Wednesday, October 28, 2009
November will not however, be a very nice month. It includes an end-semester exam, for which I am thoroughly unprepared. The exam also entails a practical examination which will be "just like Class 12" according to a Research Scholar here. Unfortunately, in Class 12, there is so much cheating and copying that it is impossible to replicate in an IIT. So, this is probably going to be my first proper practical exam ever! By the way, it's on Nov. 19, while the written papers are from Nov. 23. Luckily, or not, classes end on Nov. 18. Although, I doubt we, rather they, can complete the syllabus by then.
So, here's the main question: will I fail in Electronics and Thermodynamics? Based on the just-concluded mid-sem 2, I think I will be able to pass with a decent grade in Thermodynamics. But Electronics is just too hard: the subject itself is quite challenging while the professor and indeed, the entire department, is barking mad!
As for the other subjects, I need to concentrate a bit more on Engineering Graphics, especially the confusing part of Engineering Drawing. While HS, EVS and Maths are doable, the remaining subjects need special care.
Did anybody say anything about a branch change? Oh, was that even this year?
The Congress-NCP owes its victory to the divided opposition. Raj Thackeray's MNS, which has virtually hijacked its parent organisation's (the Shiv Sena) agenda, managed to win 12 Assembly seats, five of them in Mumbai, which is arguably the State's most cosmopolitan city. But the MNS did much worse: it ate into the vote share of the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance, thus pushing it far behind the Congress-NCP.
Now, as the Congress-NCP is set to return to power, the Opposition must think deep. So much ground has eroded beneath it that it has left the Congress-NCP as the only real choice in the State. The MNS must return to the Shiv Sena, and the Shiv Sena itself must champion a cause that people really care about. And, most importantly, the BJP must build itself into a formidable force and provide a real, nationalistic alternative in Maharashtra.
Can this happen in a mere five years? Only time will tell.
And then came the exam. It was an absolute disaster! Can you imagine how it feels to see a whole paper in front of you and not know how to solve a single question? Well, that's how I felt when I was attempting my Physical Chem paper. After all, with so many partial differentials and what-not, how can they expect us to remember the derivation of um... well, some equation.
Leaving aside Technical Communication, which is easy but not scoring, every exam was a challenge. Studying late into the night, we read all our books - from the useful BS Grewal to the horribly boring GM Masters! In fact, while reading the last at 2:00 AM, I wondered if we would make it out alive after the exam!
Now, it's all up to the end-sems, stating from the 23rd of next month. OK, so that's what I said last time too. But if not the end-sems, there's always next year :) I just hope some ingenious fresher come along who'll teach me everything!
Friday, October 16, 2009
His father fled from Bangladesh during partition, while he was still a child. His entire family came to the new-born nation of India with just the clothes on their backs. It was a very hard time: the entire subcontinent was torn apart on religious lines; a mighty empire had collapsed, leaving destruction in its wake.
In spite of the gloom, my great grandfather looked towards a brighter future. He wanted his son to study and live a better life than he did. Thus, my grandfather completed his B.Tech in Mechanical Engineering against all odds.
He was a bright student and secured a government job in NMDC Ltd. For the rest of his life, he would remain associated with the company. He married my grandmother (a marriage of 54 years till death did them apart) with whom he had two daughters (one being my mother) and a son. However, because he was posted in a tribal, mineral-rich belt of Chhattisgarh (then MP), he had to send his children to boarding school at a tender age. In addition, he also educated a little, impoverished boy who came to his door one day seeking sanctuary. That boy today is a grown man with a good job.
My grandfather enjoyed a steady income, unlike his siblings. Consequently, he would send his family money every month. Despite the additional burden, he took his wife and children on regular trips to various parts of India. Even after he grew old, he never lost his love for travel. He had diabetes and also had a bypass surgery, yet he was amazingly fit. Despite his age, he was, like a true engineer, dedicated to learning new things. Thus, he tried to master the intricacies of the cell phone and Tata Sky, often leading to long tutorial sessions with me!
My grandfather was never a disciplinarian, yet his presence disciplined you; his knowledge humbled you; and his humility inspired you.Today, without him, there seems to be a strange hole in my life. There are so many things I would have liked to do, so much to talk. And yet...
My grandfather passed away at 3:00 pm on Oct. 13, 2009 at the age of 80. My greatest tribute to him wold be to imbibe his ideals and spread my name far and wide... a name that he chose for me, 18 years ago.
Death is as sure for that which is born, as birth is for that
which is dead. Therefore grieve not for what is inevitable. - Gita
Friday, October 2, 2009
An MBA-educated NRI who believes in the unproven science of astrology. OK, that's possible. Then, twelve girls who look exactly the same. That's taking it a bit too far. Ashutosh Gowariker's latest film, What's Your Raashee?, is another one of those no-brainer Bollywood comedies that have been ruling the roost of late.
A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave.Mahatma Gandhi