First promotion is always a very special event and I cherished the opportunity very fondly. A written test was followed by interview and then an endless wait for the final result. A colleague brought the news that the result was already declared and that all the successful candidates knew their names. I was crestfallen but being an eternal optimist, chose to await official declaration. And one fine morning, I received phone call from my controller, congratulating me on my elevation! it was like a bolt from the blue, albeit in a positive perspective.
Very early into my professional life, I was advised to finish my two years of rural stint. However, posted in the western most part of Rajasthan deep in the midst of desert and having a new bride that came from the greenest part of the country, going into further upcountry to a remote, dry and poorly connected village for two years gave me shudders. Little did I realise that I would be posted at one of most sought after rural branches located at the outskirts of a prominent town just 5 minutes drive from my residence. Two years just flew off in fun.
Just after marriage, there were times when towards the month ends, we found it a bit difficult to make the two ends meet, waiting anxiously for the salary day. Once, there was an emergency and the expenditure, albeit small, was unavoidable. Having never asked for money in my life, I was in deep despair, when my wife traced some money lying under the bed mattress! It was a godsend moment.
Locating to Kolkata was as per my wish, but getting my daughter admitted to a reputed school proved to be a nightmare. Everywhere we received the standard reply of no seat. As our hope ran low, the principal of the famous Loreto Kolkata, a catholic nun of Irish origin, took mercy to my wife’s crying and allotted us a seat against heavy odds.
Stuck up at Mumbai Central, with nowhere to go, not enough money to afford a flight and with my wife and infant daughter looking haplessly at me, the final reservation chart didn’t contain our names as our wait listed tickets were not confirmed. My wife went to a TT, who invited us to his compartment and allotted seats to us against cancellation without charging a penny that was not lawful.
At Kolkata, my first residence was in Deep South, quite far from my daughter’s school and my workplace. While travelling to office, I always dreamed about shifting close to a Kali temple that was on the way to my office. It was very central close to my office as well as my daughters school. It was also a very cosmopolitan location. One morning , I just received an offer for a house situated just 2 minutes walk from the temple. It was like the end of all our woes.
Somehow, Delhi posting was not to my taste and I wasn’t doing too well. On the day my boss was getting relieved for Mumbai, he proposed whether I would like to be in Mumbai, which was totally unexpected as I never imagined he liked me so much to take me along with him. And in a moment, my lifelong ambition of getting posted in the financial capital of the country was fulfilled.
At Mumbai, I always thought that any place beyond Andheri would be too testing, but rentals and property prices in Andheri were beyond me. I not only got a good flat on rent in Andheri, but am today proud owner of a beautiful property right in the heart of Andheri.
The above are only a few of the incidents that I readily recall. There would be many more that I might have taken for granted as something that I deserved or was destined to get, little realising that while I have been waiting for a miracle to change my life, all these small miracles that were bestowed upon me were either not gratefully acknowledged as small mercies or just taken for granted by me. Life itself is a miracle and so are all these small things that happen in our lives. However. we fail to notice or do not appreciate this miraculous mysterious inexplicable part of life. We wait for big miracles – big lottery, big success, big money, big opportunity etc – missing the joys of everyday miracles around us and to us!