Saturday, June 19, 2010

The A-Z of my Pune Years


Although I am heading home, the irony is that I am feeling that I am actually leaving home.

I had this post in mind for a long time. Its not about specific friends or specific moments. Its about the entire package, the entire journey and the entire experience. For me, as this almost a personal piece, this is the most special post till date of course. I hope its good.
Spoiler Alert : It’s a long post. But I couldn’t write less. Read in two/three/four/ten installments if you like. 

A for Akurdi
Akurdigaon, despite all the abuse at initial shortcomings, the place comes alive when you have all the friends around. What change it has seen in these years, totally transformed beyond recognition. The next time I come to the place I called home for 4 years though, I shall definitely be looking out if the water level has receded in the tunnel.

B for Bike accidents
I have had many funny falls, which becomes funnier when I am narrating them to my friends. It has been a hell of a ride, bruises all over the place. But thank God, nothing serious enough to stop driving along. Bruises and falls in our legendary college ground shouldn’t go unnoticed too. India will beat Barcelona if they play at that ground because Xavi’s ground passes to Messi would bounce up over his head.

C for Chachu
There can actually be a separate A-Z list of Chachu’s moments. What a time we had in the hostel. I am thinking that he should have got the Rs. 10,000 deposit (that we never got back) as entertainment tax from the rest of us. Classic. Thank You man. He’s been a great sport most occasions, sometimes though he got angry, which unfortunately for him led to more leg pulling.

D for Defaulter
Did I hear the attendance cut-off was 75 percent? Haha. If the teachers, with the exception of a few, were better than a new-born in technical stuff, maybe we would have attended a percentage close to 75. Repeated warnings = Weekly comic relief.

E for E-Cell
Been part of most stuff in college and Rotaract holds a special place because that started it all. But after the mess it became, it was good riddance. Prateek’s revival of the E-Cell was a smashing moment. Was so awesome to work with him and Niyanta again, and throw in awesome new friends in the mix, we had a superhit E-Week and good trip down to Bangalore. Super stuff Phoenix, and congratulations to Prateek Khare.

F for Friends.
Need I say more. My time here has been defined by friends. The experiences, the laughs, the debates, the fights, the late nights, the timepass. Everything. Depresses me no end. Enough Said.

G for Grace Marks
Isbar cut-off kitna jayega ? :P Story of the college years, isn’t it? However hard I study, there is always that one/two paper that scares the shit out of me during the semester vacations. 40 in the mark sheet is prettier than anything in this world.

I don’t think anybody who stayed in THAT hostel in the first year would disagree. It a shame, we could not carry on. We made the best of friends, we had the best of moments. Football, PL, TV, terrace, the various rooms. Who would believe us when we say that we had the craziest of times in a place that greeted me with broken windows and cupboards, a still fan and a fused light, a place which had water problems all year and no mess. But we had just the medicine that was needed to cure all. Friends.

I for IPL
Hmmm, I’d rather stay quiet on this. There is always a bunch of people who are ready to take my case on this. KKR was pathetic, I guess my Pune years were THE curse. Therefore, we are winning next year, now that I am out of here. (*Takes cover*)

J for Jigar
Like it or hate it. It cant be ignored. It was the savior of all saviours. Whatever I do, wherever I am, I will have the visual of ‘Brilliant Jigar’ by ‘Technical Publications etched on to my mind.

K for Kick-off.
Kick-off here obviously signifies the beautiful game. Kicking off at Ursula’s, college, here and there. Everywhere. Kicking off at 2am in the morning under street lights. Waiting for kick-off to take place far off in England with the TV on. Debating stuff that don’t have a winner or ending around football. Also, cant miss mentioning winning the Pune University championship. That team was like family, awesome seniors.

L for Liverpool.
Cant help it, this letter is blocked for Liverpool forever.

M for Maar
Birthdays, like campuses across the land, are a curse. You get fucked. Badly. If however, Chachu is also present, the birthday boy gets some reprieve. He must have been hit on around 40-45 birthdays in these 4 years, but then again, isn’t that his real age anyway? Great times at 12 o clock midnight. All 4 years. Vikram have you recovered?

N for Niyanta
I have to say this. A gem. She has been the strongest pillar of support there ever can be. She has been in trouble a lot due to me but always ended up being by my side. Unbelievable woman. Wonderful person, lucky to meet you, luckier to be close to you. Leader oh yeah. You know what I think of your work in college. Unprecedented. I think of the list of people I met in Pune whom I am close to I cant stop being grateful.

