Positivity Diary: Reflections & Lessons – Day 3

I couldn’t keep up with the daily requirements of the challenge, but I’ve been making a mental note to put these down together. Looks like the time for the next episode is today and now. Here goes:

Client-teachers and symbiotic relationships

Sometimes our clients turn out to be excellent teachers. The best ones are those that trust you enough to give you a fairly free hand; respect you enough to duly consider your counsel, and push you enough to render yourself continually valuable. I had a series of productive and energising conversations at the end of which it felt like we’d both gained something useful and moved forward. Crave for more such!

Serendipity & redemption
This is a bit of a long-winded story, but bear with me. Picture this. My phone goes completely blank all of a sudden- I can hear the phone ring, but can’t do anything about it. I take it to the local phone shop, where the technician tells me that the display has conked off and needs to be replaced. My sixth sense (or call it my reluctance to immediately dole out the repair & replacement cost) tells me that I need to have a second opinion from our service provider/reseller. I bump into Seema who’s on her way from a class she’s attending and tell her the reason for my suddenly becoming incommunicado. In a flash, she recalls that her mobile phone contract is due to expire and she has a voucher of $100 that needs to be redeemed. She checks and as chance would have it, the voucher expires that very day. We reach the mobile service centre just about on time. The folks there tell me that I need to take my phone to the Apple service centre elsewhere (which can happen only the next day); meanwhile, Seema renews her contract, redeems the voucher and upgrades to a new phone. If only my phone hadn’t conked off or I hadn’t seen Seema at that time…

Tryst with destiny, karma and sowing seeds
In all these years of living in Singapore, I had never put in the effort to visit the Indian High Commission on Independence Day. I was determined to go this year- and the fact that I had to visit the Apple service centre to get my phone sorted provided just the perfect catalyst to ensure it happened. By the time I got to the High Commission, the tri-colour was fluttering gloriously in the moist breeze- a slightly rainy Friday. The sight of a couple of hundred people and enthusiastic performances by kids from the Indian schools provided a pleasant glimpse into the past; the soulful voice of Dr.Bhupen Hazarika crying out ‘Ganga tum behti ho kyon’ brought a lump in the throat. It was an auspicious morning.

Then having learnt that the display on my phone didn’t need to be changed (the wait for the second opinion worked!), it was lunch with the group behind a start-up that has some big plans over the next couple of years. One of those on the team is an American with a deep love for and close business ties with India. It was fascinating to hear him talk about Karma – and how life heartily drops down those who can’t stay humble on their way to the top (based on first-hand experiences with a young multi-billionaire who’s now struggling to get bail). By the time the group finished with the last sips of ‘masala chai’, the seeds of something ambitious had been well and truly sown.

Today, I pass on the baton to the incorrigible optimist, my cousin Sujit, whose zest for life, fearlessness in dreaming big, eagerness to have a laugh and the commitment to live life on his own terms are inspiring. Suji, take the #positivitychallenge on…

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