Friday, April 10, 2009

The one with The Khadadi

All the hostels in IIT had their personal canteens which were open almost whole day in order to facilitate people with edible items even when mess is not active. H7 also had a small canteen with a whole lot of things to eat. I wonder how the canteen staff used to keep all the items as well as cook all the stuff with literally just 10 X 5 sq. ft. room to roam around. But, they somehow managed to maintain the food quality well. They kept a variety of items like biscuits, fruits, packets of all kind of "Haldiram" stuffs (Unanimously voted GOD of favorite timepass throughout IIT....IIT ke har student ne Haldiram ka namak khaya hai :D), an all time supply of milk, tea and coffee, a variety of fruit juices and coldrinks, and apart from all these, a long list of freshly preparable items like noodles, maggi, rice, parathas, chapati bhaji etc. The hostel inmates used to hang around in the canteen area all day ordering tons of items from the menu. In all, this parallely running mess was the lifeline of our hostel.

The six of us also used to eat and drink a lot in the canteen whenever we got bored of the mess menu. And when it came to canteen, our demand of food usually went out of control and every time, we ate almost triple of what each of us used to eat in the mess. Kedar and vinay usually ordered parathas, Kaustubh went with the noodles most of the time, I used to order cheese maggi and sandeep always used to go a step ahead and order "DOUBLE" or "TRIPLE" cheese maggi (God knows how much cheese sandeep ate during that period :-o). Sachin wasn't able to decide what to eat and usually joined with anyone of us. Sandeep was the king of all times when it came to eating at canteen. His monthly bill alone used to be equal to the sum of all our monthly bills. So, we all were enjoying our lives at hostel - the runtime tea/coffee sessions, the lunches, tiffins and dinners in the mess and the khadadi at canteen - yup!!! that's what we used to call it - THE KHADADI.

One day, the mess was closed due to some maintainence work. It was not a weekday but some submission deadlines for assignments were close. So, all of us spent the whole day in the department lab completing the assignments of scripting and latex having no idea about lunch and dinner arrangements without mess. After eating things like dosa, wada and stuff like that at lunch time, none of us had eaten anything for a long time except some tea/coffee breaks in between. We all tried hard and completed our assignments till around 9 PM. We were exhausted and in full enthu at the same time. We came out of lab and started cycling towards our hostel. Suddenly, vinay came out of the nautia of overwhelming joy of assignment completion and yelled in full sound - "Arreeyy!!! Mala bhuk lagaliye!!!". With the end of his sentence, the air around us changed and each one of us felt a very strong irresistible appeal of hunger from their stomachs. With God Speed, we headed towards the hostel and came to realize that the mess is closed. So, it was unanimously decided it was Khadadi time. We went to the canteen to have a look at the menu and started ordering the first time that eyes could read without even thinking how much we are actually ordering and whether we will be able to finish it or not. The canteen staff felt as if they have got and order for marriage reception or something. They hurriedly started preparing all the ordered items while we sat in the TV room consoling our stomachs to wait for a while. Finally, when the canteen manager shouted that our order is ready, we all ran towards him like hungry wolves ready to attack. What happened then is now an unforgettable one hour in my IIT life. We ate and ate and ate and we realized it wasn't enough and ordered again, then ate the second order but still we didn't feel satisfied so we ordered for the third time and ate all that too. I bet the whole canteen staff must be thinking of us as middle age beasts who haven't seen food for a century. This khadadi session was written in Golden letters in the memories of lives of all of us. I am not able to find words to descibe the amount of food we ate that day. Let's have a pictorial view of what actually happened at that khadadi (Only half the dishes are present :D).

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The one with all the Carrom

It had been about a month that we all were in IIT. It took a while to adjust with the system here. The lectures, the profs, the schedule, the night outs, assignments, quizzes and all those student life nightmares. We also utilized this 1 month period to adjust with each other as a group of friends - to understand each others' likes and dislikes, interests, fav sports etc. But we never got a chance to do something sporty as a group because of all the inital load (Courtsey IIT B).

