Friday, April 24, 2009

RAIT Alumni Reunion 2008

The 4th RAIT Alumni Reunion took place on the 30th of March, 2008. It was important in the sense that 2008 was RAIT’s 25th year of existence. It was perhaps the first time that the RAA moved out from under the shadow of elder overbearing brothers, the SUC and Horizon.

With a complete lack of resources in terms of databases (which were all presumably lost from the administrative office in crashes and from the RAA room in crashes or stolen HDD's in previous years!), we started our work.

Whilst the RAA was tottering around confused with what to do and more importantly how to do it, the RAIT Alumni Network was created by the Dark Lord at the end of 2007. It was the spark actually and truly required, it was the light bulb over our heads, the Eureka in our mouths. It was an online platform to reach out. A symbiotic association was struck and the RAA began its work in earnest.

Despite the fact that the RAA and SUC were now actually differentiated, most of the people who worked in this country were also residents of the other! I slave labored for Horizon with zero appreciation :-(. Sincere work could only begin once Horizon 2008 got over. Hectic calling began on the 3rd of March, the morning Horizon ended and continued up to the end of the month. The dates were precisely chosen so as to keep some time and also, interference of the SUC away from the event.

More than a 1000 people were personally telephoned, more than 2000 emails sent, many to now dysfunctional email addresses. After a month of hectic spamming and bothering, the reunion day saw a participation of 300+ Alums and students.

The reunion:

It kickstarted off in the Pavilion of the DY Patil stadium, can't remember if it was pavilion A or B, the one to the right side :-). 25 odd people turned up on personal invitations at 5:00 PM to hold perhaps the first official RAA meeting in years. One alum embarrassed me immeasurably by stating that he wasn’t invited, but happened to be in Nerul at the time and saw the huge flex outside the gate. Blimey!

It is great to see some of the luminaries who are working with us now were present on that day. Many issues were raised, many topics covered. E-cell, Udaan, formalization of the RAA, more interaction of the Alumni etc etc. All to the applause and satisfaction of the authorities, all of course to our contentment.

Maybe things would get easier from now on, me thinketh at that time. We forget this is RAIT, takes time to set something rolling, but once rolling, woe betide the moss in its way!

It took a second informal reunion completely financed by Porky aka Protik (we are talking thousands of rupees here) and to an iota of a miniscule, dot of a minor extent by me and current RAA GSec Animesh to put things into motion.

The amount of work done in the past 2 months is unparalleled, more than the RAA has ever achieved in its history. It is momentous to be a part of this happening at the start and I implore everyone to contribute in any way they can.

Getting back to the reunion. It featured,

* Excellent food from Sai Darbar in Nerul, widely acknowledged as the best biryani for miles
* A great performance by the band Colossus which played U2, Coldplay, Floyd etc late into the night and for much longer than they were scheduled to and finally stopped when pleaded to by the organizers about police trouble. It doesn't help that parties on both side were in varying states of liquidated bliss :-)
* A mindblowingly memorable rendition of No Woman, No Cry by alum Kingshuk and some hindi numbers by now famous singer and alum, Sameer
* A lot of networking. The only time I met and talked freely to people from the 2001-02 batches. Amazing experience to debate why our Horizon was the best as compared to theirs
* Listening to tales of bravado and at times, utter foolhardiness in RAIT during those older days
* Lots of white colored RAA T-shirts passed around for free numbering more than 300. Hooo! \m/
* Great combination of spiked coke and chicken lollypops
* 3 student bloggers recording conversations, performances, impromptu stupidities. In another tradition of RAIT, most of these tapes are lost or were mistakenly recorded upon and feature versions of ‘cRapshoddy’ of all the things :-(

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At April 27, 2009 at 10:42 PM , Blogger crackhead said...

sounds like fun :)


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