Yes, Pearl Goleman…that’s the alias I suggested her.
It was my first job as a corporate trainer in a contact center. I was in a graveyard shift which used to begin at 12.30 am. In my first batch I met Poonam Dhaliwal. She joined the company as a Call Center Executive, like the rest of the executives but she was different from others. She had a spark in her that set her apart. She had a deep resonating voice which echoed experience and life.
She was a post graduate in Micro biology but as she got married and had kids she could not pursue her B. Ed and so was left with the option to work as an agent. She had an exceptional memory. I got to know this when she was giving a presentation on American Culture. She had remembered all the US history and holidays by heart.
We started taking our breaks together and the more I spoke to her, the more I found a real and genuine person in her. She was ready to listen most of the times but when she would be disturbed, she just wanted to vent out and would not give you any chance to interrupt her.
One day she brought bread halwa for me. I had never tasted it before and found the bread halwa very tasty. I also started carrying Samosas and Jalebis to the office sometimes and we would sit, sip, munch and chat in our breaks. I developed a special bond with Poonam and it was as if I have found a guide, friend, sister… all in one person.
Due to some reasons I had to leave my job very abruptly. On the day, I left the job I called Poonam and asked her how she was doing. I asked her with whom she took her break. She replied, “I don’t need a break now”. I literally had tears in my eyes but I could not do anything to help her. I did call another team member and told her to take care of Poonam.
The bond that got formed within five months was so strong that I still get comfort by just thinking about a friend who resonates with my thinking and understands me.
Due to different cities I don’t get to meet Poonam that often and because of our busy schedules I am not able to talk very frequently too. In spite of all these limitations, whenever we talk or meet it seems that we are starting from where ever we left. It is very difficult to find a friend who is there for you come what may. I feel lucky to have a friend like Poonam in my life.