One day we all were sitting together in my room doing some Algorithm problems. It had been around 2 and a 1/2 hrs straight that we were dealing with this algo thing (Enough dose to make a mature human being MAD :D). All our brains had fallen out of frustration. It was Tiffin time; we all decided to take a break from studies and get out of this "Greedy" and "Dynamic" nautia. We all went to mess, ate hearty and then went to TV room to relax a bit. Suddenly from nowhere, Sandeep came up with a brilliant idea - "Hey!!! Why not try playing Carrom for a while?" Oh yes!!! We all liked that idea instantaneously. Sandeep hurriedly went to the security to issue to carrom discs but alas!!! Security was on a regular vigilance round of hostel. We all thought it would be late till the security returns and were about to drop the idea alltogether. But, this idea was so deep into sandeep's mind, he refused to give up. He scanned the whole hostel like a search party, brought the security with him, issued the material and showed so much enthu that we all again counted in on playing. So, finally we all sat to play a game of carrom.

Now the question was which 4 out of the 6 of us are going to play first. Vinay and Sachin luckily dropped out voluntarily as some Cricket match was going on and it was something really precious to them. So, me, kedar, kaustubh and sandeep started playing the game. It was around 5:00 that we started. We were so involved in the game with every one of us exploring hard the carrom player within, we discarded the complete concept of "Time Never Stops" from our minds. As vinay and sachin were also busy in the cricket match, there was no stopwatch around us to make us realize that we should stop playing now. So, we went on and on and on...for more than 2 and a 1/2 hrs when finally Vinay and sachin came to interfere because the first innings of the match had ended. Suddenly from nowhere, it striked to us that its almost 8 PM and we are playing for like 3 hrs straight. So, we decided to record the Game progress and halt playing right away. All agreed to continue the same game next time we sit. No one knew that time would come way too soon than expected.

We winded up the game, returned the disc set to security and went straight to mess. At the dinner table, Everyone of us was excited about today evening. The 4 of us for the carrom game and the rest 2 for their cricket match. So, we started sharing all the funny and memorable moments that had occured in the past few hrs in carrom and cricket. Vinay and sachin shared some magnificant straight drives, unique cut shots, brilliant wickets and extraordinary catches. We, on the other hand, had our own magnificant Straights, Cuts and world's most unique carrom shots to laugh on. It was so much fun sharing these moments that our enthu of enjoying life at IIT apart from studies, reached a monsterous height of Mt. Everest and then there was no coming down.

We hurriedly swept through our dinner plates, washed our hands, issued the carrom disc set and within no time, the four of us were back to our game while vinay and sachin were back to their match's second inning. There was a silent approval from everybody's side that there won't be any further study tonight. Sandeep couln't recover the previous state of game from his brain's database, hence it took us a while to kick start with the game. So, we again confined ourselves within the four corners of carrom and started playing. It took us about 30 - 35 mins to finish the previous game. But, things didn't stop here at all. The losing team was now replaced by the one reserved team watching the match and waiting anxiously for their turn at the discs. So, now it was a new game with 2 new players and I was quite sure it would take us past midnight to finish this game.

And it actually did cross the midnight barrier by a large distance. It took us all about 3 AM to finally give up with the idea of playing more carrom because some of us had lectures in the morning slot. So, we packed the disc set and gave a final satisfactory look to the now empty carrom board where we discovered a new face of each other - the face of enjoyment. We returned the set to the security and receded back to our rooms to go to sleep where in our dreams, ANOTHER GAME OF CARROM WAS WAITING FOR PLAYERS TO BEGIN...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Is he in H6 or H7???

