• Ashish Ranjan

Creating Something from Nothing #1: New in Delhi

Updated: Jul 11, 2019

It was June 11th 2016, I was 22 with a bronze medal from a college no body gives a shit about, a bag on my back filled with 20 kg of books that no body is going to read from my coaching institutes, under Delhi heat which is trying to test human body's melting point, searching for a PG in my budget. Roamed for around 5 hours, saw all kinds of rooms ranging from garbage to dog shit in localities that makes you question your decision of coming to Delhi. I saw 3 people living in a room where even one shouldn't, sleeping on a bed that should be used for bonfire, having charts of formulas stuck on walls with no paint on it, like I can literally see the bricks. A big window was a privileged in Delhi PGs and the guys who were already living there said this is the reason why they took this room and I said nice, a silver lining, I took a look out of the window to find some cow sheds and I said "hmmm... that explains the smell", that's when the guy lying on the bed wearing boxers (Unfortunately, because his legs haunted me for next few weeks) with book in his hands titled "A Handbook on Mechanical Engineering" said "no bro that's from the toilet, it's about to get fixed", I looked at him, I wanted to pick him up and say, "Bro, come with me, we can do better in this city which is capital of this great country" but asked "Since when?" instead, "just a week or two...", "then where do you guys take a shit?", he started to explain pointing downwards, I said "bye" and walked away before he could do so, "It's the cheapest you can get here bro, only Rs 6000 a month and it's only 20 minutes from the coaching center. Since you joined late, all the PGs right next to the center are full", "Alright thanks bro, I'll come back here if nothing works out" and walked away with 5 more PG contact cards in my hand hoping the next one is less of a shit hole than this one.

After roaming around in Saket in Delhi heat for next hour, I reached a narrow lane pretty close to my coaching center, when I heard "Looking for a room?I happen to know of a good one very close from here", It was a middle aged man in his mid 40s, being politer than what could be trusted, having a broader smile than what I would have had if I was AIR-1 in GATE 2016. "Yes, which one?", "Come with me, he said". While walking in those lanes which became narrower with every next turn I was frustrated and angry, not because all the PGs, this place and the whether was shit but because according to me I didn't deserve this shit. I had worked hard for GATE 2016, not for 2 months, not for a year, I had worked like an animal for four fucking years, dreaming of a better life, a rich and lavish one, a job in BMW or ISRO or Mercedes hanging out with beautiful girls but here I was with a bag filled with books and my wallet filled with my father's money. Life seemed extremely disappointing and somehow I was sure that it was not my fault, somehow I was sure that injustice happened with me, that I got wrong set or that normalization fucked me up. There I was lost in my thoughts of how unfortunate I was and how people who worked lesser got more when that guy said "Amit ji, he wants a room", I looked at Amit and he was a 6'2" tall and handsome guy in his late twenties, he had well groomed beard and was well dressed. he turned out to have even wider smile while he said "hello ji, you want a room? Oye chandu, show him the top floor room", "No no, bhaiya, I don't want top floor, it'll be too hot", "Oh ok ok no problem, the boy on second floor will leave exactly in 20 days, you can shift there then, now go and see the room, it is Amazing!", so chandu and I struggled up the mount everest of 3 floors on ill designed stairs to find the oven of a room on top floor, Amit bhaiya was right, room was amazing! it was amazing how they could design a room with no windows, it was amazing how this room also had a stench, and it was certainly amazing that of all the rooms, they decided to put the defective cooler in the top floor room. It was dusk already, I had searched for rooms all day but I guess there are no good rooms in Delhi, at least not the one that I could find, I had to join classes next morning and it was 7pm already, it was time to compromise. So I gave Amit 16k, 8K for this month and 8K as a deposite they called security. I had never been so tired, a train journey from Ranchi to Delhi and then whole day of roaming around in Delhi, I didn't even remembered that I need to have dinner, I just crashed on the better looking bed out of the two beds that were in room.

Next morning my sleep broke early, I woke up around 3:30 am, it was super hot so I decided to go on terrace. It was still dark so I couldn't see much but saw enough to understand that this is Delhi, heart of this country, I talked to myself, "here I have to build a magnificent career. This is the beginning of Ashish Ranjan". I looked at infinity and said "this time I'm going to prove myself, I have a proper strategy, proper plan, proper attitude and no body is better than me". It felt like I was in control, I knew what I had to do and how to do it. These thoughts of being in the moment was going in my head as I saw the sunrise and the light unveiled that I was looking at the great "Qutb Minar" the whole time. It was time now to turn my thoughts into reality by taking actions, I still had more than an hour so I decided to go back to my shitty room and revise some of my Strength of Material notes, after which I did some boxing workout for around half an hour to break some sweat to deal with the change in environment which makes one prone to fall sick, took a bath had the unhealthy parathas that our stupid PG mess cook provided and I was ready for my first class.

I'll see all of you in the next one "Creating Something from Nothing #2: First day"

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