Highlights of 2016

Well, this year has been full of opportunities and experiences…and quite a few first-times. Here are a few memories that made this year really special –

  • Starting the year with a bang – going to Vikatgad/Peb trek made me push myself and realize that I am a lot stronger than I think
  • Making impromptu plans with my classmates – planning a trip to Lonavala in less than 72 hours – and really enjoying the overnight stay there. The campfire was definitely the highlight of the experience
  • Going to an industrial visit and linking theory with real-life application. It was surely an enriching experience
  • Trying out rollerblading – although I didn’t really continue with it for long, it was kinda enjoyable
  • Visiting the Kalaghoda festival with a friend – it was really inspiring, basically creativity unleashed!
  • Experimenting – especially with my hair. I didn’t know it would turn out to be so different
  • Attending the YouTube Fan Fest and cheering my throat hoarse. The energy of the performers was really infectious – I enjoyed every second of it! Also, Mumbai in the evening has a charm of its own
  • Preparing classroom presentations and working on assignments – I never thought it would be so much memorable. It is so rewarding when all the hours of hard work culminate into something that makes one really proud. Especially the research project – the sense of satisfaction I got after putting weeks of hard work into it was unparalleled
  • I don’t know if this classifies as a trek or just a long walk – but visiting Kanheri caves (and having a nice filling lunch after walking 9.5km) with friends was one of the best memories of the year
  • Going for an internship to a completely different state having zero knowledge about the local language, meeting amazing people and having a great time.
  • Seeing my sister score amazingly in her board exams – scoring more than 97.3%, she really made me grin with pride
  • Planning a last minute impromptu trip to Mysore myself – and finishing an entire novel (Sialkot Saga) during the train ride.
  • Getting my first stipend check – the best feeling in the world!
  • Attending trade shows other interns – they know how to make even the most boring thing fun
  • Renting a car and going for an impromptu trip to Mahabalipuram with a cousin. The lighthouse was certainly the highlight of the trip
  • Going to Marina Beach out of the blue at 10pm with flatmates, and chatting there admiring the cityscape.
  • Watching the sun rise at the Marina Beach with my roommate, attending a part of the evening mass at St. Theresa’s Church with my roommate, and treating my taste buds at the Tuscana Pizzeria and Sandy’s Chocolate Laboratory
  • Going to Marine Drive with a bestie at 6.30am, and waiting for a whopping 35 minutes at a very crowded Merwan’s (Grant Road) for the heavenliest Mawa Cake. And then getting drenched in the refreshing Mumbai rains!
  • Exploring the different taste-bud-treats that Chennai has to offer – Zuka, Zaitoon
  • Growing up a bit more – understanding a little more of love and loss, and treasuring every moment and memory
  • Watching movies in different languages other than English or Hindi – Kabali in Tamil without subtitles was an experience in itself.
  • Reaching the highest possible level of homesickness and going to watch Kannada movie screenings – Thithi, Ishtakaaamya, U-Turn and Rangitaranga etc.  😛 And understanding that Kannada cinema has a quite a bit to offer. In addition to that, becoming seriously spontaneous – watching 3 movies in a week – Happy Bhaag Jayegi, Rustom and Mechanic: Resurrection (no points for guessing which one I watched alone 😛 )
  • Going for an impromptu dinner  with my cousin at Murugan Idli Shop and enjoying a HUGE tub of icecream with crazy amount of toppings sitting at the Besant Nagar beach late in the evening, and exploring the different restaurants and making the most of my last week at the PG – Jalpaan, Sandy’s, Subway and Bombaysthaan
  • Coming back to Mumbai and meeting my classmates – sharing our internship experiences and all sorts of crazy stuff over meals, going to impromptu lunches
  • Appearing for final placements while juggling my class tests, assignments, lectures and presentations. I guess I found my greatest learning in this phase – patience and positivity make the biggest changes by helping us enjoy the smallest pleasures in life
  • Seeing my good friends get placed in amazing organizations, and finally getting placed at an amazing company myself. It hurts to see my college journey roll to an end though.
  • Seeing the Government come out with really interesting measures to curb black money – declaring schemes for disclosing undisclosed income, the demonetization of Rs.500 and Rs.1000 notes, and the introduction of new Rs.500 and Rs.2000 notes.
  • Speaking about the demonetization issue – standing for in long queues at the ATMs and ultimately deciding to go cashless
  • Watching really great movies – Inferno, Doctor Strange, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Arrival to name a few. While some of them seriously wowed me with the graphics, the others really got me thinking. The best part was that all of these movies were impromptu
  • Visiting Bhandardara with my cousins and family. That is one weekend getaway I won’t be forgetting for a while
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