Year 2003. The global software industry showed signs of post recession awakening after the dreadful World Trade Centre attack and the subsequent impact on the outsourcing businesses in general. We were stepping into our final year of Computer Application Masters course. The decisive year when we need to find a placement for ourselves so that we can contribute to the numerous bunch of brains that make this industry work.
This was the same year we had to do a project for couple of months at any of the IT companies and submit a report at the college. The need was to work on a live project so as to maximize our experience with the wonderful world of programming! I for one was not very keen from the beginning since I had strongly convinced my mind that programming is not my cup of tea. Nevertheless certain inevitabilities of life can’t be postponed forever!
The good thing about getting a project at Webstorm IT, a small time software development firm in Bangalore, was the comfortable work atmosphere offered. Add to this the fact that I’d my dearest cousin sister along with me made things all the more interesting. We were joined by three more souls in this journey towards finding our destiny!
Rajitha, the simple to the core but something much more girl, from the cultural capital of Kerala, Thrissur, was the other feminine presence among the group. The spoken words were far and few initially but she proved to be a chatter box down the line. There were many more surprises in store about her which we all discovered together.
Dennis, was nothing like a menace for sure! A harmless character but mostly lost in his wonderland perhaps planning for how to provide the algorithms a fitting place to be and flourish. He had a pair of legs that were destined to be pulled to the maximum during the days ahead.
Tina, my sweet sister was a true embodiment of free spirit. I adored her trademark bubbly attitude and the genuine care she showered on me which could well be scooped out and showcased as to how a sister should be!
Jomy, the mighty one! If there is one word which can describe him, nothing other than this suits better: Life! That’s what he was. Full of life all the while. Having lived his life as a cross country race he was the best spoken and the biggest brat, both at the same time. Little did we know that by the end of the project he’ll turn out to be the one who will be the closest to our hearts.
Jomy was the brightest among the whole bunch who had an appetite for making things work. Be it the syntax of the programs he coded or the weekend outing plans he arranged, he had it in him. A natural organizer and a tactful leader. He was born to win. Many a times I’ve stood at awe at his ability to handle a situation. His charisma definitely had a lot to do with making people listen to him. He being a natural charmer, there was no two ways about his ability to make the fairer sex attracted to him. I could only watch him with an impatient jealousy and keep reminding me that life’s not always fair...
He had this peculiar habit of munching something while programming. We being the lesser mortals who kept getting lost in the maze of the ‘ifs’ and ‘elses’ of the weird world of coding had only one sensible thing to do. Ensure the supply chain of goodies never got choked. The programming genius in him was kept awake with the constant flow of snacks delivered at his desk.
During one of these days we got to know about the culinary expertise of the lady from Thrissur. The most natural thing followed. Jomy officially appointed her as the Master Chef of our project! While he cracked his brains to bring the binary numbers under his spell, she did the same with the spices and masalas of the world. She proved herself to be an excellent cook and the realization of the fact that we’ve a full time chef with us made us really happy, especially Jomy who was a connoisseur of excellence!
Time flew by and we all parted ways as life had to move on. We all presented the fruits of our labour to our respective colleges and completed the Post Graduation in flying colours. While I pursued my next Masters in Management, Jomy got an offer at Webstorm itself which he accepted and Dennis started with another firm. Tina got married in between and flew to the States. So did Rajitha a few months later, the wedding which Jomy and I attended and relived our memories of the good old days.
Being in Bangalore helped us being in touch though as years went by the frequency came down. We did make occasional phone calls and once a while met as well. I got busy with my further studies and the job that followed. After a few years I got married too. Priorities changed and people who used to be in the frequent contacts list got replaced with other names.
As was decided by the good God, I was meant to get the shocker of my life one day while preparing for our dinner at Dubai where to which I’d moved along with my family! Tina forwarded me a mail from Rajitha saying Jomy was admitted in Vellore hospital for cancer treatment and was in the secondary stage! A whole lot of pictures flashed by in my mind and the next thing I knew was tears rolling down my cheeks and I cried my heart out on my beloved’s shoulders. I couldn’t accept the fact that, the guy I knew as the one who loved to live life to the fullest is now battling for that. I prayed to God not to call him back so soon. He had not even started his life to say the least.
A month of prayers and thoughts passed by and another phone call from Tina made me realize that how much ever you plan, His will, will be done! He may not be seen anymore, but I feel his presence everyday when I see people complain about little things. My mind speaks to me that I once knew a guy who will fold his hands and face the issues with a steely determination that will melt away even the most gruesome of challenges that ever came up!
Your legacy lives on my dear friend...