Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Memoirs of an Eighty year Old- Episode XVIII

Episode - ‘My First Job’

Hello readers I am back again with a new episode..

Now grandpa is an engineer and he is just out of college. The first job offer he gets is that of a lecturer in a Polytechnic college in Vishakapatnam. The students who passed with good marks were offered to teach the next sets of students. Being a teacher or a lecturer was a respectful thing since it reflected that they had enough brains to not just study for themselves but also teach others.

 Grandpa accepted it as a temporary employment while he searched for a better opportunity. "I worked for a maximum of three months may be. Then I got a job in the construction of Nagarjun Sagar Dam. I was given a new 2BHK house at some place near the site." 
“I saw the foundation being laid for the dam and supervised the process along with many other talented engineers and workers. To see all those blueprints of the dam and be a tiny part of it gives me so much happiness. I think I worked for about a year or so.” He said smiling at the memory.

So where was grandma? "Your grandma came with me to Hyderabad. We lived here along with my mother and youngest brother in the new house allotted to us. It was officially the first time we were living together after marriage. I think it was fun.”

I asked grandma how she felt. “Well.. it was good I guess. I was older so I could manage and also I had my mother-in-law with us to kind of help and guide me if needed. Being in a new place is never easy for the time but I adjusted. Of course we shifted to new place every three years when he got into Railway, so I got used to all the shifting soon enough.”

Grandpa was advised by one of his seniors to apply for a Railway job and he followed the advice after consulting his elder brother.

"And you got selected." I said to him. He nodded smiling. "I applied to both the Central and South Railways and got selected in both. I chose the Central Railways and had apprenticeship for a year and a half. It consisted of both theory and practical. I had to keep shifting between two places every four months during the training period. After that my first posting was in Lasur, Maharastra." he replied.

From then, started another phase of their lives.. To know more, keep reading and waiting for the next episode.. Be happy, Be kind.. 

Friday, June 9, 2017

The Memoirs of an Eighty year Old- Episode XVII

Episode - Engineering studies

Hello readers.. Let's know more about the time grandpa spent studying his engineering course. It wasn't easy to get a seat in engineering those days. Firstly, because there were hardly any colleges and secondly, only merit students were offered those precious seats. It was a three year course with the exams during the third year. It means that they have to remember everything they have studied since the first day of the college for three years. Imagine that! Also there were no 'guides' which meant no shortcuts and more effort. "That is why having a good memory was so important for us. It helped me in the Railways job." grandpa said.

I wanted to know how it was living in the hostel especially after getting married. Friends would surely keep teasing. "I stayed with my relatives before marriage. My father-in-law took care of my education once the marriage was fixed and so I moved into the hostel for better facilities." Looking at my expression, he added. "Hostels were neat and well maintained. They had good standards and students were taken care of by the staff." 

So what about the food in the hostel? I wanted to know if hostel food was tastier back then or is it a rule that no hostel is supposed to feed tasty and healthier food to it students. What do you think the answer was..
“It wasn’t great, but it was definitely good; better than what they serve today. Of course the warden, cook etc cheated and saved money by buying vegetable and supplies from their standard dealers. But compared to the corruption today that wasn’t much and they still treated us very well.” Grandpa cleared my doubt. Obviously things were in fact better back then. 

I nodded and so grandpa continued to answer my first question. "Of course my friends teased. I think apart from me there was only another guy who was married. They used to hijack my letters and threaten to read those aloud or tear them. I wasn't much bothered. We hardly wrote each other love letters. Those letters were either from her father or my brother."

Did that mean grandma hasn't written much letters to grandpa? "I did write sometimes. But they were not personal. His elder sister assisted me at times or my father attached my note to his which meant he would read it." grandma explained casually reading a magazine. Hardly any privacy! 

Grandpa passed his engineering with merit, as ever. So what next? That is for the coming episode.. Till then.. Be happy, be kind..