N is leaving Bombay. She was my manager at my previous job. I remember we used to think she was totally hyper when she had newly joined our team :)
She didn’t have much work at the beginning - as is usually the case when one joins a company - where as we were loaded with work. She used to ask us every ten minutes whether we did XYZ work, how much work got done, how much was still left to do etc.? And we used to think, “We have a hyperactive manager…GREAT!”
But in no time she became a friend. I’ve spent many happy, giddy ABSOLUT evenings at her place bitching about work and gossiping :)
We used to watch shows such as Big Boss, Indian Idol & KBC (hosted by SRK) at our respective homes & text each other non-stop throughout the show! We used to make fun of people’s daftness, their bad singing, the stupid things they did on the shows... we’d exchange some 50-60 texts between the two of us during the 1 hour shows!!
There were a few things that I admired about N, her ability to separate private and professional issues being one of them. Irrespective of whether she was friends with a person outside of work, at work she was very professional & no-nonsense. She is also one of the most fair managers I’ve known. I think these qualities endeared her to each & every member of the team. I hope I’ve been able to imbibe some of that.
I don’t know about her but I feel that N & I got along well because we are very similar as people. Apart from sharing interests such as reading, movies & more recently, blogging, we are both very straight-forward people. We’re both very transparent and we say it as it is. There are people we like, and people we don’t like, and most of the times the way we feel about people is apparent. Though I must admit I suffer from a more acute case of foot-in-the-mouth disease than she does. On New Year’s eve last year, N, another colleague of mine & I were planning to go out after work. We went to wish our group head before we left for the day. Now, our group head was a very lively & enthusiastic lady who wanted to go out with us every time we went out. She asked us what our plans for the evening were, and I, being the biggest foot-in-the-mouth-putter in this world blurted out that we were planning to go out. She got excited and asked us, “Oh, where?” Suddenly realizing what I had done, I had to cover up and the only thing I could come up with was, “Errrr…we don’t know what we’re doing yet. We’ll just…errrr…go out on the road & figure out what we want to do!”
Inherently, both N & I like to have fun! I remember one of my earliest and most fun memories with her was when we went for a client meeting to Hiranandani Gardens. The meeting got over around 4pm, it was raining and we were without a car. So instead of going back to work, we went to a coffee shop at Hiranandani, had steaming cups of coffee & chocolate doughnuts, and even walked in the rain!
I was very touched by all that N did for me when I was leaving Bombay. She threw a farewell party for me at her place, gave me presents, took me out for dinner, and she & her husband (who btw is one of the very few genuinely nice men I’ve met) even took me out for breakfast at Mondy’s...oh, Mondy’s :(!
So N, for all the fun times we had, here’s wishing you even more fun in the new city of blinding lights :)