Maine blog mata se mannat maangi thi, agar London se sahi salamat laut ayi to ek post likhoongi. Hence this post.
Ok let's start from the beginning :) I joined this new place. They recently started doing induction programs for new starters. The firm is biggish and located all over the UK the events are held in the capital London . I had joined weeks prior to getting the invite to attend the induction event I was not sure how to respond . There is always the option to decline an invite of course. I checked with my manager. The irony was he was new to the firm as well having joined a couple of weeks before me and at the point I went to ask him he was booking his tickets to the induction he has been invited for. He told me to go ahead . I went ahead and booked. Later I learnt from a colleague how she had kept declining the invites and ultimately needed to take just a 2 hr video learning . She recommended the path to me. But you know Murphy? The fellow who said if something can go wrong it will? In my case it is 100% assured it will and to top it, it will snowball into a more ginormous problem. I have lots and lots of examples which warrant a separate post I guess.
Now a little information about me. I am a typical small town girl. Big fast cities scare me. Might be the reason why I have never ventured to Mumbai . I am not into quaint idyllic rustic places either. They bore me till I am suicidal. A place like Hyderabad or BBSR works brilliant for me- just the right mix of modern and tradition, pace and rest. London is big, fast, busy busy busy. The best means of commute is the underground called the tube which requires some map reading skills. I do not have my left and right correct. Imagine reading maps! K loves maps and the tube and London . I asked him to find the detailed itinerary for me. He hovered on the laptop for some time and came up with his commandments. His directions:- come out of the train station, take the steps going downwards they will lead to the underground , see your station , take appropriate train, get down , follow people in suits! I swear that is exactly what he said . Talk about being helpful.
Anyways I did my research . As best as I could. Haggled some co- workers about any details, prayed and set off. On D-day I reached Leeds station on time and train set off. Read 10% of my book. Reached London , checked with help desk for direction to the tube and got there straight. Huh. Pretty straight forward . I went on and started reading the map. Really intently. It was a bit difficult but I had a fair idea of what to do next. There were no crowds of pulling jostling, pushing or pulling me. It was utter calm. Further down the road there was an abridged map for my area which gave me a chance to verify my earlier inferences( which were miraculously correct). Boarded the tube, emerged in the station close to the event. Remarkable. I was lost in the biggish station. Well they are called help desk for a reason and I got my answers straight up. I emerged on my street but as per K's advice there were not a lot of people in suits. Its summer you see. My Google maps was also acting up. Then I saw a group of confused people checking their phones and heading in one direction . I followed them , they were going somewhere else but I could see my destination. Hurray. Boo ya London . You don't scare me.
The day was strange with lots of strangers I was forced to interact with. We were supposed to network but if I was into networking what was I doing in IT? Duh! The event finished before time, I could avoid the office rush hour, take the return tube and get home. Finishing this trip has been like finishing an exam. Boy!