Camaraderie – against all odds

Yesterday, we had a fire drill at the place where I work. Neither the emergency alarm beeping loudly, nor the volunteers shouting at the top of their voices asking people to evacuate the premises were able to disrupt the bonding among friends. People first leisurely gathered themselves in their ‘lunch’ groups. And then, descended the stairs slowly talking and gossiping, mostly about the futility of the exercise and its impact on their valuable ‘productive’ time.

I don’t think the emergency alarm has 2 different sound options – one for mock drill and the other for real emergency. With the current state of affairs, people might take evacuation seriously only if they see real fire or smoke with their own eyes.

It is good to gather, talk, discuss, communicate, exchange views, etc, but if there’s an evacuation process going on, the only action that first comes to my mind is to ‘Get out and get safe’.

Day 15 – In Chennai on a training

They say, “Think before you wish”
After a hectic training schedule in the previous week, we wished that the training this week be a bit relaxed. But if wishes come true, they come true in extremes. Out of 9 hours we spent in the training room, the effective training was only 2 hours. In the morning, we were asked to shift to another room for an hour so that another team can take some test. A series of time wastage incidents continued further. Sometimes, getting so much free time also creates lot of boredom.

Training skills
I have attended much training and have even taken a few trainings. Hence, I guess I have a slight amount of knowledge to be able to comment on this subject. Irrespective of the training subject, a trainer is never successful unless he/she is able to be friendly with the audience. This is one basic basic thing, which a trainer cannot ignore, even if he/she is extremely well qualified in the subject. Moreover, it is very important for a trainer to be natural and not show pseudo-professionalism. No, I am not criticizing any trainer or trainers, but am just collating my experiences so far.

Day 8 – At Chennai on a training

Start of the week

Week started well. The training was quite interesting, as it related to credit operations of a bank. I guess, it is a common tendency to feel comfortable in ‘known territory’.

We had an interesting Role-playing exercise in the training. Trainings are great when they have such interactive activities and games inbuilt.

No specific updates on food exploration today, as we went to Balaji Bhavan again.

A visit to temple

In the evening, we went to a Tirupati Balaji temple near Pondy Bazaar. The temple was wonderful, and the atmosphere was really spiritual.

Day 3 – At Chennai on a training

Not much of updates today. The training was ok. We went to Shri Balaajee Bhavan for lunch. Food was great and the prices too were very  reasonable.

I had curd rice and filter coffee. Filter coffee is now a part of my staple diet 🙂

One more realization today: Not to make assumptions too fast… Initially on the basis of first day, we assumed that the entire training would go really slow. But now, it is going on very fast. I am not saying we should not make assumptions. All I am saying is that we should not base important decisions or actions on premature assumptions or logic that is not thought through well.

Day 2 – At Chennai on a training

Great breakfast + Nice lunch + Not extraordinarily boring training = Not so bad day

If you get nice piping hot aloo parathas in breakfast, there’s not much that can make your day go bad. We had a nice filling breakfast at the guest house.

Training was Ok types. Not so much boring. And there was some new stuff to learn.

For lunch, we went to the much-hyped Sarvana Bhavan. The food was good, but the prices seemed quite high, and the options seemed quite limited. I guess, the high prices were partly attributable to the silver plates in which they served the food. The Shiv-Sagar restaurant at Aundh, Pune has much more choices in South Indian menu.

Moreover, got myself a nice filter coffee at the end of the meal.

One more thing I discovered about Chennai. The minimum auto-fare is Rs. 30. Even if we wanted to go quite nearby, we always ended up paying at least 30 bucks.

And one more thing that I felt – deciphering Marathi in Pune seems a cake-walk compared to communicating in Chennai with auto-walas, shop keepers, etc.

Day 1 – At Chennai on a training

I am at Chennai for 6-week office training. I thought I would try blogging something about it everyday. I am not sure whether this spirit would last even for a day more, but still, at least for Day 1, I am all motivated to pen down things.

Start of the day
Day started at an unearthly hour of 03:00 AM, which is just three hours after the scientific start of the day. Had to get up because we needed to catch the 5:55 flight. There are very few times when you can actually see your clock showing 3:00 am.

About the flight
If that wasn’t enough, we got the last row seat in the flight. The space available was even less than that in a BEST bus in Mumbai. Any way, we reached Chennai on time.

Skipping breakfast
Then, we had to rush to our Guest house to put our bags. Even though breakfast was available at the guest house, we thought it prudent to go for the training first, and then have breakfast there. However, nothing was available around. We finally found out a fruit vendor, and some of us had to do with fruits. I didn’t like the fruits, so dragged my survival further on chips and snack bar which I had in the flight.

Boredom + Exhaustion + Sleep deficit + Bad lunch = A really tiresome day
The training was boring. I know you would say that all trainings are usually boring. But then this one was even more boring from the rest. We ran short of a name placard, and hence I was the one who had to do without it. So used a bit of ‘innovation’ and made a placard out of the notepad page. Went out for lunch, but the only place we could find was not at all good. They just had Veg Pulav and Dal Fry as vegetarian options, and which we had to go with.

Finally back to my room
Had a nice hot shower and am penning down this blog…