It will be a cold day in hell when I start enjoying Finance.

I need to write this sitting in class because an overload of numbers is happening. Corporate finance sucks.  I feel like this is all Greek AND Latin clubbed together. First few classes were fine when we were doing compound interest and simple interest but then loans came in and then bonds came in. The formulas make no sense, the questions make even less sense. It feels like I know how to swim but the water is still pulling me down and I’m kicking my feet and trying to bring  my head out of the water but I just cannot. Every new question drags me down like a great white shark.

WHAT THE HECK!

MBA is hard but this is harder still. I want the numbers to end. I don’t want to look at the calculator anymore. The worst is when the professor says that “If you cannot follow it’s OK- just use common sense to eliminate answers and select the right one.” How can I eliminate answers when I cannot even understand the questions? I gave it my best shot. I now officially give up on this subject.

Going back to my happy place- one of the past weekends was fun. I went Surfing! Who would have thought that I could do something so sporty. I did slip off the surfboard a couple of times but on my last try I mastered it- albeit just lying down- 😀 didn’t get the courage to stand yet. Maybe next time! I wish I had a surfboard to stay afloat in Corporate Finance.

I obviously looked really funny in a wet suit but the mortification was worth it because the actual act of lying down on a board and being taken for a ride on the waves was so exhilarating!

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Jackson, our trainer for surfing!

Thank god for a warm day and no rain! Afterwards we satiated our growling tummies at this awesome beach restaurant called Bucket list. What a place… what a meal!

2017-05-27-PHOTO-00000660  The adventures in Oz didn’t end there. Last weekend I went Bush walking (which is Australian for Hiking or Trekking)- oh so much beauty and so much pain! It was almost 13 KMs of climbing, walking, skipping and hopping but it was so worth it. The Blue Mountains awed me and kept me going on because every view that was coming up was way better than the last. We walked over and under waterfalls, climbed up 300 stairs and took in some breathtaking panoramas.

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The funniest thing is that I did finish the hike successfully  (Got by with a little help from my friends). Once it was over and we came out of the forests, I was celebrating the end by doing a little jig and ended up twisting my ankle 😐 *facepalm*. Because of this very unfortunate sprain I couldn’t partake in the Abseiling the next day, but since I have done rappelling before, thankfully didn’t miss out an any novel experience.

The car ride there was so lovely with my “Dear Friends”- lots of good music, munchy food and fun detours. I’m glad I didn’t take the train for this trip. Since we had the car, we went out at night to a place where the sky was so dark and the clods so scarce that I could actually see the milky way. For real. I was literally dumbstruck.

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For the adventures right at home, we planned to have a girls night in – which turned out to be anything but! It was like an american movie where house parties get out of hand- ok… maybe that is a little exaggeration- but more and more people joined in and it kept on getting merrier. We finally did have our girl’s night the week after that. I made salted caramel brownies which were over before the pan was even cool. 😀 Then S threw a Dosa Party for us. The deliciousness of the Idli Podi and the Egg Dosa are unparalleled.

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Dosa Party! 

Just yesterday we had a grownup dinner party where PV made chicken curry like a pro! She was so kind to take out some for A and me before putting the chilies in! Shame on us though A, 재 and 은 ate the spicy one with relish!

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재용 (Jaeyong) making us laugh as usual with one of his stories!

So life in Sydney is one big adventure-fest except for the fact that everything sleeps by 5:30pm, including the sun. It is cold and dark for majority of the 24 hours and as such it is difficult to escape the sandman who visit’s promptly at aroung 10:30 or 11:00pm making it extremely difficult to stay awake. It’s been a while since I have slept so early and for so long.

Enough procrastinating now. Have to go back to studying Corporate Finance as the exam is on Monday #TearsOfSorrow. This weekend will be spent buried in books- but oh well…

 

Photos by Ankit, Diksha and Apoorva!

New Term. New Country. G’Day!

So… Sydney is gorgeous! I am surprisingly at home here and it’s just been ten days that College has started.

