Sunday, 26 June 2011

Monstrous Loneliness & The Fake Monsters

Its been some 10 days but still the sad memories of that day still haunt me..17th June, the worst day of my life.
The day when the world came crashing down on me..the day when i lost complete trust on the word "trust"..the day I stood on the crossroads of life with a big dilemma in my mind,, all alone..left alone..
A single day or a single person can turn your whole life upside down & that's the fact I could not just gulp down.
No sleep, No food, No peace..the words that describe the days after that.
All I can feel right now is the monstrous feeling of loneliness...
But anyways I hope to find the answers soon, & I know god you are with me & u'll surely guide me through this....
I really need you God.

Govind Jaiswal - The rickshawallah's son who cracked the IAS

This is a very inspiring story I found on rediff about a rickshawallah's son who managed to crack the moste prestigious exam in the country & is now all set to become an IAS ......(which happens to be my dream too!!)

The 2006 competitive examinations for India's civil services is notable for the number of young people from non privileged backgrounds who feature in the merit list. For the first time, none from India's elite metros feature in the top ten.

Tears ran down Govind Jaiswal's face and refused to stop. Staring him in the face was the only thing he had ever wanted, and now that he had achieved it, he couldn't even reach out for the keys on his cellphone.
He waited till the tears dried up, till the news sunk in and made that one phone call on which depended the hopes of his entire family.
Govind, 24, the son of an uneducated rickshaw vendor in Varanasi, had grown up with cruel taunts like 'However much you study, you will still be a rickshawpuller.' He had studied with cotton stuffed in his ears to drown the noise of printing machines and generators below his window in a poor neighbourhood where small workshops existed cheek by jowl with tiny residential quarters.
He had given Math tuitions to supplement the paltry sum his father could afford to send him each month. His ailing father had sold a small plot of land to give Govind about Rs 40,000 so that he could move to Delhi which would provide him a better place to study.
Throughout his life, he had lived with only one dream -- to become an officer of the Indian Administrative Service. For him that was the only way. And when he broke the news to his family, that he was ranked 48 among 474 successful candidates in his first attempt at the exam -- it was the turn of his three sisters and father to weep with unbridled joy. 

'Besides the Civil Services, I had no option'
Icould not afford to have any other career goal. My life would have been absolutely futile had I not made it into the civil services," says Govind, just back from his medicals in New Delhi, mandatory for the IAS.
"You must understand that my circumstances were such that besides the Civil Services, I had no option. I didn't have much of a chance with lower government jobs because they are mostly fixed, neither could I start a business because I had no money. The only thing I could do was work hard at my studies."
It was almost impossible for him to study in the one room he shared with his family. To add to his woes was the power cut that extended between 10 and 14 hours every day. The moment the lights went out, he had to shut the window to block out the deafening noise of generators in the many workshops around his home.
So in search for a quiet place to study, he briefly shared a friend's room at the Banaras Hindu University. Since that did not help him much, he did what many civil services aspirants in northern India do -- he moved to New Delhi.
His father sold his last plot of land for his son's dream
F or his son to make a fresh start in a city Govind had never visited before, Narayan Jaiswal, Govind's father, sold the only remaining plot of land he had saved after getting his three daughters married.
Working for ten years at the government ration shop, Narayan earned a living by weighing goods at the store. One day when the shop shut down, he bought one rickshaw and hired it out. He added three more and at one time was prosperous enough to own about 36 rickshaws.
That was a period of financial security and Narayan was prudent enough to buy three small plots of land. With three daughters to marry off, he knew he would need it in times to come. But bad times soon befell the family. His wife passed away when Govind was in school. For 10 years there was acute hardship. The rickshaws dwindled.
On his meager earnings, the uneducated rickshaw vendor with a hearing disability continued the education of his children. The girls were married after their graduation -- Narayan sold two pieces of land for the weddings, the last plot was sold to achieve his Govinda's dream.
Narayan gave his son Rs 40,000 to prepare for his Civil Services exam in New Delhi and pursue his childhood dream of becoming an IAS officer. For the next three years, he sent his son between Rs 2,500 and Rs 3,000 every month, sometimes foregoing the expense of treating the septic wound in his foot that continues to nag him till today.

