Two things struck me recently. One, it’s a really small world – and the spread of technology has nothing to do with it. Two, most people dabble in other things before they find their chosen profession.
During a meeting the other day a gentleman said he had started his career selling vacuum cleaners. I did, too. He then said he was working in Chandigarh. I was, too. And he sold those then impressive machines out of molded suitcases on scooters and mopeds. I did that too.
It so happened we were in the same city, doing the same job and had the same boss, though a couple of years apart. Needless to say, the tone of our talk changed immediately.
I remembered those days when we lugged those heavy boxes, displayed the product in people’s homes, cleaning their carpets and curtains, in the hope of making sales. Prospective customers sometimes made us clean every nook and cranny only to send us away, once even inciting me to empty the dust bag right back on their carpet. After all, it was their dust!
Long hours, long rides on a rickety two-wheelers, almost dragging those heavy suitcases seemed worth it at the end of the month when we got paid handsomely. I remember my first pay packet was a princely 2,500 rupees – four times what I got paid as a trainee journalist two years later.
But that’s quite another story.