It’s a new term. We started on a high with ‘High Impact Teams.’ What an awesome subject. We got to know a lot about our own strengths and personalities through tests that the prof asked us to do. I know that my MBTI personality Type is ENFJ (Extrovert, Intuition, Feeling, Judgement). Now Judgement here doesn’t mean that I judge people (I ABSOLUTELY am the opposite of judgmental) it just means that I am focused and bound by deadlines among other things. What a fun subject. We learned a  lot about psychology and about how to identify the right personalities to form teams.

But now, the studies are back to the dark hole of numbers- Corporate Finance has started… I could cry! I need to use a scientific calculator because I have to use logarithms and obscenely large numbers as powers (pulling my hair out)- the worst part is that the first quiz is today! Thank god the Supply Chain Management course is theoretical and I can study it without going crazy due to the numbers.

Since I’ve come to Australia- I have realized the following about the land down under:

  1. The animals are all crazy looking and sounding- Have you seen a Wombat?
  2. Tasmanian Devils actually do run around in circles!
  3. The weather is amazing
  4. The people are beautiful
  5. The food is a lot like British Food- except that there is a lot more sea food.
  6. Public Transport is expensive
  7. Kangaroos don’t just hop- they also walk on all fours as well as lie down (which is very weird to look at)
  8. Koalas are the chillest beings ever! They sleep for 20 hours a day!
  9. The birds are hilarious. I saw one digging in the ground intently. It saw me staring but it didn’t care. Also there is the Bower Bird that loves the colour blue- so the male will make a shrine out of blue things it finds to attract the female. bowerbird-756720

My affinity towards knowing random facts that I hear is growing in this country because everything is so different from the rest of the world. It feels like the other countries evolved in synchronicity but Australia did it’s own thing. There are new types of animals, trees, climate- just everything is different and I love it!

I have this awesome apartment which is a major move up from the train compartment room I had in Singapore. Its on the 17th floor so the view is just breath taking- be it day or night. The Suburb of Burwood- where I’m living- is vibrant and colorful- except for the fact that most stores close by 6:00pm.

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We are back to real life- have to wake up, get dressed and take the bus to college. Some people are missing the easy life we had in Singapore where class was just a couple of floors under our rooms and we could wake up 10 minutes before class start time. I personally am happy about this change. I like it that we have to get out of the building that we are living in. Frankly Singapore had started feeling a little like prison because you didn’t really have to get out of the campus there.

Can’t wait for Marketing classes to start and these number based classes to end soon. I don’t know how much more of this number bashing my brain can take. :/

Sydney is ticking all the boxes for  “Places I can settle down in” as of now. I’m going Surfing this Sunday. I hope I come back in one piece to keep you posted on my MBA journey!

 

A week of lasts- for Singapore at least! 

So the Singapore portion of my MBA journey is complete. I survived… I persevered… I’m proud of myself! 

It was full of ups and downs. You all were there reading it all as it happened to me week by week! I did so many things for the first time here and I made amazing friends. There are my soul sisters A & D and of course all the others- some of whom made regular appearances in my retellings of my week. 

I have been off the grid for a couple of weeks because I was too busy filling my head with everything I learned in these last four months. I had my Exam Week! There were tears and there were tantrums galore because it is not easy to fit in all the numbers from Economics and Two different kinds of accountancy subjects in my brain which rejects numbers like the plague. But I get by with a little help from my friends and S was such a great help with everything accounts as D was for Economics. Thank you girls! Would have literally been lost without you. 

So this week I did a lot of things for the last time 

  • Used my Ikea bowl and mug
  • Rode the MRT
  • Had Veggie Crunch burger at McD
  • Had a beer at ARC
  • Went for a night walk to my beautiful bridge 

    My bridge. I’ll miss it so much!

  • Used the Washy washy to do my laundry
  • Had ‘milk tea’
  • Had a dressed up night out with everyone 

    T Me and A

So as I bid farewell to Singapore, sitting here at the Changi Airport, I leave with nothing but good memories. 