Courier boys found his house with difficulty; now the fruitwallah will tell you where the 'IAS' house is'
Outside his narrow lane, opposite the Varanasi City railway station, where Narayan Jaiswal parks his rickshaws and spends most of his waking hours, he still walks barefooted with a bandage, one end hanging loose and scraping the dirty road.
"Beyond this year, my father could not have afforded to send Govind any more money. It was getting very tough for him. Govind was earning Rs 1,500 from tuitions, I don't know what he would have done if he didn't make it to the IAS this year. My father could not sleep for 10 days before the results came," says Govind's eldest sister Nirmala, whose son is almost the same age as her brother.
Now that he will earn Rs 8,000 as his starting salary during his two-year training period in Mussoorie, Govind says his first priority is getting good treatment for his father's wound.
"I want to look after him, I don't know if he will leave Varanasi but I will definitely move him out of this rented room that we have lived for 35 years."
If his son's new job dramatically changes things for the better, Narayan Jaiswal is quite unaffected by it. He is surprised by the scores of journalists and well wishers flocking to his house.
Until now, courier delivery boys found his house with great difficulty but now even the fruit cart-wallah, one-and-a-half kilometres away, will tell you where the 'IAS' house is.
"I like my work. I haven't decided about the future -- what could be a better place than Kashi? As long as my son looks after me, what else can one want?" he says, visibly uncomfortable with the media spotlight.

'My character will be put to the test, then I want to see what a real man I am'
Having lived his life in Varanasi, the holy city on the banks of the Ganga, Govind has given his home state Uttar Pradesh as his preferred region of posting. If he doesn't get UP, he is open to being sent to any state in India.
"Varanasi needs a tight administration. As for me, I want to be a good officer. We are the agents of change and I as an administrator would like to inform common people about their right to know, their right to information. The benefit should finally go to the people."
His hero is President A P J Abdul Kalam. Govind is reading the Hindi translation of the President's best-selling book On Wings of Fire and takes out a nicely thumbed copy from a plastic bag.
"After Gandhiji, President Kalam has given us a dream and the power to dream. His dream is of a developed India and he is a symbol of many common people's dreams."

"I am a product of my circumstances that has been wrought with hardships. When I go out as an officer my character will be put to the test, and then I want to see what a real man I am."

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Life seems so much messed up..I really wish life were a playground and the people around me footballs so that I could kick some people so hard that they could never manage to return back again into my life and nose around. After having spent 4yrs in a place no less than hell with people no lesser than monsters personified I'm still quite unable to move ahead with so much cluttered up in my head.
The anger, the hated, the wrath still prevails so strongly in my mind that the new thoughts are finding it very difficult to occupy space for themselves.
Hell Hell the people who made life this for me..the people who came in my life to turn it into such a mess.
Even if I turn into some saint some fine day I'll still not stop hating what happened over the period of 3yrs & each person who made that happen.
But anyways..I hope I will soon be able to recover from this state of mind soon and develop space for the much more imp. and newer thought & ideas in my mind which are all set to rock.

Saturday, 26 February 2011

The Angel called "Ngufo".... :)

Sometimes in life u find people whom u don't know, whom u haven't met & yet they change your life in their little ways!
I found a lady named Ngufo whose article just fueled me up to start working towards my CAT & GMAT dream despite all odds n troubles in life..


Here is the article written by this great lady which is inspiring enough to charge up anybody who is willing to do something big in life.............

Ngufo's Story...

NGUFO = (Never Give Up - Fight On)

I just scored a 720 in my GMat last tuesday. I screamed in the exam center with sheer disbelief and excitement. People may have thought
I am a complete gone case - but I can tell you, I believe I got the best score I possibly can, I couldnt have asked for more. I am writing this blog because I believe that my story can and will help other average people out there, sum up the courage to livetheir deams. If I can do it - ANYONE CAN. I am a very average student, whose only strength is that I am willing to work hard.

