What can be more Indian than a game of cricket. Well I finally played a match last month, something I was looking forward to since the day I arrived here. I had this personal ambition of seeing a 100 next to my name on the score card. I was right on track while touching 40, before the captain pulled me out of the bowling attack after 3 overs. He made it pretty clear to me that the 100 looks better next to your name while batting, not bowling. Whatever! I clearly remember hearing commentators saying “A hundred is a hundred in any form of cricket”. Shooting down aspirations of budding sportsmen is such an Indian trait. The captain thus displayed his "Indianness"!
I was chatting with a friend and he asked me “So have you scored in the US as yet?” I was a bit ashamed of my batting performance, but being an honest soul, I said, “Yeah it was pretty tough, but I managed 5”. Knowing every honest bone in my body, he gave me a phone call within 30 seconds of me sending the message in. “So how were they? Americans or Indians? How did you manage so quickly? Damn, 5 chicks in 3 months is rocking! Wish I’d studied there!” Maybe this is the communication gap between virtual teams that the professor warned us about in class. No wonder most people say that MBA education is majorly based on real life situations.
Back to the point, I did not have the heart to act like my captain and curtail someone’s excitement. But after a few seconds of listening to a running commentary of his own exploits, I let the bubble burst and told him I meant cricket. Suddenly I was flooded with comments of how busy he was, how late in the night it was for him and how he really had to hang up.
Since I’m on the topic of sports, I have to mention my experience in a bowling alley. Now my bowling in the alley isn’t as accomplished as that on a cricket pitch. So by the time we were half way through the game, the screen displaying scores appeared like a chart of naughts and crosses. I had most of the naughts because of innumerable gutter balls and my friends had the crosses because of perfect strikes. One of them asked me “Bet you’ll never manage 3 straight crosses?” Well I could have shown him a few sheets with my name and lots of crosses under that. Too bad Mumbai University does not return our engineering answer sheets. But the score sheet surely evoked nostalgia of my engineering tests, with the crosses, and the zeros right next to them.
Attended a Halloween party were I wore a ghost’s mask. Had a few comments on how scary I looked without the mask and that I should keep it on at all times. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you freaking spoilsports! You guys score a 0/10 for originality.
Before the party, I saw a guy at the bus stop on campus. He was tall with a light stubble and long blonde peroxide hair wearing black boots, black stockings, black PVC miniskirt, a white top and glares. I complimented him on the attire and asked him what he was dressed as and what time he would attend the party. Thankfully he couldn’t gauge my exact words because of my heavily accented language. With a feminine squeal he thanked me on complimenting his dressing style, said he would attend the party in an hour and all he had to do was to go home and change into his costume. I almost fainted with fear and remembered the age old adage of “never talk to strangers”. This guy was stranger in more ways than one.
I woke up at 11:00 am on the day every Indian was wishing each other a Happy Diwali. I got nostalgic as I remembered the fireworks I lit as a child and how much I detested an early morning shower. Well across the 7 seas, I finally got what I had always wanted back in India. Well not exactly, but something on those lines.
After waking up my friend casually informed me that the landlord had come in at 9:00 am and dismantled the drainage pipes. Hence we were not allowed to use the bathroom or sink for the next two days. Fireworks flew immediately as I rang up my landlord. The skipped bath was put on the back burner.
As I dressed up meticulously in my thermal, tshirt, sweater and jacket, one of my roomies asked me where I was off to. I managed to answer in a neutral voice, “to the laboratory. To answer the call of nature.” Well not exactly those words. I spiced the words up a bit in Hindi with irritation.
But things aren’t all that bleak. I think I’ve finally learnt to cook now and my roomies have heaved a sigh of relief. Well I don’t blame them. If the cook doesn’t eat his own food, it surely does provide food for thought to the others. Well I’m proud to state my cooking has reached a stage where I can satiate my own taste buds.
Well where I lack in cooking skills, I more than make up for with my hair cutting proficiencies. My room mate gives me complete freedom to trim his hair using an electric shaver. I finally asked him to reciprocate my gesture and he promptly agreed. It did turn a bit messy in the bathroom, but the final result was pure magic. I think it is the best haircut I’ve ever had (this isn’t the case of sour grapes by the way, it genuinely looks good). It may boil down to beginners luck, but as long as my trusted bottle of hair gel is on my table, I can fix any hair problems pronto.
My MBA is really helping me develop entrepreneurial ideas. Since setting foot here, I have evaluated the odds of starting my own photography studio, piano classes and now a hair styling saloon. Maybe in the near future.
Was chatting with one of my friends yesterday and she asked me,”You’ve been there for almost 3 months, what was the most difficult thing you found fitting into”. I read it and I bit my lower lip with regret. That question hit me where it really hurt. An honest answer was typed back. “My denims”.