Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Herbert and Pip...

This is a story of two friends, Herbert and Pip. Ofcourse most of you have heard those names come alive in Dickens great novel, Great Expectations. I looked at the shiny smiling faces seated opposite me. To compensate for missing his wedding, I was taking my longtime chum, Motta and his fiance out for lunch. Motta with his goodnaturedness and unpretentious simplicity, the girl...sweet and pretty with a shy smile, the both making a very winsome couple, and myself carrying a burden of wondering what future lay ahead for me but overjoyed for my friend...all brought alive the characters of Herbert, Clara and Pip in my thoughts. It reminded me of a memorable line from the book about what Pip says about Herbert..."We owed so much to Herbert's ever cheerful industry and readiness, that I often wondered how I had conceived the old idea of his ineptitude, until I was one day enlightened by the reflection, that perhaps the ineptitude had never been in him at all, but had been in me."

Right from school, I would wonder how motta would survive in the hard, tough world out there. He was forever falling in and out of love, never interested in his studies(well, for some reason i considered myself superior to him in this dept!) and never serious about life. While a huge horde of us took up all the elite engineering branches, he took the only seat available to him in kerala...for architecture, but there again he ran into serious problems of back papers and impossible odds of clearing his arrears. I would advise him, but as usual it all hung lightly on his shoulders...in terms of unflinching optimism I never ever met a more equal match to him. Life has its ways of bringing out the best in a person...personal tragedies which we feared would drown him, instead propelled him to emerge stronger...breaking university records he passed his exams, intime he had begun to love his field of work and his peers began to admire his drawings. He had taken on life with a smile, when friends needed a kind word, when old classmates returned to the nest called trivandrum, he was there organizing weekly gettogethers to keep the loyola spirit alive, after many girlfriends my "Herbert" atlast found his "Clara" and finally he had learnt the trick that lay behind the success-act in life...hard work!!!

One of the most memorable moments for me this time in tvm was visiting motta's office, as last time was all abt seeing my collegepals Shan's and Anoop's new chic office building at Vazhuthacaud. It was around 10 pm at night...motta was holding deliberations with a client who had come all the way from malappuram...letting them go on I wandered around the unruly office...there were papers lying strewn all over the place with rough drawings, calculations and unintelligible scribbles on them, his portfolio lay on his drawing table, he motioned me to the computer where I browsed thru a ppt file of his drawings...my admiration for him growing with every next button clicked. Among his works there were a few houses outside tvm, a small shopping complex at medical college, and a superb mini-mall coming up at Vazhuthacadu which I am sure will soon become a building-of-note in tvm. All this he had achieved after labouring from morning to evening at a senior architect's office for a pitiable salary, and then from evening to midnight at this office of his which he shares with a few guys also running a web-designing firm there...so that he could afford the rent. His way up the ladder that lay ahead was obvious to me...soon he would need to hire more staff, kick the guys who shared his office out and finally earn the fame and respect which only the best get. I was really overwhelmed...the friend who I always despaired would never make it to the league of the rest of us go-getters, had raced past all of us. The moment the client left and he turned around to face me I enveloped him in a bear-hug and said..."Motte today you have made me so proud"...what I didnt tell him was..."I always thought of you as inept"!

Ofcourse like Pip the ineptitude always had been in me...Unlike motta never in life I could take firm decisions what best to do with my life and kept deluding myself that i had taken the easiest possible path to wealth, independence and contentment. I looked at his fiance...she was timidly stealing glances at me all the while instead of looking me straight in the face(this was the first time I met her!)...unlike many of my friends or myself, I knew by now with an absoulte surety that Motta coz of his rough ride to maturity, would make a great husband and she was a very lucky woman. As were leaving, like old times he joked to me..."nee ente pazhaya kaaryangal okke erakki kalyaanathine mumbe divorce aaki tharaathathine valare thanks"...we broke out into a smile and parted with a customary warm hug. As I walked away from them, I thought about myself...life's journey leading me back to delhi, an exam where my chances stood at a razor's edge, and beyond there was hardly any light to show me a way, almost 26 and still unsure what career-path lay ahead...I thought of my dear Herbert and prayed that his success find echoes in my life too.

21 comments:

Immigrant in Canada said...

does each drop of water know its course in the river?
Does every youg bird know the route to fly before winter?
Would you not trust the creator to show you the way?

Jofu said...

:)
Hey Jabs...
you really make me proud... I guess DP herself would be impressed and glad to read this herself....
I really love the way you write :)
hey motts... i wont be able to make for the wedding... but sure will meet you both as soon as i come back....
Jabs... I am sure your career will skyrocket in the coming coming years....
Herbert and Pip.. Amazing!!!

Thanu said...

None of us know what life has in store for us.

Just work hard and be good to fellow beings.

Very beautifully written.

