Sandeep Menon

 
 

The MEC fraternity remembers you …..

Sandeep Menon…

The MEC fraternity remembers you …..

As the effective and efficient Chairman of the Placement Council…..

As a born leader who gained respect and command from his colleagues …

As the best example,  MEC could project to the MNCs…..

As the live-wire and driving force of MEC-Illuminati…

As an ever-hungry soul for new facts, figures and trivia….

As a perfect classmate, batch mate and college mate …

As one of the bonding elements of your class , your batch and your college..

As a faithful student to your teachers…

As a loving friend to your peers and seniors…

As a caring guide to your juniors….

As a great human being…

As a faithful son..

As a caring brother…

But above all,

As a brave heart and soul who never gave up when odds kept turning low, who never stopped smiling when life forced him not to, and who found time to share pranks with us even when Fate was playing pranks with him.

I was never very close to Menon . But we too shared a relation with respect and concern. But I could never tell him personally that I respected him the most in all my batch mates.   May that be my farewell sentence to you, dear friend……..

Adios!!

-- Jose Joseph

 
My SandeepChetta 06/06/2008
 

I was inspired by my father and the “Chicken Soup Series” to write this. This is about my favorite cousin Sandeepchetta.

  Sandeepchetta was a very kind. He was always very polite to everyone. This was one of his many good qualities. He was very quick witted also had a nice sense of humor.

  He was a very helpful loving cousin. This is proved by the fact that he helped me with the spelling bee. He encouraged me to take part in the spelling bee which I am part of at the national level. He told me about many websites to study words and to pronounce them aloud. He gave me very hard words to learn and to test my knowledge. He even lent me his thesaurus. He always encouraged me to study and become the topper of the class. He taught all my cousins including me how to play chess. Till date whenever I play chess I remember him.

  Recently when Hema chechiamma and I were viewing the photos of his childhood he looked very cute. He was always ready to do anything and everything we asked him to do. This is the fact I liked about him best.
                                 
  He was a very sociable person and he knew how to interact with people of all ages. All the teachers and lecturers used to like him. He was a role model for everybody. He had lots of friends who were close to him. He was always very pleasant and witty. He used to crack jokes that made all of us laugh when the whole family used to get together. I miss his presence in these gatherings as he used to be a dominant and handsome personality.

Now that he has left this world forever, I wish that one day he would come to earth from heaven and share his experiences. I still feel that he is somewhere there in the bright starry sky, looking down at me and at the others. As I did before I will always look only to him to solve my problems, since he is the best cousin I ever had.

SandeepChetta, miss you!

Love

Vaidehi


 
College Days... 06/06/2008
 

Pheno "Menon"!!!

Saying goodbye is never easy but then what hurts even more is when you don’t ever get a chance to say that!

It’s only when you realize that a person has left you when you feel how much he meant to you and how much you had really wanted to spend time with him. You wish. But then once lost you never get it back, yup you never get back your lost time. When I realized this fact it was too late .That’s one thing I regret about Menon and Me.

Menon was someone who would light up any group! Doesn’t matter if you r a bunch of bujjis or a group of prankish kids, Menon wud get along with the group anyhow! Always playin pranks, crackin a pj abt anyone ‘nd everyone, ready to bingo he ws oozing with energy! Menon was a great friend to have and an even better son to his parents! He is someone I admire and respect not just love coz of the person he was! The way he kept himself upbeat and the way he always hoped and persisted showed true colours of the man! He had the world at his feet! He was young, smart, charming, brilliant, hardworking and was successful in more than one way! And one day when you wake up and realize what could have been? That feeling when anyone else would have broken down, got shattered, he stood tall fending away despair and sorrow! Very few people could have so much belief in oneself ! That’s what makes him so so much the Pheno”Menon” we all know!  