I also believe that with the right study plan chalked out, and going with your target with determination - ANYONE can score a 700 and above. The path is not easy, but who said anything is impossible - it just takes that little much longer.

It took me 6 months......

I am an asian indian female who did her masters in computer science from RPI, who has hated maths all her life. Surprisingly my whole life has involved studying maths and sciences since day 1. I have been meaning to write the GMAT for the last three years. But just the thought of Maths, had the motivation peter down... I finally decided to write my GMAT this year - I knew this would be my last chance. I also work full time, and have a stressful job in a small start up in the bay area. This was going to be hard...

Someone once told me that whatever happens in life happens two times - once in your mind, once in reality. I started with the dream of acing my GMAT and going to Harvard - "If you can see it, you can be it, if you JUST BELIEVE IT, there is nothing to it.....I believed I was going to Harvard"....

Study Details:
My preparation started May 15th, 2007 - I first came to this web site, and read Eric's blog,then I read Ursula's blog ( ,and I also read "Twinslplitters blog. I felt a little intimidated -these guys sounded sharp smart and well smart again. Then started the most important part of my preparation, the planning. Iknew that I was very weak, both in Maths and Verbal,
and neither came naturally to me. I didnt remember any of the maths forumlas, and even a simple ratio and proportion problem was stumping me - I needed to start bottoms up. By reading the blogs, and asking around I created a very extensive study schedule for me.

Step 1: Understand concepts, and formulas
Time frame: May 15 - July 1st.
A. Princeton Maths
B. Princeton Verbal
C. Princeton GMAT 2005
D. Download the Flash Cards link that Eric has provided -its a big big help.

Study pattern: I would put in two hours every day from 5 -7 in the evenings on weekdays, and would put in 4 hours each on a Saturday as well as Sunday over the weekend. Sundays for me were for writing my practice GMATs. Saturday for making sure I completed anythign I may have missed over the weekdays (revising things before my practise test on sunday)

Princeton was the key for me. I read every single line of the book, made notes. I spent all of May 15th, to end of June
ensuring that I had gone thru the Maths and Verbal of princeton, and understood the basics of both. I was so bad in maths
and verbal, that I held off on writing the diagnostic test, until I had read a little from the books.

Diagnostic Test: GMAT Prep 1 (didnt do the essays) - Score 460 (It didnt suprise me, it didnt de-motivate me, I just knew. I had to study harder).

The key part of my studies was making sure of the following:
-That any mistake I made any time, I made sure I would not make it again. I also followed Ursula's recommendation, when you make a mistake, dont read the answer immediately. Try to solve it on your own
how much ever time it takes, only when you are really stumped look at the answer. It will help you more.

- Another thing that helped me is, in all the books read the answer to every question. The author provides cool new ways to answer questions (techniques that can help you solve questions better. Sometimes when you answer a question rigth and dont read the explanation, you can miss some cool techniques that could help you do the question faster

- I timed every question I did. Would have a watch next to me. My goal was to do every maths question within 2 minutes, and every verbal within 1.8 mts. I did this timing for every question in OG. It helped me pace myself.

- Note answering all questiosn on the exam is very very important, even if it means guessing some of the quesitons. By being able to time myself by what I said above, it helped better my speed a lot.

- Make sure for both maths and Verbal you make flash cards earlier on. In maths for the important formulae, in verbal I mostly did it for Sentence Correction for any good question, ofr questions with idiosm, or any question I got wrong. The way I made my verbal flash cards were the following

Sentence Correction

Write the questions

where question came from say Princeton Verbal: Page x: question x: Difficulty (HARD, Very hard, medium okay)
Hint - Idiom, parallel, anything else that helps get answer

The above format form y flash cards helped me a lot. By the end of my exam prep I had 3 full boxes of flash cards, which I read and went before the exam. I believe flash cards are one part of my prep that made a tremendous difference. The above is a tedious effort, and I would get tired of writing flash cards (considering the number of questions I was getting wrong - but really do the best you can, this is important)

Princeton Exams Scores:
Princeton CAT 1 (July 1st, 2007): 640
Princeton CAT 2: (July 15th, 2007): 660
Princeton CAT 3: (Aug 11th, 2007): 670

Note I didnt write essays on either of these exams. I was too overwhelmed and just wanted to focus on the Maths/Verbal.