Out of the six of us, only vinay was allocated Hostel 6. Rest of us were together in Hostel 7. Initially, he found it quite difficult to be in sync with our plans and couldn't hang around much with us. He felt quite lonely there as the only one left out of the group living in a separate hostel. Then, as the bonds of friendship gradually strengthened, he gradually sorted out a way out of his loneliness and somehow managed to sync with our rountines at hostel 7.... And it was then, Vinay's unofficial transfer process from H6 to H7 began. He started spending more time at our hostel, used to stay all day at rooms of one of us. We studied together, played together and partied together. He even used to eat all his meals with us at our mess (Which was illeagal in a way :P) rather than eating alone at his hostel's mess. He was so regular at our mess that even the mess workers took if for granted that he is a hostel 7 inmate :D. People got so used to seeing him in hostel 7, they actually asked doubts about whether he is allocated Hostel6 or Hostel 7!!! Soon the time came when only at the peak hour of midnight, he used to realize that he has a room in hostel 6 where he should go and sleep comfortably (He even sometimes skipped that and slept at our rooms :P). And so, vinay was soon declared "a visually confirmed" hostel 7 inmate while Room no. 21, Hostel 6 kept waiting in darkness for his owner to reside.

Monday, March 30, 2009

To choose or not to choose!!!

Now that the group was set, the six of us weer like peas and cakes all the time. We had to choose subjects of our interest for the first semester and for that we had to sit in all lectures and see whether there are any compatibility issue with the topic or the professor :D. So, for the first two weeks in IIT, it was nothing but confusion. It became a million dollar question - "To Choose or not to choose"!!! Let's see the experience we got in attending initial lectures of a few subjects.

Data Mining : Me and kaustubh set somewhere in the second last row, talking about all the stuffs in the univers except Data mining. Where we were able to figure out that this subject is all about English and Greek alphabets; Vinay, kedar and sachin seemed to somehow decode that it was a mining language which prof. was talking using these alphabets. Not only this, It later came to my realization that they even understood the meaning. :D :D :D. Sandeep...I think he bunked the very first lecture. ;) Anyways, that was the only Data Mining lecture I dared to attend.

SFML : "Statistical Foundations of Machine Learning" - Again me and kaustubh landed up reaching late in the class, sitting in the last row. As soon as the lecture started, me and kaustubh found a big compatibility issue with the professor and fell asleep. That's why I have no further memories of this subject. :)

FSVP : "Formal Specification and Verification of Programs" - Looking at the above two experiences, me and kaustubh decided to stick together in the lectures. So again we were sitting together somewhere at the back trying hard to concentrate in the middle of the noon on what was going on in the surroundings of that classroom. Subject looked fascinating (I prefered the word Fascinating over Interesting because we didn't understand for a single moment what the hell was written on the board, but it looked SCIENTIFIC!!! :D ) .

ITDBMS : "Implementation Techniques of DataBase Managment System" - Somehow, we all felt this subject to be from the same planet as compared to the alien subjects discussed above. It was in continution to the DBMS theory we all learnt in our Bachelor's. So, there was an instant relation established with the river of words coming out of prof's mouth. So, we all decided - "Let's finalize atleast this one". And so, our first subject was finalized.

Network Security : The subject was all cryptic and hidden. There were lots of attacks and spyings, encrypted messages and hackings, phishings and eavesdroppings - Some people felt we were talking about some World war II scenario. I found this subject really interesting as I had a good background of this subject. But, all others seemed to find this "Security" thing somehow less secure. So, they all backed out. But, still I managed to finalize my second subject.

Algorithms : Ahh!!! So, we all finally made peace with the subject hunt and the million dollar question was finally answered. This subject was unanimously elected king of all subjects. Fundoo Prof., Fundoo topics and Fundoo problems to solve. In short, the subject was "Lay Bhari!!!". And, so our trivia of subjects came to an end and after a hunt for 2 weeks and 20 + lectures, we all were able to finalize our subjects.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Meeting Vinay and Sandeep

As we had now had a group to be with, that day we all did hang around together in the hostel all the time. It was all fun. The next day, 24th of July - still one more day of timepass before commencment of classes and to sit ideal and enjoy the Mumbai rains. That day, when we all went together to mess for lunch, I met Sandeep.