Singapore- you taught me a lot. Not just about MBA stuff but also about life and myself- and I didn’t think there was anything left to learn about these last two things anymore. 

So now the Sydney leg of my journey begins. The nomad part of me is super excited but the homebody part of me is a little sad to be leaving this beautiful country. 

Well at least I will have all of you guys with me (yes I’m talking to you batch GJAN17)! ❤ I hope Sydney is more beautiful where we learn more and more about each other and maybe something about MBA stuff too. 😉

Hasta la vista guys! 

A week of many firsts

Right now I am doing the same old thing- studying for quizzes- but last week I had quite a few novel experiences.

First things first, I WENT TO INDONESIA!

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This makes it number of countries that I have conquered till now 27/200 (Look at me talking like Alexander the great! :D) It’s been a while since I’ve gotten a new country’s stamp on my passport. The opportunity to do so was just 45 minutes away by ferry and the stamp greedy me couldn’t avoid the temptation- so I booked a hotel, packed my bag and took the boat to Batam. The island looked a lot like our very own Goa with it’s red alluvial soil, green trees and the salty, humid air. Similar shack like shops dotted the street sides and there were resorts and hotels a plenty. I had two days of solitude, serenity and sleep. It was like heaven on earth… sigh… Just me, myself and I and the king size, comfortable bed.

I had delicious Indonesian cuisine, enjoyed the sea side, watched TV on an actual television and basically had a two day vacation in the middle of the week.

P thought she was not going to be in this week’s blog- methinks she is losing her memory. She was a part of two big first time experiences last week! I went to the Central Perk Cafe (Yes, the replica of the one in F.R.I.E.N.D.S) OMG! it was so similar! They even had sets of Monica’s kitchen and Joey and Chander’s apartment. I did have to ‘politely’ request a group of people to move from the orange couch on which, in all probability, they had presumed they had a God given right to sit. They had been parked there since before we arrived and wouldn’t get up even after we were done eating! So inconsiderate! I actually got thank you nods from other groups of people who were waiting for their turn on the couch.

Since it was such an impromptu plan and I had just come back from Batam, I didn’t even have time to wash my hair (which were last washed with hotel shampoo that too after a swim) and went looking like a pony-tailed Severus Snape. How was I to know that after coffee we would actually end up going to one of the hottest clubs in town! *silent head shake* So there I was in a crumpled shirt, with no make up and dirty hair, on my way to 1 Altitude– and it was AMAZING! Wednesdays are Ladies Nights here in town and so we had $10 Martinis and such awesome music to dance to. After hours on the dance floor on the highest building of the city, we were famished of course, so off we went, to a restaurant I had never been to – Spize. I called it a night after that because the boat ride, coffee, dancing and biryani had left me with zero energy- P of course was still all active and went to Bollywood Lah to dance some more! 😀

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Hazy memory in the dark!

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The view from the club- it was on the 62nd floor!

A couple of days later, I had another night of many firsts:

  • I went out with the Singapore experts- The As

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  • I had food at one of the Hawker Centers
  • I walked the Sentosa Boardwalk
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The Boardwalk- If you look carefully you can see the ‘Merlion’ in the distance, It’s got fuchsia light on it!

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  • I went to a Casino in Singapore
  • I took the monorail from Sentosa back to town

Now, this trip to the casino was not a  leisure activity since it was still the middle of the week. We had an assignment for Operations Management that required us to write Order Winners, Order Qualifiers and Order Losing Sensitive Criteria for a few businesses, one of which was a Casino. Now, I have been to many a casinos but never as a customer, so I had no idea why an actual customer would actually select one casino over another. I asked a frequenter for help, one of the As- and he decided to make it a field trip! 😀 (All photos taken by him 😉 )

On Sunday, my bestie A and I  (The one whom I have coffee dates with) decided to mix it up and go have dinner. We wanted to eat at this Indian Restaurant because we really wanted Dal Makhani and Paratha unfortunately they had a wait time of 40 minutes (Order losing sensitive criteria! :D) So we ended up going to Master Prata to have the substitute of the Paratha. These Pratas that you get here are, I believe, originally from South India, they are made of refined flour instead of whole wheat flour and the chefs have a pretty distinct way to stretch out the dough by twisting it and then slamming it to the table again and again. They stuff it with various awesome things- I had egg, mushroom and cheese in mine. Yum!

