Yes! It really feels like heaven! Yes, this is really the time! My boss is ‘out of office’ on some supposed to be business tour (at least that is what he emailed, who wants to verify? naa..not me!..don’t wanna spoil my leisure time) to a distant remote international country (Pray he is captured by Talibans!).
Ya… so the vacation is on (for me off course!). I totally have the liberty to make my own entry and exit time at work (Wow! Can’t that be perpetual?). So, yesterday, when the course was clear, no one around, a sneak to the left and a peek to the right, bag on my shoulders and runnnn! (intentional typo) Seemed oddly like a clandestine jail break!
Since everything was secret hush-hush mission to run away from office, it had to be done without any hint to other departments. So instead of me getting the elevator from my floor (the possibility of elevators being visible on this floor are equal to remote village stations, where platforms and rail tracks are laid but availability of trains is still a dream to come to life from school drawing books), I go to a lower floor of a different phase of the same building.
Exit Finally! Am in the lift. All of a sudden the elevator door opens on a particular floor. A sylph lady enters. Looks at me.
Me (on thought bubble): Wow! Am I dreaming? Now let me make this clear. For a guy (like me), slightly out of shape (with a paunch!), receiving a smile from a girl is a moment not less than a debutant receiving ‘Man of the Match’ award for sitting on the bench!
Me (on thought bubble): Do I know you? Naa… I shouldn’t ask her this question. This dream might turn into a nightmare!
Me: abkcdfg.. HI!
(That might be ancient persian way of greeting long forgotten! But it took me great efforts to mumble out a HI!)
She: It’s been long since I have seen you. Two years after college you look the same. (Thanks to Johnson & Johnson’s baby soap, that has helped me being the same mentally for the last 22 years)
Me (on thought bubble): College? Where? Should I ask? Goddamit! It will be foolish of me to ask her that. Let me pretend and act as if I know her since times immemorial when Da Vinci was painting Mona Lisa, where I managed to look like Lisa (smiling)!
Me: asdkjabkmlk… how… err… come here? (The start was coded greek but I guess she deciphered it)
She: Some work assignment with MTDC. Gimme your number. (She got a cell phone out of her hand bag)
Me (on thought bubble): Yippee! A female asking me to exchange numbers. I never got a female’s phone number without nagging and begging! Before I could pass on mine, she gave me her number. Within a flash of lightning I noted it down on my cell phone. But still the same ‘Who is she? What’s her name? With what name should I store this number?” query haunted me. Am going nuts! The elevator door opens.
She: My boss is waiting on this floor. I will get in touch with you later. Bye!
Me (on thought bubble): Arre! Wait! You haven’t taken my number yet!
Me: Bye! Elevator’s door close. Me trying to locate her in my flash-back reel. Lift reaches the ground floor.
Me…out of lift.
(Mind you!…Till this time I haven’t stored her number yet… “Who on earth knows her name?”) Wait a minute. I think I know her. College??!!… Right! She was in my class for final year graduation! Because of my groggy attendance sheet even my professors never recognized me. And I hardly knew any of my batch mates except a few rotten-good-for-nothing-ninnies. But still she knew me! Excellent! I save the number without any name. I think I should call her up. But Hello!!.. what’s her name?!! Let me ring her up.
Ring… Ring… Ring… Ring… Ring… (Is she busy in some meeting? Should I disconnect or just hold on?) click (Finally she picked up)
She: Haillow… kaunn boltte? [marathi..who’s speaking] (wailing baby’s noise in the background) click…
I disconnect! Oui ma! I might have noted some digits here and there. Shit! Am duped! I dialled a wrong number! Now??
I have a number of a person whose name I don’t know. The number is wrong. I can’t contact her.
How do I feel??
‘Haath ko aaya aur moonh na laga!’ [hindi.. too broke.. can’t translate] Oh Me!Poor Me!
P.S.- I know nothing more about this lady except that she only studied ‘last two semesters’ in my class. Don’t worry folks! I will get to know her name and number. Some batch mate should be in contact with her (fingers crossed!).