Spilling out of the mundane and the mediocrity of everyday life are extraordinary instances of an alternate circumstance that sometimes spark upon revelations that change you forever. In my case, I had a fairly vague idea about what these revelations might be. They came in the shape and immiscible form of my father’s quirky genius. What I’d experience upon confronting those divine disclosures, I was unacquainted.
On the 27th of October, 2018, Inspiria hosted the first ever Business Conclave in which a host of illustrious professionals, top of the game in their field were invited to have intimate conversations with fervent students in the ‘my own brew’ segment. My father was among them. Earlier on, when his scheduled ‘rumored’ arrival on campus for the conclave was a speculation only privy to some, I didn’t pay much heed to it. It was only later that an odd sense of pride set in.
Many people had told me my father was a motivating leader and an immaculately articulate speaker. It was a normative saying now, much like how my family keeps telling me to keep my room clean. Though my father being this great revered entity always seemed conceivable and true to me, it seemed only so in a distant, cold, corporate world I wasn’t a part of. Looking back, it mildly bugs me how I didn’t think to express an interest in this other underlying aspect of his life. Within the four walls of our house dad was the occasional cook, the serial napper, the obnoxious dancer and the questionably skillful singer. He was my dad, and like any great dad, he loved his family and we loved him back, embarrassing quirks and all. I always left it to just that.
Titles and designations always sound grand, they’re meant to. ‘Senior Vice President’ didn’t capture dad. But then again at the same time, it did so perfectly. Hearing my father talk was liberating- a sort of freedom from looking at him through only a domestic lens and seeing the more distinguished side of him which, though new, was oddly familiar to me. I hadn’t met the suit and tie, firm hand shake-d version of my father, though I’d seen him leave for work almost every day. I sat enraptured watching in awe how with such ease he compelled a listening audience, how he talked with a sense of surety and confidence I’d never be able to muster and how he knew more than what anyone else sitting in those canopies knew. His audience increased significantly in the second round of ‘my own brew’, though I wouldn’t call the number of kids sitting in the first round scant. Never had I thought watching my father speak would be such a rewarding experience. I was overwhelmingly proud seeing people approach him to talk, asking about what he thinks of the world and sitting in rapt attention as he spoke. I must confess to have enjoyed basking in his exclusiveness, though I acquainted myself with this side of him only that day. Dad’s two worlds were juxtaposed- his professional world and his familial world. The event was more than just an entrepreneurial gala for me, it was my experience discovering new ingredients that made my dad what he is today.