Monday, January 07, 2013

Change with Time

Reading this article, made me think of a couple of friends from childhood and youth. No one who knew them would guess how they would change over time. They seem to fit the profile :

But when asked to predict what their personalities and tastes would be like in 10 years, people of all ages consistently played down the potential changes ahead.

A- One of three daughters of an army colonel and his stay at home wife. She was a firebrand - the standard bearer for her other sisters and  many of us. Very bright and industrious, she was the most likely to succeed in our set. There was nothing A was afraid of - she would plunge head first into situations where the best of us might pause. She did not hesitate to speak her mind, make waves or enemies. Always fashion forward, A did not care if he style was considered risque by the standards of the day. No matter how bad the situation, she found a way to make it work out. And yes, she held the institution of marriage in very dim view. She was going to be a career woman, travel the world, use boys for her pleasure and discard them when done. Obviously, in small town India back in my day, A did not think like the average Indian girl and we were in awe of her. I have followed her career with great interest over the years - she did very well for herself until about thirty (no big surprise) and just like that dropped off the workforce with two kids to run a creche out of her suburban Mumbai home. He husband is not anything like the bad boys she used to be attracted to - he epitomizes what A once called "death inducingly boring". 

R - He was one of the brightest kids in grade school who faded out in degrees until he made it his business to disappear in plain sight. From being the kid that always raised his hand to answer all questions in all classes, R was the one you never heard from - ever, he made eye contact with no one - in his teens he never spoke to a girl. If one of us spoke to him, he blushed beetroot red tried to get out of the conversation as quick as possible. In our seventh grade, a few kids in our class got together and staged a mock funeral for R - the idea was he was so absent and quiet that he might as well be dead. He took it in stride but nothing changed. He never made it to any top tier schools, did not end up studying science or math like the "smart" kids and went through the motions of a college education at a no name place. Fifteen or so years later, R is the head of HR in well regarded global company. 

Both A and R seem to be happy with how their lives have turned out or not.

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