Exam and the week after
The 6 hours a day - 7 days a week gruelling classes for the past 5 + months, loads and volumes of books scattered all around the place, the never ending syllabus, the always incomplete looking preparations, the unpredictable question paper and above all the exam itself, which has made even the most brilliant minds have butterflies in stomach, for which i am no exception... everything culminated on the 20th of May.
We reached the center well in advance, so advance that even the examination officials hadn't come. But I was not the only one. I had ample time to have breakfast and made a last minute attempt to overcome my guilt by going through the parts of the syllabus which I thought I am not fully prepared. Basically it was a valiant attempt :p to do something, in a couple of hours, which I dint do in the 6 months. It was not very long before I came to the conclusion that there is nothing really I could change in the final moments and decided to quit the book finally. After a couple of all the sms es, I proceeded to the examination hall with a really blank mind. The optional paper was for 2 hours in the morning and I was able to complete it comfortably for the paper was straight forward and to some extent not very tough. The general studies paper in the afternoon and the 2 hours allotted for that also vapourised like 2 minutes. The only problematic area of the entire examination was the seating arrangement. Given my height and frame, the bench assigned for me could hardly accommodate half of me. To compensate, i had to sit in an awkward posture, perpendicular to the direction in which people normally sit. While the rest of the people in my room sat facing the black board, i had to sit facing the window.
I am not planning to explicate my performance in detail and i would be extremely happy to let the examiners do that work. On my part i feel that i would completely rule out the chance of getting a call for the mains exam. This time around it is not a matter of how good i had performed but the performance of the other examinees also does matter this time. As far as i am concerned i am still skeptic keeping a 60-40% chance of qualifying and getting a call for the mains. Later i came to know that a substantial number had skipped the exam and i ain't sure in what way that is going to effect my chances. I had only about a day's time to prepare for my trip to Bangalore.
The train was scheduled at 7 am and I reached the station with a little less than an hour to spare. My fellow travellers were really sweet people and the 36 hours journey went of well. I happened to meet a person who had also given prelims and i couldn't help myself discussing the paper with him. The discussion din't last long and quickly digressed to other topics. In the end i managed to gather a few really nice wordly complements from people. (:D). I finished off a Jeffery Archer book in flat 8 hours during the journey and arrived at Bangalore at around 7 pm, the following day and it wasn't hard locating my friend's place and going home.
Though this is neither the first time I am going to Bangalore nor the first time I am going to visit a friend, this particular trip was a bit different from 0thers and i was pretty excited. This is the first time i put my hindi speaking skills to test and i myself was delighted to see the progress i had made. After the scorching heat in Delhi, the climate itself was a big relief. Be it watching 4 movies back to back, eating in the near by food shop, the coffee day cappuccino, the mc donalds's happy meal, roaming about in the streets , talking endless crap .... I happened to spend quality time with my friends and i throughly enjoyed every single moment of it. Soon the day to get out of the natural refrigerator and step into the oven called Chennai, had come and I started to prepare for the 2nd train journey of the week.
The train was scheduled to arrive at a station called KR Puram at 6.15 am. Not so sure about the distance, i decided to book a cab, the night before itself. On enquiry, i learnt that it was about 45 minutes travel from my place and so i booked the cab at around 4 am, hoping to reach the station around 5 am. The cab came at the right time, only to drop me at the station at 4.40 itself. After hopelessly walking the length and breadth of the station in a failed attempt to kill time, I thought i would ask the station master about the train's arrival ( it was 5.15 am then). Such was the reputation of the train, i got a wry, sarcastic smile as reply when i told him its printed in the ticket that the train is supposed to come at 6.15 am. "It is always like that. It will not come before 7 o'clock. definitely after lal bagh express only" -- was the final reply i got. At-last, the train pulled in at around 6.50 and the rest of the journey was largely event less. The train, in fact, arrived at chennai even before the scheduled time and reaching home in Chennai would never be a problem. Now, very soon, i have to start packing for my return to Delhi in the first week of June.
Exam and the week after