For Princeton I followed Ursulas recommendation of creating detailed spreadsheets showing what I was weak in, what took more time etc.
I am not sure how much this helped me, because I never got a chance to review these again before the exam. It helped me at that time, as it ensuredthat every quesiton I had done wrong, I had analyzed the same, made flash cards, and could answer them if they came again.
I've attached a sample of what I created, but again not sure how useful
this is.

Step 2: Studies Taken further (Kaplan)
Time Frame: July 1st - August 1st
A. Kaplan GRE & GMAT Math Workbook
B. Kaplan Verbal
C. Kaplan GMAT 2005
Kaplan Exam Scores:
Kaplan CAT 1: July 29th, 550 (was really devastated Sad ).
Kaplan CAT 2: August 15, 560 (devastation continues)
I donthave my Kaplan 3, 4 scores with me right now, but I remember they were all in the 500 range...

Was pretty disappointed with my Kaplan scores. The exams were very tough. I had read that what you get is generally 50-60 points
below your actual score, but that didnt help me much. I was way behind.

Step 3: Gmat Official Guide: Verbal/Maths
Time frame: August 1st - September end.
1. Maths Offical Guide workbook
2. Verbal Official Guide workbook

Step 4: GMAT Official guide Main book
Time Frame: October 1st - November 26th
1. Official guide 10th Edition
2. Sentence Correction (Manhattan GMAT)

really good book, that helped me hone my SC skills. Studied it in between with my OG prep.
3. Kaplan 800 -I bought this book (but it was too tough, and given that
I was focusing on finishing my OG, I never got to do this)

While studying from the Official guides I re-took all my Princeton tests again - I wanted to see if I had improved at all. Also I wanted to write all the exams with essays this time to ensure I had the stamina. I didnt prepare for my essays at this point Sad. I was still overwhelmed with the Maths/Verbal studies.

Princeton Test 1: 09/30/2007 - 720 (my first 700 and above)
Princeton Test 2: 10/07/2007 - 720
Princeton Test 3: 10/14/2007 - 640
princeton Test 4: 10/20/2007 - 640

Note I wrote essays for all the above tests (and the essays were really bull shitty). I hadnt prepared for essays at this time, was just trying to build my stamina.

I just remember being very depressed and down at this time. I was getting erratic results, and couldnt for the life of me figure out whta the hell I was doing wrong. I just decided I didnt have a choice any more. I would focus on my OG, and then write the GMAT CAT 1, 2, Power Prep 1, 2 all four test are available for free - and would give me a final evaluation of what my score woudl be. I was trying my best what more could I do?

Note the Official Guide has a huge number of questions. To be able to complete them, and still build up my stamina I would get up at 5 in the monring, and would do 20 Questions from Problem solving
20- from Data Sufficiency, 20 from RC, 20 from CR adn 20 from SC, every single day. It would take me around 3 hours to get this done every day. I would make sure whenever I got time I go thru my mistakes.
I CANNOT stress how importnat going thru your mistakes and making flash cards is!!! I never left a single question that I had done wrong, unrevised.

Essays Preparation

Book: Arco:GMAT Answers to the Real Essay Questions.

I started worrying about my essays mid October. I knew I sucked at essays, and hadnt written a single one for the initial tests. I bought the Arco Essay book and read the instructions for Analysis of the Argument/Issue. I followed instructions that helped me outline my essays much better. I just received my AWA scores and it was a 5.5 - all thanks to this book.

Final Exam Prep
Finally the date for the final exam Nov 27th. It was the thanksgiving weekend, Thursday Friday Saturday sunday.

