Meeting one of the smartest guys I know!
Thank you so much, Neal, for making the time to meet me in the middle of some hectic wedding activities. Getting to see Avia and talking to her was mesmerizing. I think she is very funny – specially for her age! The last time I saw her, she was still struggling to open her eyes in this new world. That was way back when and you were on the other coast. You might remember that after visiting the new born – we did what all fathers of new borns do – we went for a run!!
I missed Kim and Veera though! Hopefully Sharmila will join us too.
It was great catching up about our Optiant days together and all those great folks that we got a chance to work with.
But the best part – at least for me – was talking about taking years off. Hopefully you will do it sometime. You are the one person I know in my entire network who is most likely to. You have always had a independent perspective towards life and have an innate sense of how to not fall in the trap of “never enough” when it comes to money.
I know you will give Avia and Veera some indelible moments in life when you do so.
I went back and searched up my photo database (which is now over 100,000 pictures) to find that moment I talked about that has stayed seared in my memory. It was one of those year offs for me. It was after a grueling 10 year near-nothing-to-$1B start up success (the success was in spite of me; but the effort was not for the weak of the heart). That robbed me from enjoying the first daughter (Natasha) in her early years. But the second one (Nikita) had not yet completed a year when I took the year off.
As I was telling you – for the first time, I subscribed to a newspaper – Wall Street Journal, no less! I guess I was trying to catch up with the world in a hurry. But some of the best mornings were sitting outside by the pool reading the newspaper and then Nikita – who would have just woken up – would come up to me – with the dog in tow and shimmy up the chair to sit next to me. She was barely a year, as I said. So, the conversations were fairly unintelligible. The dog never seemed to mind though.
It is moments like that you are going to be very proud of when you reflect back on life when you realize the end is nigh. You will remember very little of what work you did at office.
So, here is to you taking a year off and creating some life memories. Perhaps that boat in Barcelona that we talked about? 🙂