Thursday, November 14, 2013

Two friends


I once had two friends

They were the best I had

I shared everything with them

If only I knew they would not last


I woke up with their calls

I texted them in between work

I shared everything with all my heart

If only I knew they would not last


I flew over cities to meet with them

I ran over people to be with them

They had become my life’s new start

If only I knew they would not last


We grew up, we got mature

They got many new friends

& I got my life’s lure

Lunches were postponed

Dinners got cancelled

B’Days now forgotten

And not one of us took a name


We are no longer friends

They can’t stand my presence in their lives

We haven’t spoken in years

And haven’t even tried to jump over the fence


I miss them, to say the least

I wish I had more friends like these

The heart cries, coz now there is just a past

If only I knew they would not last


But now I have two new friends

And they are the best I can ever have

I share everything with them


And I really want them to last.


(For one ‘Masakali_’ and an ‘OyeHello’)

Friday, October 25, 2013

My Valedictorian Speech.

Following is the speech I had prepared to deliver at my Convocation on the 19th of Oct '13. Unfortunately NaMo, currently Guj-CM, was running short of time, and the ceremony had to be cut short, curtailing the 3 speeches, one each from SPM, SLS and SPT. Here is the one that would have been SPT's 'Last speech of Graduation'

Formal pleasantries.

Congratulations Graduates.

A week ago, I got a call from the Director of the School himself, asking if I would be interested in sharing my experience at PDPU during the Convocation. I was, frankly speaking, in a fix. The director wanted me, an average student of the batch, to share my experiences. So I did exactly what our Generation would do. What our YouTube generation would do. I saw a few YouTube videos. Steve Jobs, Randy Paush, Bono, Michael Dell, Ellen Degeneres, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Larry Page, and all this time, I kept wondering just one thing. These are big people, who have made it very big in their lives. I am no Gates, I am a normal guy.
Also, half of the above dropped out of college, so that train is long gone for me.

But seriously, what have I been asked to do here? I know today is supposed to be the day we celebrate our graduation from PDPU. However today, I would also like all of us to celebrate the people who made us into what we are today. The people. Our friends, our good friends, our not so good friends, our Professors, and our families.

These, ladies and gentlemen, are the people who shaped us. From the father who constantly pestered you for your expenses and cut short your pocket money, to the one who flew in, within a day’s notice, leaving behind all his work, because he was summoned by the Disciplinary committee for your misdeeds.

From the Professors, who threw you out of class because every day you attended his class just to look at the girl with those brown eyes and the beauty spot on her nape, sitting in the corner, to the one who gave you those extra 3 marks, without you even asking, just so that you could appear for the interview, next day.

And the friends, oh those idiots. Borrowing cash from you to buy a gift for your B’day. Keeping up all night before the end terms “to study”…and ending up discussing the SLS Chicks all night long.
Friendship became a completely new phenomenon in college. “Maggi and chai at 3 in the morning at Ashoks Galla”, would take up a Hundred-page chapter in all our lives. And damn those, who cleared Transport Phenomena in the first attempt. The ones who did not, are a fraternity, till death do us apart, I swear to God.  
Bhui Sir’s Bread & BAAttar, TP Singh Sir’s know-it-all smirk (Forgive me, Prof.), Ashish Sarkar Sir’s football stories and imagining him with this same bushy beard, even in his youth, Nigam Sir’s searious yet inPHORmative one-to-one sessions, Karmakar Sir’s Aeyi Porag, these have stories behind them that deserve to be told to the entire world.
Flare, Soul Pepper, SPE, DisCo, Internships, B.Tech Thesis, Placements, all just flashed by.

So what have I earned in the 4 years at PDPU apart from a piece of paper that happens to be my Graduation Degree and will most probably feed me for the rest of my life, and maybe even make my parents proud in the entire society?
Well, I have earned the blessings of the Professor, who used to scold me every time he saw me, whether on the lawns, or by mistake in the class, and now when I go to see him, he greets me as if I was his long-lost son.
I have earned the trust of those few, who I can depend on with my life, who I can call up at 2 in the morning to fish me out of a sticky situation in the opposite end of the world, not even having talked to him for over a year.

And above all, I have earned a life. An attitude. A pride. One that I was alien to before I came to this place. One that has become my way of life, one that I am known by, in the big bad world out there, the very world I survive in just because of what I became here.

From 08BT01062, I became Abhimanyu Manna.

This...Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, PDPU, is an amazing place. To me, it's Magical.

God Bless you all. God Bless PDPU.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Riding: An Art.

Life is a stage and we as actors are performers. The art of living life cannot be measured by a tablespoon and made a perfect dish with appropriate ingredients. Similarly, the beauty of a motorcycle journey is not dependent on the pre-decided route, the roadmaps or the destination. What one lives through during a road trip is the flavour that one just craves for. Of course, it’s easier said than done. Because the motorcycle journeys are meant for those who are willing to take the challenges bestowed on them by themselves.

my royal enfield at mori plains.