I wrote my practise prep tests all in that week (my timing was way off), should have writtne them earlier, but there had been
too much of work in the office, and I had been strugglign with finish OG 10th edition 3 hours every day. was tired.

GMAT CAT 1: Nov 22nd (720)
GMAT CAT 2: Nov 23rd (690)

I believe what I got on the above two tests were the best reflection of my capabilities. When I try to see the quant/verbal breakdown
in the GMAT CAT tests now it doesnt show me. But I have always averaged between 38 - 40 in verbal and 47 - 49 in maths.

Power PREP 1: Nov 24rd (750): Q49V44
Power Prep 2: Nov 25th(710): Q48/40

I wasnt that excited about the Power prep scores. A lotof the verbal questions were repeats from the OG guide. Hence they were not reflective of my true score I felt.

I also believe that OG is god. Doing maths OG,verbal OG and finally the master of them all OG 10th edition, helped me get better. At the end I had becomevery very good at Data Sufficiency. From a complete duffer to someone who would not make silly mistakes, and do the questions well in time. it really helped me.

Day of the Exam - Drama continues.
I had bled for 6 months on this. It was excruciating. My exam was on Tuesday, on Monday I fell very badly sick. I am not sure if it was psychosomatic, or what the problem was. I had soar throad, cold, cough, and fever. I slept all of monday, got up at 8 in the night feeling like shit, adn very very unhappy wth life in general I could not believe what god was doing to me. How could he - it was so unfair, all this effort, all the determination for what? I called up to see if I could postpone
the exam, they said i was calling too late, I would forfeit the money, unless I could produce medical records. At the back of mind, I jsut wantedto write the damn exam, I wanted to get it over with ......

my husband doubled me up with lots of medicine, and lots of food. I remember crying to my folks about how unfair it was on Monday night. And then something just clicked in my brain. Its happened to me before - when I am beat down, some part of me fight backs. I wasnt going down that easy. I sat down from 8 - 12 in the night, and finished the last few questions from OG data sufficiency and OG Critical reasoning. I wanted to make sure my OG was all doen and complete before I went to the
exam. (I dont recommend this to anyone - a proper night sleep before the exam is essential - unless you have bad luck like me .... )

I went to sleep at 12. I could not sleep the whole bloody night. I was awake - just didnt know how to fall asleep. At 5 with eyes wide open, I just couldnt believe my bad lluck. Got up at 6 in the morning had 2 crocins, a bath. I prayed to god for 5 minutes, asking him to give me strength to go thru whatever comes my way and then went to the exam (it was at eight in the morning). There I find out as I dont have a green card yet, I needed to
get my passport (I had walked in just with my driver's licence - SHIT!!!. My husband went and got me the passport). I entered the room at 8.30.

But at this time with all the stress since the previous night, I was so pissed/frustrated, that I literally started talkign to god telling him that if I didnt get a 700 this time, I would write the exam every single year 3 times for the next n years, until I hit the damn score. I WASNT GIVING UP......

I sat down for the exam, it prompted me to write down which school I wanted my score reported (6 months, crazy effort, fever, soar throat, feeling sick .....) I took a deep breath, took a gulp, and with shaking hands, wrote down Harvard business school. I can tell you this, when the exam started, you could have shot me, and I would hve answered the question with everything I had. Every question had 300% of me when I asnwered. I didnt have time to finish all the maths questions. But I rememberd that answering all was more important - I had to randomly select answers for the last 4 quesitons Sad (selected all D's as the last four were problem solving questions, adn I had read, that the probability of it being a D is high). Verbal was better for me, I finished it in time.

4 hours later, when the exam prompted me if I wanted to see my score. I closed my eyes, gave a prayer to god, asked him to help me pull up my score to 700 - and then pressed on the button.

720 showed up on screen - I acutally gave a scream of delight and tears started streaming thru my eyes. It had been so hard, so painful, so WONDERFUL.....

i sit at home today unable to believe I did it. I feel happy, delighted, but apprehensive - there is still a long way between me and my dream, but the first boulder is out of the way. I have applicaitons to write, lot of work to do, but its amazing what you can accomplish once you set your mind to something, and believethat you will go thru with it, not matter what is thrown your way.

