This little girl was in the train I took last week ( Haan Haan IIM ke ladke train mein bhee ghoomte hain . Gareeb hoon main.). Due to some reason , she kept looking at my face and laughing at pretty regular intervals . Abb bacche bhee mera mazzak udaane lage .
Last week , as I sat at my desk , tapping away on the keyboard and trying to look as involved as if I was three keystrokes away from finding the cure to Limfusarcoma of the intestine , a colleague walked by.
Noticing me , he exclaimed in a rather cheerful tone generally reserved for pretty secretaries..
"Hey Abhi , I hear you are getting married !"
Now as people with inadequate exposure to this blog would have noticed , I am a very shy boy , steeped in tradition and "samaajik maryada". Hence I merely let out a coy smile , lowered my eyes till my eyelashes brushed the keyboard and nodded a delicate yes .
At this point of time , I was expecting a little congratulatory pat or something . But the colleague shook his pumpkin head sideways , murmured a "Yakeen nahi hota" and walked on.
Now , people would believe it if I said I ordered a tomato soup last night and found Himesh's cap floating in it , but nobody has been ready to believe the fact that I am getting married . My underdeveloped brain , which has helped me flunk many maths exams , offers possible reasons:
1.I look too young to be a married man . I just ambled past 25 , and to make things rosier , I have been told by perfectly sane people that I still retain a bit of the boyish charm which deserts a normal indian male in the early twenties . Some have mentioned that I am a male version of the santoor girl , who captured our imaginations with "meri twacha se meri umra ka pata nahi chalta".
2. The second , and a very real reason , is this .It defies all common sense and laws of intellect that some girl has actually agreed to marry a guy like me. Deviod of any "dude"-ish qualities , and as boring as a wooden chair , sometimes even I find it hard to digest that I got someone to say a yes. But then , to err is human , and she has erred big time.
My canine instincts warn me a lot of readers would like to raise their left eyebrows , smile a slanted smile and pose the "Who is She" question to me now . But I would like to refer to the second paragraph where I mentioned me being immersed in the bucket of "saamajik maryada" and hence would like to save the story for a later date. All I can say is , that to know the person with whom I am going to grow old , to know the person who is gonna be a witness to my life , to know the person who forms one of the reasons for my existence now , is humbling and satisfying and pleasing in a very calm and fulfilling way.And pampered she will be .
Infact , if you have a memory which is anything better than simply unbelievably pathetic , you will recall that at the top of this post , there is a picture of a little girl who giggled at me all through out a train journey as if I was wearing a red nose and singing Baa Baa Black Sheep . So during the journey , a 'hi-society-well-dressed-confident' types old lady with a head full of white hair and numerous questions was sitting besides me . She had noticed me boarding the train with a lot of luggage ( A travel bag , a backpack , and a cardboard carton carrying the V day gifts I had bought for the lady who is going to tolerate me in this life ) .So some fifteen minutes into the journey , the old woman asks me ..
Old woman : lot of luggage..eh ?
Me : Uh..yeah..a lot of stuff stolen from the hotels..he he..
Old woman : Really ?
Me : gasp..oh no..I was trying to be a little amusing..never mind
Old woman : What's in that cardboard box ?
Me : Oh that ? Well..actually it contains all the gifts I bought for my fiancee..
Old woman : I see..that's sweet..
Me : Blush . Blush .
Old woman : So , you are going to buy her things next valentines day too ?
Me ( proud as a soldier ): Of course ! I am quite a handful when it comes to out-of-the-box surprises for the people I love !
Old woman : Trust me , son . Next V day , you wont do it .
Me ( with a simmering rage in my eyes ) : Oh no maam , I wont change !
Old woman : No . Its not about you . Next V day , after an year of taking her out for shopping and eating out and movies , you wont have any money with you to buy all this.
It was then when I realised that she was in the process of doing great damage to the confidence of a dreamy to-be-married young guy. I did not encourage any conversation with her for the rest of the journey and quietly watched that little girl in the picture laugh at me.
Moving on to other issues ailing the society , I have been as busy as mother of nine lately . I keep my cell in the bathroom when I take the shower , I exchange around 35 official mails everyday and after office , I tune the telly to MTV and work on office stuff well after midnight .Sometimes , I wish I was back to college , when I had the time to watch three movies in a day (Sometimes four.Dont tell mommy), the time to sleep till my tummy growled for lunch , the time to reply to all the comments you leave on this blog.
And as a direct result of watching MTV after office , I am particularly concerned by the behaviour of Asha Bhonsle . I mean , problem kya hai inn aunty ko ? It seems like she is on a spree of making music videos with anyone who is free after lunch and can sing slightly better than a monkey with a penguin stuck in his throat . If her videos with Sunjay Dutt and Brett Lee made me feel like banging my head on the nearest wall just once , her latest video with Urmila Taang-tod-kar makes me feel like banging my head on the nearest wall till I lose all memory of the video , Asha Bhonsle , Urmila and the entire production unit of any movie with Urmila in it . Now Asha Ji is coming up with a video of something she did with Robbie Williams ( I mean a music video , you sicko ) , and watching Asha butt in on Rock DJ is going to leave me with suicidal tendencies , I am afraid.
But one song I got playing all day is "Sun re Sajaniya" by a pakistani guy called Ali Zafar . A light , peppy song , it leaves me feeling like "Yeah.life is good.in spite of Asha Bhonsle , that old woman in the train , and kids who laugh at me."
This reminds me , if someone out there can mail me INXS's Afterglow with a scaringly big eyed Indian singer called Sona in it , I would be grateful and would promptly courier him/her a copy of Asha Bhonsle's album as a mark of gratitude. Also , I need "You are beautiful" by James Blunt and "bad day" by daniel powter . In fact any good music is always welcome .So there. No , seriously , send me the songs at email@example.com if you can , I wont send you anything as dangerous as the Asha thing.
Anyway , now that it is out there in the open under the blue sky , I believe you guys will have stories of more challenge and pain to hear . The adventures of a guy with limited social ettiquettes , rudimentary dance moves , and a whacky attitude when faced with the giant called the Great North Indian Wedding and the seven ( or were they eight ?) ceremonies before it , sure sounds as full as a Yash Chopra movie .
In fact , the first symptoms have already started to show , with me gradually limiting my presence on orkut ( Note - I just found Yaari.com , which has been started by a friend . Much neater .) , learning to use a spoon and fork and planning to brush up my dance moves . And no , I dont want "afterglow" for that reason .
Oops , I got to jump off this bed urgently , leap across the table and bang my head on the wall opposite me now . MTV is again playing the Asha Bhonsle - Urmila thing .
Be good . Work hard . And believe me when I say I am getting married .