Well… the coming weeks are going to be hectic since we have final exams. After that off to Sydney! Woo hoo!

I hope I have something to write about this week because after a very exciting last week, this one seems pretty tame and frankly extremely boring.

Let’s see if I can make it any fun. Still have 4 days left!

XOXO

 

The Moradian Effect

Hai from Batam, Indonesia! I have a massive project report to write. It requires a lot of reading and citing- so basically lots of focus and time. In all fairness, I could have done this in Singapore sitting on my bed but, as they say, change is the only constant- I needed a little change in scenery. My train compartment like room started closing in on me till I felt like I couldn’t breathe so here I am- the whole Singapore Strait away, sitting on my king size bed and writing.

The past two weeks have been phenomenal- academics-wise. We had two very eccentric professors teaching us two extremely boring subjects. Prof. Peter Clarke (Peter ‘Clark quay’ according to one very pretty girl 😉 ) who was teaching us, or at least trying to teach us, Managerial Accounting. He was very posh- Irish, extremely funny with his expressions and his over the top reactions to little things like someone entering the class late, and his glow in the dark extendable pointer (that’s NOT what she said LOL!). He is the only professor I have had who was teaching from the book he himself had authored. Actually, If I think about it, it has been a while since I have studied using a book at all! It was really refreshing. His last words to us were “If you ever get arrested, don’t tell anyone I taught you Accounting.” 😀

The other professor was Prof. Boman Moradian- now what to say about this man. He was boisterous, passionate about his subject, funny and pretty aberrant for a teacher. He made us write principles for management that he had coined over the years. For instance, “Don’t be a chindi chor, be a khandaani chor,”, “Make sure you die young; after living for as long as possible.” and “Never ever hypothicate your house or I will find you and kill you.” With all the F-bombs, the ‘Kicks you-know-where’, the Pappus and the Bumboos, Prof. Moradian taught us Operations Management in a way no professor has taught anything before. He completely ignored the book, the guidelines set by the college and the process of grading. He did everything his own way and we are better off for it. You can see the love and respect he garnered in all of our faces in the photo with him.

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The future CEOs with Prof. Moradian “AHA!”

I hope his blessings work and we do end up as CEOs and/or Entrepreneurs.

The rest of the week went by as usual. I was working on, or trying to work on, my project report. I was failing to focus many a times because I started watching my TV shows again- after a 3 month hiatus. So had lots to catch up on. :/ I know, I know.. I have a problem. There should be a ‘Television Addics Anonymous’ for people like me 😦

I did buy rainbow slippers- my old slippers had become permanently pink because of Holi and looked absolutely horrid.

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Some where over the rainbow… skies are blue. And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.

I also had my usual, much required, coffee date with A.

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Red Velvet Cheesecake and Mushroom Quiche. *Drool*

A new thing that happened was that I found a fellow Subway lover (yay!) so had a Subway dinner date with P. The McD lovers are a plenty, but to find another person who is appreciative of the yumminess of Subway is a treat!

Selamat tinggal from Batam! More about my trip later.

XOXO

I am Lucky

For me, losing friends is never easy.  I have been here for three months now, the fourth month is starting. I, by the virtue of being a peoples’ person, have tried to interact with and befriend everyone. I already have friends back home- friends I have had for years. But remember the Bigg Boss effect that I talked about a couple of weeks ago? When you live in close proximity with the same people for extended periods of time, three months (which really is NOT ample time to get to know someone) seems like three years and you feel like you have known these people forever.

This is definitely our brain tricking us though, because people are not who they seem most of the time and hence you fall out with people as often as you fall in with them. The out part ALWAYS hurts- even if for a while. Specially for me, because I’m most definitely a lover and not a fighter! So if someone here wants to know me better- what better way than me just telling them? Here goes:

I am a Leo/Virgo cusp- due to this anomaly of my birth-date falling in between two constellations, three things happen.