I really hope the details I've written above help others get thru this exam too - all the information I read up on this web site and others really helped me get myself ready, I am just trying to reciprocate in kind.

this blog is specially targetted for people, who think they are average, and who are trying to step up their mind/spirit to go after there dreams - I am an example of that. Dont ever every loose faith in yourself ....

As for me right now - HARVARD, LOOK OUT HERE i COME.....    "

Creed.....My love!

The amazing lines of the amazing song that keeps ringing in my mind all the time, I so completely love this..............

Please come now I think I'm falling
I'm holding to all I think is safe
It seems I found the road to nowhere
And I'm trying to escape
I yelled back when I heard thunder
But I'm down to one last breath
And with it let me say
Let me say

Hold me now
I'm six feet from the edge and I'm thinking
That maybe six feet
Ain't so far down

I'm looking down now that it's over
Reflecting on all of my mistakes
I thought I found the road to somewhere
Somewhere in His grace
I cried out heaven save me
But I'm down to one last breath
And with it let me say
Let me say

Hold me now
I'm six feet from the edge and I'm thinking
That maybe six feet
Ain't so far down

Sad eyes follow me
But I still believe there's something left for me
So please come stay with me
'Cause I still believe there's something left for you and me
For you and me
For you and me

Hold me now
I'm six feet from the edge and I'm thinking

.................However now i need no one to hold me,, I'm on my way to the tops already......................
Dont need this world anymore!!!

The introspection----- >INSIDE OUT<--------

Yesterday was a day i spent in doing what people generally call a "self-introspection"...
Too much to erase and too long a path to follow...
The past has been too erotic to think about & the future is too unpredictable to worry for,, All that i have at hand is TODAY.
A chance to make up for all the bad things i have don to myself and a chance too strike back with full force to reach out my dreams.

Though those depressing feelings are still etched on upon me but still today I decide to wake up again from the deep slumbers and drowsiness and strike back............!!!

So here's it to all u people who cared a damn about me and here's it to the big mean world.........NEIZZA IS BACK.!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Standing 6 feet from the edge..& im thinking..

My first post on this blog....
& so is it the beginning...............?

Beginning of a something new..Beginning of a metamorphosis i have been waiting for..
Beginning of my new life........& the beginning of me...

Today I feel like sharing my life..
I have lived a normal plain life of a simple yet overly-ambitious life of a delhi girl for the past 20yrs..(Yes thats how old I am!)
And in these years I have learnt to live on the edge..
I have learnt how life goes on..I've learnt how you have no option but to get up  fight again after every great fall..I've learnt to live alone in the emptiness of crowds..
Learnt a bit too much..

As a child I had been very ambitious,, Trying to fight my way to the top always..
Many a times i fell but without a second a moment of thought I was back again on the track each time with a broken little heart but a yet new vigour..
Things were never that easy at any point in time..I had to fight my way to things..
I loved to be loved............

But as I grew...the lessons of life grew way too harsh for me to stand up again each time with a new spirit  hope...The lessons which pushed me down under..The lessons grew too fierce for me to face........
& thus here I am 6 feet from the edge with 100 parts of me hovering over m head..with no direction to follow..with just me waiting for the metamorphosis to happen.
Waiting to pick every part of me  put me back together to being who i was..
Waiting to get myself back again..bcz right now im all lost & alone..not able to look ahead with these tears blurring my vision..

The past 4yrs changed every part of me,, inside out..
The experiences of the past 4 yrs drenched out every single strength from within my spirit, strained my head way too much 7 left me numb with just a single realization...I'VE LOST MYSELF..

However today is not just a starting of this blog for me but a whole new start of a new life too..
I wish to redefine my life, I wish to ake charge..
I wish to FIGHT...........I WISH TO BE ME...
I hope god is still with me & that he would help me through this metamorphosis..