“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, an hour, a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”
these incredibly motivating words of Lance Armstrong always gives me strength during tough times.
It was a hot unforgiving noon in May 2003,The bowler had sweat dripping down his face,on the opposite end was a left-handed batsman batting on 99.The next scene I remember was that I was in my neighbour`s house begging for forgiveness and of course getting our ball back.Yes, that was the tenth time I had broken her window glasses in search of my elusive century.Good Evening Toastmaster of the day ,fellow toastmaster and guests,I am Shailesh Tripathi.My fond childhood memories are of playing cricket for hours with my friends on the street,breaking glasses and fighting with my sister.I come from middle class background. My father is an engineer and my mother is a housewife.I always wanted to be a cricketer.In fact I was so obsessed with cricket that apart from sleeping and attending school,I was always found on the ground. My childhood idol was Sourav Ganguly and I used to imitate his style and strokes to perfection.Not surprisingly I had 32 centuries in street cricket at the age of 14.
Things changed when I was 15,I fell in love with basketball.I became a die-hard fan of Kobe Bryant.I would emulate his skills for hours on the court but that infatuation only lasted for a year.Finally I found my true love in football in high school.From that day onwards I not only played football but also watched and analysed every game played in the world.I became a die hard soccer fan.Thierry Henry,Dennis Bergkamp,Zidane and Ronaldinho were some of my childhood heroes.My obsession with football got to a point that it affected my studies.In fact I almost failed in several subjects just because I was watching late night football matches.I was convinced that I should make a career in sports.
But then ” you don’t always get what you want“.My parents turned out to be the biggest detractors for my sports career dreams and instead wanted me to chase academic dreams.So when I passed 10th standard with flying colors,they introduced me to a beast called IIT. They said intelligent boys don’t play sports. Impressionable innocent mind of mine got misled.So like many other Indian students,next one year I was balancing my studies and IIT coaching like a circus artist.Obviously I didn`t clear IIT as I never prepared for it.But I was already catapulted into this world of engineering.I joined Fr. agnels college for B.Tech in Mechanical engineering.
.It was during my engineering days that I became more passionate about quizzing.In fact even during my school days I was an ardent follower of Derek O Brien and Siddharth Basu. During my four years in college I enthusiastically participated and won many state level quiz contests.I have loved every bit of this exciting journey.
I always fantasized engineering to be all about creation,innovation and design,but I was so wrong,it was all about getting that cut off marks to get to the next semester and finally be eligible for campus placements.Thankfully,I got good scores in my engineering.After passing out from the college I got a job in a research department in L&T.I was supposed to research on deep water and sub sea pipeline design.I had no idea what it was and for a someone who hates technical stuffs this really was a great joke.So after 5 months of torture I ended up quitting the job.
I struggled for few months to get a job,finally after 5 interviews I got a job in a major oil and gas company ONGC.I was excited to kick start my career.The first year was more of a whirlwind as I was under training in different locations meeting people from various backgrounds.After the training I got posted in a field job in LPG plant in Uran.It was exciting as well as scary.I have been really doing well during the past 4 years.Though I got many awards and accolades in my corporate life but deep within I knew my heart is looking elsewhere.
So this year I decided to rekindle my passion.I started my own blog to pursue sports writing and also joined toastmaster to become the world`s best public speaker. In the words of Tennis Legend Sir Arthur Ashe:
“You are never really playing an opponent. You are playing yourself, your own highest standards, and when you reach your limits, that is real joy.”
Over to you,Toastmasters of the Day!