Sandeep - I would call him a man with a systematically disorganized mind :-) - He was also from Pune but his hometown was Sangali. Tall, well built, sporty personality, fair color, and carrying a smile of 3 year old kid on his face. He was a really interesting person to talk to - sometimes he used to sit and talk nothing like a shy person and suddenly the next moment he would realize "oh yes!!! I can talk!!!" and he would just start talking on and on. His talks revealed that he would easily get confused or forget things - and believe me, his "forgetting things" was a Guiness World Record in itself - simply unmatchable. He was a sports loving personality, always ready to play, kept keen interest in footer and got bored of cricket. He had very "unique doubts" about cricket which Sachin might be able to relate well. At the first meeting, I never knew this person would become the unanimously voted king of our group - SAHEB.

So, the five of us passed the day in usual activities - sleeping, setting room, surfing net, meeting at dinner, talking and sharing. And finally, that night we slept peacefully for the last time in IIT - The next day, LECTURES OFFICIALLY COMMENCED. We had to choose subjects of our interest so as to sit in only those classes and to find out where our interest lies, we had no choice but to attend all classes. Funny, Ain't it!!! :) I remember, the first class was scheduled at 8:30 AM in the morning and I found it very very hard to wake up for that. Somehow, I managed to land up with kedar, kaustubh and sachin sitting in the first lecture at IIT - that was where I met Vinay.

Vinay - Vinay = Khadadi - this was the only relation I could formulate sitting in that class looking at him. It was easy, his body said it all. :) Tall, well built but exceeded limits at some body portions especially stomach. His tummy was a nice punching bag to practice. After the lecture, we all met vinay. I apparantely came to know that vinay was also from Pune and Vinay, kedar and kaustubh shared the same UG College there. Surprisingly, Kaustubh turned out to be there Senior :D. While I was talking to vinay, I realized I am talking to a container of CNI (Compressed Natural Intelligence). His academic record showed that he must be a book worm, but his behaviour was much like a last bencher dare devil. He was all about sheer intelligence and ofcourse Food. He shared a similar interest in cricket as Sachin. They talked a lot about cricket at their first meeting. Vinay was not easy to analyze in one meeting. Rest of vinay unfolds gradually.

The Curtain is up, the Plot is set, the characters introduced - Allow me to present to you the Journey of my life at IIT - H7@IITB.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Meeting Kedar and Sachin

In the initial meetings, Kaustubh mentioned that there are some more friends of our batch who have been alloted rooms in Hostel 7. I was happy, I could see the near future where I was in a gang of friends chilling out in the nights.
The next morning, me and kaustubh went to breakfast together and he introduced me to Kedar and Sachin, two more interesting characters of our storyline. I felt like - "Hey, the formation of the gang has begun!!!". Let's have an insight of these two characters.

KEDAR - another Puneri - I would describe his body in his own favorite phrase - "He jara Jastach Hotay" :D... He was a Heavy 12-Tyre Fully Loaded truck. Tall, Heavy built and tough looks. To be honest, at first sight, I was scared of this DON-type monument. But, only till we had a talk. While talking to him I came to know - "Is Bade Hathi ke daat khane ke aur, dikhane ke aur" - I mean he was not the kind of guy which his looks propose. He was calm and composed, affectionate towards marathi literature, a fan of typical Golden era old songs, and of course how can I forget it - an "Extremely Brother Crazy" human being - a rare characteristic in human species (You will gradually know its meaning). In short, I realized it would be fun hanging around with him. That's it about him, rest unfolds later. Let's move on to the next character.

SACHIN - an aamchi Mumbai "Fast" Local - As Kedar and Sachin were sitting together in front of me, I could compare them easily as "a 12-tyre Fully loaded truck standing on the road with a bicycle besides it" :D. Ya, Sachin was the other extreme in physical sense. Thin and taller (apparently making him look more thinner), typical family-loving, sensible, calm and carrying introvert expressions on face, spectacles to enhance the looks - in short a Sabhya, Sushil Mulga. He reveals quite a lot about his personality when he speaks. Intelligence, strongly backed up reasoning, encyclopediatic memory and extremist opinions. He was the living definition of CRAZY ABOUT CRICKET. He was an ideal candidate to have healthy information exchange with. He had some sort of inherent hidden infinite physical inertia inside him which made his body unstable in any situation - he would always be in a hurry. And of course, he was so homesick by nature that it can actually be called as a serious disease :D :D :D.

