November 12, 2013mauritius work-life-balance journal
Orange Business Services, ITD (IT Delivery) team organized a Team Building outing with Black River Gorges National Park as our destination. Why team building? ITD comprises of several smaller teams to make up around 90 people. Some people 60 people joined the event. Others had to assure business continuity & some took a leave instead.
When did it happen? Monday 11 November 2013.
Abou picked me up around 07h30. On the way he had picked several others & like that we reached OBS around 08h05. Good! We should be leaving in some 30 mins we thought but alas because of a few late comers we were getting annoyed in that full packed bus. Ahaaan! Due to lack of communication from the organizing committee, I didn’t know we’d be going in one bus (60 seats). I thought we’d be going through several smaller vans. Had I known it earlier, I’d brought a ravanne to make some noise. Anyway, after 45 mins of waiting in the bus we finally left the compound.
On the way we picked up two other colleagues who were waiting with foodstuffs; sandwiches & snacks. A few of us grabbed that moment to get down and buy some packs of beer :) Hehe! Needed those. Sandwiches were veg … Good for me. A box of snacks came around but it was written non-veg on that. I didn’t take. Later I came to know that the box contained veg snacks. By the time the box came again, it was empty :P Still … no worries. We had beer to keep the smile :)
We reached Petrin, that’s from where the trail starts. We got down & were called up by names for team making. That was kinda boring … I wonder who planned that. Team building is supposed to be fun & helps you build friendship. However, this was getting boring every hour. We were given colored laces to identify us from each team. I got the orange lace & others got blue, green & even pink. Ok, we had the roll of orange lace but no scissors. I took a sharp piece of rock to cut the lace, roadie-style.
We then started walking. Ahaaan! The track was estimated to be 3 hours long. We should have capitalized on this time to integrate activities; use of compass, pictorial questions etc … so that people can work together to find their way and solve the problems during the 3 hours. It would also bring people closer by exchanging ideas. But nah… there was no such thing. We just walked… mixed with different teams (based on the color laces) as we could choose with whom to walk.
After two hours of walk some had gone ahead while the rest lost their way & reached nearly Mare Longue. We discussed & decided to return and follow the correct track. Ahaaan! Not realizing that the track down Gorges is steep and hectic (or even dangerous)… since, we were tired already it became a lot more difficult.
By 13h30 I was feeling damn hungry. Yup! I eat every 2 hours. Beer was over but luckily Girish had bread which I shared with Abou. We then continued the adventure.
On the way, I picked up cans of Smirnoff & Beer left by nature-haters, certainly not from OBS since the cans looked older. We reached Gorges around 15h00 but too tired to appreciate the scenery. Instead of 3 hours we had 5 hours of trail, some of us without food :P No way to engage in other activities other than eating. Yup! We had a late-lunch and were eager to get home.
We returned to Ebène around 17h00. Yet another surprise was waiting for us. We wouldn’t get company transport until 19h00. That was heart-breaking to many. I was about to leave by bus. Luckily, Girish gave me a lift till Quartier Militaire.
I reached home at 18h30, totally worn out! Had shower, dinner & went to bed!
Photos, courtesy of Altaf Nawool & Arvind Bysooa.