Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Fire Fire Run Away!

Our team settled down to work after the award ceremony was over. The Project Team of the month award reacted as a tonic and we passionately started working to meet the tight deadline.

Hardly few minutes passed peacefully, that we heard a fire alarm. I was extremely lethargic and did not want to budge from my place since I sensed nothing serious. Evacuation drills are common and happens frequently, and my previous experiences had taught me well how to react.

But no, I cannot have the luxury of sitting and working when the whole floor is making an effort to abide by the our Admin Officer’s words, who was making a conscious effort to make us believe whatever he said. Our emergency exit door was opened, solving the mystery where it leads.

The drill was for the entire office lobby, and we were happy to find that the employees of another organization were already on their way down, walking nonchalantly, and some were very keen to peep into the interiors of our office as this is the only chance they would get to see it. Seeing new crowd made us happy and I was searching for some known faces in the new crowd, only in vain.

Someone was taking photographs and I just wanted to know about the roots of that person, for which I hardly had time. When we came to Parking lot, we saw few firemen vigorously using the huge water pipes to pacify the invisible fire. One employee was too curious to find the fire, that he could not control himself and ran behind the firemen who were trying their best to make the water reach a window, which was just a jump ahead for a tall man.

We enjoyed the scene thoroughly and even thought of mocking the whole process and to resume work. But to our misfortune, my Asst. Manager was closely following us and would not leave us to revert.

By this time, it was pretty clear to the office mates that it was nothing more than a mock drill. For the first time we used the stairs for getting down and came to know how pathetically it was maintained. I could hardly control myself from comparing Raheja and Spencers. Rahaja is the good old place where we used to have our office. It is the best place for office use with least diversions, surrounded only by the official crowd. I hate spencers for more than one reason. One for its non formal looks, and other, for tempting me so often, that I end up paying half of my salary to Food court shops and Landmark and Music world owners.

Talking all these we finally reached the ground floor and witnessed a huge crane moving unwearyingly. Again we saw few firemen running too seriously, shouting at the crowd to give way, carrying the huge water tubes. I could not stop wondering their immense acting skills and admired their confidence, which made them to underestimate the commonsense of the crowd gathered.

We were standing at a safer distance from the crane and were eagerly watching the happenings. I noticed few young girls with scribbling pads, carrying just out of college looks, seriously taking note of the happenings. They introduced themselves as Hindu reporters and started asking us questions and our Asst Manager was dutiful enough to entertain them. Everything went on fine till that uncouth looking lean girl, thought of opening her mouth. Imagining herself covering a hottest incident, and assuming herself to be a prudent journalist, she asked “You work for a Call Center Right?”. That interruption was unpleasant, as she plunged in the middle of the conversation with an unrelated question.

We found it least important to correct her and to boast about the superiority of the analysis we perform and tones of data we use to arrive at a conclusion. It is an irritating fact that any person working for a BPO is seen as someone working as a voice transcriptor or as a data entry operator. There is an immediate need to educate public about it.

Turning my attention towards the crane, I watched it moving slowly, so slowly, that I wondered what would happen in case of a real calamity. The time it took to reach the top floor was sufficiently more than 5minutes, by which time; the survivors would have already become extinct.

Someone was already waiting in the top floor, and bravely dislodged himself from the building to the crane, and landed on the earth after a good 3 minutes. That was an enjoyable different scenario and we all remained as eagerly watching bystanders.

The rest of the happenings were usual. Someone came to give us a big lecture, which hardly reached our ears. We just spent a few minutes there, and were waiting for the crowd to disperse. The fire extinguisher wasted well over few gallons of water, making a vain attempt to drench most of the crowd, making a ceremonial end to the whole occasion.

Having shared a wonderful experience, we refreshingly climbed the stairs, to attend to our work.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Terrible Night

After a tiresome day, I wanted to relax and was flipping the pages of PGW. Already it was 12.45 A.M, and thought it would be appropriate to honor night. As an authentic way for good night sleep, I wanted to pay final visit to lavatory.

I took the great pain of lifting myself from the bed and successfully switched on the lavatory light. Feeling half sleepy, I tried opening the door. But then, it did not open. I double-checked whether it was locked outside. No it was not. I doubted my father would be inside, but he was already sleeping.

Checked once again whether the door was closed from outside. After confirming that I was not wrong, found it right to inform my mother. Already in deep sleep, she was annoyed by my interruption and gave the good advice to check whether it was locked from outside. I patiently explained her and she got up to confirm.

“Yes, it is locked. But how come? Just an hour back I closed the door and slept. Who can be inside?”, asked my mother frantically. The lavatory had a godrej handle and a manual lock. The godrej handle was perfectly all right as we checked from outside and felt the movement to be flawless. But who could have used the manual lock when every inmate is outside? There is very less chance that the manual lock would have gone wrong. Even if it had, it cannot be blamed for the current state of the door, for at the maximum loose screws would make it to fall down and it did not have the capacity to curtail the movement of the door.

I firmly concluded someone’s presence inside and opened the main door of the house. Brought these things to my father’s notice and bravely ventured to terrace to check whether the bathroom window could give us some clue. But it was locked. My father, after trying his hand on the door, came out to call the security for help. I too joined him.

