Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas - Down Memory Lane!

**All Characters mentioned in this post is real and living. All relation to living claracters and examples are definitely intentional!! :)

Last night, I was walking through T Nagar ( Ensuring that my dear wife does not pick up too many things when she shops ) and I saw this street vendor selling the red color X mas caps. It immediately brought some fantastic memories and got me smiling.

I remember the Chris-ma, Chris-pa game ( and all the other games) that we played in our Office at Elnet. Dinesh being made to go from person to person with instructions ( all for just one chocolate!! :) ), Sharon stealing the banana from Divya’s Pongal bay decorations, Prabhu hiding under the table trying to escape from Deepa’s bashing and I having to distribute Christmas chocolates wearing a santa claus cap – come to think of it, I think we were total nuts!

It always leaves me with immense wonder as to how indelible some of the memories remain. I can still remember, the recipe instruction that Anusha had got from her friend to make bisi bele bath for one of our pot luck celebrations… I think it went something like:

1. Take cooker, add rice, and togaribele ( I still have no clue what this is :) ) and cook in cooker till three whistles… ( Ppl in anusha’s flat was telling later that they could hear Anusha trying to whistle. )
2. Take tamarind equal to one big lemon ( Imagine telling Anusha about “big” lemon – I heard she took and orange ) and …..
3. ( This is the best part ) For vaggaaarani ( this sounds like a queen’s name :) ) – little oil + Sasive ( sounds like some calling our SAsi.. :) ) + Karabevu
4. Add 4 and 3 and mix….

And to imagine – we had to eat whatever came out!!! :)

Ayon’s excuses for becoming fat was also amazing! – He blames it on him not having the refrigerator – reason? whenever he buys chicken, he has to eat the whole chicken prepared in the same night- and if he has to eat so much chicken, he must have enough rice also… :):):) So, you see, he is not to be blamed for getting larger :)

And of course, how can we forget apna Sharon – who even distributed sweets when Pallikarani was included in master_location table :)

I guess, Laks’s promise of getting a “vaira odyaanam” to Anusha is still not done!!!

I could go on and on….but the best thing to say about those times are best said by Bryan Adams in his ever living song – Summer of ’69:

……. Oh when I look back now, That summer seemed to last forever
And if I had the choice, Ya - I'd always wanna be there
Those were the best days of my life………

…………….Man we were killin' time, We were young and restless
We needed to unwind, I guess nothin' can last forever - forever, no………..


  1. Right time to bringin the memories jay….

    Sweet Memories always stayz fresh in our minds…

    Couple of min’s back me and Bharath were having a discussion abt Christmas – the last year’s Chris-ma/pa and abt planning for this year’s celebrations.

    The Chris-ma/pa game had been wonderful in the past… lots of mischievous things came up…. Hope this time we will make it much better….

  2. Really you made me nostalgic, Jay.

    Unfortunately I have a refrigerator now, but still the exponential growth remains:)

    I fondly remember those days, starting with the crank call to Naresh (Citibank bumper prize car winner) to the "Biriyani" breakfast at GRT! The way Karthik would consolidate the excel when we watched comical midnight horror films to the tense last over commentary on my Reliance phone in a boat in Kerala :) I remember Laks ordering "veg" biriyani in Topsee, and the waiter after a long interval, gets biriyani alright, which is Chicken biriyani minus the chicken :) Also Senthil getting drunk on your terrace during his bachelor's party was hilarious.

    Yup those were the good ole days, the year long summers of Chennai !!!

  3. Hey Jay,

    Your email really made me think of those golden days at Elnet  Honestly, there are quite a lot of memorable moments that come across my mind !!! charting down a few 

    Decided to watch a movie just 15 minutes before the showtime and then drove to Mayajaal in 6 minutes  with Harini & Vikram almost having the experience of roller coaster sitting in front seats, Anusha buying us tickets for any Sharukh movie [no xcel work for me ;)], Went to Abupalace hotel around 1 Am and then drove to GRT just because Abu palce dosa was not very good, Funny Vaastushastra and Kaal experiences in Sangam Theatre, Wayanad ghost experience ;) – literally everyone stayed in same cottage totally abandoning the second one and the funny design of the rest room with glass walls, Designing our t-shirt, Senthil’s bachelor party’s fruit punch, went to Radisson for a buffet and our guyz quickly opened the Spring water bottles and drank everything and we ended up paying more for Water than food, Laks intentionally working late nights particularly wen we call him for a movie, Swimming in Tidel with our guyz walking breadthwise, Senthil & you eating 2 full biriyanis at Sami’s restaurant (trying to be descent here) and then you go and run in the gym next day, Srikanth trying to promote eTracker than prolite by all means ;), So many excel sheets I had prepared ;), Our sudden trip to palakkad from Coimbatore and then very sudden trip to another town (forgot the name !!!) to meet Aparna ;), Birthday parties at Elnet, Harini’s scooty always driven by Anusha and it gets stopped in the middle of the road almost all days, team meet at Golden sun resort, V meet stalls and graphics, Got into vegetarian restaurant thinking that they serve Non-vegetarian and Ayon got very upset abt it ;) So stopped at a roadside side shop to eat whatever non-veg is available (think he had only Kadai) and much much more !!! I still have the wooden photo carving that you guyz got me in Wayanad….As of date, prolite/etracker is the best team I have ever worked with…Almost a Picture Perfect team !!!

