Sunday, July 31, 2005

Worth Rs. 10/-

While I was whining about my life to all and sundry, somebody upstairs decided enough is enough, and so sent down scores of angelic helpers to pull me out of my rut. What happened was this: on Wednesday evening I succumbed to the call of the Chicken Tikka Sub. The result of this was a very satiated stomach, a very long post about last night's dinner (a.k.a. The land I live in...) and me generally feeling upbeat about everything. After the mustard and mayonnaise had worn off, I realized that I was left with a solitary 10 rupees note in my purse. I was wondering what to do about it, for it was 1 am already. The choice was between a moonlit walk to the ATM or skipping breakfast next day or rather the same day. When A, who was going home at that very moment, invited me to breakfast.

I was delighted, ecstatic, and I gave him an instant hug! He cast me a doubtful look, pondering whether he had done the right thing. I guess my flurry of "Thank You's" put his doubts to rest. Omelets, bread n butter, poha and milk. What more can a man ask for? Well, man can be very greedy and ask for lots of things. I, however, played the perfect guest and offered to walk to office, while A could ride his bicycle. To my surprise and horror, A offered me a lift. Where is the horror in that, you might ask? Well, I am mortally scared of getting on anything while it is moving (this due to a rather unfortunate incident with a bus but that will have to stay out of this post, for now). A stopped, asked me to get on and then started his cycle with much effort, for both him and me are rather fondly attracted to the earth by gravity. I have not been on the carrier seat of a cycle in eons, and I blessed A with every blessing I could think of right then.

Hours rolled by on a busy Thursday, and soon unrelenting hunger struck again. As I was about to undertake the inevitable trek to the ATM, SM turned up and said, "Hey! Remember the report you helped me on? The boss really liked it. I am treating you to lunch!" And just like that I was at a complete loss for words and in complete control of the menu. I'll spare the details, but the lunch sure felt good. I came back to my office room, and U who had just completed her project, invited me over for dinner. I was suddenly "the poor baby boy who's out of home for first time and needs to be looked after." Everybody was molly-coddling me! I, who was starting to believe more in my instant messenger than people around me, was suddenly wondering where had all these people turned up from.

I spent the evening explaining the Potter stories to U's wonderful kids. I have a penchant for story telling and kids form the best listeners - they imagine without questions rooted in drab realities, but beware lest you feel you can pull the wool over their eyes! This was topped by a screening of Shrek 2 (I loooooove that Donkey) and a wonderful dinner of many courses - lemon rice, bhindi, papaya, rotis, buttermilk, and tutti-fruity ice cream.

Next morning before I left for home I told S about my lonely 10 rupee note. He was of the opinion I should lay a wager as to how many days I can survive without spending any money at all. He labeled me as the "sponsored candidate" in office, and went as far as to suggest that on Monday I should ask the boss for a treat.

I had not even finished my weekend quota of sleep when I got a call from B, inviting me over for dinner and a movie. I jumped at the chance, for I had not seen a movie in ages. This was my first visit to B's home since he got married. B's wife, a most charming lady, cooked. Over a dinner of rajma-chawal and mangoes, she complained jokingly about B's sense of clothing, and how he is never chatty whenever he comes back from office. I was thinking, "Here is another happy marriage!" Later at the mall just as they stepped onto the escalator, I saw B hold her hand. It was all there, right in that small gesture, all that they felt for each other. Whatever pangs of loneliness I felt, were washed over by a rather well made movie titled Yahaan.

I am sucker for well made movies with enchanting visuals, a very nice looking female lead, a mesmerizing song and a credible story set in contemporary India. A love story set in the gorgeous valleys of Kashmir, where bullets are as numerous as the snow flakes, played chords of music which many Indians like me barely understand. I drove back home at 11 pm, amidst crawling trucks on the highway, happy and sad at the same time, I was beginning to see a tinge of the strength love gives a person. The love of friends, of family, of my land ... and of the beloved.

It's back to work tomorrow. Anyone is interested in a dinner date? Don't worry! Ofcourse, I'll pay. After all, I still have the ten rupee note in my purse.


  1. sigh.... up for panu puri... thats YUMMY!!
    *hauls fr away*...

  2. see! things do get better! i say you hold onto that 10 rupee note and frame it or something, so when you're feeling low, you can look at it and remember how lucky u r!

  3. and what's that crack about instant messenger people?!

    what's not to believe in what i said?

  4. @grafx: Whoa! Paani Puri! Okay - my lunch is taken care off. :D

    @cactus: Great Idea - Yummy! I luv those. Say how about an anda-parantha date? ;)

    @sonia: Hee hee - hmmm - frame it you say! What will I do if nobody treats me to lunch today? :O

    And there is nothing "not to believe" in what you or anybody said on the IM. It's just that I need people of flesh and blood around me sometimes, to keep my sense of reality intact.

  5. come... i'll treat u to a falafel :)

  6. so tatz when companys like mine seem to b a boon,by blocking all types of messengers they ensure tat we only interact with real ppl !
    even i'm uprooted from my home n kisi ne chai tak nahi pucha mujhe , some ppl have all the luck in the world

  7. Well I can make out ur the fav one among ur pals...possibly coz ur always there to help them! I guess u deserve all tht pampering! Oh n if i were u i'd pass on that 10 rupee note to a person who really needs it. N if u hav to buy food, buy it for a beggar or a poor kid or some1... :)

  8. @pixel: Hey! Cool. Since I am booked for lunch, and dinner already ... how about breakfast tomorrow :)

    @swathi: errr ... would you like some Elaichi Chai? :)

    @mirage: Oh my ... did I let on that I do not need that ten rupeee note. I do! I need it to salvage whatever I have left of my reputation. :D Ofcourse! Lending a helping hand to someone more in need will always be on the top of my list.

  9. go to the ATM? i mean , how long can u expect ur luck to last! and how do u expect to treat me to chocolate excess without money??!

  10. At college, we used to try survivin' on that kind of money for a week- again as a wager. Of course, we ate in the hostel mess. But still, a week!
    When your luck's over, your favour bank will show a large debit balance, wouldn't it? How 'bout that?

  11. That 10 rupee note is turning out to be quite lucky for you ;)

  12. @sonia: How long! Would you believe it that on Monday I got treated to a Pizza lunch! And at night it was burgers at McDonalds - but since we had decided to go dutch I graciously paid the hostess back today morning :)

    @rahul: Yeah! It will :) hmmmm.... now I'll have to think of ways to replenish it!

    @khushee: Oh yes! Very lucky :D

  13. i do believe! but no dutch when it comes to the choco excess! ;o)