library photocopier to the – anti mosquito spray to the – cla$$ committee meeting to the - Sports Hangar to the – $t@ff to the – students to the – Universal Testing Machine to the – r@j@m hall mike to the - DC motors to the – college bus to the - lab AC to the – and now the Enrolments to the - everything – NOTHING WORKS!!
Its violation of IPR (Intellectual Property Rights) Mr.Nek Chand.

The visit to the Lake was disappointing as the boating had closed by then and only couples were allowed in to the Pub that was there. Then we went to the 22nd sector for shopping despite some of the guys wanting to go the 17th sector were everything was cheap ( E V E R Y T H I N G . . .). And the night journey to the All Terrain Manali began after dinner at a Dhaba where we had the most inconvenient conveniences. Anyway we believe in open source technologies.
And Saturday Night Full Tight #$%^& I mean tight after the day’s work and the organiser’s special party!
We reached Manali by around noon of Sunday, 28th of November, bereft of the breakfast again. Anyway we forgive that as it was worth it as we geared up for the rendezvous with Nature!!! It was rest and desperately needed after the hectic travel and overnight raw drinking ( I mean we did not get any mineral water around). In the evening we left to the hot spring ( sulphur water) and it was sema hot machi! And the bath was really refreshing. We then left to shop after some prayers at the Ambika Devi Temple( is that correct???) and the Tibetan Monastery. WOW! the boys had real good time shopping at Manali. They were bargaining for hours – don’t go wrong, they aint good bargainers, it was just that the salesperson at the counter was a girl and one of the ex reps told me she was a good figure (what doth that mean…..?).
This is what happened:
Slide1: Don’t Smoke.
Slide2: Don’t sleep. This is not a Classroom.
Ad: Coming Soon..
IBM and MIT presents
Linux Demo Day
An obsession called freedom!
A Computer Club Presentation in association with Indian Linux Users Group, Chennai.
Platinum Sponsor: IBM Gold Sponsor: Redhat
Media Partner: The Hindu Co Sponsors: LFY, Linair, IndLinux
HIM : How much is this ? ( pointing at a shawl )
HER : three handrad rupis
HIM : (to his friend) machi munnooranda…
FRIEND : (to her) paththu roobakku moonu varuma?
HER : Kya?.... hindi mein bolo bhaiyya.
HIM : (to friend) deiy annannu sollittaa, (to her) bhaiyya nahi payya!
HER : bolo How much you give?
HIM : other designs…
FRIEND : (hissing to him) deiy, kaasu vahchirukkiyaa
HIM : (with a nasty laugh) return poga Auto’kke kaasu illa
FRIEND : machchi aala vudu,,,, veli ooru police kitta adi vaanga mudiyathu..
HIM : deiy nee Chandigarhla vaangala
FRIEND : deiy inga jail’la romba kuloorunda..
HER : bolo bolo
HIM : sorry, purse forgot ( milk drowning in the face)
HER : ******** ******* *** ****** ***** ******* **( local language bad words)
HIM : Escape

Both walked as smiling as ever as if they had been praised! (Spirit de MIT!!!)
Back to hotel it was time to fire. . . . campfire. So we were running around arranging for musical chairs but boys were not turning out as much as girls. To find out the matter I went in to one of the PR’s room only to find out they were celebrating free dum.. err … freedom. Anyway, with the campfire around it was an ideal atmosphere to fry some nuts and they did not miss the opportunity. There was High Voltage Kadalai all around that we had tough time getting them in to the games.
So the day expected arrived. We left to Rohtang Pass the next morning.
The journey itself was very delightful and during the upward journey from Manali to Rohtang Pass, our jeep stopped at a point from where I could see Hell – there was a cut of almost 300 – 400 feet ( I am poor at this one). No, I don’t actually fear height. I am only worried about the 9.8 meters per square seconds, and that’s quite large. And we reached the top, it was ocean of snow. Boy, it was amazing – Nature’s teasing curves, gorgeous peaks, seducing splendor.
From the top the whole world seemed to be at peace – it was an elevated feeling, an experience. The spark of madness in everybody’s cerebrum was out and everyone was playing like a child. To our disappointment we had to leave, leave the place where you are free from pollution, crowd, noise, assessments, reviews….

Now we left to something called shillong gardens. Wow, at last the purpose of the trip was attained – Industrial Training, yeah I was directly given the job – guide the horse and people over that and you wont believe me my looks and skills were so perfectly matched that a tourist enquired me “ Salim Bhai patha hai?” assuming me to be a local!

And today was the O R I G I N A L Campfire. Huh! Today the Organisers were themselves were at that – The Killer KADALAI, and at their best. And one of the strongly built IBMer( not me, I am super strong) was singing “Aththa maga…” ( aint able to guess it – everybody knows that , please refer October issue of ELEX GOSSIP).

There were some closely contested games and the winner was……….. Navas, coz I took all the chocolates. The next day morning IT was raining snow, WOW what a treat for eye! Whole Manali changed to UJALA!!

