For the first time in six months one felt the warmth of Sun rays beating through the clear blue skies, temperature rising to 70 degrees, orange - yellow leaves beginning to add color to the pale and placid life, it felt like the beginning of spring. Indeed it was the last working day before the spring break, the Friday where no grad student worried about his assignments, as they had just finished their midterm exam. Everyone planed for their 9 day vacation called spring break.
Amit wasn’t sure whether he had something called a spring break as he was a Research Assistant; research according to him was searching something which his advisor had hidden somewhere . It was his second spring break; he knew how his previous spring break was foiled by his advisor in the name of research. He was happy as he had a good result - a line graph; something tangible to show, which his advisor expected all the time. At 11 am he reached his advisor’s office, who always believed in impromptu meetings; would send out an email the previous night, he always kept Amit on his toes.
“Can I come in Dr Y?” Amit knocked the door. “Come in” out came a voice. “How is everything going? Do you have any result to show?” was his usual silence breaker. Amit was all charged up, for the first time he had results which he thought were beyond his advisor's expectations; powered his laptop on and presented the demo and the graph. This was the first time his advisor liked his demo and was satisfied with it. With a funny smile came the reply “Good job, I give you two day vacation, START WORKING ON YOUR THESIS FROM MONDAY”.
These are the exact words every research grad student wishes to hear. It translates to “Ja Jeele Apni Zindagi” (read as ‘end of torture period get ready to graduate’). Spring graduation sounded realistic, he was as thrilled as an early released prisoner for his good deeds; but wasn’t sure what his good deeds were!
“Find three people for your thesis committee” his advisor broke the silence again. Amit knew that these three angels play a significant role in converting a grad student status to a graduate status, he had his X, Y, and Z pen down; one of them being his advisor. “I said find three more people, I cannot be part of the committee”, “why because I no longer work at this University!” “I submitted my resignation last month”; “Didn’t I tell you?” those words out of Dr Y were enough to give someone heart attack.
Amit felt like Vijay of “Don”, in the scene where Vijay realizes that the only person who knew about his true identity was dead and only the red diary could prove his innocence. Amit had a red thumb drive. He had heard of thesis being changed at the last minute, but changing advisor was ridiculous.
“Ladkiya Pyar Toh Apni Marzi Seh Karleti Hai, Magar Shaadi Apne Ma Baap Ki Marzi Sey Karti hai” of the movie Kabhi Kabhi lingered in his mind.
“Amit can you tell me something about the research you have done so far?” asked Dr X, his future advisor next day during his meeting. Those words had the power to recreate Khuda Gawah’s scene where Badshah Khan’s imprisonment is extended indefinitely for no fault of his. The thought of defending his Thesis without his advisor was enough to forget about the so called spring break.