  • I can never buy anything with my sun-sign on it.
  • I can never get a sun-sign tattoo
  • I have qualities of both Virgos and Leos.
    • I am organized and methodological (My bed and desk will be clean)- But my closet is a mess most of the times, thanks to the Leo laziness.
    • I love making lists (which is pretty evident here)- but I don’t really stick to them.
    • I am calm, collected and patient- till someone tests that patience and then I burst out all lioness style.
    • I am tactful as well as stubborn
    • I love to make people smile (the Leo warmth)
    • One thing that is common to both the sun-signs and I feel I have it in double doses- I am fiercely Loyal (Hufflepuff pride, y’all!)

The above is just a little snapshot of me. Like a Polaroid photo, I am still developing though- and this MBA is fanning the picture.

This past week, I did something that I hadn’t done in a long while! I made a short film. Last time I did something like that was in Undergrad film-making class. You can watch The Video here if you want-  but let me warn you, I am sans makeup and I probably should have washed my hair before filming, but hey, it was one of the many assignments I had to do that week, so I let the lazy Leo side win over the perfectionist Virgo side. This was the final project for our Decision Making class where we had to illustrate what we learned in class in a creative way with our group. I had fun filming with the guys and also brushing up on my very basic editing skills.

I went on a couple of roomie dates with A. One day we walked 3.5 KMs to the mall Vivo City. The walk was the burn the calories from the Tiger, but also because I was really craving Subway. So we awarded ourselves with sub, cookie and coffee. Speaking of coffee,a few days later we went to Starbucks (Yay!) I so miss having proper coffee! The only coffee we get at the cafe in the college is the Vietnamese one- it is black coffee with condensed milk. It is watery and super sweet. Does wonders to keep me awake in class with the caffeine and the sugar rush that I get, but I miss the froth and the bitterness. I also had the yummiest chicken pot pie. Even though I burned the entire roof of my mouth with the hot pie filling, I enjoyed it to no end.

Oh one thing (among a few others) about the college cafe that is awesome is, The Waffles. I’m sure most of you will agree- I do have this tradition of splitting one with D whenever I have it. I absolutely cannot have a full waffle due to the extreme sugar content, but YUM! the hot, crunchiness on the outside and the warm chocolaty gooeyness on the inside— I get speechless.

On that sweet note, I have special mentions today- I have been told that this blog is much awaited every week by two amazing women whom I have had a pleasure of sharing some food, conversation and music with. S and G (You know who you are!) You both are brilliant! I so wish you both were in the GMBA batch instead of MGB! We have to have a girls night together along with all the other beautiful MGB girls! ❤

Oh- On Saturday we had a Global Learning activity- we went to an inspiring place called ‘Dignity Kitchen‘. It is one of many Hawker Centers in Singapore, but the twist that this one has is special and humbling. Everyone who works at this Hawker Center is differently-able (mentally or physically). The man who started it all has been doing this absolutely awe inspiring work of training these people and helping them integrate into the working society. The food was delicious, the atmosphere warm and inviting. It was super touching and even though we all were a little angry at having to wake up early on a Saturday when we started from the college, we all were definitely extrenely happy that we went and saw such a different side of the metropolitan and modern Singapore. Made me realize- I may lose friends, I may have set backs, maths will always frustrate me and I will feel useless and dumb at times, but I am still one of the lucky ones. I am healthy, I have the power in me to be happy, I have a very strong support system in my family and friends and I am in control of my own life.

I AM LUCKY.

Now I just hope I remember this forever.

XOXO.

A Colourful Afternoon.

Last week’s report comes three days too late and that is because I spent the last weekend studying for the Marketing Exam that was this Monday (More about that later). You must have read about me avoiding studying like the plague and doing everything I could in my power to delay it as much as possible- it was all true!

