Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Snow'd in C'ville - Darden postcards

Top to bottom: Courtyard outside Cafe '67, A wooden bench on Flagler stands as a reminder of the fall afternoons I have spent on it reading my cases, Flagler courtyard and the classrooms building
In this second instalment of pictures, we spent a day at Darden taking pictures. Darden on any given day is beautiful, but with snow, Darden transforms into a picture-taker's paradise. Winter break has ensured that the snow in most parts of the grounds in untouched and pristine. Superimposed with memories from last winter break spent at C'ville is the twinge of sadness that I won't be here next winter.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snow'd in Charlottesville

With over twenty-five inches of snow in C'ville and the sister being here from sunny California, I had a great two days being snowed in at home in C'ville. We braved the snow to go on a walk around Ivy Gardens for a photo-shoot and came out with some good shots!

Friday, December 18, 2009

And yet another quarter whooshes by!

The end of SY Q2 came and went a week ago... and unbelievable as it is, I am done with three fourths of my MBA. Home stretch is here and so is the darn nostalgia... who invented goodbyes anyway?

This past quarter taught me some very important things about school - business or grad . I had a set of courses lined up in the beginning of the quarter; however, during add-drop I switched some and shuffled some to accommodate my recruiting efforts. Now I feel bad about having missed some good courses - yet I found some pretty unexpectedly interesting courses too, so it wasn't all bad! Big lesson here is to that you're paying to learn and you're going to be here just once. Recruiting will keep happening and the world cannot stop and wait while you find a job! So it's important to learn to balance the coursework as well as do what you need to in order to land a job. But then again, who is this advice for? The economy's looking up for the next batch at school and I hope that very few people in the coming batches will be stuck like us!

Some key takeaways from the quarter were that great ideas come with a cool group bonding at Panera, sustainability can be cool, Crystal Ball and I might just call a truce and agree to disagree, if you're too big to fail then you're too big to manage... oh and I have to recommend this fantastic book I read as part of a course I took this quarter. The book's called Strategic Intuition and is written by Columbia professor William Duggan.

Retrospection is a vile habit - so much wisdom and no undo button to let you do it all over!

Wine and women

Over last week - exam week - there were a few social events thrown into the evenings marking friends going to India on vacation or going away on exchange next quarter. one of them was a ladies night, another was a surprise party for a dear friend going on exchange and was held at the Root residence (THANK YOU JD and Roots!). And at both of these events that I attended, there was a cross-section of Darden women (and men - but they were playing a comic game of Guitar Hero).

And much later, after these enjoyable evenings, one of our exchange students from Italy pointed how she was inspired by the women she had met on those evenings and at Darden. At no other place had she met such independent minded women who knew what they wanted out of their lives... or at least knew how to figure out what they wanted out of their lives... they shared similar attitudes and thoughts towards life, relationships, career, food and wellness among a host of other things. And they inspired her to be like them - to stand up as women who had the courage to follow their dreams and desires. We are a minority, she said later, and we must stand together, for each other.

I thought about what she had said, and couldn't agree more. We are a minority and we are precious. The support we are capable of giving each other is phenomenal, and we give it so freely only to receive it in plenty. I will miss these women when we graduate, but I know that my life is richer just by knowing them.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Playing catch up on Thanksgiving

So I know I have been quiet on the blog space these past few weeks, blame it on writer's block and celebrate the come back now!

I had a great Thanksgiving break in California with family and friends. It was great catching up with some friends from work and high school in the Bay Area - although we couldn't really have all the long deep conversations on all that we had missed out in each others' lives since we last met, it was enough to pick up the threads and move on to more current stuff. Or maybe no one ever really attempts to have those years' worth of conversations...

In the short time that I was there, I was able to fully appreciate the garage-to-fortress rise of the technology companies that give Silicon Valley its name. Highlights of my trip include walking along the Golden Gate, riding a Christmas train to Fremont with my young cousins and a tour of the YouTube office in San Bruno!

Another thing that I was really thankful to technology for was free wi-fi (Thanks Google!) in the airports! I had a three hour layover in Charlotte on my way back and used the internet fully to research a project and create a deck to present in class the following morning.


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