Thursday, February 28, 2008


26th Feb 08

9.10AM: Texting best pal as I hit ORR (Outer Ring Road), on my way to the Airport for a 9.50 flight. Shit! Fat chance I am going to make it!

9.45AM: The security lady looks at the boarding pass and smiles. “Apni bangalee?” “Haan! Ami bangalee and I am late!” The PA girl is announcing my name. Last boarding call for passenger traveling on…damn! Of all the times this one had to be on time!

9.55AM: Squeezed between a teen reading ‘Rescued by a Sheikh’ at the window and a burping gent carrying two mobile phones that ring alternatively. Groan! Remember to be on time if you want your choice of seating.

10.15AM: Pleasantly surprised with the in-flight music menu. Dark Side of the Moon. Nothing better to block the burps next door!

10.20AM: Burpy decides to watch a comedy sitcom and laughs loudly. There goes Floyd!

10.30AM: M&B girl wrestles with the climax scene and coffee finally droping the coffee on me. For once I am glad they serve lukewarm coffee in flight. Burpy tries to help and extends his napkin. Before I can say thank you, he burps on my face. Help me God!

10.55AM: Hauling my case to the taxi. Mental note: Never agree to ferry parcels for others and manage only with cabin bag.

11.50AM: Yawn! How can meetings be so boing?

2.00PM: Aloo paratha at a tiny dhaba run by a punjabi proprietor who calls himself ‘Uncle’. I am glad we decided to try this out.

5.00PM: An angry text message from Dad. ‘HOPE ALLS WELL.’ Ooops! I forgot to call home again.

7.30PM: Leafing through books at Landmark@CitiCenter. Decide to pick up a few. Anyway my bag is empty after unloading the parcels.

8.30PM: Meeting an old workmate for dinner. We decide to go for chinese on the 3rd floor. The palate disappoints. Our conversation is solely ex-office bashing. He is someone I call a professional friend. The only thing common is our old workplace. I was never inclined to know more. So by the end of the meal we didn’t have anything to talk about.

9.25PM: I walk to my hotel, relieved. One more peripheral relationship serviced for this year.

27th February 08

1.37AM: Get some sleep! It feels good to be wild. Tch!

6.08AM: It’s the alarm. Damn this is criminal! Snooze for another hour please.

7.00AM: Get up! Now!

9.30AM: Coffee please.

11.00AM: Mid term reviews. Poor sods.

11.30AM: Wake up and smell the coffeeeee!

2.00PM: At Uncle’s Dhaba again. The same aloo parathas. Still tastes yummy.

3.00PM: I need to remain awake.

4.00PM: Airline girl calls to inform that the flight is delayed.

4.30PM: They ask me to summarize the meeting. Why can’t they let me sleep??

5.00PM: Airline girl calls again to inform further delay. Shit!

6.00PM: The taxi guy suggests a different route.

6.30PM: The flight is delayed by another hour. Halleluiah!

6.45PM: Settle down with coffee (yuck!) at the waiting hall. The next lady is working a suduko and canoodling with someone over phone. ‘Coochie, what plan for tonight?’ Coochie????

6.50PM: Inward thinking. Exploring my raison d’etre. The ageless bond of a nameless relationship comes to mind. It ends up worrying a most important person in my life. Press the brake girl, before the other breaks.

7.10PM: Announcement for security check.

7.15PM: A gent cuts the queue and slinks to the spot before me grinning in self glory. If only looks could kill.

8.30PM: Bejeweled Bangalore tantalizes. Snaking traffic glitters like lusty sequin chains choking the city to a slow death.

8.45PM: Finally home soil.

8.50PM: Mad rush at the baggage conveyor. The earlier obnoxious gent stands guarding with his trolley the only gap in the sea of waiting people. How will I reach my stuff??

8.51PM: I spot my case. Request the airline personnel standing closest to help. He pulls out my case and hitches up the handle for me. ‘Oh! Last in first out!’ the pesky gent quips. Goodbye, Loser.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

fish tail

I say thank God for the fish! I must have written earlier that I am fish fanatic. Oh yeah baby. I looove my fish! Fried, curried, sautéed, minced, diced, filleted. My friends called me sushi in college. I am particularly partial to fried fish of any dimension and origin served with no distracting garnishing. Cosmic soul mates if you may. The fish fried-just-right and ready for you on a platter and you inch forward with rising anticipation. Will it be soft inside or crunchy? Does it have a subtle flavour or a strong aroma? Is the texture smooth or coarse?
Therefore, Goa has been a dream, specially since Bangalore does disappoint true fish connoisseurs. Talking about Goa, it has this cool south asian eatery called Nation of Noodles, tucked away in Calangute. It’s rarely that one sees so many global cuisines jostling in roughly one square mile area as in Calangute. I am not a classic gourmet, but the falafel and bagel toast was one of the best I have had so far.

