The B Trip

I did not have any good name for the trip. In fact I did not give any thought to naming it either. It was the first trip of its kind but that was all I thought. My mind was too preoccupied with the presentation I was to make to think of anything else. But when this guy at the airport took my e-ticket , highlighted the flight with his blue marker and initiated a very short conversation, he named the trip for me.

“Only six days trip to India, ma’am?” he asked.
“Yes.” I replied. And I thought 6 days in a country as vast as India! What do you get to see in 6 days? Nothing!
“Business Trip ma’am?” he asked again.
I couldn’t hear him the first time he said that. He repeated himself and I smiled another “Yes”!

Ah. Business Trip. It sounded so good to my ears. Thus my trip was named “Business Trip”. It was indeed my very first ‘international business trip’ too. Ahem! That sounds hi-fi. Let it sound as good as it can ‘sound’. For I feel absolutely different after those 6 days in India. I might have been silent as ever when I should have done some networking. I could have presented on the issue better than I did. I should have spoken slower (though I was told my speed had clarity)…and there were a lot of things I could have done better than I did there. The realization hasn’t stopped me from feeling good though! A lot of factors could have contributed to it. The good-looking Stewart to begin with . I was bored, losing focus, lacking any enthusiasm at work. And then I get on this Jet Airways flight heading to Delhi from KTM and there’s a cute Stewart whose presence makes the ride all the better! I felt foolish, stupid, immature and yet I loved the feeling like a teenager who has her first crush. My sentiments were ditto the times back in school when 3 of us (including me) had a crush on XIX !

I wasn’t expecting anything out of the trip. But sometime, 30,000 ft above the ground I seem to have left all my frustrations, confusions and come back home with absolutely nothing for anyone and nothing of my old self either! Next time on, I’ll not forget mom’s preaching which goes ” Mukhako koseli vanda haatako koseli lyaunu” when I defended myself with ‘business reasons’ and reminded her of ‘joys’ she should have experienced on my safe arrival. Reasons for rejoicing was the hypothesis ‘Bengaluru International Airport could have been a terrorist target, I a hostage’ which obviously was all too easy to think of. Not that a day before flying I hadn’t dreamt of all those or rather imagined all of it in my head. I dreamt in details including a ‘terrorist attack’ headline flashing in India TV or Aaj Tak as the breaking news and of course my picture on one corner of the TV screen as a victim too! Then I do something clever and turn into a hero. 😀

And here are some of my Bangalore experiences in bits:

( This was written during the trip)

There was absolutely nothing to see. But I stood at the hotel gate looking at the road ahead as if there was something to be seen , something everyone else had missed and it was only me ( bless my glasses) that could see the ‘view’. I might have looked as though I was ‘looking’ but I wasn’t doing so. I stood there looking at nothing, folding my arms across my chest, again dropping them to my sides: uncertain of my posture but very certain of ‘ lack of networking’ skills. They were talking in the lobby and I ‘knew’ that I should have ‘approached’ them, introduced myself enthusiastically and done a bit of something called ‘selling myself’. I made no use of the knowledge. I stood there transfixed in my position, looking at nothing and pretending not to have seen them either. I would not call that pretending….hmm, I was/am just not into the conventional ‘networking’ methods. But, hey! I am not into any un-conventional methods of ‘networking’ either. Was only trying to make ‘unsocial’ traits of mine acceptable 🙂 Thankfully, she saw me introduced to me to the other person, and I did the same as expected. And he did the unexpected. I’ve stuck to ‘Namaste’ for greeting new everyone here while the other person always extended his/her hand for a handshake. And everyone takes back their hands when I end the introductory remark with a “Namaste”. This man, still extended his hand even after my ‘Namaste’ being the first person I shook hands with after reaching Bengaluru.

They did most of the talking, I did the listening and popping the Prawn into my mouth after a misguided information that the black thing was ‘gobi’ ! That’s what happens when you are into eating while the rest are deeply engrossed in conversations.

me

That’s me making my presentation 🙂

Part II
It was a different person who came to meet us today. Different and new only for me though. The others know him. So this guy, who I find friendly and approachable (though obviously I don’t do any kind of approaching) is talking of his son. He is saying his son goes to an informal school and then amidst a morseful of naan and mixed vegetables I can’t stop myself from saying”Sooo ( munch…munch) interesting “. They surely didn’t give much thought to my “munching” interesting sounds but to my own ears it sounds ridiculous and stupid. Why did I have to speak up while chewing my food when I am as silent as a dead person other times? Where are my manners?

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5 comments

  1. Hmm…….
    Nice thought…that herioic deed wala..thats funny and sweet.
    and its ur second international trip ho ni..haina ra ?
    and U are unapproaching….never mind…u need not come out of ur cocoon just for the heck of networking…if u do good…u need not have that network and all….
    and anyways…
    I wish u had written sth abt ur presentation..I mean sth u learnt their..sm insights…..

  2. Yah it was the second Intl’ trip ( though we rarely see India as anything International here) 🙂 …but it was the first official ‘intl trip’ I guess apart from some flights to Pokhara ( which felt awesome too and I did my share of ‘mock boasting’ as my friends are mostly traveling by land …u know how the first times feel…all so good )..and we did have a presentation in the first Intl trip too..though due to the language barrier in Japan ( even English)…the presentation did not have the desired discussion as expected for me..still it was a good exposure…but while making tis presentation in Bglore..there was an outburst from the audience in the middle of it…my topic was this ‘south asia response to the international regime on plant genetic resources for food and agriculture’ ..yah vast n the moment these intl’ regimes come in, moreover WTO etc..it angers most I notice…

    thanks for the suggestion…I’ll write scribble sth on the issue , for my own clarity and deal with the experience…maybe in a few days when m done with another programme on this food security , IPRs and agriculture etc….

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