A couple of weeks ago Amar sent an invitation to join him and a few of his other friends at his Pensieve. His logic was that these were people who were close to him and belong to different parts of his life and it would be nice for all of us to meet. Lunch and tea and bajjis were on the agenda. Too good to miss.
|Diyanat, Amar, Kumar, Satish, Me, Devika, Madhavi and Abhishek|
I asked him if our common friend Madhavi was coming. She has rejoined the Centre for Organisational Development and when he said he had invited her and that she also was asking about me, I called her. I asked her if she was coming and she said she would like to come so I picked her up and off we went. Its a long drive to Amar's Pensieve and took us a good part of an hour.
Amar was waiting with Ramakrishna. The food was ready, piping hot, so I decided to go at it and not wait for the others (Amar and Madhavi waited). Ramakrishna excelled as a cook once again and I dug in heartily into the rice, chicken, rasam and dal. Then the others arrived- Abhishek Patwari, an advocate with his wife Devika and daughter Bani, Satish, a financial consultant, Kumar, an entrepreneur turned psychologist. And then, coming up last on his bike was Diyanat Ali, founder of the Greater Hyderabad Adventure Club and a Transformational Coach. Diyanat conducts programs like Self Craft, Menswork Rites of Passage and Outlife and has interest in facilitating spiritual and esoteric processes like - hold your breath - Sufi Zikr, Shamanic journeying, yoga, Vision quest, Soulcraft etc.
Conversation was good - lots of questions to the advocate. I found that I cannot go as an atheist - by default, if I have no other religion, the Hindu law applies to property, marriage and something. I found that hard to believe. Diyanat regaled us with stories of how he took off on his grandest adventure when he was all of eight years old - getting a bunch of other eight year olds to sign up for a night out in a cave. The others backed off but he spent most part of the night in the cave. He conducts tours to te Sahyadris and told tales of how the villagers treat them well, how he once got lost. Kumar told us of his practice, his adventures in Auli when he fell into a ditch covered with snow and somehow made it out. Not just that, he also survived a fall from a three storeyed building. Satish told us about his days with truck finance and how he was a terror among the truck drivers - driven by the company's cause. A major change for the shy and introverted young man. Madhavi told us about her work at the CoD. Amar held the group energy well and introduced everyone and kept everyone in the loop.
There was talk that bordered on the philosophical when Diyanat talked about getting lost in the forests and Kumar about his fall into the ditch. We talked about how that moment of losing control is what was perhaps the most fascinating thing in life. Conversation flowed easily. I spoke of how Amar was the one who got me into speaking assignments with a speech at the Hyderabad Management Association (2007) and how he and Madhavi were the ones to give me the first workshop assignment at the CoD which was in some transition (2008). I have since done some 100 plus lectures and maybe 50-75 workshops. Much gratitude A and M. Saish also spoke of how Amar was the one who advised him to choose some job which worked out well for him.
We took a group pic and left at 4 after filling ourselves with some lovely mirchi bajjis, pakoras and chai. Thanks Amar, for a lovely day out and hope to do one again soon.