Menon and I were classmates. We were part of the BRA(Back Row Association) durin first year. It sure was one of the best times of our life. We used to play a lot of tricks on each other and sometimes on the staff too. Asif,  Appu,  Johny,  Relin,  Kichu,  Menon, Pillai,  Joshy, Seban, Varky, Jetty, Mama, Kootha, Noufy, Chandrappan and a whole lot more formed the E1A batch BRA! Menon used to be there with us all the while playing along but when the exams came up he would change totally. He wud get bk to his study table and we wudnt see him till the exams got over! That’s the first time I saw the intensity in him. Cant forget the numerous FIFA clashes we have had. He would never want to loose. Always game, be it  for a game of football or teasing the joo’s or simply havin fun. It was not until our 3rd year when the placement cell was formed when I truly saw a new dimension to him. The way he used to work and say “Job for all” truly inspired the rest to work that much harder. The way he used to keep the spirits of the unplaced students high was something remarkable. The way he persisted in brining biggies to campus was awe inspiring. Many would have already given up chasing companies from the initial response that they get from the HR but then Menon never used to give up. He used to persist and finally would succeed more often than not. And then it all changed. Sometimes life doesn’t treat you fair. I have often wondered why him of all people? He dint smoke, he dint drink, he was the cleanest I would say among us. It becomes too hard sometimes to accept. But life aint fair always. We were all there outside AIMS praying when his first surgery was carried out . Still remember that day when Vikas, Pillai, Asif, Appu and me went to AIMS after his surgery. We sat there with him and he was his usual self crackin PJ’s(notorious for his Bamboo-Bamboo Challu J). He was back to his smiling best! Everyone was so happy for him! In a short while he was back with us in college and everything seemed to be back to normal. His “Tiger” song during final year for English recitation was a treat to watch. Even the judges burst out laughing! That’s when I really started respecting this guy. After all he had been through he still hadnt changed one bit and if at all he had changed it was by becoming more jovial. Soon college was over for everyone of us and we all went our way joining the professional world. But then we were one bunch of people who could never be really separated! We used to have frequent get-togethers be it at Bngy or Hyd or Kochi, it dint matter as long as everyone was there. Menon was our “Zizou”. Cant forget the fights he wud pick up with anyone and everyone who wud say Zizou was no good( which they wud regret later on as I did)!He always had a football in his car and that’s the first thing he would say when we meet up. Let’s go play ball! J I will always cherish those moments we spent playin football whether be it in college, hostel terrace, BEML ground or at Micrsoft@hyd. Sad that it all had to change when he had to undergo surgery again. It was tough for everyone to believe but we hoped it was nothing serious. And we still don’t want to belive what has happened.

When all about you is black with gloom, 
And all you feel is pending doom. 
When your bones are racked with grim despair - 
When every breath is a gasp for air. 
Keep on going, though you need to grope, 
For around the bend is a ray of hope.


Still you may loose,

But you always die a winner!!! 

That’s something I learnt from him and he is a winner for Us! You will always be special to us and I will always treasure those moments I spent with you. Miss you buddy and will always miss your company! 

Luv,
Amar

 
 

From Valli with love...

How your most innocent smile could melt our hearts and make us all forget how difficult you could be as a child. 

I remember how you would take time to teach ammoomma cricket and how inspired you were of her wisdom, enthusiasm to learn new things and her quiet serenity.


I remember you teasing Rahael-amma. Yelling ‘phone’ into her ear, leading her to think you were calling her names in the English language and how you annoyed her so much she had to lock you up to teach you a lesson!

I remember
(And just for the record, no, I did intervene at this point and got an even friskier Dulu out for fear he’d go blue all over!)


I also remember a rare occasion when ammayi was home on a working day, thanks to an all-Kerala-Bandh. She decided to use her ‘free’ time to lock herself up in the safety of her bedroom to clean out the contents of her cupboard. This seemed to trigger all the right buttons in young Dulu and his little master of a cheta, who promptly made their displeasure known by banging on the door with an assortment of toys and some of the smaller furniture. Attempts were also being made by the brothers duo to enter into the bedroom via the window, to no avail. You must also know that the air was thick with calls of ‘patti’ and ‘thendi’ when they were suddenly silenced by a passerby in the street below shouting – “DA! AARAVIDE!!”. I still chuckle when I think of Sandeep and Dulu’s faces at the time. JI remember the time we came back from watching ‘Manichitrathazhu’ and how I told you what seemed to be a harmless story with a scary ending and how you jumped out of your chair! 

I remember the delicious times in Trivandrum when we took you with all the little brothers in tow to the beach, the museum and the zoo, the movies and all the games we played at home. I remember how proud I was to be your Valli chechi; of being the one in charge and of the trust the elders had placed in me.



You had a monster of a memory. How you would remember every little thing in your past life to the minutest detail. 

I remember you as a little boy at Kochammavan’s wedding, looking as handsome as ever in your kurta-pajama, living up to your mischievous reputation, pinching your mother as hard as you could, while she stood behind the mandapam with all the others in the immediate family and trying not to grimace.
 
