CHAPTER THE THIRD: MEMORABLE MOMENTS
1. SLIPPERY SOURCES, ORNERY INTERVIEWEES
Ah, the intricacies of an interview. Some people you seek have a way of peppering you with questions concerning the legitimacy of your purpose, finally squeeze you into their inordinately busy schedules “I’m blocked, blocked solid this week, ma!” and promptly forget to answer their phone(s)/email, and/or doors. Then there’s the quest for anonymity. First it’s “No photo!! Nooo! I’m telling you in advance, eh?” then it’s “Um… no name, either!” and finally “Could you take me off the list of interviewees? Forget I said anything!!” Of course, I did my best to respect their wishes and privacy!
2. I, THE PROFESSIONAL
This is the closest thing I’d ever had to real work till then; it was like a real job! The excitement didn’t die down till the end and I still think about it fondly. On a more serious note, this internship also contributed marvelously to my college resume!
3. BONDING OVER BONDAS
There were some interviews that were an absolute treat to conduct! It’s a really good opportunity to meet new people, make friends, and broaden horizons! Once they heard about the magazine I was representing, they were brimming over with tips and suggestions for improvement and new ideas for future use. I learnt loads of things like people skills and time management that you just can’t pick up in school. Put together, my Grade 12 was a holistic learning experience!
4. SURVIVING POWER CUTS
Some called it a necessary evil. Others agreed, but left out the ‘necessary’. It was testament to the fact that even the best-laid plans and the smoothest time-tables will have a spanner in their works…working around these cuts (which occurred exactly in the few hours when I was free from numerous other activities) was so traumatic, it was almost funny!
5. THE COMPUTER GOES KAPUT. THE PHONE FOLLOWS.
Two weeks of utter mayhem! I couldn’t do much ParentEdge work and sat and philosophized how our lives are so dependent on our electronic gadgets. My English teacher loved the resulting essay; she said it had that touch of legitimate empathy.
6. TOO BUSY TO BASK IN MY GLORY!!
The Board exams arrived with a flash and a bang, and the evening before, I received a whole bunch of copies of the fifth issue to distribute to contributors. Many of them were my classmates, so all that could be spared by both parties was a cursory look of admiration, a smile and a ‘thank-you’, and then it was back to the last-minute chemical formulae.
7. BASKING ANYWAY
Leave it to me to make the most of a cursory look of admiration, a smile and a ‘thank-you’!! The other contributors were really thrilled to receive their copies-(read as gushing, glowing and overwhelmingly excited!!)
8. I’D MAKE A REALLY BAD FAMOUS PERSON!
The previous Student Editors had all given video interviews, and I was all for it. At first, anyway. It’s definitely an acquired skill, speaking coherently at a blinking red light trying to ignore the people behind the camera grinning at you and doubling over with silent laughter (thanks, Dad) as you fumble for the right words to make yourself sound erudite and ‘grown-up’! The number of retakes we took…. There was one of me just smiling blankly at the camera, struck momentarily dumb and reciting the Periodic Table backwards in my head… Mrs. Sudha was really nice throughout this whole episode; thanks to her, I was able to give a pretty decent interview!
CHAPTER THE FOURTH: IN CONCLUSION
My work with Parent Edge was basically what I like to do best- write and talk (even at the same time!) and will remain, I believe, in the Hall of Most Treasured Memories in my mind for a long time to come.Another happy outcome of this experience was that I was ready to choose my career- keeping in mind that I had all the makings of a budding wax carver and a rodeo clown, I decided to give my folks a wee bit of a shock by pursuing a degree in medicine.