Monday, February 18, 2008

There have been many embarrassing moments but the top of the list still is the time I went shopping with my three year old in tow. Forum Mall Westside sale. Choc a block with people. I was rummaging through the foot ware sale while my boy walks up to me holding a ferarri red lacy bra from the neighbouring lingerie section and says, “Mommy's red?”
Sensing all eyes turning, I freeze. Then I try to play it down by ignoring and before I can quietly snatch away his prized possession he turns to the crowd and wraps the bra around himself and says, “For my Mommy”. Giggles are audible. Particularly from the men. I have a strong urge to disown. Finally I appeal to the sales lady who quickly plucks the ‘flame’ from his hand much to his dislike and motions to haul the pesky kid away. Since then, I have never taken him shopping except for regular stuff like candies and colour pens.

The entire Saturday was spent on getting my handwriting analyzed by an expert and later whiling away time with some of the funniest people I have met in a while.

The handwriting thingie (the cute employee engagement girl’s idea to pep up the office) didn’t reveal anything new (stubborn, persistent, rebellious, empathetic, imaginative blah blah) except the fact that I am also terribly sensitive, a fact I dispute vehemently. Damn! It’s not easy being a closet crybaby.

Later the same day, I met up with my best bud and his recently acquired pal. A few beers in Koshys turned out to be a laughathalon of the kind that leaves you smiling even after you reach home. All courtesy a techie from Goa with ambiguous sexual leaning and a straightforward sense of humour that makes him an extremely endearing company. So there we were talking about Hesse and Ishiguro, Goa and Nagaland all wrapped in a bizarre amusement that you can’t isolate or identify yet it settles in a happy cloud all around you.

And then we met a college mate of my pal who, refused to recognize him even after sitting at the table 2 feet away for over 45 minutes till another classmate walks in and smiles a hello. What followed was my pal getting besieged by his old mates, the kindest of whom said, “My God, what happened to you?” Cest la vie. Oh, one of the friends had baked absolutely delicious pastries that we gutted with delight. The drive back home was peaceful. Unlike happiness that leaves you empty when gone, this was strangely fulfilling. Thank you.

Friday, February 15, 2008

I Spy

Three air tickets of an airline to three different cities booked on the same day. The airline boy calls on her cellphone, “Madam, we are holding a booking on your name for Chennai, Mumbai and Goa on 19th. I called to confirm where have you decided to fly on that day?” WOW. This is it girl! Like in gangsta-movies. The pretty mole gives the airport cops a miss and zips to an unknown destination under alias. Tralalaa!

Cocking her right eye brow, Code Name Lithium purrs in her sexiest deep voice, “Ohhh, where do YOU want me to go, Darrling?”

Airline boy mumbles inaudible. Code Name Lithium smiles knowingly. Poor boy. An innocent victim of her fatal charm.

Trrrring. It’s the desk phone. The traveldesk girl calling to apologise for the goof up just when Code Name Lithium was warming up for her next sting. Sighh! The world isn’t ready for her yet. She slides back to her guise of a bored office-goer fighting to keep sleep at bay while waiting for the day she will reveal her true self.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

valentine, victory and vermicelli

In the morning, got caught in massive traffic near Forum, Koramangala and decided to take the other route via Christ College which amounted to harakiri!

Result: late at work, rescheduled meeting and a sulky boss.

It’s mid day now and I am still struggling with a presentation and behind schedule for four calls and a dozen emails. But I have already managed to receive a few V day wishes, forward ten jokes, have five cups of coffee and upset my best buddy with my cynicism. (It was the coffee, I swear!).

Oh! If you are wondering about the title, it’s nothing significant. Just random words starting with V that came to my mind while I was fuming in traffic in the morning.

P.S. The cute girl from employee engagement team has distributed red paper hearts to all and asked us to write the name of the person whom you admire the most in office which will be tallied e.o.d. to rate popularity. Groan!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

digging for gold

Despite this, we went for Fool’s Gold. My pal had seen the promo poster and thought he loves Kate Hudson in a black bikini. So this was making up for forcing him to grit and bear 1408 last week.

On the plus, beautiful locale. Beaches have never been my hot spot (I burn easily). But sitting in a near freezing theater, the Bahamas were the only thing warm.

Now, the only thing close to gold is Mathew’s hairless chest. Mathew’s personal trainer must be mighty proud since the entire storyline hinges on his shirtless chest! Bravo! As for chemistry, Tom Hanks and Wilson in Cast Away were hotter together than Mathew and Kate. So, you are adequately warned to keep the money in your pocket and not be tempted to buy the ticket. Oh! as for the bikini, there is just that, the bikini, and nothing else there. Grin.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

It’s a wet cold typically grey Bangalore morning. Such mornings make her wish for someone special to curl up to with coffee and crossword. An emotional anchor. A polestar in her night sky of uncertainty. She misses a warm smile at waking. An occasional hug. Someone to say, ease up, I will take care of everything.
But these moments pass quickly. She knows a relationship isn’t for her. It has never worked. And a lot of it has to do with her. Her life had many dimensions and a relationship usually doesn’t survive all that for too long. So she has got used to her ‘alone but not lonely’ way and she isn’t unhappy. It’s just the trick of light in the morning that make her wistful.