I remember being gob smacked to see how quickly you and Dulu could devour a whole bowl full of pazham-poris, so much so that next time the pazham-poris were on the table, I was ready to pinch my two-share’s worth before it was all gone.

I remember you when you first started at Bhavans, in your checkered shirt and on your brand new bicycles. How you would send Dulu crashing into the gravel piled on the side of the road with a smashing side kick to Dulu’s cycle. 

Of course, I remember the episode of the “chechimar enikky erivulla molagu thannu” in Karuvatta. But then, Anu’s already mentioned that.

I remember the sensation of absolute horror on finding about your illness and trying not to lose control of myself upon seeing you last year in May 07. That trip, my dear was mainly to see you. 


I am glad that my children - Vai and Gauri got to know you when we visited you last year. They ask me why you got sick, if it’s because you had too many lollies. But then does anyone know why you had to be the one? Why it had to happen?

You would have been immensely moved to see the enormous outpouring of love, generosity, understanding and prayers for you from all whose lives you have touched.

You didn’t like to see people cry, especially not family. You knew how sick you were, but you were ever cheerful and positive and lent so much strength to those around you to deal with what fate had in store. 

In the end, it’s not about anything else. It’s just that you are my brother and I love you very much. Sandeep, I miss you every day.

Farewell and so long, Sandeep. You’re a STAR!


 
School Days 06/06/2008
 

Alma Mater - Sandeep wrote this  for the Bhavan's school magazine in 2007.  His life at school in his own words...

I was asked to write a nostalgic story about my years in school , so here it goes . No guarantees as to how much nostalgia it will conjure up. I did twelve years of schooling at Bhavan’s Vidya Mandir , Eroor from 1990 to 2002 . I was the second batch of this great school. I was the average , lazy to core student most teachers had a few problems with.

The fight against cursive writing was a long hard struggle in the lower grades. Mercy Miss & Co would drag kids like me who had cryptic handwriting to the staff room and make us do forceful cursive writing . I would write neatly just to get out of there , thanks to the loving teachers I have almost calligraphic handwriting  nowJ . If English Cursive writing was the Battle of Plassey , Hindi cursive writing was WW II

Those were the early years , by the time the higher classes came , things started becoming more challenging , marks were mandatory at home as well as at school , and I wasn’t exactly the topper . A girl called Teena CH was the topper in my class from the time immemorial, and amma would say “ aa Teena CHine kandu padikke “ ! School was not far off , some teachers would sense a virtual talent in me on a particular subject and tell my mother the same during the “Open House “  , they would also add that I wasn’t working hard enough , that’s why my grades were suffering in the subject I had great talent  and promise in , I have always wondered whether it was a ploy to get kids like me study a little bit.

After seventh standard  , things started looking ugly . I was bad at mathematics, really bad . And me and one close friend ,Thomas, who was equally bad or worse was called to the library and was given a proper “bhashan”  by Mala Miss and Viji Miss saying they wouldn’t promote us to the next class unless we guys perked our performance . It was kind of a pep talk , only thing was that we realized it was the end of the world if we don’t really  bend our backs and study really hard . And we guys did well enough to pass thanks to the threat from our adorable teachers. They were our class teachers till tenth and I forever indebted to them and other teachers Rema Miss , Lathika Miss , Sreekantha Miss  for making me what I am today , sounds little melodramatic ? Well its true.


In the eighth class a new student came to class, he sat next to me, so while exchanging pleasantries I asked him what his mother was , he replied saying she was a teacher, obviously my next question was where and which subject , his reply was Bhavan’s Eroor and Mathematics , and of course being a math wizard I knew most of the Maths teachers in school , by now I started fearing the worst , with rising trepidation I asked the next question “ what’s her name ?” The reply sent a shiver down my spine “ Renuka N Menon , Principal" It was Naresh , another good friend and the perennial victim of all our torturous jokes about him as he was  the “First Son of the School “.

Another interesting anecdote is when , having crowned myself the king of vocab , and the ultimate gateway to chaste , pristine English , in one English Model paper for the boards I wrote the past participle ( or whatever ) of think as “thinked”  when it should have been thought . Mala Miss , my Eng teacher at the time gave great publicity to that one in a million mistake and escalated the matter to Renuka Madam . If ever there was a zenith of embarrassment that was it , and as if to add insult to injury she also remarked in my answer paper , “ Shocking , Mr Vocabulary !"