O for Overwhelming moments.
There are times when you feel so good, that the whole week’s schedule can take a walk. Moments which can keep you cheered up in the not so good times. I have had loads of them, and If I have to mention one, here goes : It was the first semester, and I was terribly homesick. One morning, I came out of the college gate expecting a friend of a friend to come, which was what I was told. Instead, I saw my closest friend since my childhood days step out of hiding and shock me. I remember I sat down for a moment to just take it in. Harsh Sureka had come down from Manipal and oh those 2 days are still wonderful. I dint know Pune well enough to take him to the best of places, but for me, nothing else mattered. I was already in heaven and there’s no better place than that in Pune, is there? Thank you so much.

P for Placement
To be honest, I can neither describe the tension prior to getting placed, not the relief afterwards. I hope Godrej and Boyce works out well.

Q for Quarter
Yeah pints, quarters whatever. Basically signifies drinks. And boy!! what a time we have had. The talks, the stories, the madness, EPIC.

R for Rent
Abhi ATM se nikaal kar aapko rent deta hoon. Was one of the consistent lines I delivered to my landlords over the months and years. Stayed in a flat for 6 months, and a room for 2 and a half years, and both were fun. Sad that I have to leave the place now, but that sadness is multiplied by the thought of me having to CLEAN the damn room before leaving. Not cool.

S for stories
Aaah, some stories. Saurabh Singh always has the craziest stories. Soham Chakraborty’ s stories narrated by Vikram are the kind of stuff which inspired the creation of the abbreviation ROFL. Have some awesome stories myself which I shall remember for life too. If someone does actually sit down and compile all the stories in a book, that would outsell Techmax Publications for sure.

T for Transport Nagar Naka
A friend in need is a friend indeed. :P . When we ran out of ‘you know what’, who came to the rescue? Exactly this place. Good times late at night, passing time, stopping for chai-sutta and just talking. Delight.

U for Ursulas.
The people. The football. Football at the ground or at the basketball courts has been such a time. I remember going to play there in the first year and feeling, yeah now I feel settled here in Pune. And nothing has changed. Its just like home. Even more importantly, the people. I have been lucky enough to have a lot of friends who went to school at St. Ursulas and I have to say, they are awesome.

V for Viki’s flat
Ok Vikram doesn’t own the place, nor does he stay alone there. But that’s how that flat is called by me – Viki’s flat. The dinner times have been filled with such incidents, that I have probably never looked forward to dinner more in my life. Also, staying in a single room in the last 2 years, that was the time of the day I really looked forward to catching up with an awesome group. All of you at LaviKunj and the SB Patil Building : A big thank You.

W for Wake Up
My Pune years have had more nights than day. Honest. I have had so many people trying their best to wake me up in the morning, and thank you for the patience. On the day of my M3 paper in second year, I woke up at 10am. That’s the time the exam was scheduled to start. I reached at 10.15-10.20 and was allowed to sit thankfully. Scary!

X for Xerox
The notes, the sheets, the Jigars, the question papers, the tuition stuff we missed, unending list. Xerox, mini Xerox. The irony is that, however much we Xeroxed, what we utilized from that is dealing in single digit percentages. Copyline doesn’t mind though.

Y for You All.
We if you managed to read this excessively long post till here, you need a pat. Haha. There have been great number of people who I have had a good time with. Some might be reading this, some not. Cannot name all ofcourse. ‘You all’ is for every person that made this Pune experience worthwhile. We might have met once, we might have met daily, we might have had more chats than talks, you might have been a senior giving me advice and guidance, you might have been someone we have worked on something together, just everybody has contributed to this wonderful time. Cannot stress this more. Honest to God.

Z for Zoo.
Like you have seen plain clothes policemen, this special zoo has plain clothes / human skinned animals. They are primarily donkeys with Z for Zero IQ. They include the college administration. And the brains behind the university and marks system. Sorry, but I tried my best, just couldn’t resist this.

Damn tempted to get back a couple of alphabets as wildcard entrants like Roadies etc., and write some more. But I guess I will leave it at that.

A man (or woman, maybe) once said that Every good thing must come to an end. Boy!! Wasn’t he correct!!



  1. no match mannnn!!! awesome :)

  2. amazing ... jus loved the way its all put up .. the A-Z .. n boy i luv our college pic ..
    the thing dat caught me was .. the M3 Paper thing !!
    Freakyyy mann !! lol !!