Feb 16th aano b'day?

Jiby said...

Sarah, I guess i need to be patient...

Jofu, thanks da...motta's changed a lot...he inspired this post. though the attendance is gonna be high he is still pissed that some of us are gonna miss out on his Big Day.

thanu, my bday falls in sep. why do u ask???

Mind Curry said...

excellent jiby..

The moment the client left and he turned around to face me I enveloped him in a bear-hug and said..."Motte today you have made me so proud"...

when i read that i felt overwhelmed by emotions..its simple acts and thoughts like these that make us men and women..not mighty conquests and great power.

i am not sure..but i think i read somewhere that you are attempting the ICS? i sure hope you get through. we need more people like you..men with hearts.

Anonymous said...

beautiful post mach. Motta is surely gonna get his rewards for the hard work he is putting in.

Anonymous said...

beautiful post mach. Motta is surely gonna get his rewards for the hard work he is putting in.

Shan

Thanu said...

your jiby216 made me ask Feb 16, if u said no, next choice would have been 21st june.

Reji said...

Oru nimisham 'etho padmarajan film' nte thirakkatha vaayikkum pole thonni.
Your craft in writing reminded me of saying so.'Aavashayam ellathe worry cheyynna swabham'. Pareeksha tention aakam. Pakshe sentimental aanu. Saramilla 'athu kalakaran markku paranjittullathanu'. Anubhavangal ullavanum, manushya bandangalude sankeernathakalil koodi kadannu poyavanume 'karalil tharakkum pole'ezhuthan pattu!!

Anand K said...

Sorry Jibs, couldn't comment on ur earlier posts 'coz I was travelling in "Vaddakkan" kerala. You know, sipping local pinacoladas and gorging on Malabar dishes.... while you were swatting flies in the Delhi heat! NJAHAHAHAHA. BTW, I saw Vadakkumnaathan.... watched it with great expectations (talk about Pip and Joe, eh?) but I was disappointed big time!

BTW, great post. Motta was always a dark horse! And as you said he's been thru things we haven't (luckily )even remotely faced. And he's done pretty well too....

BTW, remember when you told abt that pal of yours that day in Figueroa MacDonald's? The one that singlehandledly hauled his family out of penury, got his sisters married and even bought his dad a car..... just by his own merit? Guys like us sure feel very small when measured against real achievers like these, eh?
I have always been sorta self-conscious of my rather privileged upbringing, cushioned life and no worries, caring family not knowing anything of the initial hardships faced by my parents (I was too little then)..... and most importantly having not faced ANY serious tribulation in life to date (Thank God for that anyway! Must have done something REAL good in my past life.). In the light of all this, my life to date ain't that commendable IMO.

I hope I soon make my mark..... and "earn" my life so far and to come.

shruti said...

very warm and very nicely written .. I guess anything from the heart has a touch of magic to it .. I also have a habit of drawing parallels to my favourite characters in books ..

>|' ; '| said...

wow

Thariyan said...

sexy blog man...having been mottas classmate and having seen him go through some real bad patches and having seen how he overcame all those,I can quite relate to everything u tried to convey...a job well done !!...a fitting wedding gift :)

b v n said...

hey jiby... came across your blog for the first time,its quite rarely that i've come across stuff that i can so much relate to

been stuck here for almost an hour now...great posts....keep writing...and hope you clear the prelims

Geo said...

i thnk i know ths guy... at least i have seen him...

u got a set of real interesting friends
nice to see you keeping in touch with them…

nothing like going back to your friends and spending some time with them..
reliving old times…

hope and love said...

great post..!

Matter of Choice said...

Hi Jiby,

wanted to post a comment on the latest post. Somehow wasnt able to do that. Well...jez remember that when you think that things cant get any worse it usually means that soon things will get better!.

Keep going!
Anish

Reji said...

Jiby,

This is in response to your last post.
'Ningale kurichulla Daivathinte udyeshyam verentho aanu.
Athuvare kaathirikkuka.Nallathe sambhavikku'.
You just wait and see!.

silverine said...

Hi Jiby,

Wanted to leave a comment when you left that comment on Mind Curry's post.

I just want to thank you for involving all of us in your journey and keeping us informed through regular posts here. And like me I am sure everyone of your regular readers got involved in your journey. And we hoped when you hoped and prayed when you went for the exams. I am sure all of us like me feel like we took this exam with you. I want to thank you for involving us right from the very beginning and thank you too for telling us about the reults.
Treat this as a run up for the next. And best of luck. My prayers are with you.

Apologies for using this space and the long comment.

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Karthik said...

Hi Jiby,
I am reading this blog quite late. I really dont know what to say. I guess with time everyone gets emotional a little more and the case is same with me also. Outstanding post.

P.S: Can anyone write like Charles Dickens, Jiby? At least i dont think so