All said and done, bikers have a hard core belief that they live, breathe & feel riding like no one else. And to a certain extent, it’s true. He who rides, lives life at a different tangent and senses individuality with each passing road trip.

Companions make life beautiful and so they make journeys and expeditions meaningful. For the solo rider – the companion is the Enfield, for the one who loves togetherness – the companion is a friend or a loved one. But choose anything – it will just return back multi folds with only one thing – sheer bliss!!


The purpose of traveling is unexplained. Some do it for leisure, some for pleasure and some for explorations. When I asked myself, I got a plain simple answer – its my inner calling and passion. I feel blessed that I form a relatively smaller part of the world that not just knows his passion but also has an opportunity to live it – live it to the fullest. And I am glad that I made that choice. After all each life is all about the choices that have been made  – isn’t it?

The road less travelled calls for the nomad who may or may not believe in motorcycle journeys, but certainly respects adventure with a pinch of serenity or vice versa. The destination is and will always be a part of the journey because what it brings with itself is a thought – there is much more to be seen, explored & experience. There is no school which teaches that or no expert rider who can pass it on to you – it will just come naturally once you kick start your Enfield and begin your journey towards the ‘Art of Riding’.


When you are on the oldest motorcycle brand in the world, you see too much of the globe to remain strapped to a single identity. That’s why each Bullet means something different to each rider. There are days when we feel that I am living in a dream – a dream that is so pure and sacred that it has added purity to our beings and created new horizons for me. Fresh air and open highways, green mountains and light blue sea, no speed limits and a soothing motorcycle ride – that’s what life is all about in this dream world. I humbly bow down to the World of Bulleteers, where they live to ride and ride to live !!!


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Writing, for the fun of it.

Today, I want to write just for the sake of writing. I don’t need this to be read by anyone. I don’t need anyone to comment. Today, I want to write, just for the sake of writing.
Blogging these days has become a way of communicating with the unknown. Most of the times the blogger doesn’t even know the reader. And yet they do. No doubt that has a thrill of its own.
But by each day the meaning of blogs has metamorphosed, if I may say so. Blogs are becoming more reader-centred, rather than staying writer-centred. What about expressing yourself to yourself? Blogging is supposed to be for oneself, and not for the reader. That is what blogging is supposed to be. The writer doesn’t choose his reader. The reader chooses his writer.
So here I am. Expressing to myself. I, Abhimanyu Manna, am talking to myself and hence, have gone totally bonkers. It like making those stupid faces in front of the mirror, repeating, “In kutton ke saamne mat naachna Basantiii..!” in 100 different styles & voices. Yea, just like that.
It's liberating, really. I am not a lunatic. Expressing to yourself might not be as much fun as writing to an audience, but it gives you a reality check. It lets you know about you, as it is. Time passes as it should. Emotions flow as they should. It is good. Yea it is.
So here I am, talking to myself, getting an inch closer to reality and yet edging towards ‘Moh-maya’.
Till next then.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

8 Minutes.


If the sun were to explode, you wouldn’t even know about it for 8 minutes. Because that is how long it takes for light to travel to us. For 8 minutes, the world would still be bright. And it would feel warm.”

- Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

We live our mundane lives every day, oblivious of what is going to happen to us tomorrow. Every next second is a surprise. Or rather, what it is intended to be. By who? Let’s not get into that now. Later, maybe.

Today, all we have is ‘8 Minutes’. What if some day, it really happened. And all we had was 8 minutes. Haah! Sounds like those cheesy forwarded texts, saying, “What would you do? Forward to falana-dimka people to get interesting answers, but first answer me.”

Let’s call the day when it happens, The Worst Day. So what would you do? In those last 8 minutes? The worst day, would also mean that it most certainly would be the last day. And hence it would mean that the Worst day would make the list of things to do a lot longer. Would it not?

You all would have your own lists. I have mine. But keeping in mind that we would have just 8 minutes, I am in a fix. What would I most certainly do? And what would I skip? There would be so many things I would have wanted to do in life. But those 8 minutes are not the time to do them. How would I know without ever doing them before if I like them? And would it be wise to do them in those 8 minutes? Would those 8 minutes be enough for all of them? It most certainly would not. And even if it were, I would not want to do them. Primarily because that would be the first time I would be doing them. I want to do only good things in those 8 minutes.

Good things. All in 8 minutes. So where do we start? How about, “What makes most number of memories?” Touch? Audio Clips? Video clips? Pictures? Pictures.

Pictures. Photographs. Photographs, to capture a particular moment in time. Photographs, to re-live a previously captured moment in time. Photographs, to remember people by. Or a place. Photographs to make your nostrils pain and your eyes itch because you miss the person, or the moment. Photographs to remind you how much you love someone. Photographs to remind you of the glorious gone-by days. Photographs to live them, just once more.

So that seals it. My last 8 minutes, I would want to re-live the gone-by moments. Rewind and play through those moments in my mind. Like a movie. A movie with just photographs. Moments frozen and captured in time. Yes, that should do the trick.

The Last 8 minutes. Now I am prepared for it.

Bring it on.