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As I smoke my morning cigarette (admittedly a disgusting habit I picked up back in college), I suddenly miss India. I shiver against the wind in cold, dark, damp London. It’s 7.30 a.m. and its pitch dark. Even after three and a half years, I still have times when I wonder what I am doing here.

What makes this the Promised Land? A question I have asked myself (and others) a million times before and one I still haven't found an answer to.

Since there are a couple of hours to go for work, I set out to make a list of things that could explain possibly why a young wide-eyed law student comes over to (quite literally) the dark side.

Here is what I came up with (in no particular order):


  1. has been morbidly fascinated by Yashraj movies from an early age (i.e., ever since he/she learnt what NRI means);
  2. has had dangerous levels of exposure to Monty Python’s Flying Circus;
  3. believes James Bond is a real person;
  4. hopes to get with a hot foreign chick/guy (a separate blog entry shall have to be devoted to this rather fond hope);
  5. is charmed by the accent of the hot chick/guy in 4 above (which he/she later realises is closer to Geoffrey Boycott being strangled than Yes Minister);
  6. wishes that the great tan he/she was born with be appreciated (while his/her friends still use Fair & Lovely/Handsome);
  7. finds out that Europe is closer to London than Bangalore;
  8. wants to be the automatic choice for best leg-spinner in the firm's cricket team (and he/she wants to rub it in when India beats the South African second XI);
  9. needs more grocery money than the obscene amounts Indian firms pay graduates;
  10. appreciates human-prototype billable hour targets (because donkey-testing is banned in the UK);
  11. wants to sweat less (logical corollary to 10 above. Also related to the weather, although there was a 33 degree Celsius heat wave in the UK last year); or
  12. is certifiable and wants to multi-task (or build his/her CV, which has forever been a favourite hobby of law students- please refer to Multitasking- The 'certified' way).

I feel a lot better about things having undertaken this much-needed analysis. I whistle softly to myself as I put on my suit and knot my tie.

The next lot of eager starry-eyed Indian trainees is due to start at Colby, Hewitt and Richards LLP today.


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