Its been a long time since I last posted something here. Perhaps I can start doing it more often, now that I’ll be away from work for the next year or so. As the title of the post suggests, this post is about the place which I called home for almost the last 3 years. (Forgive me for being a bit rusty, its the grief speaking more than anything else)
I still remember disembarking from the train at Champa station, all groggy eyed and apprehensive about what’s in store for me. Never had I seen a place so dotted with thermal power plants. Why, only 20 odd kilometres from Champa I saw the first plant and thought it to be NTPC (it turned out to be Lanco-Amarkantak). After resting and breaking the fast at the CSEB guest house, when we started for NTPC, I was again amazed at the sheer number of plants in and around the city. Yes, the eyes have now become familiar with the smoke belching chimneys dotting the skyline and the cooling towers hissing off steam into the atmosphere, yet at that time it was a horrifically astounding sight.
Time flies, and here I am on the verge of leaving the first company I ever worked with for a longer duration of time. To be precise today is my 1028th day at Korba and most of these have been fun-filled and exciting (obviously there were dull and excruciating moments too). NTPC in general and NTPC Korba in particular is a place where anyone would be glad to spend their whole working lives. Yes the “ash-storms” and pollution make life difficult, but still this is a place that one will find difficult if not impossible to hate. I have tried my level best to hate the place but here I am, writing an ode to the place that in some corner of my heart I started to love and which a part of my mind started to recognise as home.
I have had the good fortune of being blessed with wonderful friends, colleagues and seniors during my stay at Korba. I am surely and sorely going to miss all of them. Yes, I know that a new life beckons but some part of me doesn’t want to leave just as yet. I am surely going to miss those beautiful sunset views of switchyard and the garden walks and so much more. It has been one hell of an experience! Even at the job, I have had myriad of things to do : from internal inspection of state-of-the-art transformers to scrap disposal, from retrofitting of protective relays to picking up used liquor bottles from Darri, I have done all of that and more. Yes it was a great time of my life that I spent here.
I won’t be able to forget Korba (after all I was posted here when I got hitched to the love of my life!). That bi-cycle gang of ours which became so popular that suddenly there was a surge in the number of bi-cycles being sold in Korba, those sunday afternoons spent on relentless cricket (even if there were only 3 players available), NTPC Premier League Cricket Matches…..ohh the list is too long. The hot savoury samosas of Bipin, those days and nights spent on commissioning of transformers and quizzing out problems in Switchyard, that feeling of achievement after roasting juicy pieces of chicken with diesel and coal: all of these are surely etched in my memory and won’t be leaving me anytime soon.
I found examples of how to work and how not to work, how to make others work and how not to make others work. It was not all black and white these 1028 days but everyday a different shade of grey. I think grey is the most natural and truthful colour there ever can be and will be.
It was the NTPC brand that got me into ISB and I would try and uphold the honour of the name of the place I would be known by, wherever the future takes me.