When was the last time someone called us PG04? When we all got placed? Or the last time the faculty addressed us? Or was it when we had our convocation? Or was it in one of those emails that one of us sends to each other once in a while?
This PG04 to me (atleast) had a really strong connotation. This to me was the call to our wolfpack (see Hangover if you haven't), call to our brethren, call to the family (Godfather) that separated us from them. Us was PG04. Them was everyone else including PG03, PG05, Faculty, Hostel cooks, the security guards, the professors and the companies coming on campus to hire us. And others were people not on campus like the world beyond the college walls, the families back home and so on and so forth. At MDI, we were all we had. Ok, exaggerating. I made it sound like we were in a concentration camp. May be we were. It was a wild world out there and we had to emerge from MDI as Change Masters. To give credit to the salutation of our hostel, some of us have did become Change Masters!
But over years the wolfpacks have dismantled, families have gone to the mattresses, other pressing matters such as buying houses, acquiring corner offices, raising kids et at have taken precedence. We've gone busy with our respective lives. So much so that we cant meet even if we live 3 KMs away from each other (pointing accusatory glances at Ridhima and Ketan - I live 3 KMs away and we've been making plans for three months). What has remained is faint memories of times spent at MDI. And there were tons of incidents that I probably will never forget.
The beauty is, each of us would have had our own sets of memories to look back at. And the sad bit is, none of us would ever discover all the stories that went around back then! May be someone has to catalog all these into one journal? May be I will at some point.
I can share my story to start with. When I walked into MDI, I had no clue what was in store for me. I came from a small college in a remote corner of Delhi and everything about MDI was intimidating to me - the ones I was talking to on a yahoo group (before college started) went to fancy colleges, were sons of army colonels and so on and so forth. My roommate, Pochu, was topper from BITS Pilani. The dudes next to me in class - Satya and Gupta - were so brainy that I had no idea where to look at where stuff was happening in the class. Right in front of me was Piyush who was so tall that I had to stand on my chair to make sense of stuff happening on the blackboard. The first friend I made at MDI was Ashish who literally lived in the library the whole of first semester. Despite being the odd one out (I still am come to think of it), with time I found my place. I became a part of "us." I discovered things that made me happy - reading, counter-strike, music, spreading myself too thin, staying up at night, travel and of course, writing. I learnt that I was not the king of the universe. And I made friends that probably will last for a lifetime!
Thing is, if I did not go to MDI, I probably wouldn't have discovered any of these and I would have been a far different person from what I am today.
Wait a minute. So, why this email?
Because (Vivek) Gawri told me that it's been exactly 10 years since we passed out! Ten fucking years (and almost 12 since we started). I can't say it feels like yesterday but time does fly away. While at campus those two years seemed like eternity and now 10 years are insignificant.
Back then, when I was joining MDI, like someone starting a new phase in life (see Shawshank), I was super excited - after all I was going to MDI! And I was afraid of the unknown. I was clueless about what was expected from me - MDI to me was (and is) the most decorated tag that I've earned. I was dreamy eyed - I remember I wanted to be like Bill Gates and make money (of course I am nowhere close). And I was apprehensive. I had no glass globes to gaze into and predict what would become of me in 10 years.
In fact, I remember getting asked a million times, "Where do you see yourself in 10 years."
I dont recall what I'd said but there's a high probability that I would have said, "I'd be the CEO of a large organization." Talk of wishful thinking!
BTW, what did you say? And are you any close to what you thought you were gonna be doing in ten years?
And may be, just may be, today is the time to plan for the next 10 years. What would you be doing on Mar 16, 2026?
Me? Well, I would be living on a sparsely populated location (if there is one left till then) and I would be a teacher. And a writer. Please be my guest if you visit the city I am in. And do buy my books ;P
So, here the deal. Lets come together? Meet each other? If not meet everyone else, may be come back to meet your friends that you spend so many countless nights with, on the dome, on the steps of the hostel, the acad block, library, computer centre and of course behind the closed doors of rooms ;)
So what if we are older now? I am sure there is some fire left in the belly. And that little fire finally succumbs to a slow, painful, nondescript death brought about by years of monotony, how about a meet up? I am sure there will be reasons, excuses, spouses, deadlines, missed connections, red-eyes and all that troubling your brains but it would be fun!
Guys, time does flies (Tomorrow never dies) and it goes away fast. Next time I send something like this out, we probably would be 20 years out of MDI and as Sharma told Gawri, "it would be a miracle if we are alive by then." Lets do this. For you. And for I. And for us.
Thats' it guys.
Oh, one more thing! Thank you for such an amazing time at MDI. Whatever little I know, whatever little I do, all of it has happened because I was lucky enough to be at MDI and more lucky to have you for company.
Love, Regards and Headshots
Saurabh "MML | h!+m4n" Garg
P.S.: Thanks to Gawri for reminding me that we're ten years out of college and Ketan for confirming. And guess I've seen too many movies.
I have set this form on Google where I am asking you for your location and contact details. Please do fill in if you are keen. https://docs.google.com/
forms/d/1hDAfjywcF0r6UPgxToB- R58lxSpScNPFPkpx9YxYmr4/ viewform