Tag Archives: Recession

Love In The Times Of Recession: Chapter 2: Tough Times Ahead

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The month of September crawled to an end and the students of Batch – 5 faced a daunting task ahead of them, from October onwards – to get placed in a reputed firm!! The students had still about 3 months left but there was a constant fear in all their minds. Big multinational firms were filing for bankruptcy across the world; multitudes of people were losing their jobs, layoffs became the order of the day. With a grim situation in every industry, what were the chances of getting placed, wondered the students of the batch.

The batch had pitched themselves in front of companies, in 6 metros across India. Presentations were made, brochures handed over. Most of the companies promised to come over to the campus during the placement season, but none did finally. Day 0 of placements kept changing to suit the needs of the companies but to no avail. Tempers were running high, the management promised to do the needful. Empty promises….the fate of 40 students was hanging in mid air!

On a daily basis the management came in for fierce criticism from the students.

“They shouldn’t waste our lives like this. If they can’t give us placements, they should have asked us not to join the college straightaway while we were going through out admission process. At that time it was all about flowery promises, and look at it now,” Rahul fumed.

Ayushman sensed that this was trouble. As the head of the college PLACOM student’s body, he could not let a rebellion situation to arise. Students were in favour of Rahul’s current statement but Ayushman took control. “See at this hour we should back the authorities and see that action is taken. I have myself been talking to the PGP chairperson and she has promised 100% placements.”

“We should also understand the market scenario, it’s just our sheer bad luck that we are graduating in these tough times,” ended Ayushman and soothed the atmosphere a bit, though in his inner mind he knew that if the situation does not improve sooner this frustration can lead to something big and disastrous.

Every computer in the lab had either Naukri.com or MonsterIndia.com page open, with students searching through the openings advertised in them. Mails with covering letters and resumes attached were being sent across. Numerous telephone calls were also being made to companies by the PLACOM members huddled in a small cabin right outside the PGP office. Excel sheet databases were open, with constant updates at the end of every call. Smiles on faces were replaced by frowns and scorns and most of the students were bordering on depression.

Ayushman had interned in a big multinational during his summer training and he was keeping his fingers crossed about it. He was also thinking of calling them and asking if he had any chance of joining them. The associate director of the company was impressed by the work put up by him and had asked him to call up during placements.

Ayushman though wanted something to happen without him asking for favors.  He by now had sat for three interviews but nothing had come out. All the time the companies would select him only to inform later that recession has forced them to delay recruitments.

The ever chirpy girl’s hostel also saw a lot of gloom. A constant frown was plastered on all their faces. Skipped meals, sleepless nights, dark circles under the eyes, the girls were an absolute sight.

Even love didn’t seem to prosper in these tough times. Heated arguments over the phone, followed by break – ups, girls crying copiously, boys nursing their bruised ego…everything spelt doom!!

Ashima was no exception to this. Her relationship with Rajiv started having cracks. Rajiv had changed over the last one month. He was hardly there for her these days, days when she needed him the most. She sensed that Rajiv was moving away from her.

Rajiv was a “classic” personality. His charm lay in the exuberance of his spirits and positive energy. He was Ashima’s super closest friend, more like a watch dog. He had been her confession box, her critic, her “keep – your – head –screwed – right – in – place – missy” lecture giver, her punching bag…oh she could keep going on!! But he had moved on. She was alone…once again!!

As Ashima was brooding all by herself in the balcony, she saw a lone figure walking up the road. It was Ayushman. What was he doing all by himself? Where was Rahul?

She decided to call him.

“Hi. How come you are all by yourself?”

“I needed a break so I decided to take a walk! How do you know that? Are you following me?!?”

“Look up and you would know”, she said and cut the call.

Ayushman looked up and saw Ashima waving at him. He waved back and after a brief exchange, he continued with his walk.

At the spur of the moment, Ashima messaged him

“Can we meet for a cup of coffee at Barista?”

This Book Is A Copyright of the author. Any Infringement or usage on any other website will invite legal action. 

The Photograph above has been taken from http://www.facebook.com/taylor.maries.photos. For more such pictures visit the wonderful page. 

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Love In The Times Of Recession: Chapter 1: Bull Whip Effect

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The boys in the class had enough reasons to feel bored and sleepy; they did not need a lesson on the bull whip theory to add to their misery. Some killed their boredom through their i-pods; some did it through playing the oldest fashioned game of book cricket. While Ayushman kept Ashima’s falling hair at bay and tried understanding the concept itself.

Ashima rubbed her eyes every few minutes; she tried concentrating hard on what the professor was trying to explain. Every time she did that, the words on the white board appeared more alien to her.

Ayushman continued making his notes, the class continued to yawn and Ashima finished drawing the caricature of a bored classroom. The bell rang and BIM-B batch five room number 101 had a spring in their stride. Unanimously they seconded the professor’s teachings and rushed out for a desperate smoke break.

Ayushman stood in one corner, reflecting on the class and smoking his roll up. Rahul was standing next to him cribbing about the Bull whip effect; Ayushman though was lost in another world. He tried hard to forget the presence of Ashima sitting next to him in the class. He searched for answers within, why he did not mind the occasional fall of her hair on his shoulder, he wondered what had changed post the summer internship. He finished the roll up stubbed it on the ground and walked towards the bus. Rahul tagged along still cribbing about the class.