And thus, it eventually became - "1 se bhale 2, 2 se bhale 4" and we 4 were already involved in a bond with each other. Hey you all, keep the enthu alive.... two more profiles are yet to come... will be back with them very soon.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Meeting Kaustubh

Roaming around in the corridor, I landed up talking with a guy and came to know that he is actually one of my kind - MTech I, CSE. Oh! what a relief!!! I am not alone here. :) And guess what, He was a Maharashtrian too. What better could I expect. So, we started sharing.

His name was Kaustubh Nimkar - A not so tall, average built, smiling face hero from Pune. From the initial talk, I could estimate he was a balanced person, not too wild and not too dormant, had interest in Blogging :), loved sports like football, crazy about F-1 racing, and a "moderately" active personality (you will get to know why its specially mentioned MODERATELY ;-) ). He also had a good taste of music - a big fan of Pink Floyd and Indian Ocean. We shared quite similar interests.

We had a great time together that day, talking about all general stuffs, sipping coffee, sharing lives. And I felt finally I am not alone anymore.

First Meetings

okay....So its been like about 2 days now that I am living in IIT's hostel. It was 22nd of July, 2006. I was sitting in my room, experiencing doubled joy of FREE INTERNET and HEAVY RAINFALLS for the first time and I was wondering where are all my IITian friends because I couldn't spot a single person of MTech I, CSE in that hostel till then. Classes were scheduled to start from 25th, I still had 3 more days to do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING (Rare chance in IIT :D)....I was feeling lonely, very lonely. I was wondering around in the corridors of my hostel when I met the first soul of MY KIND - MTech I, CSE. Allow me to introduce the characters which now have become my lifelong friends... Let's begin the FIRST MEETINGS.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Lady of the Lake

My first day in IIT - "Abhijeet Padhye, MTech, CSE IIT Bombay"... Wow!!! a dream come true. I was so excited entering this new realms of where fortunes favor everyone. I came to know from the Hostel coordination unit that I have been allocated a room in Hostel 7. H7 - The Lady of the Lake - That's what my hostel was renowned as. An exotic natural place surrounded by waters of Powai Lake from 3 sides and having a life long access to the cool breeze from the lake. At the entrance was Hall Manager's office...I had to finish some paper processing there(as if checking in in a hotel). As I moved forward, a short "7" shaped corridor glazing in a filtered sunlight passing through the green plastic covers over it, warmly welcomed me. As I walked through the corridor, I saw the serene beauty of the lake just touching the turning edge of the corridor and I thought - "Wah!!! Yaha rahne me maza aayega".

As I turned through the edge, I saw the same corridor go endlessly with so called "Wings" of the hostel splitting from it like branches of a tree. I was wondering which branch of this beautiful tree am I going to be a part of. And with these thoughts, I continued walking past the corridor weaving thoughts about how my "own" room would be. Its a great feeling thinking you would be the owner of a room. You can keep it the way you want, decorate it, arrange it, do whatever you want, live the way you like - its like owning your first Property. :) Anyways, I was allocated Room No. 69... which in fact turned out to be the very first room as one walks through that corridor into the wings. As I opened the room, I felt like opening the door of a completely different world inside that small space confined by 4 walls, containing a bed, a chair and a table and full of emptiness. I brought all my luggage inside my room, laid down on bed looking through the window at the reflection of the sun shining in the wavey water of the lake thinking how my next 3 years would be at IIT and what kind of friends would I meet here - and I closed my eyes and slipped away into the dreamy world of sleep..... WELCOME TO H7- THE LADY OF THE LAKE.


Hi all,

This blog is a very very special blog dedicated to my friends at IIT Bombay. The posts in this blog will tour you through the events of 6 most interesting friends' lives@iitb. Its a story full of emotions, nostalgia, laughter, and loads of enjoyable moments. The story and characters are not at all fictitious and bear intentional resemblance with some living person. Hehe. Allow me to take you through this journey of my F.R.I.E.N.D.S. at IIT.