My mother alone was inside now, and to add to our apprehension, our whole apartment plunged to darkness all of a sudden. I shouted, asking her to come out and with equal force, she quickly rushed out. I was content that all of us were safely placed, and concluded that whoever was hiding himself lacked confidence and courage for, he would not have chosen to remain in that place even after knowing that we became cautious. Some blurred thought told me that this power cut might be the act of that nasty gangster’s group, and even thought of alarming the police. But what if it was a simple lock problem? I never thought a Policeman could be as efficient as a carpenter in mending the door.

After a wait of ten more minutes, the old security managed to climb the whole three stairs and came to our place. Good, that he got a torch with him. I went inside, cautiously picking the chord less phone and cell phone, directed my mother to search for the lock. After firmly locking the main door, all of us went once again to check the terrace. It gave no new clue.

To our relief, we noticed that the power was restored. With regained confidence, we four set to detect more about the lock mystery. The security too tried his hand and gave an astounding look. “It seems it is locked form inside.” That was his great finding after 10 minutes check. “I don’t think something grave would have happened. Do not worry. We will ask the carpenter to do the needful tomorrow. Just a mild voice, I will be there at your service.” he said. Poor man, a climb to our place took him more than 10 minutes. It was our fault to expect something solid from his part.

Again left alone, we were confused. My mother safely parked the valuables in the bureau, and was wondering what to do. I could not help thinking about our Tamil heroes, whose ferocious single kick would make even the greatest of great doors to succumb.

After few minutes of complete silence, we concluded that it was nothing more than a lock disorder, settled to sleep.

Next morning we could not bring the carpenter and thankfully, the other restroom was in perfect condition, allowing everyone to empty his or her respective bowels.

My friend, who came to meet me, noticed the door and I pathetically narrated the whole happenings. She burst out into laughter and demanded a screwdriver. I faithfully gave it, and eagerly watched her at work. Just a few minutes, godrej handle was dismantled completely and the door was opened. The handle which was unsusceptible few hours back, turned out to be the real culprit.

“You do not need a Tamil hero. Just some common sense and a screwdriver to open the adamant door.”, she told sarcastically. I gave a hangdog look and my mother was in all praise for her. Long live my friend, for you have taught me the use of a screwdriver.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

New Search - III (concluded)

I was done with my meal and was going through the pages of one the books my friend presented. The contents discussed about the thing, which was of little interest to me. It was about mind power. Not that I do not believe in mind power. I am averse to someone lecturing and directing me to do this and that to improve myself. For I never thought that someone’s lecture will make me realize myself.

But this book made me to think. Instead of knowing it from someone, won’t I be getting first hand information, if I consult with my own conscience? Looked at Anamica interestingly now. She was ready with high spirits to discuss the topic with me. “So, want to discuss about this topic now?”. I was surprised that she read my mind, but she is my mind. I should not have been surprised.

“Yes. Anamica. Life has thaught me that a little change in my attitude can make me feel better. But never understood my control over my own self. That always remained a difficult task. “

“Let me continue, from where I left earlier, because, I want you to listen what I thought will help you” said Anamica. She was going to start from “What you sow, so you reap”. “I found yourself so happy, in the morning, ready to go around the city with your friend. My intrusion irritated you. When u lost all your glee after a call from your friend, you wanted someone by your side to amuse you. And when the topic turned against you, you found it easier to slip and relax. Don’t you think you are self-centric? I don’t say that it is a peculiar character to you alone. “

She had a point. I take people who are close to me for granted. Once decided, I find it difficult to reconsider. My stubbornness irritates my friends and parents. Invariably, I am dependent on them psychologically. I cannot detach myself since I derive my happiness also from them. Even if something is of no interest to me, I can force myself to make them happy.

Now that the point reached me correctly, she decided to move on to next one. “When you extensively use your logic, it will drive you to a single solution. You explore your mind power, when you know how to use your logical skills.”

I said, “So you say logic is the base for my internal quest. But I encounter a problem here. When I rely too much on logic, I become overconfident. Like a matured adult, I take full control of my life, disbelieving in divine interruptions. Am I right in relying fully on my mind power, ignoring the God power?”

“Do not always seek an answer”, she replied. “God and mind power are two pillars which support you. When you are over confident, mind power will do. But remember, not always you had high spirits. There were days, when you felt extremely down and expected someone to soothe you. I know you believed in God power on those days. Belief is the basic thing, which keeps our life running. When it comes to belief, logic has no role to play. God and mind power are two mutually exclusive concepts, and it is up to us, to choose the one which suits our purpose, according to the need of the hour.”

I felt relieved. Not that I understood her completely. But thought that discussion would be an eye opener. With this, she said good-bye to me. I interrupted and said, “You told me that you would make me mature. Do you think this would suffice?”

She turned back and said, "As I said, spoon-feeding will be of no use. You hate a book because someone instructs you. In the same way, you will hate me if I instruct and direct you constantly. I have kindled something in you. It is upto you to develop it. Do call me when you need my help. For I am there to guide you.”

She left where she had been, bidding me farewell. But now I am left confused with what had happened to me. Please help if someone could.