Let’s go back a little because we didn’t really talk about the 5 days that came before the weekend though. Monday was Holi! First festival of the year that I was celebrating away from home. Thankfully my sister went home so my parents didn’t have to miss the both of us at the same time. She had blast with Vodka paani puris and colors and her friends and of course Tintin. I, on the other hand, forgot to have breakfast and as a result had a dizzy spell in class. Hypoglycemia or Hypotension or both. Who knows… what helped though was my lovely friend D ❤ awesome roommates- A & A ❤ Thank you for the TLC girls! Kisses!

The other thing that helped was of course, Holi. There was dancing and colours and a lot of frolic, as is expected out of the festival of colours. All the non-Indians joined in on the fun and it was a total ‘Rang Barse’ kind of afternoon. We were told it will be a ‘Dry Holi’ so there was no water to play with. But no one said anything about the Juice and the Ice! 😀

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Holi Hai!

So after all the dancing and running around, everyone obviously wanted to wash away the colour, sweat and juice- so the bathrooms were full to capacity. While we ‘patiently’ waited outside (your’s truly might have ‘requested’ people to come out fast.) we heard the screams of girls- why you ask? Nothing sinister- the water stopped. So there were girls outside the bathroom with gulaal dripping off them and there were girls in the showers, with shampoo in their hair- while the entire building had run out of water.

It was kind of hilarious. It took around an hour for the problem to be fixed while people like me- not too  grimy and pink- used wet wipes to clean up our faces at least. Most people were too far gone and so the next day you could see some still-pink faces in the class that the teacher conveniently ignored. The usual gig that goes on for a few days after Holi every year.

I know there will be more festivals coming and I will be here, with all the new people I have met here (Can you call the people you met 2 months and 22 days ago new?) . Some have already become like family and some I’m still getting to know. There are so many different personality types. We have a lot of alpha males. That can be expected as we all are potentially future CEOs. The small number of women are strong, smart, independent and just over all amazing. A few of them are mothers and still they here. Studying, making the most of their lives and I feel that they are the ones who deserve the most kudos. They are the true Alphas.

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Who Run the World? Well of course we do! #LadyPresident #GirlsBiteBack

On that note, A and I had a girls night on Friday. We had conversations about life, love, goals and family over Tiger. The wind was awesome and the night was overall a very enjoyable one- swear to do it again A?

I have got mosquito bites all over my feet, the weather is mostly rainy and humid, the ants are crazy and a lot of it just plain sucks.. but I realized a few days ago that I have a month left in Singapore and believe it or not… I’m going to miss it a lot.

Things I do when I absolutely have to study

I am doing everything but studying right now. I have the Marketing Management final exam tomorrow and since the morning I have:

  • made my bed properly
  • cleaned my table
  • given myself a facial
  • made soup for lunch
  • taken a nap after having the soup for lunch
  • done bhangra in the pantry with D and A ❤
  • put on lip balm a gazillion times
  • made 10 different hair styles
  • had deep conversations about life, the universe and everything
  • YouTube videos… need I say more
  • Facebooked
  • had ten gallons of water
  • had to fill my water bottle a million times
  • had to answer the nature’s call a million and one times
  • decided that I need to have chai ever so often to help me concentrate
  • taken mini strolls around my room
  • stared out of window at the people who are enjoying their Sunday instead of being cooped up like me.
  • opened and closed the Netflix tab multiple times.
  • checked the time and given myself a deadline to finish the chapter I’m reading multiple times
  • realized that meeting the deadline is not possible
  • given up on the deadline
  • done surya namaskar 15 times because I thought maybe Yoga will center me and help me focus.
  • listened to “I want to break free” 12 times.
  • stared at myself in the mirror till I couldn’t recognize myself
  • basically become the definition of procrastination.
  • written this blog post
  • oh and I occasionally studied between doing the very important things listed above.

