This was my third and last (most probably) attempt at UPSC Civil Services Exam and it again started with the prelims exam. I am astounded as to how the run up to and the aftermath of this exam have varied through the years. In my first attempt in 2007, I along with 3 other friends who had TATA STEEL with me took the exam. The preparations before exam were as much serious as the manner in which we filled the application form. I had been so engrossed in my project work at the company that I hadn't even read a newspaper in last 3 months (there went my General Studies paper) and I was still banking on my physics knowledge acquired 5 years ago during preparation for IITJEE to clear my Physics paper. So the four of us rode bikes to Ranchi (140 KM away) a day before the exam. We booked a hotel room for 2 days and did a tour of Ranchi at night, looking for good bars. We didn't drink because we were there for exams and not for partying. Next morning an hour before exam we were looking for stationery shops to buy HB pencil and erasers without which we could not mark the OMR sheets. So far so much for the preparation.The exam itself went as good as I was expecting. I could not even read the whole of Physics question paper and in GS I had no clue to 80 % of the problems. In the evening we went to a good bar (as good as it can get in Ranchi) and had some drinks to ease the post-exam trauma and finally returned to Jamshedpur next morning to get back to work. I didn't evaluate my performance afterward and the only time I thought about it again was when I was told by some friends that the results were out. Fortunately I had still had my roll number saved in my cell, others didn't even bother for that. All of this happened when IAS was still my dream job.