Summer Internship in Kolkata – the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

About Author: – Shaumik is pursuing his Integrated Masters from IIT Roorkee. He interned at Jadavpur University in Earth Sciences. Read on to find out how he discovered the good, bad and ugly sides of his internship stay at Kolkata.

When I first stepped onto Didi’s Shonar Bangla, I wondered if I would be able to survive the two months there. I completed my intern and I survived. I got used to the climate, and more importantly, the traveling. So, I would like to share my opinion on the pros and cons of the combination of Kolkata, the department of Geological Sciences in Jadavpur University and Me.

The Good

The Food: The food is great, especially if you’re from a place like Roorkee. I wish I could literally lift the canteen and take it with me to Roorkee! In addition, they provide the food at subsidized rates, so you can have more than enough for really cheap rates.

The Professor: Before taking up this intern, on mentioning his name, every senior or Professor in Roorkee would have kind words for Dr Nibir Mandal. And they were absolutely right. He is someone who would guide you, but in a way that you could control. It’s as if I am steering on my own. My internship was not that much appealing to me until the introduction of Matlab. As I have experienced earlier, when your program gives the desired output, it brings about so much happiness!

The Bad

Water Coolers: There is nothing bad about water coolers, but think about this: there is no water cooler in the whole campus of Jadavpur University. No more comments on that! Anyways, the research scholars usually have a nice break when they go to fill their water bottles (I still have no idea where).

The Dogs: There are dogs everywhere, and although they are far friendlier than their counterparts in Roorkee, I don’t like them. In fact, I don’t like any other species other than humans. Dogs, Cats, Snakes, Hamsters, Guinea Pigs! None. Maybe I’m just the anti-non-human!

The Proxy System: Jadavpur University has a weird system of LAN. After sweating with the settings and handling the IP conflicts and setting the proxy server, I finally configured it! For what? Just 5 minutes of facebook-less, twitter-less internet. The internet stopped working for the rest of the day. In a few more days, I did figure out how to bypass the checks, and days were far less boring since then.

The Ugly

The Metro: Don’t think this as Delhi. Think of the number of people in the Delhi Metro. Add another person for every square foot. That is Kolkata. If you are lucky enough to get a seat, the sweat of the person sitting next to you will make your time go slower than that of the Prince of Persia! Ugly indeed. The silver lining was the introduction of the new metros with working AC, but now even those are just about a tenth of the total number.

Humidity: This is one thing I hate about Kolkata. Something which I feel is worse than the soaring temperatures. This drains you out of all the energy you have!

The Bus Conductors and the Auto drivers: This class of people are $%#&^$&#*$&%^#&#&@#$^%. Enough said. More importantly, if I write anything even remotely near to what I think of them, my publisher would just censor it. I would still like to mention that there are good people among the ugly, but, it’s nonetheless a rarity.

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