 

Sunburned noses and salty hair

I feel like I’m living in the Bigg-Boss house (Or Big Brother, depending on the part of the world you are from). Here are some reasons why-

  • Everyone is together 24/7
  • Every little piece of news spreads like the smell of freshly popped corn. It’s like you drop a pen, and the most random person will come to you in five minutes commenting about how funny it was when you dropped it… and they weren’t even there to witness it!
  • Because of the above point, the Chinese whisper game is strong. Things are twisted way out of proportion.
  • People get frustrated and annoyed and burst out when least expected.
  • We dress up in the morning, just to go to class and then after 4 hours, get back into our pajamas.
  • Everyone loves taking walks.
  • We have to cook ourselves meals with very limited supplies.
  • There are cameras everywhere… I mean literally everywhere!
  • Our day starts with music in the bathroom where someone or the other is always playing songs.
  • Cliques have formed.
  • We have ‘guests’ come in every once in a while in the form of speakers.
  • We have weekly meetings with the dean who wants to know about the progress and discuss if there are any issues (read Salman Khan)
  • We sometimes have a random dinner party for some occasion (the last one was the alumni mixer that happened this week.)
  • We are forced to team up and perform tasks (SBRs).
  • The security lady keeps a watchful eye on us through the cameras- one could say she is the ‘Bigg’ Boss of this facility!

Well… the week that went by was pretty standard. I progressively scored less marks in each of my marketing quizzes. Overall did well though so no complaints. Now have to focus on the final exam for marketing that is happening next Monday. I got C as a final grade in Statistics. I was expecting a C-, so that was some unexpectedly good news (Oh how the mighty have fallen! I’m celebrating a C!!).

This was a long weekend though, because our courses ended on Thursday and hence no classes on Friday- yay! We had been making plans for this weekend for a while now. We started off from going to the Island of Bintam (Indonesia) and as such plans go, it didn’t come to any fruition. After much deliberation, we decided to not really tax our already overused brains any further and just joined the Global Learning Committee on a trip to the Islands of Kusu and Saint John. No new country was stamped on my passport, but it was a Saturday well spent.  The water was cool, the sun was hot and the breeze was just perfect.

We went shopping for clothes on Friday because, of course, we are women and women just need an excuse to shop, which in this case was a beach trip for which we had absolutely ‘nothing’ to wear. I did end up wearing something that I did have already though- but I wouldn’t say that the shopping trip was a waste. I bought a t-shirt that says ‘Lady President’.

Back to the Islands- We took a ferry from the Marina into St. John’s Island first. It was picturesque with it’s blue water, gold sand and green palm trees dotting the area. I initially thought it was an island that I could gladly get stranded on- but I quickly realized the error of my ways when I found out that there was no restaurant or shop or even a vending machine (i.e. no food or water). Starving and parched, we waited for the ferry to take us to the next island, but we missed the one at 1:50pm. The next one was in… wait for it… TWO HOURS!!!

We were ready to jump into the ocean and swim to Kusu Island. Lin, one of our batch-mates, came to our rescue though. With his insane survival skills, he found us fresh passion fruits and sugar canes. So there we were, on an island, going back to the basics. Chewing on sugar canes and slurping up the refreshing, tangy passion fruits like they were tequila shots. He was our guardian angel. Thank you so much for not letting us pass out from hunger and thirst Lin- If any of you MGBs is reading it, let Lin know! 🙂

Kusu Island didn’t do much for us food wise as well. We did get some soft-drinks there though, which was a relief. We apparently were too late, thanks to missing the ferry, and missed out on some alleged fried rice. I don’t know whether it is the truth or not though because I couldn’t see a grain of rice anywhere on that island when I reached. Maybe all the tortoises ate it, there was a pit full of them there (Kusu means Tortoise in the local language). Kusu Island does have a gorgeous temple on it though, along with the tortoises. It’s a place of worship for the God prosperity and I did say a small prayer for the god to help me control the rate at which my money disappears here in Singapore.

We finally returned home with Rudolph like red noses and sea salt all over our legs and hair. We were famished but happy because we had finally gotten out of the monotonous routine that our life has become in the B-School, if even for one day.

Here are some mementos from this trip to the Islands of Saint John and Kusu. I hope we have more days like this in the future and all of you people who didn’t come for this trip can join us for the next one.

