My holiday ( self –imposed ) started on the 5th of august uptil the 11th where I had decided that me along with my friends would have the time of our lives touring in the garb of a symposium .5th august – venue – SVCE ,sriperumbudur -- I did well in the quiz scoring 8/20 which was supposed to be the cut off , but surprisingly on being pointed the mistake , SVCE guys chose to somehow put my request under the carpet , which made my go wild , all but in vain . SVCE even though having a big name (and of course lots of distractions !!!! ) does not do justice in professionally holding an event . they seem to be too casual about it , as if it were just a poker game played in a small room ( that’s their AV hall). I came home disappointed at not qualifying for the quiz finals, but still seemed to cheer as I had one more shot at a symposium tomorrow on the 6th in thangavelu engg college . I got the news that my paper on nano technology had been selected next day , via e-mail just a day in advance ( professionalism !!!). I had to sit thru the night , to do my PowerPoint presentation which went uptill 8 in the morning with little time in between to catch a wink of sleep .

I quickly boarded a bus coming to TIDEL park stop and reached the college by 9 30 just in time for paper presentation , which went of pretty well as I was congratulated by many participants for my presentation , but some how finished 4th among the 10 finalists . these judges at the paper presentation seem to look more at the presentation than the content and fluency , and this point irritates me . well the most interesting part was yet to unfold ( QUIZ –what else??). I was schocked at the response with as many as 117 teams in the quiz . but somehow my brain waded thru the technical maze and we ( myself and achut) qualified 3rd but the finals was forgetful , with we coming 4th. The next event was adzap –marketing where I thought we put up a decent ad skit – but we made the cardinal engineering sin of presenting our skit in ENGLISH , probably if we had any “TAPPANKUTHU” “ o-podu” style ads we could have caught the attention of the so-called judges. So goodbye Thangavelu , I had to rush from there to go home and pack my bags to catch the 20 15 METTUPALAYAM EXPRESS at central station . there I met 2 of my class mates achut and jaffer . these 2 days had been so exhausting with me having to walk here and there , it showed that evening as I stretched my legs . I dozed off in a minute , only to wake up an hour later ,refreshed – went thru a few computer magazines .

We reached coimbatore at 04 50 hrs and were on the lookout for an internet centre as in the meelee of symposiums we had forgotten to note down the address and phone number of AMRITA college from their website . our hunt ended at 05 30 hrs landing in a small PCO booth with a single computer and a dial up connection @ 50 rs an hour!!!. We had to give in to his rate , but browsed for only 10 minutes and after having got the details we boarded the MANGALORE MAIL which stopped at ETTIMEDAI railway station . the college from there was only a stone’s throw away . the weather was so cool there , with the morning mist over the mountains making a lovely scene as welcoming in all it’s splendour .the college is placed in between 5-6 hills in a lovely place resembling so much of the station in malgudi days.
As soon as we made our entry into the college we had volunteers escorting us to the registration counter on a cloudy but cool day. In our small journey upto the help desk I just shuddered at the sight of their superb campus. This seemed to be the ideal place for pursuing studies and I got the indication that this was just the tip of the iceberg and there was more to follow . we were the 20th out of 500 odd students to register . soon we registered for the respective events and were escorted to the hostel , which though was small ,offered a wonderful scene from the balcony . we had to rush to the main hall (Amriteshwari hall) in an hour’s time . so we quickly bathed and went down for breakfast and were waiting for the other 3 members of our gang( GANESH,SUDHIR AND VINU) to join us. These guys(EEE) were coming from ooty midway thru their industrial visit . but they did’nt arrive in time and we three had to attend the events without proper partners . when I went to the main hall , I kind of felt that this college was more like a temple and had students who were all hi-fi at the same time god fearing and pious . I was tending to feel very lonely, as the other 2 guys had gone to attend IT HUNT event which was all about answering 25 questions on a given subject ranging from DBMS, MICROPROCESSORS , OOPS and ………… so on. We necessarily had to be in a team of 2 from the same college to attend these group events so , I was left in the lurch . but later after a request to some one they allowed me to participate alone ,on which my performance there was not too noteworthy!!!.

The next event was quiz at 11 30 am and our EEE gang was yet to arrive there . this made us all the more angry as one of us (jaffer – in this case) would not be allowed to participate as he had no partner . achut and I took up the test and we found the prelims like sailing a boat in rough weather , but still managed to crack a few good ones , but all said and done we were sure that qualifying in the finals was a distant dream when one is competing with 400 odd people in a national level technical symposium . next up was debugging and given my dislike for the programming environment I slept thru the prelims only to be fresh for the sumptuous lunch in store in an hours time . the next event was titled KING OF THE RING which was basically an aptitude test in the prelims and a mock interview in the finals. I gave it a good shot but wasn’t able to finish their array of questions in an hour’s time, but felt from within that participating in such an event brings me on par with best brains all over the country and helps me to gauge myself among the top. Well half a day over 1300 hrs and time for lunch –fried rice with kurma and raitha along with rotis . while we 3 were having our lunch we were very crossed with our EEE gang that had not turned up and in turn spoiled our holiday mood and ruined our chance of participating in ADZAP –as it required a minimum of 3 and max 4 , with my other 2 CSE guys rattling in stage fear.

After lunch when we came out we finally spotted our EEE gang who were misguided in taking a circuitous route to AMRITA .my joy knew no bounds after seeing them and immediately we went to the ADZAP contest and we were to do 3 minute skit on selling a defense software with a punch line and our marketing strategy . we named our software as KALAM’S ANGELS VERSION X.X –with punch line as --- just nuke it ---!!!.sudhir gave a very good marketing strategy with the onus of selling the software to underdeveloped nations –developing nations and so on ….. we thought we would definitely qualify , but judge thought otherwise and so our record of prelims drop outs went on accumulating in Amrita college . as we were walking thru the steps in the main hall I spotted my name printed on a sheet of paper and guess what ? I qualified 3rd in the quiz prelims and I was damn elated as we had beaten fancied teams like CIT and PSG who were behind us in points . that small news made up our day and so we were staying the night in amrita , to come back to have a go at the quiz finals tomorrow .

After qualifying for the quiz our sagging spirits were rejuvenated with some lovely weather in the evening and of course a nice tifffen in their hexa-lotus shaped cottage like canteen , which seemed to us like we were attending an ayurveda ashram with a gurukul like atmosphere where the boys and girls went all out in seing that our request was met and made all possible arrangements to make sure we enjoyed our stay . our plans to go to coimbatore (21 kms from ettimedai) that evening to see a movie was quashed by rain initially and also by the news that AMRITA was organizing a cultural dance programme. So that evening we entered in to a jam packed hall , with first song number being BARDASH NAHIN KAR SAKTA from the movie HUMRAAZ and that catchy number set the tone for the evening , with a string of amazing dance performances. The program got over by 8 and we were in a euphoric mood humming a few tones and went to dinner and over dinner we had a long discussion over some trivial matter that I don’t remember now. It was a lovey night as this is a very rare chance to spend it with your close friends in such an environment talking on all topics under the sun. soon we got tired and had to call it a day as we broke into slumber after a day of mixed emotions .

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