It was decided way back in August of the ‘good year’ 2015 that my summer of 2016 will be in the historic city of Pune. It was an all-expanses-paid internship at the world’s largest oilfield services company. World’s largest of anything is pride!
A two hours flight from Kolkata reaches you to Pune.
“Your first flight?” a firangi guy who looked like Richard Gere asked after a small conversation in the waiting area.
Over the next two months, i would have met many such nice people, got a signed picture from one the greatest fast bowler of all time, gone on a tinder date too (she was also nice). I would have explored Marathi street food. And i would have discovered how tough is maintaining work-life balance. And how weekend got precious that they are.
The best part of a work day was when i came back sometimes as late as 9 pm-the episode of F.R.I.E.N.D.S on comedy central usually flavoured with a sense of satisfaction on work accomplished throughout the day. Leaning on the couch with overhead AC, legs stretched on a wooden table in front with a fork in one hand, made busy with a colorful fruit plate and remote in another hand, tv facing. Life seemed enriched in that island.
On weekends, however, we were different animals. We trekked on Lonavala around the pockets of western ghats. Monsoon winds assaulting your clothing creating eddy inside but your mind is more concerned about capturing every moment of nature’s astonishing display of beauty. Winds, clouds and garam chai. There was no couch, there was no AC. But those moments were surreal.
“If you ask my name then I will say Anindya Chatterjee. ” said an old man walking with me. I had asked for direction and he offered to walk along. He was a retired ex-service man. He had no idea how fast those forty years went for him. It seemed to him like yesterday. Talking to him for 10 minutes gave those precious insights of life you get after you have seen sixty-two years of it.
“Nobody ever got anything by holding on to it. ”
“You need to let things go”
In the hindsight, an internship is a great learning experience, a ladder to better career opportunities. But it just can’t be limited to that. It’s also about going places and meeting people.