Monday, May 5, 2008

RYLA part 1

When i go to any event and feel like talking about it after it finishes, I do not start off straight away, because, the excitement of the moment may give certain things undue importance. I have stuck to the same rule in this case. And I have started writing a good 24 hours after I first felt like it.

Before I actually begin writing about the event, I think it deserves a bit of an introduction. RYLA or Rotary Youth Leadership Awards is a residential event 3 to 5 days long, organized and paid for by Rotary International, which is an assortment of all the Rotary clubs worldwide. For more information on Rotary, click here and here. For information on RYLA click here and here.

Now let me talk about the RYLA I attended. My account is going to be on a very personal basis. RYLA 2008 was organized by Rotary Club Joka. The venue was Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (Joka). The event was from 2nd may to 4th may 2008, and I was sponsored by Rotary Club of Calcutta South Extension.

Initially, I hardly had any idea about what this was and agreed to go just because of the big names of the institutions. Being in IIM and staying in its hostel was one of the attractions too. Also, being interested in participation, I liked the idea of the event as well. On top of it, the prospect of meeting IIM faculty was an alluring aspect too.

I am going to be quite slow in writing out an account of the entire thing. And I would not like to leave out anything though I am depending mostly on memory. I do have a brief schedule with me, but it does not mention the contents of the lectures and things like that. I was supposed to contact the president of Rotary Club Joka to get my instructions. I called her and was asked to report to Tata Hall of IIM C at 9 in the morning. I turned up quite early in fact and was waiting in the well – furnished lounge of the hall. The lounge was soothing with its cream sofas and AC and a home theatre et al. The officials who were supposed to receive me arrived at 9:15 to be precise, but before that I was informed to report to the New Hostel and get registered there. It was a longish walk from Tata hall and it was the hostel where we would stay for the next two days. I liked the building at once. Nice and clean and quite big, it was inviting and as un-hostel like as can be. We were ushered into a room on the first floor to get registered. Then we were allotted rooms. It was immensely satisfying to hear that they had arranged for single room accommodation for all participants. I got room 204 and with my lock and key, which was handed over soon afterwards (along with a nice side bag, toffees and the schedule), I went in to get ready for the event that was to follow in ten minutes or so. Thus it was a pretty good start.

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