Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Good Morning

Prejudices rule the world. The moment you hear of “The United States of America”, all we imagine is dollars in millions, super sexy cars, a chic home & a swanky lifestyle. Then, reality bites. One session of recession and millions of dollars being dolled out to save the companies who sold the super car, to keep the chic home & live in a style which suddenly turns from swanky to swampy.

This has nothing to do with my being married to a Tamilian. And no, my wife does not want to relocate to the US either. But, think South India and you imagine Idli, Dosa & Vada-Sambhar, only, right? Well, wrong. I have lived down south for 4 years. That’s a long time for ignorance to turn to frustration, frustration into depression which leads to hate. Am sure, a lot of people took this route. Or else, why such a prejudice? I loved most of my stay days there, and not just the food. People define culture. I loved the people there. For all I know, I may be one of the lucky few who found good south Indians to interact with at every occasion during the entire 4-year stint there. Who knows? Anyhow, I have come to believe that South Indians, especially, Tamilians are the most straight forward, a little rustic & yet well mannered, simple thinking & simple living people. They are very unlike most north Indians, especially Delhites who love to show off. Infact, I am inclined to state they don’t know how to show off! Most of my class mates in B-School were from business families. Parents of few would drive in to meet their kids in Mercedes cars. Some of them own rice/flour mills, some run more than a dozen petrol pumps on national highways & some have flourishing textile and/or spare parts factories. And you could not make a difference. I still don’t know why do most people there don’t tuck in their shirts, love wearing slippers to work, change into lungis in the next given opportunity & love curd rice so much!

And then, there is this one batch mate whose father has a transport company running more than 30 trucks (give or take a few, I don’t remember the exact number now). At first glance, this guy was the true picture of a typical south Indian dude you could imagine. He had a purple colored bike, had more than one purple colored jeans, worn matching with green or yellow shirts mostly. He had a short but stout figure & certainly believed he was Cupid’s gift to both sexes. Most batch mates did not like him initially. Many, I guess would still avoid him. He loved himself. From day one, he was sure, he was not in B-School for a job. He had bigger plans. He wanted to be an entrepreneur. Our initial interactions with him were only because only north Indians on campus smoked & his room mate happened to be one. During the course of time spent alongside, we became good friends. How much of good friends? Well, can’t really measure the intensity. Infact, after I left Chennai we have met only once in the last 6 years & spoken thrice.

The fourth time he called me in the last week of March this year, saying he is visiting Delhi over business. We wanted to meet, but he had a flight to catch the same evening & wanted a favor. He said someone will deliver some money in cash to me which I was supposed to deposit in his bank account! I said, “ok, but how much is the amount? ” He said, “ten lacs”. I think the phone fell off my palm because there was a long silence & when I recollected my thoughts & perhaps the phone, I heard him saying he is carrying twenty five lacs in cash with him!! I had not seen one lac in cash together in my life & the next day someone was delivering ten lacs!! What happened with the money comes sometime later.

My submission, he too could have lived with the typical north Indian prejudice and never handover his hard earned, hard cash of such a magnitude to a north Indian, living in Delhi with whom he has not spoken in years. He chose his instinct & friendship. His company creates blended coffee, by the brand name, Good Morning. Let us all wake up!!

3 comments:

Home said...

US of India??? am i missing something here?

Home said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jerry said...

Yes... you are missing your identity!!!

Anyways, thx.. have amended the typo error