Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cognizant project outing at Raichak

As the client and the onsite team members celebrated Thanksgiving in the US, the project team in Kolkata had their day-out at Raichak this Friday. Raichak is a weekend getaway around 50 kilometers south of Kolkata on the bank of river Ganges. The Ganges has become very wide here as it races to meet the Bay of Bengal just few kilometers away. The place is full of beautiful bungalows with large decorated lawns. The Radisson Fort (also called Ffort) is the most attractive resort at Raichak.
The bus route and boarding timings were mailed to us the previous evening. But as normally happens, the bus started more than half an hour late in the morning, jeopardizing to some extent the pick-ups of the people down the route. However, we later made up some of the delays and were on the way to Raichak, all set.

Soon, among the shouts of the teams, breakfast was handed out. The delivery manager reshuffled our seats ignoring our meek protest to ensure that we do not seat beside somebody we already know! The bus raced through the golden paddy fields interrupted only by occasional habitats. The reaping season is around the corner.
We reached the place shortly after ten, happy that we had had the full day to enjoy. Our bungalow was a spacious two-storied building with plenty of rooms and a beautiful lawn around it. We took little rest before engaging in different activities like playing crickets.

The girls settled in a room upstairs. The guys sat in groups to eat and drink. The gossips continued as chicken and vegetable pakoras, salads and fish fingers came in at regular intervals. After a while, Jaya, my CBC (Cognizant Business Consulting) colleague, and I decided to go see the Ganges. Soon, few more people joined us. We walked thorough shaded roads and soon reached the Ganges. The view was beautiful. A big ship and couple of steamers floating on the river welcomed us. Soon I spotted a fisherman spreading his net and was lucky to take a beautiful snap of him. We spent some more time there taking photos of birds, trees and of course ourselves. On the way back, we chance encountered a snake digging its mouth on the prey.
Coming back, I sat with some ELTs (Entry Level Trainees) and gave them good amount of gyan! Some more wanderings and the lunch followed.
The lunch was elaborate with many a delicious items – papad, rice, daal, salad, mutton and chicken curry, potato fry, gobi, pickle, sweet and betel leaves. Post-lunch we sat idly for sometime before playing Housie.
Lo and behold! Jaya soon stroke gold. Within few minutes into the game, she had the ‘King’s corner’ and won a big Dairy Milk chocolate! She was lucky once again and won another chocolate. Though the game ended with the frustrated unlucky losers looting the chocolates, it was lot of fun.
After tea and snacks, we got back to the bus and headed back to the city. The music system in the bus, which was not working in the morning, came back alive - though with some unpalatable video songs. Cutting through the heavy Friday evening traffic we came back home with the memory of a day well spent.


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