I was considered rather cheeky, or rather too cheeky . Let me bore all of you with another incident of my “cheekiness”. Maths paper , two sections geometry and algebra.

Geometry is valued by Renuka Madam and algebra by Viji Miss . So upon not getting an answer completely in geometry I was persuaded to think out-of-the-box , during the exam I remembered that , Renuka Madam , with all due respect , used to start off a problem and give some hint and to improve our skills would tell us that “ On further calculation , we get the LHS = RHS “ , being as innocent (wink) as I was I wrote the same line in the question paper . If the previous incident was the height of embarrassment , this was the height of notoriety . But since by 10th I had reached the level of Euclid on geometry , I was let alone scot-free . I can see Madam smiling when she reads this or if she reads this.

In class twelve , two of close friends Anil and David , were late to school , so to avoid late attendance from Mathen Master, jumped the wall to reach the Maths unit test on time , their intent was academic but execution was pathetic , when they landed on school grounds from the wall , they were caught red-handed by Gopalan chettan and Ashokan chettan and there began a law suit BVM Eroor V/S Anil and Rajappan .The accused claimed that in their excitement to write the exam they did not see the obstacles in their path . This was a long standing joke as the accused held high posts in the school , namely House Captain and Head Boy.

That’s it with anecdotes . In the following paras , I attempt vainly to summarize my school life.

Special Mention to -

- Anuradha Miss , English , she was the real inspiration in me becoming a quizzer , quizzed around a lot in the school bus with Vinod , Alex , Sundareshwar .  
- Dr Geetha Miss ,  Hindi , PHd , for fuelling my fading interest in Hindi  
- Saroja Miss , Hindi , instilling class discipline  
- Sunitha Miss ,Sreedevi Miss , Jayasree Miss  Physics  
- Anil Master and Latha Miss Chemical Entertainment  
- Babu Sir , Mathen Sir , Suresh Master ( aka Suru ) , Late Paul Sir , Lilly Miss , Mohan Sir , Venu Master
- Indu Miss for our knowledge about western Europe and Preethi Miss for the interact club  
- Maya Miss & Sudha Miss, Library Teachers, for their support quizzing wise  
- Mini Miss , for teaching me sorting algorithms in C++ , which was really helpful during my engineering
- Ashokan Chettan (Akkosotto) , Lewis Chettan , Lawrence chettan ,Manoharan Chettan, Rajan Chettan ( salt analyst ) , Gopalan chettan ,  Ponnamma Chechi , Devi Chechi            
Last but not least , Renuka Madam               
 

Best Trip : Std Ninth picnic , still the best even after college , can you believe that . All teachers were  singing and dancing.

Best Moment : Lots , Magnum Opus, Vox Populi and all other school fests where we could not win much . Sports days and Munshi meets, cheering our super athletes with sip-ups in hand , winning quizzes for the school .

Best Academic Moment  : Some of us were penalized fifteen minutes of our Chemistry unit test for taking a leave to prepare for IIT JEE , when we got in we realized that the guys who had the time advantage did not know a thing on the question paper . In effect the penalty was saved

Most Hilarious Moment : David Rajan’s head boy campaign speech and farewell speech , where he flew a pigeon. For more details , ask teachers who have taught the 2002 batch

Best Meal : Canteen , singing with friends “ chorum kariyum kazichu kazichu njan ippam rogi “ a mallu  remake of Daler Mehndi song “ Na na na na re na re na …” 

Best Academic Project : Testing water salinity of Chambakkara waters , the project was considered for a Nobel nomination but did not fetch any external viva marks

Best Cultural Moment : Anand RV leading the vanchi pattu and our very own “ Vande Mataram “  AR Rahman Style
After School I did engineering in Electronics and Communication from Model Engineering College , Kochi and I am currently working in Apache Design Solutions Pvt Ltd , an Electronic Design Automation company  in Bangalore 

Disclaimer :  The views represent are the author’s alone . Not meant to offend anyone .

Please excuse the self-centricity of this account of our school , as I had very little data other than mine to put across considering the very little time I had . A more wholesome account of how great it was will make a Ved Vyas out of me .  If I have missed anyone in particular to mention , its just bad printing.


