Serengeti Migration - A Daily Phenomenon?

Who says one needs to go to Africa to see the Serengeti migration?  Every city has its very own migration that occurs twice daily.  In the morning I’m a witness to, and indeed a part of, the thousands of people who spill out from the train and subway stations and rush to their offices in one of the tall office buildings.  Herds of people make their way to their offices in the morning and then back to the train and subway stations in the evening - it's like the Circular Migration of the Serengeti that we see on the Discovery Channel.

Replace the wildbeests of the Serengeti plains with people and you will wonder why such a phenomenon is called “one of the ten natural travel wonders of the world”.  Are people not natural?  Is going to the office not “natural”?  Such a migration has become a staple of the developed world where everyone has a herd mentality.

The entire phenomenon is quite amusing if you think about it.  Men in dark suits holding their briefcases and Blackberry's rushing to their offices; high-heeled women in shirts, skirts, trousers and heavy make-up who walk alongside their male counterparts; the occasional person in a t-shirt, jeans and sneakers who seems out of place… it’s quite an elaborate, yet amusing show to watch.

Normally, I don’t even notice the people as I’m “going-with-the-flow”.  However, there is no better way to physically “experience” going-against-the-flow than to head to the train station in the morning when the throngs are heading out of it.  I can feel the crowd’s resistance, and it gives me some degree of satisfaction knowing that I'm going against the crowd.  This feeling, I think, is a prerequisite to accomplishing something meaningful.

I did this in September 2008 when I quit my permanent full-time job to see the world and have some truly amazing experiences.  It was the best decision of my life, as it eventually led to me meeting my soon-to-be-wife.

So, as you sit in your little cubicle drinking office coffee and wondering if you should execute that idea that you have been thinking about for quite some time, then ask yourself if you want to be a part of the "Circular Migration" for the rest of your life - and just do it!

8 comments:

Mee said...

I said to myself-what a coincidence- am going to Africa soon and here you are writing about Serengeti!:) On reading realized otherwise!

Going the against the flow- like you, 2 yrs ago- I quit a hi flying corporate career -went against the flow (took some courage alright!) but now I am a happy soul:)-I do what I love most and do it t impact people for positive change in the world we live in:)

Wish you and your soon to be bride much happiness and togetherness always:)

Neeraj said...

Going to Africa? Cool! I'm planning on going there... some day (hopefully soon). Where in Africa?

BTW, what are you doing now? Journalism?

Thanks for your wishes :)

Mee said...

E Africa- Kenya, Tanzania, Zanzibar- Diwali period for 2.5weeks

An ex colleague from Oglvy and me both have started a social communication consultancy for NGO's offering holistic communications for all causes and issues in the country

What d you do?:)

Neeraj said...

So are you visiting the Serengeti National Park and the Masai Mara Park? Have fun!

How does a social communication consultancy work? Do you have a website?

I had faced a major problem after I returned from my long trip... problem of what to do now?! Luck played a major part but I started a company offering Risk Management services to Banks. It wasn't my dream or anything to do this but it sure beats working for someone else :)

Mee said...

Yep will be doing the safaris in both Serengeti and Massai Mara. Will also hope to see the pink flamingos.

The website is undergoing a re-construct-will send you the link-soonest it starts functioning ( hopefully anthr 10days!)

Risk mgmnt services to Banks? U help them with their research and assessment of the various funds/scripts and such?

Neeraj said...

More specifically, I'm in Market Risk Management. All banks have to report VaR ("Value at Risk") to a regulatory authority. It's an overall theoretical number based on the total value of the Bank's portfolio of stocks, bonds, FX and derivatives. The value of the holdings is derived from market prices and financial models. My current project has to do with the migration of trades from one system to another... the models will change... so VaR will change... do you get the picture? :)

Let me know your website when it's up and running. And I hope you put up some pics from your safaris on your blog :)

Mee said...

Yep get it:) it may be a niche segment you are in but very interesting!
Since you are closely associated with the financial world- do you too believe the stock mkt has to go thru a correction and hence at some stage will dip? :)

Sure yes will do the posting of pics surely- currently laid up with a bad back so pushed the trip to end dec from early nov

Neeraj said...

Yes, mkt will correct, although when that will happen is for astrologers to "predict" :)