The academic year winds itself up slowly with the string of months coming to a close. Some of us have in us those hidden phobias about certain subjects or in fact all if you acted like the grasshopper and not the toiling ant. These fears or demons come out of their hiding during the examination time and play havoc with your mental and physical health.
While some start having stomach pains and headaches some have a nauseated feeling, some get paralysed with fear while in some hands and legs tremble. All this could be pinpointed to one thing that is lack of preparation.
In the months of March or April, the summer also make its much more difficult to think with a cool mind. So these winter months must be put to good use so that you can enjoy the monsoon along with your results. Do remember that they not only cheer you up but also your parents and teachers who would be happy about your performance.
So the question comes, how do we prepare mentally and physically for the examinations in the near future. Like the rising Sun on the horizon, it will be in no time that the examination days shines upon you. Whether you shine and are prepared for it depends on how good you put your time to use.
You have to eat and drink well to take upon the burden that awaits you as mental work is almost equivalent to physical activity and you may soon get exhausted. See that parents keep your food rations and fruit juices where you can reach them. And now to the mental frame that you need to get into. Just like in history think of one of those warriors who went out to battle complete with armor and head gear and a well trained and disciplined army.
The Armor that you wear to your examination is your confidence and attitude. Don’t let the armor have any chinks or weak points in it. The head gear is your calm and composed mind that you keep while writing the exam. But then the armor and headgear will be of little use if you don’t have a disciplined army with you. The army that comes with you is the amount of well charted preparation that you have done all these months. More the preparation more is the count of your army personnel from whom you can get the timely required support.
That in short sums up your battle preparedness or rather exam readiness. Once you are equipped with all these then knocking each question down or giving a fitting answer to each question that blocks your way to success is sheer fun.
If you can assimilate all these in you then you will be battle ready and rarin to go and perform at your best and beat the demons inside you and those that await you as questions in your examination paper…Good Luck.
It was almost a year he had been confined to this hospital bed and he knew from the doctor’s look that the end was near. A close friend tired like himself looked at him with brimmed sadness. Turning his eyes away from him, he looked at the few plants he had nurtured to keep him company during his lonely stay in this city hospital where he had been diagnosed with terminal illness.
Some of them were dying and some were trying to cling on to life just like him this winter, but poor them, like him, they missed the sun to brighten things up…
During my computer studies at an Institute in Mumbai, I got a membership at the J. N Petit Library which was on the way to Flora fountain/ Hutatma Chowk. My Institute had 2 centres, one at Nariman point and the other one on the ground floor of the same J N Petit library. This made me shuttle between Fort area and Nariman point either on foot or in a bus. Sometimes while going to the classes, I used to take a bus from V. T station and most of the time walking back was criss cross the Oval, Cross and the Azad cricket grounds where I could see some cricketing greats honing their skills.
Before I could complete my project, I got a job as a faculty at a firm which had it’s office in the same area. Now walking sessions were between the office and the Institute and sometimes a halt at the library. Once I had to appear for a subject paper that I couldn’t attend earlier. Now after many months I called the Institute and asked for a re-exam option and they said the next week the subject exam was scheduled and we could attend it. I and my friend Nissar, who had also skipped the earlier exam reached the Institute just in time and rushed into our seats and asked for the papers. I guess we were one or two minutes late into the exam.
The professor who hosted the subject exam at Nariman point, Embassy Centre office was a different person. A senior person well into his late fifties, he was highly irritated and asked both of us to stand up. No wonder, as we without asking or consulting him had barged into the room and on to our seats without having the basic courtesy to greet him or even acknowledge that there was a teacher in the room. Such audacious and irresponsible students he had not seen in his entire career. He gave us a good rebuke for 5 long minutes in front of his students. Slowly he calmed down as we stood still patiently hearing without giving any excuses. Finally he asked us both to sit down and write the exam which we did and gave him our answer papers and silently left the Institute. Nissar had to hurry to his Maker Chambers office leaving me alone to walk all the good 3 kms to V. T station or the C.S.T. All the while walking, I was wondering if our actions warranted such a strong rebuke from the professor.
Agreed, we had not greeted him as we walked into the exam nor had we met him earlier to tell him that we were writing his exam. But we had seen in our other exams where students from an earlier batch come silently and write the exam. Yes I was wrong, maybe we should have talked to him or atleast greeted him as we walked in. These thoughts kept me company in my 45 minutes walk back to the C. S. T.