    Thanks da maple for starting my day perfectly with your email 

  4. it Telepathy?....just a while ago I wrote you in another mail about our good old days in Elnet and I was telling you, I was thinking about all those just yesterday. I sent you that mail and came to this thread and you are talking about the same thing.

    As Karthik said, it was the best team I have ever worked with. Chrisma/pa in Elnet ...2006 after the new batch of 20 came in (Santhos et al)....Jeevitha was my chris child and I sent her a note to ask for ice cream on the road like a kid. And she sportively sat in the middle of the road and cried for Ice cream in Kodaikanal. :) Vinitha to Sharon .....I hate you from my bottom of my heart, leg and feet. Karthik always saying....loosappa nee....

    Laks to harini...hey unakku onnume thonaliya....Ashwin....anybody using Vijayalakshmi.....Deepa's quote no. 1120203....

    Wayanad was unforgettable...and so is any other trip. Going to Kodai in Dec end 2006 and shivering in cold....real crazy gang....

    Anusha applying for personal loans to pay her phone bills...Apoorva and Anusha always fighting over something...Harini fixing the bugs online while talking with someone on the phone and claiming there is no bug in Prolite....still I admire her skills of handling a vnet on one hand, the landline on another, a call in her cell phone and in the same time typing a mail....anything to eat vanishing in no time....coming up with a scheme to creat a fund for evening snacks and Dinesh and Prabhu coordinating for that (because if someone buys anything to eat will never get to taste it) Viji running around to get the monthly 50Rs. contribution for the personally getting a bashing from Rajashree for the 'Road Map' (remember that Jay/Pradeep/Nalini :) )....

    when we came up with shift system in Elnet...coming at 5.30 in the morning and leaving at 11 in the night...a real good experience...

    And the one fateful day.....I remember sitting the Elnet conference room from 10 in the morning to 2.30AM the next morning, with back to back meetings and Nexgen requirements discussion continuing to late night and early morning...with working lunch and dinner... (and I am sure everyone would have cursed Jay for that that day:) )....

    and last but not the least...however perfect the status report is, Jay will give 50 comments to me and Nalni. :)

    Good old days...


  5. Satish - I also remember how you changed!! :)

    When you started on the project, you were scandalized by Anusha speaking about marriage and potential swap of hubbies with her cousin!!!!

    I still remember your comment "Enna pasanga pa ivanga ellam ?" :):):)

  6. Thanks Jay.

    We really had a nice time in that team.

    I miss that work environment a lot. :-)

    we really enjoyed our work :-)

  7. Posting my comments from the mail

    This already looks like a EX tools team :)

    Dear All,
    Good to know that everyone is doing well from our tools team.. Ofcourse our Chief Jay is still with the Tools team and he has decided to be a key component in the new tool C2.

    Karthik will be waiting for ....Jays 5 minutes around 7.00 which eventually all will decide for a second show movie

    I still remember Sakthi at Elnet who used to seriously work in the night... Dont ask me what he was doing in the Morning :)

    Apoor and project team having a fight at Elnet on a helpdesk call...

    Aswin fighting on some requirements and design issues in the middle of the night

    Monthly once outing and eating with Bakkaras of the month paying for it...genuine causes of course.. birthdays, promotions, marriages, etc.....

    Invading TOPSEE restaurant...Only restaurant to be open in the middle of the night

    What ever we did as a team...i think we all are part of the best at Cognizant, since we had proved so many times on the challenges..

    I was definitely lucky and enjoyed being part of the team :)

    best regards

  8. As everyone pointed out those were golden days. I just used to be a lone tester in the entire group (odd man out).. Sometime people dont like me coming to their desk because I always come with problems... Funny to read long emails from Chaitanya (reasons for not working).. always complaining about environment.

    Our trip to Kodaikanal and Wayyanad are more memorable ones. I still remember that our guys were wondering how to climb up the top of the peak in Edakal Cave and by that time A man dressed in dhoti and 2 ladies in Sarees asked us to just move and climbed up the peak in few minutes.. Our guys charged up then and finally they made atleast 75% of distance.. Then big Fight between Laks and Leeches, Harini and fellow passenger in train..

    How come we forget our man Vimalan.. Going to Non- Veg almost 3 days in a week sometimes 5 days a week.. coming up with dissatisfaction most of the times either about food or service..