And all good things come to an end ( at end semesters), it was time to leave Manali. We left to Dhilli by afternoon. The Bus stopped at a Dhaba again for dinner and that was a good one. I was contemplating on the tour, the Mughals – Shah Jahan married thrice, Jahangir some eight times and every Mughal married atleast thrice and now you know why India is a super power as far as manpower is concerned. While others were busy attaining Naan, I attained Gyaan – “All men are not stupid, some marry eight times!”.

We got started, and lo the driver was at his best again, the tyre burst again at around six in the morning. But we explore opportunities at adversaries. There was a sugarcane field around and I couldn’t control. So we (me and my class rep), went straight to buy one , Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani! and it was a loss of six canes to the farmer. Lord, forgive these sinners (say Amen). And we were in Delhi by the noon of Wednesday, 1st of December.

It was time for some rest before we left for shopping. And one of the ex-rep of S batch(with both an analog and digital camera ), started screaming mad “ Thaththai……. Thaththai……. Thaththai…………………hennaiyil ellam Soththai..( someone help me out with the meaning of the lyrics yaar) and don’t burn Nandu, you already have Ulcer. By the way we missed you and Dr.Narendra Kumar missed ##### ###### ( source : ELEX GOSSIP).
We had some good shopping.

And before we could enjoy ourselves to the best, the news came that the deadly ‘Dot Matrix Printed’ sheets of white paper carrying only 9 different letters, but potent enough to screw up your life ( though boys are generally immune to them) have been displayed on the Department Notice Board.
HEY BUSH! The Weapons of Mass Destruction are here – The Results!!! Since that was the last night in the hotel, there was some heavy ‘chemical off balancing act’ that night – all credits to the damn result!

So the next day was really packed as we rushed through Quitb Minar, Indira Gandhi Museum, India Gate, Lotus Temple and The Red Fort. On the return journey from the fort to the Hotel it was time to ‘ Shake you bon bon… Shake you bon bon…’ at last and many of us danced – Ramanathan, Michael RDR, me and some of the girls went through their Middle School PT drills. Of course ours was “ Best..! Kannaaa… Best..!”

We were back in the train after Dinner and it was time again to analyse the tour. We were at least partly successful in our endeavor – we made Girls to learn wash their plates themselves and live without bed coffee. And the results were a DISASTER!( Lord, save thy Lifemates!). They are fit only to score ten again and again (Hey toppers you owe me a Big Treat!)..
And there were some animated moments with one of the organizers at last showing some GUTS to approach the other college girl he has been following since Quitb Minar. This is what happened.
HE : Hi! I am ####
SHE : ( without much interest) Hi
HE : I am from MIT.
SHE : (with the ‘ so what ’ look) Hmm….
HE : I am placed in $$$
SHE : I see ( too bad)
HE : I have a cell phone…
HE : I have a passport…
SHE : ( with the ‘why are all men like this ????’ look) WHAT???
HE : ( still unable to tell that out..) hmmm.. I have a credit card
SHE : …….come again,,,,
HE : I have a credit card, I have a ration card , I have…….. hmm…. Ah… Playing cards
SHE : ( with the look of ‘justice seeking Kannagi’ )So whaaaat???
HE : Shall we play rummy ( lost control once again!) ?
SHE : S O R R Y!!!!! I don’t play cards.
HE : (!@#$%^&*())Thank you.
A flop again ( Don’t give up, Rejections Are The Stepping Stones For Acceptance – Thirulolluvar)

To sum up:
Improving the Quality of wine - TCSers were at that throughout.
Powered by negligence.Driven by organisers– The Infoscions were invariably late
Come. Celebrate tour. – The Cognizants were at it – dance,
sing, masti and all!
Applying Medicine - Poor Wiproites. They fell ill.
ON Demand Service – IBMers were taking care, making
everyone feel at home. The tour
was ON. Credits to them.
Signs of advanced sleep – HSSers were sleepers par excellence.
Needless to say Manali was the high point of the tour, where I was blessed enough to think of my less fortunate fellow beings who are visually challenged to even see this beauty of nature and that disturbed me a lot. So I have decided to donate my eyes and register for that at the earliest. I know most of you would have already made the decision on this, in case you haven’t I request you to do it sooner that later and light their lives.
At last, the tour was even far form ordinary………. It was an experience.. an experience to be shared when destiny brings us together in the future. Thank you organizers for the wonderful tour.
Ah…. And at last when I was back home, the first question that mom asked was - “ Beta, did you Booze?” and I replied – “ No Mamma, Bottle ki kasam” (err… how innocent! ) and whatever happened after that has been censored owing to extreme violence.
Anyway, welcome back to MIT. Do not worry, this semester sans the ‘handwriting spoiling’ routine called Record writing (Fruits excluded!).
All characters in this movie are ASCII… err.. real and any coincidence to reality is purely intended.

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