Friday, February 08, 2008

The King and a room

“It’s an Evil fucking room” was the scariest line of 1408, the horror flick based on Stephen King’s novella. Before we could proceed through the movie, my best friend sank in his seat stuffing his fingers in his ears. I got busy watching Cussak, who was cute and my friend, whose expressions were cuter. Agreed, King isn’t for the faint hearted, but frankly, I am disappointed. I am a Stephen King fan. I love his books. They are what I call mind spook. They give me goosebumps. But I never liked any film adaptations of his novels. While Carrie was passable, Dreamcatcher was down right ugly!
Coming back to 1408, it has all the chills (literally!)and cheap thrills (bleeding walls, talking spirits, moving furniture, impaired electronics et al) but it wasn’t scary. Hell, even the entertainment quotient is just average. The cocky cute hero turns into a pathetic shivering jelly brain. That’s the essence of the storyline. I don’t know about my friend, but watching this wouldn’t keep me up in strange beds in strange hotel rooms when I am traveling.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

learn to be still

It hasn’t been an easy week. The emotional roller coaster has been particularly nasty. One that leaves you queasy and makes you wanna throw-up. And throw-up she did, on friends and family who bore the brunt of it. She withdrew without any explanation from anything and everything that meant something to her. Her parents got worried that she sunk in books all day shunning meals to avoid dinner table conversation. She over heard her dad asking her mom, what’s the matter with her? Only Ro was relieved that she was not at his case like usual. Her best friend tried to help but she shut him out without an apology leaving him hurt and withdrawn. It was only at her work, where there is least emotional attachment that no one noticed anything different.
Now when she is done with her grieving, she began to notice the wrecks she left at the wake of her withdrawal. Her mom still looked sullen. Her dad seemed a little distant. Her best friend was remote and who can blame him. Thankfully, he hasn’t given up on her completely yet. It is only Ro who maintained normalcy going about his school talk just like any other day.
She feels guilty to have left her loved ones behind in her dive for inner quiet. Her ability to withdraw has always been retorted with anger and resentment. Unable to understand her stillness, Sanjay had called her an automaton. She didn’t feel bad then, knowing that his inherent inability to comprehend her, lies in his failure to understand the need for silencing the chorus in her head.
There are so many contradictions
In all these messages we send
How do I get out of here
Where do I fit in?
Though the world is torn and shaken
Even if your heart is breakin’
It’ waiting for you to awaken
And someday you will-
Learn to be still

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


The problem of getting in a shell is that when you emerge out of it ready to face the world, there’s no one waiting. It can get a little disorienting.
Oh no daarrling! We don’t have the time or inclination to wait up for you to work the cobwebs inside your head. There are way too many of them, love. Besides, we have enough of our own, no? So bury your head all you like, but bury it at your own risk pluzzee! And better not take it for granted that the world in general and people in particular would be waiting with a smile. Understand?

Monday, February 04, 2008

Hey you, I heard you don’t care. No one does. So why should you?

Hey you, don’t worry. I will get ’un-used’ to you.

Hey you, for the first time you made me angry. Earlier I just cried. Stupid me.

Hey you, got any idea of what I am going thorough? Nah. I will spare you the gore.

Hey you, I am through with giving. But I always have some to give you.

Hey you, I would have walked to the end of earth with you. Now I am too weary.

Hey you, I wanted you to appreciate me. But it doesn’t matter anymore.

Hey you, I wouldn’t grovel. Even a bitch deserves respect.

Hey you, thanks for caring. Cause once you did.

Hey you, I will always love you.


It will be a low slow day. She just knows it. Loneliness always makes her lazy. But loneliness isn’t anything new to her. It’s her one true friend through life. And she likes it too. So why is it making her low suddenly? Maybe it’s the ‘Big girls don’t cry’ on radio on the way to work. Maybe it’s the 'Dark Waters' she watched late Sunday night. Maybe it is the gloomy stillness of the grey morning. Or maybe because she didn’t know why she hadn’t responded to her best friend’s message yesterday.

Inexplicable loneliness is something she is dealing with right now. Reminds her of the lines from a Floyd song.

Heaven sent the promised land.

Looks all right from where I stand.

Cause I'm the man on the outside looking in.

Waiting on the first step.

Show me where the key is kept.

Point me down the right line because it's time.

To let me in from the cold.

Turn my lead into gold.

Cause there's a chill wind blowing in my soul.

And I think I'm growing old.