Tuesday, April 27, 2010

April Syndrome

There is something about April. I still haven’t been able to sort out my feelings for this month. It is ‘mixed emotions’ month.

The beginning of the month is good with the appraisals (at least for the last 2 years) and high which follows seeing the bank account ;~) and the planning for extravagance in the coming year. Then as the month rolls its time for re-location or re-organisation on the professional front and/or personal front. It is the time when one sees location and relationship status updates of one’s friends and acquaintances on Facebook. Leave & license agreements terminate or transfer orders are received. People formalize their relationship status and get engaged hoping to get a 7 month head-start in preparing for the big fat Indian wedding. (what they don’t understand is that is that everybody else follows the same game plan and the head start does not serve any purpose). Adding to the ‘fun’ is the infamous Indian summer in its top form draining out every ounce of energy, patience and sanity in me.

April (since birth-1987) – I never really had to do anything but for smile, sing a nursery rhyme and shake my booty when my parents wanted to show off their child’s talent at a gathering. I think I just wailed and got my things done.

April (1988-2002-in school) – Exam time!!! Need I say anymore!! But holidays began by the middle of the month and it was time to head off to kerala.

April (2002-2007- in law school)- First half of the month (like every semester in law school) we didn’t know what we were doing. Second half was spent in collecting notes for the impending exams in May.

April (2008- grad school)- In the first half my folks visited NL and we headed off for a mini trip to Paris and Brussels with Chech and Chettan. Back from the trip, I saw the syllabus and realized I should have started studying from January to clear my exams!!

April (2009- work)- Last April I moved out of home. The feeling was not very great initially. I moved in with a friend of a friend of a friend (typical mallu me!)- Nidhi from Delhi. When I moved in she had already planned her life for the coming year, she wanted to move back to Delhi by April next year and get married to a guy she had identified by winter 2010. I seriously thought that she not in the best frame of mind as she was missing her family while she was alone. Over time I learnt to appreciate the independence, luxury and the responsibility, demerits of living alone. With Nidhi coincidently there is a strange connection- we are the same person..upto 90% (10%- she is more motivated than me and has common sense!)... there are times when we both would think the same thing at the same time. The next one year saw me enjoying vegetarian food (and never missing non-vegetarian food), becoming better dressed and learning about the plumbing, electricity and other essential things in a house that has to be taken care of. With Nidhi came her band of friends who I really enjoyed having over or visiting and have had some real fun times. We both are chronic commentators, we have to pass a comment on anything on TV or movie hall. During our movie phase, every weekend we tagged a friend of hers T to the movie hall as a chaperon. Once in the movie hall, Nidhi and I would commence our running commentary on the movie while T would tell us to shut up! So much so we once ended up confessing that when either one of us is not home, we end up commenting to ourselves!!

April 2010- March gave me a tough time with work as I was putting upto 16 hours a day coupled with travel. With April came the appraisal and so I was in the ecstatic mood. I was hardly home, and could not really catch up on what was happening at Nidhi’s end. What I thought was a passing phase was actually a resolute decision. As destiny has planned out things along with concerted efforts from her end, Nidhi got a transfer to Delhi and her parents gladly agreed to her choice of guy - a news which I got when I returned home at half past 2 in the morning (it is really not the best time to break news which has a powerful impact!!). What then followed was a 3 night marathon bachelor party, the final one being on a MONDAY NIGHT at our favorite watering hole...Following day Nidhi was packed off to Delhi-lock stock and barrel.
Nidhi is getting married tomorrow. (slight change in plans by folks- wedding in winter 2010 has become wedding in summer 2010) I couldn’t have been happier for her. I am now on the hunt for a roommate. I hope it will not be difficult for the new person to step into Nidhi’s shoes. All the best for you life Nidhi and please look ravishing on ur D-day and after that too.

PS- April saw a low at the professional front- but I think 3 shots of watermelon juice has made me feel better.

April also saw 3 of my friends get engaged- I was pleasantly surprised by 2 and shocked beyond belief by 1. I wish you all patience and piece of mind while running amok organizing ur wedding.

April is also seeing my neighbors leave for far away place…Am I the only one with nothing worthwhile happening in my life!!!

…time to update the CV on linkedin!! :~P

Friday, April 09, 2010

Arranged Madness- I

So after eons I visited this l’il space of mine and saw that it is nearly ONE YEAR since I wrote anything. The reasons attributed for the absence are

  1. Laziness

  2. Long hours in office

  3. Long hours sitting blank in meetings

  4. Long hours dozing in flights

  5. Laziness

Annie McBeal has been playing her part for nearly 2 years now. She has made some companies/individuals rich, her firm rich (a little) and herself also (reasonably) rich. In the process she has also driven lot many people mad with her queries, requisition lists and fast pace of talking. Now that there is (exponential ?!) growth on the professional end, it is time for growth on the personal end.

No bragging, my profession makes me spend all my waking hours at work. And there is no fixed time as to when the day begins or when the day ends. So with such work life imbalance (if I may say so), my luck with guys continues the way it was while I was in college or grad school. Over the last 2 years the scenario has been like this:

Scene 1- Ann meets people in a get together. Ann gets chatting with a guy.
Ann- ….hahaha..(trying to impress guy with her smile and fluttering eyelashes)…
Boy- its really nice talking to you….(phone rings)….ya baby…Sorry my girlfriend is calling…excuse me…be right back… K
They never come back!! :~

Scene 2- Ann works on a transaction where she gets into heated arguments with the other side lawyer. She then goes to a meeting, all charged up to bash up the lawyer. Meets the lawyer…he is a cute guy!!! And then has trouble acting aggressive in front of the cute guy. End result the deal closes, everyone is happy...Ann gets chatting with the cute guy… then her senior calls her into his cabin and says
Senior- Ann, remember the deal we did, well the clients are not on good terms now…we are gonna have tough time seeing them fight. You do understand what I am trying to convey, right?Ann- Yup! (storms out of the room)
Ann had to cut all ties with the cute guy!! :~(

With time (along with my youthful looks :P) running out, the stage is set for (drumrolls) *Arranged Marriage*

Arranged marriage as I see it is like entering into a joint venture arrangement. The parents carry a letter of intent (LOI), scouting for a suitable strategic partner for their child. Once an interested party is identified and the preliminary (commercial) points agreed upon, the parents and relatives do a due diligence on the prospective groom and bride. Instead of PwC or E&Y it is Kochuteresia ammai or Chackochayan who does the diligence check. Once the report prepared, disclosures made and risks estimated and understood, the parents decide to get the children to enter into a ‘formal’ arrangement in the parish church at 12:05 pm on a Sunday, followed by a sumptuous lunch in the parish hall or * hotel.

My family is presently in the LOI stage and preparation of this is NOT an easy task. My escapades in this arranged madness will be a regular feature here and don’t say I didn’t warn you.

First task is THE FOTO. The first impression is the best impression; irrespective of the fact that fotoshop did all the work. Softly lit background, woman (dressed in an outfit which she might never wear) standing with the support of a pillar and staring blankly in a direction which is NOT the direction of the camera. NOW THAT’S A MATRIMONIAL PIC!!! I look old’er’ and chubb‘ier’ in pose-y pics. Numerous explanations on the logic why a ‘normal everyday’ pic should be uploaded have fallen on deaf ears. Neither my folks nor I were ready to give up our stand. So we reached a compromise. I know have a formal posey pic taken- but my chubby cheeks and aging looks have been taken care of….here take a look!