Credits : Sharath S Nair , Anil Kumar , Vinod J , Sindhu Miss , Parvathy Miss

 
Post Title. 06/02/2008
 

Kunji chechi to Sandeep

My dear, dear brother.  It's been a month.  So hard to sit here and type these words.   Being so far away, I can almost pretend that nothing has changed and you are still at home watching cricket or surfing the net.  It feels so unfair that life should go on for everyone else when you are not with us.  But if we learned anything from you, its to stay strong.  That and all your memories is what keeps us all going. 

 
 

You were our much awaited little brother. Sandeep.  First cousin on our mom’s side.  A new baby after six years ! I remember Amma reading a letter from India with the news of your impending arrival and asking us to think of names for the new baby.  Chechi and I promptly reeled off a list of names of boys and girls from our grade.  Mine included names like Lancelot and Mohammed Faizan.

My memories of you are so many…the red faced tiny two month old -  I still vividly remember feeling a mixture of delight tinged with jealousy (my status as the baby in the family now involuntarily relinquished), the frenzy of shopping before each yearly summer trip to India and us deciding what toy to get you.  The train set with trains and tracks, the penguin rollercoaster.  Each toy selected with the anticipation of your face lighting up in joy.

The time we fed you “eruvulla” grapes (a spray of fresh green pepper (kurumullagu) from the tree near the front gate at Karuvatta meant to be grapes after our leisurely lunch of sand (rice) and pebbles (curry).  Playing “baby” to my “Mommy” and Valli chechi’s “Daddy” – you did so great till then , pretending to eat the ‘rice’ and ‘curry’ .  How were we to know you would pop it into your mouth and then let out a LOUD scream that brought Kochammavan and Ammumma running in fear from the house.  Tears flowing, you complained to them, “chechimar enikku eruvulla grapes thannu”. !!!!

The time we spent hours making an elaborate sand castle in Karuvatta.  With doors and flowers decorating the castle – while we waited for Mini ammayi’s  home made icecream to set.   Then Mini ammayi playing referee when baby Dulu ran outside and in one well aimed kick (should have been an indication of the soccering talent to come), demolished our hours of labor.

The Onam and Xmas and summer hols with all the cousins in Trivandrum after we moved to India.  The time nine of us crammed into valyamman’s new Santro and drove to Trivandrum from Ernakulam.  How about halfway into the uncomfortable but tremendously fun trip, you and Dulu got into a fist fight - the rest of us trying hard to keep out of the way of the blows.  (Not an easy task when there are seven people in the backseat of a relatively small car)

Over the years you went from being adorable (sometimes bratty) lil brother to a great friend.  At first I was saddened at the thought that my son, Ishan will never get to know you, but then I realized he would.  Because between us all we have enough memories of you to last us a lifetime. You were the first one he called “maama” and when he is old enough, I will tell him all about you.  I read this in a magazine and loved it because it captures what I feel exactly even after you are gone. “ I am I and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we still are”. You will always be my  lil  brother.  I will always be your kunji chechi.

 
 

I saw pictures of my nephew when he was born, and I knew he was going to grow up as a handsome young man. I finally saw him in person when I came home in 1986. Truly a handsome boy and my father [his grandfather/Appooppan]’s pride and joy!! At the tender age of one, he knew how to get his way and I saw how happy he made my father.

Over the last few years as we came back home more often, we had a better chance to enjoy every minute with Sandeep. He always had some good plans for everyone—never a dull moment! During our visit in 2005, he talked about several big plans, including for our family to travel together, which we were going to do, but God had other plans for him. Now I know our limits and that we cannot alter God’s plans, no matter how hard we try.

I will always cherish the happy moments we had, even though the opportunities were rare as the distance and commitments in life made it difficult. I was amazed at this young man’s strength and how he could keep everyone around him happy, despite the most adverse situations in life. He taught me a good lesson—that you can set high goals and work towards them, even when the worst things are happening to you. What a lesson to learn from a 23-year-old boy that I did not learn in 48 years!  I am not afraid as I know you are in a better world where your Appooppan will protect you, and I can see him fussing over you even more now.

 
sandy! 05/19/2008
 

The early years...

remembering early ages of sandeep is great fun. i think, i have met him first as young baby, in one of those midnight entry of the trio (that is my brother kochettan, hemachechi and baby sandeep) through the back door of maveli house, karuvatta! he must be fast asleep and in he wakes up everyone else with his cry for the moon!
he always asked for what is unattainable! i mean as his young kochacha that period of time! his demands were so difficult for me!