 

Happy Holi to everyone! I hope your day is colorful and bright! ❤ XOXO

 

2 Weeks worth of B-School experience, 1 Blog post.

I have two weeks worth of B-School shenanigans to report as unfortunately, the last week kind of got away from me and I didn’t have the time or the will to write. The week had begun on a high note with us going on a ‘City Tour’. It would have been much better if this particular global learning activity had happened weeks ago, because.. as established previously- Singapore is extremely small. Wherever you go, you have to cross the entire city so every drive essentially looks the same. The City Tour, hence, was not something that was required two months after being in the city. It did include a beautiful bridge though, and what an amazing view. Believe it or not- it was a brighter, better version of the Manhattan skyline.

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The roomies on the beautiful bridge with the awe inspiring (though cropped) skyline in the background.

After going to Chinatown and such for what seemed like the millionth time, it was a good change of pace to see something new. My love affair with all the bridges of the world continues (Ex-bridges include the Millennium Bridge in Newcastle, the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, The Tower Bridge in London, The Charles Bridge in Prague, The Pont de l’Archeveche in Paris with the love locks and the little dainty bridges in the city center of Dublin).

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Marina Bay Sands in the background of the Selfie-in-Progress. What a marvelous feat of architecture! 

The rest of the week progressed as usual with studies and quizzes.

Oh we did have an industry visit to the office of Thomson Reuters. Now you must be wondering why MBA students will be taken to a News Agency- well because we were taken to experience the cutting edge research work that the Lab of Reuters is doing. You can know more about it here. It was mind boggling how much data is out there in the world and how geniuses deal with it. A lot of people got very excited about the prospects of data mining in the future. I understood some of what was happening. Not as much as the engineers did, but enough to know that the future is online, it is global and it is all public. Privacy is a dying concept.

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On our way to Reuters, Definitely listening to our fave tune at the moment- ‘Shape of you‘ by Ed Sheeran.

The week ended on a low note because  we had an exam on Monday and so the weekend was spent studying. It paid off though- 82% in Financial Accounting!! Who would have thought! I’m so proud of myself right now. I am starting to feel my left brain stirring and stretching just before waking up. It has been dormant for all these years while my right brain took over all the intellectual functions. Numbers are slowly starting to make sense… slowly. I can’t take all the credit though. A friend worked hard and tutored us. Thank you dude! ❤

Oh also Marketing classes finally started- thank God. Something that I can finally get a hang of without struggling. It’s theories and concepts. It doesn’t require me to crunch numbers. I can use the brain powers that I am accustomed to- learning, creating, thinking. These classes are going hand in hand with Data Modeling and Optimization classes though. That subject I don’t know if I like yet. It is extremely interesting but it has graphs and numbers- so I’m essentially struggling with the blasphemous fact that I might be liking something quantitative. Hmmmm…. More comments on that later.

The best thing that happened  in all my time here is that two of my closest friends became a little more than just friends to each other. Not to sound cheesy or anything, but the wide smiles and the stolen glances (who do they think they are kidding) are adorable to witness…  at least for now (don’t get anoying you guys)! Feels like we are back in high school where we tease and laugh and enjoy with the people who’s relationship is just blossoming. I hope its a happily ever after for these two- cheers to more laughter, and blushes and the cheeky remarks! ❤ you guys!

Two months left in this beautiful city of Singapore. I wish I can come back and stay here for longer, even though I know right now it is more the people who I’m with than the city.

I miss my dog more than ever. Six more months before I can cuddle with him. 😦

Tonight I’m missing an awesome beach party as well as a silent disco. I have been reminded that the assignment that I have to submit tomorrow is not what I will remember 1o years down the line. Both the parties were being sold to me  by different friends, but what can I say, even though I really really wanted to go, I have a submission tomorrow! I’m here to study along with making awesome memories. Today studies are kind of getting in the way, but there is always another evening, another weekend, another party! The late night dance breaks in the room is a memory that is going to be with me for life though- don’t worry peeps!

XOXO