How I saw the World from a 1m x 0.1m window

Today’s guest entry is written by soon-to-be MBA graduate, Muhammad Waqas from Pakistan.

On the sunny afternoon of 25th December 2015, I entered my apartment and looked out of my bedroom window overshadowing the beautiful Lake Leman with snow-covered mountains completing the view. The first thing I noticed was the bald trees which helped me to have a clear view of the lake. The lake looked so mesmerizing due to the sun’s reflection that I ended up looking at the same scenery for the next 15 minutes taking deep breaths to give my tar soaked lungs as much fresh air as I could. Yes, that is what happens to smokers.

Fast forward to 27th November 2016. As I was packing my bags to leave my IMD abode in a fortnight, I looked again at the lake from the same window and recollected how the trees in front of my apartment grew leaves which blocked the view in summer and now the same trees have almost shed their leaves and I again have a clear view of the lake. The lake is still looking as mesmerizing without losing any beauty, the birds are still chirping in harmony, the kids are still playing and the air has the same freshness and romanticism.

But along with that recollection, I entered an internal loop, much like the one I entered in many of our Finance classes, reminding me of the many memories I collected during the year:

  • I recollected how I saw my first snow fall. I had seen snow many times but never a snow fall.
  • I remembered the most common spoken word in Belgian region is “alez”. Only my Belgian tank Ulrich knows how to answer it.
  • I witnessed an Israeli Jewish sharing a room with Palestinian/American Muslim in a Christian Monastery in Italy. For sure there was not much politics involved there.
  • I saw how Japanese can be so loyal to their friends that they can go to any heights to reach a common goal.
  • I witnessed Pakistan getting defeated by their arch rivals twice in a space of 1 month. I still cannot believe how India can defeat the best cricket team in the world!
  • I saw how Brits decided to say farewell to EU and the follow up confusion to stay out completely or partially in EU.
  • I waited for an overwhelming victory of Trump. That made me think, miracles do happen and I probably need to change my name before going to US again.
  • I recounted how the IMD MBA community welcomed 3 partners and twins, and 5 more IMD kids are on the way. Let’s see if we can add any more numbers before the graduation ceremony.

All this brought a smile to my face and before I could take a deep breath again, my 3 year old son asked me “Where are we going?!”

Waqas