Thank you, Ashish!

Post 7 of #sg100peopleToThank. More about this series is here.

Thank you, Ashish
Ashish Biswas is a filmmaker (some of his work is on Vimeo) and storyteller. And is also an MDI Gurgaon Alumni and that's how I know Ashish (he was a senior at college). And this is one of those million things that I am thankful to MDI for. If you can attend a business school, please do. The people that you meet there will add so much to your life that you would come out a changed person. 

Coming to Ashish. So, he was a year senior at MDI and thus we were on a first name basis.

Lemme narrate an incident. This goes back almost 10 years, if not more. There was this time when Amit (Sharma, a classmate from MDI) and I were in Mumbai and we were really struggling to balance our ambition and reality.

Reality - he and I were in jobs that paid ok, was ok in terms of work but it was far far from the kind of stories we wanted to tell. I don't remember where was Amit but I was either with GE or with CLA or with Gravity.

Ambition - tell stories that made ordinary people into heroes and gave the message of hope and all that.

To both of us (Amit and I), Ashish was someone who was living it up. He had quit his cushy job to "struggle" and make films. And he was the only person we knew who was doing anything that was remotely related to things we wanted to work on.

So we met him at the rooftop canteen of a post-production studio (I still remember it was at the Gold's Gym building at Pali - that time there was no Gold's Gym) and while I don't remember the specifics, I remember a thing that Ashish told me. After all these years, that thing has stayed with me till date. He said, "mehnat karega to there is no way you will not reach where you want to reach."

This is a way too polished version, to be honest. He had used some expletives that only he can muster. But you get the gist.

The funny thing is that I have heard this from parents, teachers, strangers, neighbours, their pets, random stranger on the street, books, motivational speakers and even Shahrukh Khan. But when it came from Ashish, it hit home. To a point that it has stayed with me till this date. There are times when I am sad and I don't know what to do and I want to cry and I want to walk up a mountain to scream my lungs out in despair and all that. And that's when I am reminded of this simple lesson. Fuck as I write this, I can recall what he was eating. A veg thali with some deep fried papad. Bisu, veg thali, papad. Funny how our brains work!

So yeah, thank you, Ashish, for the lesson that I have NOT forgotten till date.

Oh, the other thing that I took away from you that day (and continue to hold dear) is that you've taught me to chase my dreams by being an example that I could emulate. I have seen you through your ups and downs and highs and lows. You've held your head high when you were down. And you've kept your doors open when you are at a place of comfort. I hope when I reach where you are, I remain as humble and as helpful.

Thank you for all the mindspace, help and inputs.

Wish you all the best :)

With all respect,
Saurabh Garg
Class of 2006

Others posts in this series: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

I don't think I can keep up with one post a day. So, I am dropping the charade of even trying. However, I do need an endpoint. So, I will endeavour to do these before I go for Vipassana (around September). I have about 170 days. Manageable? Any bets? 

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