    Undoubtedly it was the best period for me in my tenure in Cognizant.

    Happy Holidays and Advance new year wishes.

    Senthil RD

  9. exactly mentioned by others... the team we ahd in prolite in the best team i have worked with...

    actually when i joined prolite testing, it was said to me that i got to be alone with all dev team... but the team was real good that i felt home...

    prabhu & me planning up for all the events/celebrations... the pot-lucks, to top it we collected funds to have snacks time... heights of fun... also enjoyed the late-nights for migrations/work/fun

    and prabhu hiding under the table jus to escape from deepa... and the trip to Jay's Marriage... the night before where all were sitting in a one room and sharing their love stories...

    everything fresh in mind...

  10. Senthil / Prabhu - How can we forget -
    Prabhu turning in his sleep in my room, waking me up and asking me to get the newspaper !!! :):):)

  11. THis was a reply from SAtish - Would be difficult to ask him again to post here - So me taking the liberty to comment here:

    Yes. The team came from1st floor to 3rd floor to fight with Apoorva...around 7.30PM i think. Great times.

    And Laks getting a stare from the entire Quality team for his comment on the stage .. 'the tool is as good as the user'.... bold statement...

    On tours....Coorg....Anusha loosing her slippers and pestering to buy a new one when every one were hungry and desperately wanted to have dinner....
    And Prabhus romance (?) with the dog (i forgot the name) in the resort...

    The bday parties...buying a low priced cake at times, exclusively to apply on the bday baby's face....

    Non stop helpdesk calls and escalations even during weekend (how many weekend afternoon naps I got disturbed by those stupid calls) Getting nightmares of Helpdesk calls (I forgot her name....a project from 1st floor Elnet...Nalini do you remember?) The best part....I used to tell the caller, please check with your QR/QC on this...and getting the reply...I am the QR :) ...ah.... you still say 'nillundu' for 'ninnundu'...?

    Ah...what memories to rekindle...lovely days...


  12. Wowow…wht a pleasant memories.

    எண்ணங்கள் யாவும் வண்ணங்கள் ஆனால் ,
    வார்த்தைகள் எல்லாம் வானவில் ஆகும் ...

    When i list out those wonderful moments, it will end up vyth the performance issue in blog server, so to be specific…

    ---The wayanaad trip and the hilarious mountain climbing still bring butterflies in my stomach…

    ---Anusha blackmailing Sriram and getting chocolate for the metrics…

    ---Venkat coming by boat during winter season with 2 set of dress, getting into men’s room and changing into formals (it reminds me the scenes from ‘mad money’)

    ---The cca cup memories, karthik taking us to the southern most end of Chennai in search of practice ground and our team moved to 3rd round (just by got the walkover in the previous rounds)

    ---Srini and his magical macros...whtever the tasks/requirements u give, srini replying with his unique style "yah it will be done, i will write a macro"

    ---Unknown mail frm Deepa's frnd (name sounds like chimni lamp) and everyone asking Deepa for an intro...

    ---Satish, Jay and JC became the victims of latenight SMS and PJ's...JC introduced me to his wife as "andha latenite sms anupavla..avanthaan ithu :-)

    ---Satish, the dog we saw in the Coorg is Floyd ...hw can i forgot the lady love :-)

    --- Jay and Satish misunderstanding Sharon as girl (even we too expecting some north indian girl) end up with this mischievous guy :-)

    --- Sarav asking Abu abt his newborn child and Abu replying "Vidhi velayadichu Sarav" ...

    ---Jay, you owe me a chocolate for the christma/pa game we athu interest rate increase aagi, vatti kutti pottu, meter vatti mile vaatti you have to give me @least 5 kg of chocolates...pinky swear :-)

    ---Watching all sort of movies like "King Kong" and someone told "Enna kodumada ithu" by looking at king kong romancing with the girl.

    ashes may fade away...but the memories will remain forevr...hope we'll hv a get together one fine day...

    Bow bowww…hehe just said Happy Christmas in Puppy style :-)

  13. wow...gaining momentum....Do we have all our EX tools team members in the list?

    And Karthik did create a group called 'ToolsChampions' in Yahoo groups but no one uses it. If anyone is not a member please join and we can be in touch through that group.

    Good summarization from all. I think even all of us write tons and tons, we can cover all those fun we had together.

    Oh...Harini..I can never forget Kavitha's marriage...and the dinner...Anusha and you were really brave to break in to the dinner hall and rest is history....have never seen a stampede like that. For those of you who dont know this....the reception was delayed and till 9.30PM it didnt start. The place was vyasarpadi or somewhere in the north madras and all of us have to drive back to south madras some 30 KM and the dinner hall was not opened and everyone were impatient. I told Anusha and Harini to just walk in, in pretence of asking water and surely the crowd will think its for dinner and rush in. They bravely entered and even before a blink there was a stampede and we the master planners could not get a seat for dinner and we scattered across the hall to catch hold of a seat....i used to share this with many a people as I can never forget the fun we had then..

