Happy New Year Folks! (2019)

Date: Jan 2, 2019

We humans are a strange species. We come up with weird excuses to party and have fun. Every year, we celebrate Earth completing it's orbit around the Sun. I love it! There's a rekindled sense of optimism in the air. It gives us time to reflect over the last 12 months and take stock of our life. A nice checkpoint in what would hopefully be an amazing life :)

It's been a great year with a lot of ups and downs, of highs and lows. It tested my sanity, strengthened my resolve and made me truly appreciate the value of friends and family. It truly was a landmark year that would forever remain close to my heart. Here's to a year that has given me a lot, that has probably taken more, but overall a year that has been my biggest learning curve yet. I'm grateful for it all. Eternally indebted to a lot of people in my life for their kindness and affection. A special shoutout to the following things and people in my life this year (in no particular order):

  • The amazing Kindred team (especially my colleagues James, Rupam and Dima) - The AI Research team is awesome! Great, down-to-earth colleagues, quality work and a nurturing work environment. They’ve helped me grow a lot as a researcher.
  • One of my closest friends SV (Vignesh Sk) - One of the kindest, smartest, wackiest guys I know. Talks openly from his heart, completely candid and most importantly, a great friend :) If not for him and my work at Kindred, I shudder to imagine how my life could’ve turned out this year.
  • Naresh, Raam, Boxer and TSB - My long time friends from NIT. My comrades in arms. Always grateful to our inane, funny and sometimes deeply philosophical conversations.
  • PV (Vignesh Pasupathy) - This guy is the definition of smart, unassuming and humble. While we don’t talk as often as we should, we’ve got a great thing going. The conversation starts where we left off previously :)
  • Francois Hogan - Had an amazing time working with him during his internship at Kindred. Super smart, digs deep until he truly understands what he studies, runs marathons and always smiling and humble :) Unfortunate that he had to go back to MIT to finish his PhD :)
  • Pooja, Ashmini and Megan - Hard to describe, some wonderful memories :)
  • Vishaal and Ramkumar - Some of my oldest friends from high school. Super smart, fun guys to hangout with! They’re both living in Pittsburgh (roommates) and pursuing a PhD. I had a blast hanging out with them in Sept this year!
  • Sharath Anna - A cousin who’s life experiences would blow your mind! Never got a chance to spend time with him until this year. Great guy who I’d love to josh around with more often.
  • Rajan uncle - My Dad’s closest friend. Another guy who’s life experiences, tastes and ideas impressed the hell out of me. Kind, funny and unassuming :) The trip to Vellore to meet him would always be close to my heart :)
  • Honorable mentions - Dinesh, Adhav, Raghu, Navaneeth, Sanket, Megha, Jeremy, Simge, Dieta, Bala, Hema, Cheryl-Ann, Chris Glover, Lalith and Siddharth Balan for being in my life. Yoga classes with Alejandra. Colin (intern at Kindred) for exhibiting true emotional strength. Also the family run Dumpling House in East Chinatown!
  • Paati, Senthil, Nathan and Rajesh Chithappa, Anitha Chithi, Sriram, Karthik and Varshini - For their genuine love and concern for me :)
  • Srinath - My brother who puts up with all the weird shit I say. He’s currently studying in Sweden. I’m sure he’s going to do great things in life :)
  • Amma and Appa - Eternally indebted to their unconditional love. I do debate with them a lot just for the sake of it :P They really did let me live life on my own terms.

Wishing everyone reading this a happy 2019 :) Hopefully, you have a prosperous year ahead filled with love, acceptance and loads of fun :)