Life sometimes unfolds in the most miraculous and unexpected ways. It throws tons of lemons at you for years and then you start believing that maybe lemons are not that bad. It is then, life decides to show you something that you have long forgotten… something that you feel is only part of motivational, self help, philosophical books – Pure bliss!
During my job in 2012, I got transferred to Coimbatore, Tamilnadu (India) for a 2 months period where I was supposed to train and mentor a batch of freshers. Till then, I had no experience of providing training and it had been more than a decade that I had addressed a group of people. Sure the opportunity looked exciting. But more than the work it was the break from my everyday routine and all the clutter which had been following me for some years was what I was looking forward to.
It was my first time to travel alone for which I was feeling very proud which was very stupid because I was already 24 and should have had travelled alone by that time already! But nevertheless, I was extremely excited. When I landed in Coimbatore, a cab was waiting for me to take me to the company guest house. Well, things seemed pretty smooth.
When I reached the guest house I got to know that in the whole house of 7 rooms I was the only guest. There were couple of caretakers however they would be sleeping on the ground floor where as I would be on the upper floor all alone. Yep, no roomie…. no company. Just me! The antisocial part of me was jumping with joy where as the other part of me was shit scared. So to sum it up, my blood pressure was pretty high that evening.
The first night went pretty bad. I couldn’t sleep all night. There was a cat screaming all night which was really freaking me out. I prayed really hard in the morning to get some roomie or at least someone in the house! My prayers were heard and I got a roommate the other day. I had a lot of inhibitions about her since she was from the HR but she was a human after all and that was exactly what I needed at that point of time!
As the days went by we got along really well.We were in a way perfect for each other. She wouldn’t stop talking, I didn’t mind listening. She would give the caretaker cum cook of the guesthouse a weekly menu for breakfast and dinner, something which never occurred to me. She would introduce me to new people from other teams which again, if I was all by myself wouldn’t have done. Ever. We were taking lunch breaks together, coming home together, dining together, spending hours talking, gossiping, singing… Well I was absolutely loving this new friend! Meanwhile, the guesthouse started filling up with other guys and it was a happy place! Never ever in my life had I felt so comfortable in the company of total strangers. Never before had I realised the power of sharing a good laugh. It just connects you with the other person instantly. No need of heart to heart talk, no need to share your past, no fear of being judged… Just some good humour and you are liberated from all the stress that you had been carrying all around for so many years.
Coimbatore was my gateway to peaceful mornings, breezy- golden evenings and magical starry nights. We were not staying in the main town. The guest house was situated slightly in the outskirts of the main town which was almost like a village. In the silence of the dawn one could hear the peacocks from distant farms. This place knew no air or sound pollution. The air was always fresh and crisp and silence so deep that in my life for the first time I heard lizards chuckling.
The monsoons are not the same in Coimbatore as they are in other parts of Tamilnadu. I stayed there from mid June – mid August and hardly saw any showers. The clouds would gather up every evening forming some of the most magnificent skyscapes but that was it. Nevertheless, I was pretty happy with this climate. Mumbai is always hot and humid and in the monsoons it always pours heavily. But this place’s climate was perfection to my taste. Dry, sunny, not too hot not too cold and windy. I knew where I would be buying a property after my retirement.