It was a hot summer afternoon in April 2013 when a bunch of totally clueless but highly aspirational leaders landed in Ajmera Green Acres, Bangalore. Excitement had a different meaning then- a new randomly allocated fully furnished apartment, new faces, new goals, a new cool evening breeze that you rarely get to see in the suburbs of Delhi, a lush green confusing campus, a pampered paparazzi experience and a black backpack loaded with some heavy spiral binders. Friendship was un-biased and group formation was a non-trivial thing. The energy levels were high, so was the attendance at the midnight birthday parties. The walls between the Ajmera apartments were thin, the goals more congruent and beer parties & rides between Ajmera to Campus less planned.
And then life took a gradual sharp turn. Bags became heavier, sleep cycles were disrupted, electricity bills went up, and so did the trips to library and the chai sales at Prabhakars. Nonetheless, the EPGP junta did learn how to make arbit 2x2s, how to fill answers sheets endlessly, how to wrap up a 6 weeks project in 6 hours, and how to screw up in the exams and yet walk out with a smile. Something perhaps that did not change was spirit to go on, the courage to ooze more gas and the consumption of alcohol, of course.
Now, a wave of nostalgia has started to sweep over everyone. The friendships have become stronger, but within the thick walls of Ajmera. Academics have taken a backseat and all that people aspire is to join the out-of-the-process bandwagon. The study groups no longer carry the serendipity tag. The potluck dinners happen more often. The goals take a new meaning every night, based on the JDs that land up in the email box. The midnight birthday wishes are counting less and jobs letters are counting more.
A flashback today into the past months is short but more profound. All you smell is the limitless caffeine inhaled day and night, all you walk are the steps walked between the corridors of P-11 and the EPGP lounge, all you miss are the countless dusk-to-dawn parties, all you have learnt is how to survive and confront, all you read 24×7 is the Whatsapp chat, all you hear are some MBA jargons, frustrations with things-that-aren’t-perfect at IIMB, some stories of those long nights spent in Singapore, a lot of arbit gyaan and some wicked laughter from those selected Ajmera balconies overlooking a far away calm lake, with ash of smoked w**d in the air burnt over 23.82 lac rupees.
By: Hitesh Wadhwa, EPGP Student @IIM Bangalore