I know many of you who read this will say, “I know what got him to write this!”. And you are correct. What I will be writing below doesn’t depend on it though, I hope you do not fall asleep mid way (or even before that!).
I have been an army brat all my life. From my “Hello World!” moment in the beautiful city of Tehran, life has been all about change. I went on to experience the fresh fish of Calicut, the rapid development at Doha, the breathtaking rice fields of Palakkad and finally, the wonderful city of Jaipur. Seeing new places and meeting new people is exciting, but the flip side involves something that everyone would no doubt agree, is difficult. It is the part where you have to say goodbye, to friends, family and a lot of wonderful memories.
I have always considered myself rather cold when it comes to emotions such as this. I don’t remember being heavy hearted during any of the times that I had to leave one city for another. I used to look forward to seeing my new home. I used to make guesses as to the life I was soon going to live, the life that I knew I would need to put behind me a few more years later. But humans are known for the never ending depth to their emotions. A depth that is explored from birth to death, in a journey that is never short of surprises for the bearer of the emotions itself. And the realisation that one is changing, is usually the cause of surprise. It is this realisation in myself that prompted me to write this.
I now enter another checkpoint in my life where I have to say goodbye to a lot of people. And I know this time that things are different. I think of the experiences that made me what I am today, the people who influenced me and the memories that have been engraved onto me. I know that when I leave the institute, dragging my luggage behind me, I will turn back and look down the long road. I know 4 years of thoughts will flash by me, from the moment I entered this institute and stared aghast at the desert-like environment that was MNIT, to the point of the final goodbye, which is just a few days away from now.
I will now proceed to say goodbye in two parts, each targeted at two different sets of people. Mind you, the two sets might have an intersection, so that’s two goodbyes for these people!
The first goodbye, is to the ones I call friends. Those of you who were part of the mass bunks in first year. Those of who took my ‘ice-breaker’ sessions and those who were my comrades during the same. The guys who I’d drink with, and the very next morning, would tell me about all the crap I’d have done the previous night. The people I’d turned to during my lowest of moments, by far one of the most forgettable phases of my life. The awesome people I’ve gamed with and taken part in tournaments with. The amazing friends who took the trouble to make a lovely video for me. And a lot more. To each and every one of you, all I can say is, I’m speechless with gratitude. I’m proud to have known all of you. Hope nothing but success comes your way.
I’m not sure how many of you can guess who my second goodbye is for. But here goes. It is to my juniors.
I’ve had quite a number of you thanking me for helping out and for having guided you at times. But allow me to say something in return.
Ever since my 3rd year, I used to take time off to teach you guys. What started out as just a little something I was doing to help the department ended up being a passion for me. I cherished every second of every seminar I’d taken. I enjoyed evaluating all those answer sheets from the quizzes we’d have after the seminars and reading out the funny answers during the next session (with the promise of anonymity of course!). And those killer doubts that you’d raise! Trust me when I say that there was no better way to learn than that! And how can I forget all the fun times that we’ve had conducting events and workshops, an enriching experience in itself. All of this together convinced me to proceed towards the career that I now have in mind for myself, which is teaching. I yearn to be a professor, and I will be pursuing an MS now and a PhD after that as steps towards that direction. Thanks to _each_ and every one of you for making me realise what I truly want to become in life, for making me find something that I truly loved doing. Thanks to all those of you who’d turned to me for advice. And the same amount of thanks to all those juniors from the newsletter team who I’ve had the pleasure of working with as well. I forever remain indebted to all of you for this and will continue to be the geeky Lalith Boss that you’ve always known. To put it in my own words, “Let me know if you need any help.” 🙂
On a concluding note, all I’d like to say is that I hope to not lose touch with any of you, because bonds like this don’t deserve a punishment as cruel.
And thus I assure you all that this time on, the curtains will not fall.