Friday, December 01, 2006

Facts from my file - to prove we can always make do with what we have

We spend so much of our time bemoaning what we don't have - unfulfilled wishes, unavailability of resources, lack of time, unexpected twists in our life courtesy destiny, and what not. Me inclusive... thanks to some unexpected events, I have wallowed in enough self-pity and have cribbed enough over the last month to last me a lifetime! Phew! Never again.

But, in truth, if we just spend a little time thinking over the past, we'll realise, not from examples of others' lives but from our own that if we let life run its course we adapt to situations of scarcity, abundance, joy, sorrow et al quite effortlessly - as long as we don't consciously think about something as a disadvantage.

Here is a simple example:

a) Till 1 1/2 years ago, I did not have a mobile phone. I was still in touch with all my acquaintances and was able to manage all my work correspondences also. In fact, when I ultimately got a mobile phone, it took me time to get used to the fact that I had a phone - I would forget it at home all the time! When Vibhor, then the associate editor of BenefIT, used to call my mobile to clarify any doubts in my articles, inevitably my mom would pick it up and tell him that I've forgotten it at home... as usual! Today, I hesitate to give my mobile instrument for repair for a day... I wonder what I'd do without it. So, I was able to live without a mobile at one point of time; I am able to live with it as well today.

b) When I started writing, I did not have a computer all my own! Some articles I've written by hand. Some articles I've typed and taken print-outs when my dad was not using his computer. Even at that point of time, I got articles published.

c) Then, my dad gave me his laptop. I had a computer! What a luxury... I could type my articles whenever I wanted. But still no Internet connection. I would have to copy the articles onto a floppy disk (ha ha, yes, CDs were too expensive, and well my computer didn't have a CD writer anyways), take it to my dad's computer and then email it to the editors. You guessed it right - a dial-up connection. And I'd also use my dad's computer whenever he was out visiting clients, to do all my Web-based research.

d) Then, my father got an unlimited broadband connection. So, we bought a small Ethernet chord too, so I could take my laptop to his office, connect it to his computer and then connect to the Internet through it. he graciously allowed me a corner of his table where I would set my computer to connect to his. But, everytime a client visited, I'd be booted out (obviously!) and even otherwise, er, it is not really the best experience to sit in your dad's office table all the time. Over time, both of you start glaring at each other a little helplessly.

e) Next, we bought 40 metres of Ethernet cable and a D-Link switch and pulled the cable up to my room, so I could sit in my room and work. Wow!

f) Then, I bought my own laptop (don't ask me how many months I saved for it!) Double WOW!

g) Now, dad has set up a Wireless Router in his office room, so both my father and I can sit and work in any room in the house, even the balcony. Bliss!

I realised that at no stage did I really feel as if I did not have the "resources" to work. Throughout I was able to manage a decent number of articles per month. When I did not have a computer three articles a month seemed amazing, when I had a computer but limited Internet access, six to eight articles seemed great, and with unlimited Internet and my own computer, I can now average around 20 articles a month! So, resources evolve, work evolves. It's all about changing with the times. But throw me back to the pre-Internet age now, and I wonder if I can manage :-) Now, that would be a real challenge - er, don't pose it to me!

1 comment:

Anandham said...

Experience is the best teacher. Who gives the test first & then the lesson. Now u have learnt the lesson. Me too ;)

Thanks
anandham