Patiala Date

There I was, seated outside the mall, with my voluminous bag and helmet, waiting for my friend to show up when I saw her.

She was dressed in a pair of violet patialas, her long hair tied back and she’d worn dangling silver earrings that complimented the attire. Every bit the quintessential Punjabi kudi right out of Bollywood – and I’m not kidding, this was actually my first reaction!

In between looking for my friend in the sparsely populated road, I kept an eye on this girl. I saw her in the midst of a face palm – she hit her forehead and probably berated herself for something. Eventually, this girl came very close to where I was seated and asked the person sitting next to me if she could use her phone for a moment. The person refused and I could see disappointment etched on the pretty girl’s face and she made to move away.

The face-palm gesture explained itself and I quickly called out to her, took my phone out and asked her to go ahead and use it! She looked relieved, thanked me and spoke over the phone.

(The fact that I was in a similar situation barely half an hour before meeting her only added to the urgency with which I lent her my phone. Yeah I basically used a stranger’s phone to reach out to Boo with whom I’d accidentally left my phone. I knew exactly how weird she was feeling about her stupidity )

After the call she thanked me and sat waiting next to me. Having nothing better to do and being thoroughly fascinated, I struck up a conversation. In the course of our discussion, she admitted that she was here for a first date and told me about the year-long secret glances and unspoken conversations that she’d shared with Mr Potential who in fact ticked all her boxes. (Woh checklist jo hata hai humara!?)

She confessed to being super nervous and a tad bit annoyed that her exams were around the corner and she never wanted to commit to these things.. I tried to assure her that things would be good, give cupid a chance… My pretty in pink friend made two more calls of which I overheard the sweetest and most respectful – Tussi Kaha hai?

She’d dressed up traditional cause she really liked him and that he loved this attire… She spoke of how his hands were shivering when he made the first move to talk to her and hang out and laughed glibly. It melted my heart and made me feel so happy for her! Small joys in a big bad world, ain’t it!?

I caught her credentials just in time before I parted with a wink and wished her luck.

Just caught up with her on social media and got to know that despite Mr Potential’s Late Lateef act, for which she wanted to slap him, She said Yes!

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Floodgates

A floodgate opens by, of memories rushing hither

Within that diary, my emotions nearing wither.

‘Twas us against the world, a battle was fought.

Left you strong, but I was broken and distraught.

What do I do with these papers and this ink?

The dusty fabric has secrets aplenty, you ‘d blink.

There was love there, and tenderness and care.

But then, you made clear, those feelings you did not share.

It took me time, a great deal of distance.

And here I am, relishing my sustenance.

Yellowed pages, dogeared ends..

They call out to me, and show me the bends.

Of lies, betrayal, heartache, and all the evil rest.

Move on, Life did, for it always knows what’s best.

#Pune

Bangalore is heart and Mumbai is mind, but the simplest mention of Pune, brings a smile to my face because of the special place it holds in my heart. 

As with a lot of things, I’ve noticed that my tryst with love usually begins with an abject hatred of something. First impression of Pune was that I had to run away from it and not come even inches close to it. This happened during the time when I was interviewing at Simc. I was disappointed that it was so much like an older Bangalore. I assured two of my friends that I would definitely not take it up because Pune wasn’t Mumbai and I then believed that I had needed the vibe of Mumbai. 

I couldn’t have been more wrong bout Pune. Having lived in Lavale for two blissful years, I think this city will always be home of a different kind. The kind of home that gave me hope in finding good in different  people and an acceptance of myself, thanks to my people.  

As I undertake this bus journey home, from Mumbai. I am fleetingly passing through the lanes of Pune city  and I’m nostalgic like hell. What stands out is our countless trips to FC road on broke days, with friends and not so good friends, celebrity spotting while on a ‘research’ project to study religious tourism and it’s effects, (I’m amazed a senior sent us knowing fully well that we couldn’t have access to Osho, no regrets though cause that was a beautiful day!), a full day Pune Darshan at the end of two years (now I can brag about places in Pune to everyone), of freshers nights that turned to the beginning of common crushes and friendships, of dosa and coffee trips with the  extended best girl gang that one could possibly have.. And of countless as bus rides, to the ‘city’ and back to the hostel, just because. ‘Let’s go through city’ was music to the ears! And yet, the amazing solitude our rooms offered. 

It’s  funny how you comfortable you get with your people. How you video call each other, even if it’s as rare as once in a few months. How connected you are, and how much it makes you feel happy.. Knowing that they’re there. Man. I miss you guys! 

And I  haven’t even talked about the campus fun. Shared secrets, embarrassments, gossip and stories about the people you detest? Sigh. 

I can only hope that meeting all of you in two months, is going to culminate in  an epic extravaganza. 

So long, beauties! 

With the girl…

I stare at the world with a curious eye. These past few weeks have been a very hectic phase for me. I’ve never had to scuttle off from place to place at such short notice. The last break I had, I would stay put in one place for almost three to four months before being dragged to the city.

I’m curious now because this place is so different from the others. I like to think I’ve had a pretty sheltered existence – flights over trains, buses over bikes, and all that. But things changed a few years ago. For a while, I had to part with her and be steered by another older person, however, I think she likes having me around. I’ve always been there when she’s needed escape.

I moved out of the home with her and tasted the delicious scent of freedom– with a heavy yet hopeful heart. I was so happy to be outside the confines of my room, if only for a short travel and then to another room. It’s been a good journey and I like her. She seems to know how to handle me and I seem perfect for her.

Coming back to the places I’ve been with her – I must say in 4 weeks of my life, the amount of traveling I did in this humongous city is what I’d never done yet. The most entertaining was when she took me out on a date to her workplace. We traveled the roads and I was appalled at how filthy it was. I had trouble avoiding the potholes, skipping the barred drain openings marred by the grubby remains of paan. It was weird. It was ‘People, people everywhere. And not a person to talk to’. Perhaps this is the way it is with people – they’re surrounded by so many people yet there are very few that they can trust and share their deep, dark secrets with.

Hand in hand we walked up the slant and unruly steps, the engineering marvel that is the railways, the narrow crowded streets of the city, into lifts, buses and what not. That day I think I saw it all. Her hands were aching but she did not let go of me – her grip remained tight and possessive. I liked it. She carried me through those long staircases, heaving, and puffing, through the wide roads and into the lift again until we finally reached our new home.

I loved every bit of it because I don’t get to see much stuff and that day, I felt like she and I shared a special bond. One that will be a testament to our friendship for a long time.

This is rare because, after all, I’m just a trolley case.