Live Life Like A Jive – Yes, those were the words which defined and shaped my year 2013. This was an year which included a lot of learning experiences for me. As I sit here to reminiscence the 365 days which just flew past me like a gush of fresh air, I remember the life they breathed into me as they passed by. I want to talk about a few key things which 2013 added to my life. It is going to be long but compressing such an eventful year to a byte would be very wrong on my part of celebration.
Time for me was never about the amount of hours or days spent involved in something or the other. But it was always about moments, moments which I can cherish, moments which I can learn from, moments which shape me and moments which challenge me. 2013 was a lot about creating those moments, a majority of them with people I learned to like and cherish in my life. Some of the key moments helped me imbibe the feeling of happiness, attachment, exuberance, humility and creativity.
Some moments were spent alone exploring my own self, I did this by indulging in my new found love for creative writing especially poetry. I penned a few poems in Hindi and English continuing with my efforts from last year. A few I recited to some close friends another just kept in my diary. Some I never even bothered to write them down, instead I made them into my own lullaby.
Some moments were of learning a quintessential amount of what the world has to offer me, this again was a continuation of what 2012 has springboarded me into. I continued with my efforts of learning on Coursera and finished my almost 1 academic year in coursera with 6 finished course with certificates and 1 finished but un-certified experience. I realized that the certificates were just a way to keep me focussed in trying to take the course seriously. They were not the end goal but an important force in making me learn what I was giving time to. I have been very satisfied with my indulgence in online learning platforms and want to continue it for the rest of my life.
A few moments were of exploring the world around me, not just the natural but also the man made one. I would attribute this to some amazing journeys I commited myself to undertake and was fortunate to be made a part of. Partaking the adventurous and enduring trek experience at Mullayangiri ranges was an experience to remember. Where I lived what I would have wanted in my dreams sometimes, to wander like Frodo in the Mountains and reach the end at the end of the day. It was a personal achievment for me finishing that 15 km trek and realizing that life has so much more in store for me if only I continue taking one step at a time in the forward direction. I was fortunate to top it up with some really amazing trips with my new fellowship of friends I found in Bangalore, a place I would always remember that 1 year in Bangalore as a turning point of my life till now.
Some moments of composing my jives with my old friends, to eating dinner and watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S. with my old college buddies. Going on bike rides in rainy days and all the random restaurant trips during late night hours. To my new found road side aloo paratha dabhas and some road trips in car with no random plans.
The moments of performing our choreographed sequence in front of a housefull crowd and working with one of the best teams I could have got in my first workplace out of college.
The joyous moment of finally being able to pursue my boyhood dream of doing research and along with the sad realization of leaving all that I learned and earned in an year to move forward to pursue bigger goals in my life. The realization of the fact that everything that has a beginning has an end. But I was happy that this beautiful joruney of my life ended on a high note.
The moments spend in theaters watching some of the finest bollywood and hollywood movies of the year with people I love discussing them with.
The moment of watching my first cricket match in the stadium and watching one of my inspirations Adam Gilchrist and my crush Priety Zinta at their finest.
The new moments were of spending probably one of the longest in years to come and best time with my family before I set forth to the new world.
The uncountable moments of photoboothing in various UIUC events, and countless magic moments with the new people and reuniting with some close old people in my life.
On an academic level the moments were of seeing our first reseach output being published to demonstrating our tool to a whole breed of social change agents. The slight sadness at missing the perfect 4/4 because of an A- but at the sametime what realizing what research is all about. The constant efforts towards writing my first paper which are still underway.
The proud feeling of once again starting on an idea, building and working with great a team and successfully getting accepted for our efforts. More on this one after next year March 😉
Being awed by the beauty of life like a couple kissing in their car parked at the top most turning slope of the Lombard street, SFO, the journey atop the Blackwell forest reserve, the glad you came trip and the dangerous WOLF tour. The first concert experience and the countless free stuff 😉
The many delicious meals I learned to cook and serve, and the innumerable dine-ins and eat-outs with my new friends. The late nighters and the chai latte, maggie after that. The 1 am effort to cook pudding and gifting it to my Professor =)
The long walks and bus rides, the sleep-ins and nightouts.
The feeling of being hugged by a thousand kids, dressed and dancing around like Martha – the speaking dog, while sweating like a pig inside the mask.
The snow angels and the youtube guided snowman. The eyebrow raising at the Halloween Frat party and my DIY costume.
The so much to do and yet so less time in hand. 2013 was like an alfresco ride in an Amazon forest.
A lot of moments with myself but many of those because of the people who I am glad to have shared those moments with.
There were a lot of people who made this year so fantastic for me. Right from my family’s and some people’s encouragement in helping me decide my future to my team, my manager, my advisors and my friend’s shaping every single day of my year. Some people with whom new bonds were forged and some with which old ties were strengthened. The people who were part of my journeys, my adventures and my wisdom. The people who were my guest and the ones who were my host. The new cohorts and the closer team mates. The old friends I left back in India and the new ones I made in US. The so many birthday boys and girls I had a chance to celebrate with.
And yes my own self who absorbed all this and continued on the the smile =)
All the moments and all the people were part of few major events in my life.
– My last few months at Citrix, which involved a long session of lunches, treats, trips, birthday celebrations and farewells.
– The time spend at my home in Bangalore and with friends involving a majority of the moments I remember.
– The long academic and social six month period at UIUC and USA in general.
What Next –>
The year is gone and the story is written. As the clock ticks on the new year and new day is passing by. I have new moments to create, new people to meet, new places to go, new things to learn and lot more things to DO but most importantly to continue on with my motto “Live Life Like A Jive” and as Frost said “miles to go before I sleep …”.
Happy New Year for another unexpected Journey =)
PS: I am actually going to sleep right now as it is too late and I am feeling sleepy =P