Friday, October 31, 2014

Hostel Life @ SPJIMR

The rays of the rising sun reflect off the water, and the lotuses on the Bhawan's lake open up their pink petals to collect liquid gold. A white bird glides above the water. The picture of tranquility.

Over the SPJIMR campus - the Dawn just broke.

In buildings #26 & #29 - All HELL just broke.

It's 8:00 am.

A hundred and eight alarms go off - Ghetto Sirens in an air attack.Instantaneously, deathly drowsy but deadly accurate hands hit snooze like a guided missile.

1. Sleep, 2. Good Grades, 3. Social Life..."pick two, welcome to college!”
Manage all three? - Welcome to PGPM!!

Class begins in an hour at 9, that’s fixed. What time do people leave bed?
That’s a function of individual risk appetite.Yet the uncles from 7:30, the men from 8 a.m. and the studs from 8:45 all acknowledge the morning alike when the communal Jukebox of the Hostel declares it.

Dudes with speakers in their rooms belt out hits to which the hostel hums while making themselves presentable for college. Nothing illustrates the First mover's advantage better than waiting on occupied shower cubicles. Fortunately or unfortunately the Microeconomic Law of diminishing marginal-utility doesn’t apply here. Optimum resource utilization is practiced while sharing the full length mirrors and collaboration happens when the ‘sincere ones’ give a 2 minute download to the ‘drifters’ on a 2 hour class pre-read.

Mornings in the Hostel are busy - but in a good way. Everybody's on their own path but we're still on the same train. Comradeship camaraderie.

About Ten minutes to nine:

A mass exodus is in progress, but between the hostel and the lecture-theatres lies a key strategic decision. It’s called breakfast- now or after first class.The key parameters of - # of consumers, staff serving efficiency a.k.a "bhaiya jaldi karo" index and time remaining to class are analyzed.

Yet the Heuristic developed over ten PGPM years still stands good-Be 'Just-in-Time' for breakfast or else practice 'lean-management' till after the first lecture.When mostly classes and rarely enthusiasm gets over by late afternoon or evening, participants return in hordes, yet the hostel goes deadly silent. It's time for mass hostel hibernation a.k.a Power naps. Don't be fooled by the silence though, it's only the lull before the storm.Everyone's charging up for the night - the liveliest time of existence at campus.

One invariably wakes up by shouts and shout-outs happening outside. Depending on the decibel intensity, these could be one of three things –

Sound #1:

If it sounds like a fight that sounds extremely friendly, food has been found!! , someone got sweets/snacks/anything from home - RUSH!! Away from home, the only standard remaining is ‘edible’.

Sound #2:

Large bouts of laughter, High Fives.

Look for this room and get ready for some solid entertainment. Folks are on someone's case - a.k.a Lagao-ing sessions. These are generally punctuated by punchlines in a single wicked voice followed by howling laughter.In the midst of all this, academic group messages have already started floating around - meeting times are being decided. Tasks are being delegated. Classic divide and conquer.

Dinner time doubles up as a socialization opportunity, where all the animals of the jungle meet at the waterhole. On some table there's a hot debate regarding India's macroeconomic policies, on another an admiration club for a professor's class while guys on yet another table are discussing the next Movie screening of the cine-phile club. Amongst all this, folks from the party committee are surveying around gathering consensus for the next lounge PGPM's gonna crash.

After rounds of post dinner walks and discussions have ended, folks get to business on submissions due the next day. Seated in huddles in the garden, the mess and hostel common areas everyone glowing in the soft light halos of their laptops.

Business plans are being made, debt equity ratios being decided, and new positioning and segmentation approaches explored.

It's around midnight, but the activity around hardly makes it seem so- the efficient humming of clockwork, ideas being born over a chai session here, a round of coke there.Suddenly a loud shriek pierces through the cool night.

That’s Sound #3.

Loud ear shattering Shrieks and sounds of a deadly chase.It's a birthday!! The only time to run away from friends.For this is a time when brotherly love knows no bounds and spills over in ample measure in the form of birthday bumps being lavished over the lucky guy.

Just when things get wild and people begin to shout - "THIS IS SPARTA!!!!" - The birthday-bashers committee presents the cake, the theme of peaceful celebration is restored. Phew!

So much adrenaline in the air already, arm wrestling matches break-out.

Yes, yes we have women's doubles as well.

A welcome break from work, people start to reminisce the last room party. Weekends are a bit more relaxed and the room parties are to die for. There are those who play instruments and then there are those who invent them. Music flows from Chairs desks even the trash can.

Doesn't take long however before duty calls again and participants return to their huddles to finish work and retire for the day.
It's after 2 am now:

A loud resounding “YES!!” is heard, in the background HIGH-FIVE claps - the first groups to submit all deliverables for the day.

Everywhere you look reviews are in progress, and fingers clicking away relentlessly at the laptop keys.
Birds begin chatter in the background, the dawn is near.
Late nights and early mornings...Life of a PGPM-er.

Having completed tasks for the day, you head back to your room, a little chat with the roomie who you only see mostly before you end the day. A small discussion leads to the realization of the tremendous value that’s been added in the past 24 hours.

We're all living maximum lives, the realization is powerful, and gets you charged up and looking forward to the next day.

CAUTION: This life is highly addictive. Use in moderation. May be that’s why, It’s a one year program.


~ Aryak SinghPGPM1013 Marketing.

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