Sunday, July 24, 2005

Update on GMAT preparations

Work and GMAT are about the only things running in my life right now so here is an update on one of them.

I have been doing reasonably well in quant section but faltering on the verbal.

Here are the results of some practice tests that I have taken until today.

Test Descrp. Quant Verbal Total
Powerprep-1 (SS)47, 31 V (SS)31,22 650
Kaplan Diag. 18/26 22/28 650
Kaplan Paper 34 27 660
Kaplan CAt-1 24 21 560
Crack GMAT-1 33 24 640
Crack GMAT-2 31 23 630

I did write a test today morning and got 710, so I am thrilled about it.
Powerprep-2 SS49 SS37 710

I am pretty confident about my quant skills and feel certain to achieve 95%ile or higher. Though, Kaplan Cat-1 score is cause of concern as I thought I did fine that time too.
Seeing the trend, I have been focusing on my verbal and in course of my studies I realized that English grammar or at least the GMAT grammar is based on set of well defined rules. Until now I used to think that it goes more on how correct it sounds (I learnt that those are called idiomatic) with some rules here and there. So what one needs to do is to understand these rules and remember them while reading the sentences. This helps answer question easily. However ETS is clever enough to disguise and complicate the sentences so that you find it difficult to identify these mistakes. Some Practice should help here.

I did learn from friends that they were also getting similar scores in practice tests and ended up scoring lot more in actual GMAT. However I cannot take this for granted.

Okay, time to go for a swim and then back to GMAT preps...

Sunday, July 10, 2005

3 Years Down

Friday 8th July, I completed three years in this company. Looking back there was a time when I was not sure I’d make it this far. I have come a long way and so have all my batch mates.

Friday all the memories from our training days came flooding back. It was a 4 month training and a tough one at that, something we enjoyed thoroughly nonetheless. We had evaluating exams ever so often and we never had any breathing time. But we made it through, each one supporting the other and we did have a lot of fun together.

Of more than 100 of us that started here 3 years back only around 25-30 of us remain. I am not even sure of the exact number. Others have moved on to other jobs, studies, some have got married, both guys and girls and still some others, I just don’t know. They seem to have disappeared of the face of the earth.

Personally I have had my ups and downs but the good thing has been that I have learnt a lot. Every thing that didn’t go my way was an experience that’s made me better and more mature and less instinctive. There are lots of good things that have happened and lot of things I have achieved. All said and done I like the way things have gone. Now I realize that I didn’t want it to be smooth sailing affair and miss out on the experiences that have made me wiser. At that time, however, I may have had a different opinion. If it hadn’t been for everything that has transpired in the last 3 years, I probably wouldn’t have been at this juncture, thinking of bigger things and trying to find my true potential. However there are things I could have done better and still others I regret and would have rather not done, given the chance. Well they say that you learn from your mistakes and I have.

Coming back to our batch, it has always been a very close group of friends. Some of my best friends are my batch mates from work, other being my college classmates and teammates from cricket teams in college and work. Actually of the 25-30 ppl left in the company 6 of us are right here in Minneapolis on the same account. Half our batch is probably in the US right now.

I have really and thoroughly enjoyed the past 3 years at work and having such great friends is what makes it such a wonderful experience. Some of my closest friends, batch mates or others are right here near in Minneapolis. So I am still having the time of my life. Everyday!!

It’s a beautiful life!! Hope it stays that way!

Here is what I am singing –

Time of your Life
– by Green day

Another turning point;
a fork stuck in the road.

Time grabs you by the wrist;
directs you where to go.

So make the best of this test
and don't ask why.

It's not a question
but a lesson learned in time.

It's something unpredictable
but in the end it's right.
I hope you had the time of your life.

So take the photographs
and still frames in your mind.

Hang it on a shelf
In good health and good time.

Tattoos of memories
and dead skin on trial.

For what it's worth,
it was worth all the while.

It's something unpredictable
but in the end it's right.
I hope you had the time of your life.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

You've Got Another Thing Coming

That's right here's where the talkin' ends
Well listen this night there'll be some action spent
Drive hard I'm callin' all the shots
I got an ace card comin' down on the rocks

In this world we're livin' in we have our share of sorrow
Answer now is don't give in aim for a new tomorrow

Oh so hot no time to take a rest yeah
Act tough ain't room for second best
Real strong got me some security
Hey I'm a big smash I'm goin' for infinity yeah

If you think I'll sit around as the world goes by
You're thinkin' like a fool cause it's a case of do or die
Out there is a fortune waitin' to be had
You think I'll let it go you're mad
You've got another thing comin'


I have been getting a bit nervous reading posts of fellow bloggers who have already written GMAT and few drafts of essays and still think that they are behind schedule. I am yet to write GMAT, my preparation has hardly gathered any momentum and starting with the application process hasn’t crossed my mind as yet. Most importantly my GMAT is just a month away and I am nowhere near ready. Infact I am not much better than when I first started preparations.

Last Monday I decided that the time to act was now. I was off from work early every day and managed to study daily. I wasn’t able to concentrate as much as I would have liked too but I did make some progress and more importantly I had the long weekend for all the catching up. Unlike other weekends, I decided not to plan any travel or outing just so that I may concentrate on my studies.

Things did not go as planned and we had an all night outing on Friday and I slept through Saturday. I was really pissed off Saturday evening for the time I wasted and wanted to make up for it next 2 days.

Somehow this kind of adventure was exactly what I needed to turn things around. I was able to motivate myself and get some seriousness and resolve in my preparations. I made decent progress next 2 days covering most of the tasks I planned.

One of thing that generally inspires me is music. On Saturday when I was wondering about what I was doing and where I was going with this, I thought that if you want something you have to go and get it. I have an opportunity to do something with my life, better not let that slip away. I remember listening to this song by Judas priest at the time, it goes like this

If you think I'll sit around as the world goes by
You're thinkin' like a fool cause it's a case of do or die
Out there is a fortune waitin' to be had
You think I'll let it go you're mad
You've got another thing comin'

Yes Anand, You've got another thing comin' and you better be ready

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