    And when Prabu says he didnt get his chocolate yet...I too remember not getting the amount sometimes and I think everytime Karthik prepares an excel, there will be one scapegoat who will not get his/her money back. :)

    When Harini talks about the useless chats during tea break...initially I thought these people were out of the world to discuss so many topics with so much knowledge..and after a few days when I got along with the team and used to join them for tea...I realized what they actually discuss....vetti to the core.... :)

    Vikram getting caught by the Police for not having license and papers...arguing with the police that he doesnt have any money..the police advising him...enna sir neengllam computerla enna ennamo pannareenga...neengale ippadi pannalama...and vikram saying I dont have can have my (otta) kinetick honda...and the policman irritated leaving him..(thinking he is a savu grakki).. :)

    Anusha and Harini borrowing my two wheeler and searching my vehicle in the parking lot for a long time and I directing them over phone seeing them through the glass window and they not able to see me...Anusha was a bit shocked and asking...enga irundhu engala pakkareenga....ungala pakka mudiyalaye...

    Pradeep shelling out Rs.10000 of his personal money for buying a recovery tool in the late night when the DB got crashed....and the recovery was not successful and the tool cannot be used in any other machine than it is installed and 10K gandhi kanankku....

    Whatever requirement you give to Jerry...she will say...Satish...ithellam productionukku pogathu...why should I waste time in developing that....

    Throwing everyone in the swimming pool fully dressed during my farewell in the beach resort (forgot the resort name...Golden Sun?)..what a fun...

    On and on and on...I thnk we can never stop...


  14. Posting mail onto the blog as per Jay's request!

    Hope I am not the last!! But I am glad to be seeing these emails and read through everyone of them.
    It brought back the wonderful memories of Cognizant especially for me where Prolite was not just the best but also my first stint at a workplace!!

    I think all of us who joined the team as ELT did learn a lot which we still carry forth wherever we go!

    I can never forget :

    --trip to Kumarakom where we had a piping hot tea in the middle of the lake in a houseboat when it started raining Cats and Dogs with lightening and thunder adding to the eeeriness and then later in the day when our host GEORGE started telling jay about the dancers .... :)
    -- trip to wayanad and the argument between Satish and Jay on Lord Krishna's escapades and all us crowding around them to see what happens next ..( we were waiting for a knock out punch from Sathish!)
    -- the snack breaks at Elnet Canteen and discussions on some arbit topic that made no sense with huge noise that got the attention of anyone trying to have a silent coffee(Vikram remember Lorentz Fitzgerald contractions!!!)
    ---those endless samosas from the canteen where everyone forgets to pay and the canteen man comes to me and says " andha big madam saaptaanga" obviously referring to Anusha :)!!
    ---Sriram stalking Anusha and me and then finally Jay in a desparate attempt to get his reports!!!!! (i head anusha started bullying him in the end)
    ---karthik trying to act as the " collection agent" ( i even remmber he used to wrap his kerchief around the neck) going around each cube in a vain attempt to get money!!
    --- all of us trying to guess the costomues ashwin and karthik would be doning especially when it is a friday! (karthik remember those matching shoes!!)
    ----kavitha's wedding and gymkana Jim, i remember what a scramble it was for dinner!
    ---those wonderful late nights, those vehement arguments on topics that never meant anything
    and I could go on and on...

    But I guess at the end of it I would still cherish every moment of it.. and I keep talking about it whenever I meet people!
    Glad to know most of us are still the same inspite of the passage of time and I hope we remain in touch irrespective of where we are!

    We should probably have a reunion sometime if most of us can make it..


  15. Indeed an excellent email and what better way of starting my day than reliving such wonderful days :)...

    I miss

    Harini riding me home and yelling at me in the signal "Anusha Kaala kizha poda "...

    Harini braking the bike when Laks is seated behind :)....

    Searching an Ideal gift for Jay at his wedding :)... and trying to get him a shirt that fits him ;) with his fav color Apoorv the shirt that we gave him remains in the cupboard even now lol :)

    Paheli movie ...

    Fruits diet and gymming with Jerry....

    Satish's expression after he heard the deal that I had with my cousin :)....

    Leeches in Wayanad... Shobha killing one in sleep :)

    Senthil's arguement with Laks and Harini :)

    Work breaks between coffee :).. small samosas in harini's account....

    Ashwin and Vikram walking hand in hand in tiruvanmiyur beach ;)

    Venkat threatning Deepa on, switching on the fan if she doesnt stop her thathvams :)

    amazing moments.. truly celebrating work :)

    have a great year

    Anusha K