Behind The Scenes of My Internship: 13 Bitter Things I Learnt in an NGO Internship

By Tanisha Khaitan

That rosy, glorious picture of an NGO, where you work under sincere, honest people working hard to make the world a better place and get to learn all the ropes (or at least some) of the legal profession goes for a toss when you work in a place where people are not even ready to call themselves an NGO, the Director looks like a phony and you invest your energies in a project which has a lot of legal connotations, in a parallel universe.

The bitter, hard-biting, sometimes darkly humorous reality of interning in my first year as a law student can be summed up by 13 simple but important life lessons I learned in my one month.

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1.      The exact decibel at which you should scream if two ferocious dogs chase you all over the office and it’s too early in the morning for anyone to arrive and save you.

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2.      The shape in which you should curl up your body to escape any serious damage when a generously stuffed wardrobe falls on you.

3.      How to get on the wrong bus and spend one and a half hours and 120 rupees getting back to your hostel instead of 20 minutes and 10 rupees.

4.      How to climb on windows and tables in the search of network so that you could send just that one SMS.

5.       How to avoid the gaze of people who wonder why you always choose the spot in front of their house to talk on the phone and what’s wrong with your own house.

6.      How to decipher the ongoing topic by observing the tones and gestures of people when you do not know their language, always.

7.      How to convince yourself on New Year’s Day that you’re not lonely, just going through a phase of life called internship.

8.      How to listen to music with earphones when both your hands are busy washing clothes and you’re not wearing pants with pockets.

9.      How to quietly sneak off the bus without buying a ticket and then rejoicing about it because it’s the only funny thing that happened that day.

10.     How to respond when a person from Cameroon flirts with you, exactly at the time when you’re looking to bite someone’s head off.

11.     How to convey to your boss that he needs a bloody schedule if he wants to get his project running.

12.     How to while away entire days thinking up the silliest things possible because there is nothing else to amuse you.

13.     How to reach such a pathetic stage in life that after sometime it ceases to be pathetic and appears plain funny.

Do share your experiences in comments below!

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Disclaimer: Internship experiences are opinions shared by individual law students and tend to be personal and subjective in nature. The internship experiences shared on Lawctopus are NOT Lawctopus official views on the internship.

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