One day, a few months after the above incident, I climbed the stairs to the Petit library to return some books and borrow some. I thought of sitting down and read some of the magazines which is when I noticed the professor sitting across the marble topped table. I went to him and sat next to him and wished him a good afternoon. He recognized me immediately from our earlier meeting and was sorry to have been tough on us that day. He was, I gathered, had been with the mainframes division at LIC and was a part time faculty after his retirement. What he told next was this… When I saw you two walking into the room without showing any manners, it reminded me of my son of the same age as yours and I equated your behavior with his. He doesn’t listen to any of my good advice. So I got angry and I admit I should not have done this to you two, who had come to write the exam. I consoled him saying that boys of our age were like mannered and he had to take it lightly on his son to which he agreed. Finally he said, inspite of all the harsh sounding I gave, you surprised me when you passed with good marks. Yes, I told him in jest, we might lack in manners but our intent to perform well in the exam was strong and could not be dented by his rebuke. We talked for a good thirty minutes before I bid bye to him. This incident taught me two things. Just because the first meeting is a failure doesn’t mean you can’t patch up and be friends the next time you meet. The next learning is, if someone rebukes you there might be other things on the person’s mind that caused him to behave so, and you definitely need to give him or her a second chance…
He had always lived the bandit way
and became irate by the day
A ship is what he wanted to be on
how he liked to sail on the high seas
but then his habits came haunting
when he set sights on the treasures
that sailed the seas with men on it.
Once he raided a ship with his buccaneers
full of chests, this one belonged to a King
had always dreamed of, to conquer one
all this shiny wealth would be his, if only,
he could reach home by the green islands
but got cursed by the captain and his crew
who got slaughtered with their cutlasses
thrown to the seas for the waves to bury.
A storm was brewing in the distant sky
it could hit them this week or the next
they all spent drinking the stolen liquor
went into a stupor that lasted many a day
it was when, someone noticed a patch
on his skin which turned into a rumor
they would all overthrow their chief
for the disease would cause havoc
if allowed to run its usual course.
The next day, they started an argument
the pirate was prepared, having noticed
the patch on his skin and their reactions
With his flaming pistol, wrecked them all
before the calamity could strike them
throwing their bodies and guiding the ship
through channels of rocks and great fish.
The storm hit him and his ship for days.
got wrecked when it hit the rocky land
it was an island and he did not despair.
He got occupied carrying the chests
full of gold, silver, emeralds and rubies
buried them in deep holes dug by him
when the job mighty done, was he happy?
the next day, the disease knocked him
ration of fresh water and fruits dried up
the curse of the plunder came to haunt
he was rich but the wealth of no use now
his body lay dried in the sun on the rocks
searching for dear water, when all around
it splashed in fury not giving him a drop.
An Email from a pal in the late 90’s was good enough to start a new friendship.
It was a great feeling to see that new email from your pen friend sitting in your mail or inbox waiting for you to find and read it. You read it not once, but again and again going through the lines which your friend from a distant land had written to you. You would then take the time to draft, review, correct and send a crisp and neat reply back. It was important, as the strength of the friendship bond depended on your very replies.
In those times, pen pals appeared in books, newspaper columns, chat rooms and on pen pal sites and that was good enough for anyone to start and strike a friendship with one whom you found suitable and who shared your some if not all interests. The profile write up was therefore quite important to let others know who you, as a person was, for them to decide and send you that first reply.
The first few reply mails would decide the conversion ratio and whether the friendship would last or get lost as fast as it had started. But yes, for the persistent types, those who believed in a good genuine friendship did last whereas some got lost over a few months or a years as the communication dried up due to lack of the initial curiosity or both friends getting lost in their work or personal problems.
Some of these pals disappeared into oblivion and it was neither yours nor their fault. I always believed, out there in the world, there are people who get close to you in different periods of time, get friendly, share your joys and sorrows and then leave so as to give the same joy and sharing to others in solitude and pining for friendship. You would have new ones come into your lonely life and the saga continued. In those days, you never thought you would meet any of your pals in person and this thought rarely came to mind, as distant pals were like stars in the sky waiting to give you glow and warmth in your journey of life…
On an ending note, I was fortunate enough to meet a few of my not so distant star pals over a pen palling period of 20 years.