Ayushman stared at Rahul, told him that ‘He had used a similar theory last year at a college fest’. Rahul probed further, Ayushman rolled up another joint and patiently explained ‘You don’t have to learn such things, just think what happened when the professor taught you Bull-Whip effect, you didn’t get anything right. That was because the professor wasn’t quite clear of what he wanted to say, and that is what the Bull-Whip effect is all about’. Rahul shook his head in the affirmative but his blank expression spoke another story.

The ride to the hostel was more joyous for the band of boys than the blue lit classroom of management lessons. Some spoke about the latest crack codes to break into pornographic sites, others cribbed about the class, some frowned that the girl’s hostel was a far cry from theirs; others seconded their opinion by adding that the managing committee should have taken lessons from them before choosing the girls.

The one common link that binds this nation and its people together is the lack of electricity. The boys trudged the steps to reach their rooms. None cribbed though about the failed power. Ayushman picked up his guitar and went on the terrace, rolled up another joint and started playing it.

Rahul sat next to him, smoking a cigarette and sipping on chilled beer, when he questioned Ayushman, whether he had seen how beautiful Ashima looked today in the class.

Ayushman continued playing the guitar, as Rahul probed further ‘did you see that white thing hanging out of her closet’? Ayushman took a deep puff inside, circled the smoke in the air and answered ‘mate concentrate harder on your studies and you will experience many such whites all your life’.

Slowly the whole band of boys entered the terrace, and stood around Ayushman clapping with him as his music reached a crescendo.

Rajiv sat in a smoke filled room, working on his laptop trying to understand the dynamics of the project. His phone flashed Ashima’s number. He chose to ignore it. After ten attempts he picked up the phone and faced her wrath.

Ashima was upset that Rajiv was avoiding her; he on the other hand was grappling with the project as there was a presentation the following day. Ashima changed the topic to the happenings in the class, to which Rajiv showed least interest. After several attempts to draw his attention towards her talks she disconnected the phone.

Her phone buzzed, it had fallen on the floor, with the cover on one side and the body on the other. Ashima had slumped next to her cupboard and had tears rolling down her cheek. She remembered a similar day few years back, when Rajiv had walked into her life and had proved to be her guiding angel with a magic wand.

His young boyish charm and humour had her in splits; she continued crying as she reflected upon the past memories.

She remembered the long walks they used to take back home after the night shift. How safe she used to feel with him, in the unsafe capital. The first hug she got from him after his failed attempt at a self cooked dinner date. The phone kept ringing as the tears slowly started changing into a smile.

Ashima got up from the floor; re arranged her phone and tried calling Rajiv again. As the phone rang, she remembered how she lost her virginity to the man she loved the most in the whole world. She frowned at herself, for even thinking twice whether she had made the right choice. The phone kept ringing.

This Book Is A Copyright of the author. Any Infringement or usage on any other website will invite legal action. 

The Photograph above has been taken from http://www.facebook.com/taylor.maries.photos. For more such pictures visit the wonderful page. 

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Love In The Times of Recession: The Last Day

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Our Anonymous Author gives us her first, a prologue of yet to be published book “Love In The Times of Recession”. Have a read. 

Till 3 a.m. they were together speaking to each other, both were portraying they were normal, but then there was something in there mind. Tomorrow they will probably see each other for the last time.

The only question in their mind was “Whether they will be able to see each other after this?” Ayushman was going away, to resolve some unresolved questions of life with the hope that he will convert his dreams into reality. But he was leaving behind something, which even if it was a dream was probably better than many realities. What was that?

Ashima was not able to sleep that night. She had waited for the morning with all the breath she could accumulate. At the same time she did not want the morning to come because she knew that that could probably be the last time she would see Ayushman.

There was a certain heartache today that she could feel. Those last four days had been an era for her. She knew that she just might not live like that again or may be this was the beginning of a life where-in everyday would be like the last four days. Four days which made her feel like a princess, most loved and the luckiest person on the planet. As time passed, both continued to struggle with the feeling of “Going Away”.

6 o clock, morning of 5th Jan 2009, Ayushman called Ashima and said. “I am reaching there in 15 minutes….” 15 minutes plus 5 minutes of stay and he will be gone. Gone for no idea what duration. Ashima was struggling again.

The morning was beautiful but as they say Beauty can kill. It looked like one of those days when a beautiful morning was about to kill two young individuals. Ayushman left his hostel. Ashima came down from her 1st floor room, eagerly waiting; her eyes were on that noisy road which was for a strange reason seemed silent for her.

Ayushman was leaving everything behind, those days, friends, his college and now Ashima. Though they were going to meet each other but today there was a sense of melancholy floating in the air. The excitement of the last four days had disappeared.

The auto-rickshaw finally appeared. Ayushman stepped out but for some Ashima could not go towards her. Something was stopping her, maybe the thought that the sooner she meets her, the quicker he will leave. But she has to because Ayushman has to leave. That is how life is, cruel sometimes, lovely on most occasions.

Ayushman was looking in those eyes. Ashima was trying hard to stop herself, asking tears not to disturb her eyes which wanted to see her Ayushman last time. The moment was amazing and unforgettable for her, that last touch, that last hug and that last…………..

Goodbye