Monday, March 30, 2009

Sendoff to a friend - post from my diary

When we are away from our family, friends become our family members and that statement is especially true when you are at Onsite. I stay in an apartment with my friend Kavitha. Next to our apartment, Sharad, Neel and Sethu lives in an apartment The client for whom I am working, Cognizant is not the only supplier. IBM, Infosys, Synergy, Cognizant all of us joins hands and works together. Sethu and myself from Cognizant, Kavitha, newly joined to Cognizant, Neel from Synergy and Sharad from Infosys. . One thing that unites all of us is we all are Indians. We all work for same client. Thus we all go to office and come from office together. (Also, no other go as there is only one car for commute). Mostly evening tea and night dinner also we all use to have together. Going to Wallmart, Indian grocery stores, temple everything use to be together which makes our friendship thick by default.

There are lots of associates like me working here and thus you can see one or other person moving out of project, moving to another state for new project, moving out of country happening quite often. This time, after two years of US life, sharad’s project has come to an end and he went back India by last Saturday. Until Friday evening he was busy with his project. He did all his chocolates and other last minute shopping on Friday, Closed his accounts on Saturday morning, broke his apartment lease on Saturday morning. Had to go out for send off party with his project mates. Had to go for dinner, breakfast at his friends home who have been calling them from the day he landed US. Those two days were definitely too much of traffic jam in his life.

Friday night by 10.30 pm myself and shared started to clean his room and do his packing and we completed it by 1.30 am Saturday morning. Sharad’s flight was by 7.30 PM so he had plans to start from home by 3.30 pm to airport. I already had planned to take my license written exam and driving refreshment class on Saturday. Since I have postponed already for a long time I did not want to skip that Saturday also as otherwise I have to wait for seven more days to take the exam. Taking exam on a weekday with the project work is time consuming which I cannot afford. Saturday morning, I just slept for 5 hours got up, got ready and took my written exam. I had already booked for my driving refreshment class with a driving school for Saturday 11.30 am to 3.30 pm. Without knowing the packing will take this much of time, previous day itself I did all these plans.

Sharad did not want any of us to accompany him for airport, as he felt both him and also us, will feel sad when he moves leaving us. However, once I came back from driving class, seeing him getting ready to leave, I felt to accompany him till airport.

Sharad, Its okay, we will also come with you till airport.

No, see your face and eyes, already its too reddish and sad. You may cry if you see me leaving.

Stupid. It was such a tiresome day, yesterday, both at office hours and after office. I just slept for 5 hours and I have been running from the morning. How else will face look. I am tired that’s all. I am sad but don’t worry I will not cry. I assure you.

After convincing Sharad, Kavitha, Neel, Sethu, myself and sharad started to airport.

When we reached airport, it was slightly drizzling and too much of cold. Sharad told us as his checking is at Terminal 5. So we parked our car near to terminal 5 entrance and went inside Terminal 5. His flight was ‘American Airlines’’. Inside we couldn’t see any International check in booth at all for American Airlines. When he enquired the customer service, we came to know that it is actually ‘Terminal 3’. He checked his e-ticket and confirmed that he has overseen it and it’s actually written correct in the e-ticket.

Since it was already bad weather, we thought to take the internal trains that commute between the terminals instead of going out and taking the car. Though there was more than enough time for his flight, we were bit nervous at that moment. Anything that we do with nervous will be a mess and it was here also… We proceeded to the station and that moment one train came. Sharad, I and Kavi entered into the train. Before Neel and Sethu could enter the train started to move. After the train moved for few minutes only we realized that we have entered in to the wrong side of train. The train is not going to Terminal 3 but to Remote car parking. We called and informed Neel and sethu to take the other side of train. We got down at the ‘Remote car parking’ station and waited for the next train that goes to Terminal 3.

I was kidding Sharad about his terminal confusions and we were waiting in the station. Suddenly I realized kavi was not near me who was actually standing next to me. We both then noticed kavi, few steps ahead of us, holding a pillar and crying alone. Then sharad consoled her, the train came and we proceeded in to the station. Basically being an emotional girl, every one thought, I may cry but no one expected Kavi would cry. When we reached Terminal 3, Neel and Sethu had already reached there. Sharad finished his baggage checking and came out, we went to Starbucks, had coffee, took sendoff photographs basically had a good time.

Since we were all together just because of work and we are all from different states of India, we knew henceforth our conversations is mostly on mail, chat, Orkut etc…. and personal contact is going to be less, no clue when we will meet again or whether we will meet again also. We all felt sad because of that real fact.

Finally Sharad went inside for security check and we started back to our home. From airport to train station and from there to car park and then while returning home … for a long time there was an unusual silence between all of us. Once we reached home, I started to prepare tea and my mind couldn’t stop think this ‘Indecent Fellow’ (that’s how we address Sharad for fun) always demands for very hot tea and he is not here now. Kavi just said that time, Sri, this kamina guy is not here for tea from now right…. :) Yesterday, evening again while preparing tea, I cleaned 5 mugs for all of us and Kavi noticed that and said , Sri we are only 4 here… Sharad is not here, why 5mugs? Ooh! I gave a smile :)…..

That’s the power of the magical word ‘Friendship’

With Love
Sri :)

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