  3. winning the Pune University championship. " That team was like family, awesome seniors. " . thanks for dat 1 ... Boyyy we Won it in Style maaan..! not a single Goal conceededddd !! ...

    Cheerzzzzz bro ...

  4. i am not much of a reader but i couldn take my eyes off this one.Great one man .Couldn agree more and ll surely miss the times enjoy dude tc

  5. awesome man
    !! jus gave me goosebumps!! thanks fr mentiomnin ursulas..was a privilege havn u play der wid us!! hopin fr some more ursula footbal n transprt nagar naka moments!!

  6. wonderful....! the best thing i have ever read!!
    btw dg... "like it , hate it but u cant ignore it" get over this line now... :P :P
    loved the end with ZOO.. ;)
    thanks a lot dg... u r my beeeeeeeeest frnd!!!! :) :) will miss u dhakkan....! ;)

  7. this post is jus like u...AWESOME !!

  8. too good...i dont think anyone would read this in installments..bcoz once u start off u just dont feel like takin ur eyes off it..

    awesome dude...
    tc n all the best for future !!!

  9. awesme DG..nostalgic already...!!

  10. very well compiled...
    you are one of the few to have taken out the total 'rus' of akd...

  11. thanks everybody ... :) :) feels awesome.. sreejith said it perfect... nostalgic big time

  12. College hostels.. esp Engg college hostels.. leaves us all with such memories.. cud relate to some of urs :D

  13. asum piece dg... well done!!!

  14. in the movie 300, towards the end when all the 300 spartans r being stuck by arrows and they fall to the ground, a soldier holds his king's hand and proudly recites, "My King, it's an honour to die at ur side"..... well after reading, it's the King's reply that i would share wit u.."It's an honour to have Lived at urs.."
    cheers to the moments we had....

  15. Thanks so much everybody for reading it. Truly.

    @jobin ... man, thanks so much for that comment. appreciate it so much. cheers indeed to the moments. :)

  16. Wowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww..loved it Ani..loved ittttt..

  17. hey dg.....true spirit of colg lyf dne wid juzz 26 letters....truly awesome mann.....u rock all d best for ur future nd han keep writing........

  18. hey pretty much speechless after gnna hve to agree with niki on this...u cant read this in installments...any DY Patilian( hope this sounds okay) cant stop reading this one. i think my eyes r wet after reading this one...i bow down to u mate...even tho i knw things at A-Akurdi dint end ideally for us...i hope its nt the end of the road for us and beyond the tunnel we are able to make more memories for some historical posts like this!!! im gonna end here as im flushed with memories of pune myself...jst wud like to say...take care...god bless to u and to all!!!

  19. AWESUM!AWESUM!AWESUM!!u didnt mention the tricks i used to ask u to pass!!!;p.reeallly!!superb blog!!hats off!!

  20. awesome man..too gud..
    best thing was latenyt football..miss u all
    all the best for future...n keep writing..

  21. There you did it again... Second time i read it and i am in tears!! i feel like a stupid bahu of some idiotic ekta kapoor soap!! it could not have been expressed better..!! I forgive you for not being able to come to MPL :) Its just terrific... even i could relate to some college moments... The end with the ZOO was classic.. and the spoiler alert in the beginning was inspired by a bong ;)

    Enroute to become a 'Greater'Bong!! Way to go :)Love you

  22. haha,... harsh, no wayyyy thats the case.. n btw come back sooon, feelin gr8 to b bk in calcutta. onli u r missing. :( ... fast fast.

    @everyone who read and commented - cant thank u enuff. really feels awesome to read the comments.

  23. This post of yours has,after so many days,reminded me of what a lovely time I had there. As I sit in a room in the hallowed portals of an institute, reading this makes me realize that the most important thing in life is having such unbelievable friends!!!
    Cheers man!

  24. tnx a ton nishant. u said it. :) :)

  25. wil i evr gt tired f readin dis?!!! suprb stuf dg...thnx 4 dis...n stp mkin ppl cry!! :P man dis made ma eyes wet.. :( again!!!

  26. somehow i find P for Placement funny?

  27. not looking good, is it? :D

  28. Simply awesome!!!!! Really well put DG! Cheers :)

  29. Read it after 6 months. And am in tears again u Dog! Beautifully written. :)

  30. Harshhhhhhhhhhhh , thanks soooo much man. Your comment made my day. :)

  31. great write..missed it d first time a year ago..looking forward to the A-Z on chachu :P

  32. awesome. period