Friday, November 09, 2007

All (Good) Things Come to an End

So what is coming to an end? My foundation course (FC) at LBSNAA.

The truth is even if I crib, I enjoyed it and FC became a part of my life. I will miss seeing 300 faces, getting up at 5 AM, working late till night, enjoying the batch gossips and making new friends. I do not know what the reason of my nostalgia is when there are still 20 days to go. Perhaps if on a Deepawali morning, you are alone and you know that in coming days this loneliness will increase, you can only feel sad.

Today I will tell you the heights of the FC. If you have been a regular reader of my blog, you may know about many of them. But I have never written a comprehensive blog devoted exclusively to entire LBSNAA activities, so here it is.

TREK: It all begins with the trek, a nine day affair, when you are left on mountains in a group of around twenty. It is a nerve testing experience. There you discover and rediscover your limits, make some really good friends or rather ever lasting relationship and see the difficult side of life. Mountains reveal many truths and make you humble; one realizes that his life, egos, ambitions etc are too small in this game of nature.

VILLAGE VISIT: The first place where you are treated as an officer; where you get to know what real India is. In a group of around six, we are sent to distant backward villages. Probationers live in the village itself and there they discover that rays of India’s shining are yet to reach many places. They realize that task ahead for a civil servant is really demanding; but yes if they work with empathy, they can make a difference.

FETE: In a team of nearly ten, we manage a shop, just like the school kids do in school fete. The shop that earns the maximum profit becomes the winner. There is this jail where you can send anyone by paying a token money, there is that music on demand, there are usual pani puris, fancy dresses and what not. And this time we also got the real Bond, Ruskin Bond. Welcome back to the school days.

INDIA DAY: The batch is divided into four zones, region wise. Each zone presents its culture, its cuisines, its dances for an entire day. Everyone gets dressed in his traditional attire. That is the time when you know how much you have missed by not learning classical music, by not knowing any dance form etc. And that is also the time one discovers why India has unity in diversity.

There are many other things a FC too. There are cultural nights by professionals. You listen to the classical Ghazals and realize that they are beautiful; you see your first Odissi performance and cannot help appreciating the dance. There are also regular physical exercises and I am told this becomes a habit and reason of good health of many civil servants.

To avoid giving you a skewed picture, the highs of the FC are evenly balanced by over demanding discipline, lullabying lectures, loaded academics, occasional show cause notices, memos, castigations etc.

But everyone tells me, FC remains the best (or the most nostalgic) part of a civil servant’s career.

To end it on a positive note, see the most popular joke here.

There is a queue of dead people and god is sending them to heaven and hell by seeing their life records. An officer trainee from LBSNAA comes there is his suit, tie, and lapel card etc. The god without even seeing any of his records sends him to heaven. People protest. They shout how only being from the academy qualifies him for heaven.

God replies: But he has already been through hell at LBSNAA!


Ashish said...

Hi Anurag

Though I have been a regular reader of your blogs, this is the first time I am commenting......and the honour is all mine ;-)

Anyways, I can confidently say that I have also lived through the FC (in a virtual way)...and your narratives have helped me keep up the tempo in my quest and not to getting a taste of things to come which sure looks promising and challenging :-)

So FC may be ending but it is now that the real test begins when things will not be that smooth and systematic...where memos and show-cause notices will assume a totally different dimension...

I wish you " A VERY HAPPY DIWALI" and all the best to face and stand up to the challenges ahead....

Remember....Bharat awaits...

Cosmic Voices said...

The show must go on...

Anonymous said...

"I will miss seeing 300 faces, getting up at 5 AM, working late till night" ..... does not portend well for India :)

Anurag Srivastava said...

@Ashish: Pleasure is mine too. Its a great feeling to see comments on your post :)

A very happy diwali (though belated) to you too. I know job will take a different dimension.

But I am still not going in the field. After this my Bharat Darshan starts and then again classes for three months. So I land in the field only around June

@Cosmic voices: of course it will, thats the beauty of life :)

@anonymous: I bow to your sense of humour :)

Hari said...

Hi Anurag,
Another bautiful piece of work. Keep going.

praveen said...

What is FC (first course?) ?

Anurag Srivastava said...

@Hari: Thanks :)

@Praveen: You did not read the first line of the blog, it is foundation course :P

praveen said...

I know I'm a dolt... but never thought I'm at the extremes :-))

I hope u'll find time to write even after FC :)

sree said...

Hi Anurag today I spent some time going through ur blog. I read from ur first postings. They really good and practical.Hope you don't mind if I shoot this question. Did you start ur real preparation after quitting job or else before. I got this doubt because you had history which is unmanageble as ur 2 optional.The line which liked from ur postings is "I never had the courage to do what I wanted." Its really thought provoking.

Anurag Srivastava said...

@Sree: I did not start any 'serious' preparations before quitting the job. But I dont know if what I did before can be called preparations.

I always liked reading the editorials and newspapers. I had an interest in history, so occasionally read history books. And according to me, history is not unmanageable if one has interest.

Thanks for liking my blogs :)

darius said...

hi.. long time, like u said, this place hardly gives one much time. But this post on the end of FC i simply had to comment on.. its the same here anurag. when it started, i hated it so much. But the amazing thing about humans is that no matter what the conditions, if we manage to find good friends/relationships (and through them, emotional support of sorts), we can adapt to almost anything.. im actually so depressed these days thinking of the emptiness of the campus in less than 2 weeks.. sigh

Prabu said...

hi sir,
your blog is interesting. i will write to you after reading the entire blog.
i found an exceptional person. thanks to orkut!

Anurag Srivastava said...

@darius: do you still check your blog, my comment is waiting moderation, more after seeing your reply :)

@Prabhu: thanks for the appreciation :)