- Ajay Kontham ™
- Bangalore, Karnataka, India
- | Writer | Photographer | Split Personality Disorder | Dreamer | Thinker | Foodie | Music-Lover | Art | God-Fearing | Movies | Riding | Mid-Night Adventures | Swimming | Golf | Soccer | Dance | Rational | Stubborn | Fashion | Silent | Sensitive | Calm | Helpful | Psycho | Mad | Crazy |Stupid | Creative | Mentally Stable Psychopath |
Sunday, October 19, 2014
The night sunk in the silence of the aftermath of a long drizzling day. The city had slept in its comfort. But there was one house where the midnight oil was still burning in its glory. He had to be in the office the next day early in the morning for a major release. So, what was the reason that he had to burn away the oil instead of a sound sleep. Was there a presentation that he had to give and he was just finishing it up or just prep-ing himself for that. That wasn't the reason either. Amid all this, he checked his watch only to find that it was too late and too little time to sleep. It was ten minutes to one. He picked up his mobile and pinged his friend "U awake?". There was 90 percent chance that the person he messaged would be awake at that time of the night. So, someone else was also burning the midnight oil in the other part of the city.
"Yeah. What's up?" asked Aryan after he received a ping from his friend at almost an hour past midnight. He was also burning the midnight oil, but he had no obligations for the night, not even for the day that followed. He was one mean insomniac, who spends his day in the night and also his night. He is a little screwed that way. After the exchange of a few messages and making plans to meet up the next day after his meeting in the office, it was not a complicated task to figure out at the first instance itself. It was her, again for his sleeplessness. Aryan never understood what was it that compelled this insomnia and that the reason for that was a chick! Oh, he knew alright, but never got the chance to experience. He had been sleepless for a lot other reasons, but a chick, never had the pleasure, he amuses himself over it. Only time could tell. So, there was an update regarding his one-sided love affair. He did man up and found his courage to tell his feelings but there was a catch. There always is one. So what was it this time? He was going to tell her over a message in Whatsapp! "Oh, god! Kill me now!" exclaimed Aryan in his mind after reading that message on his cell. In Gautham's defense, he didn't have the courage to say to her in person. And that is not all. There was another catch.
"When are you going to propose?", Aryan asked feeling a little bit out of place what to reply.
"I decided one thing. I'll not propose her. Instead, I'll just inform".
"Oh dear lord, Shoot me now! Just end my misery.", Aryan was getting high voltage shocks.
The rest of the conversation didn't go as Aryan intended it to. He tried his best to keep him positive about the outcome even though the chances were one to thousand. All his inspiring-philosophies didn't actually work out. He has to be in Gautham's shoes to be able to understand. And the final shock of the night was when Gautham replied that he wasn't going to wait for her opinion. "God, O' dear Lord where are you? Why am I still breathing?", Aryan shouted in silence.
Gautham would probably kill Aryan for sharing this. No doubt. Aryan is dead when Gautham gets wind of this.
Saturday, October 4, 2014
Disclaimer : This following piece of fiction is a continuation of the first part Prologue, which I wrote a long time back. I have have had this feeling to continue this somehow. So, here it is.
Chapter 1 : Prologue
I check the time on my watch. The time was 2210 hours. I still had over an hour to set everything in place. I got on my bike, drove to the destination parked it a few blocks away beyond the eye of suspicion. I took care of the security cameras. I have been canvasing this neighborhood for the past few weeks now. I have to be careful. I have got a long list to deal with. If I get caught, the injustice would win, yet again. I need to set things straight when I can before it's too late. The security camera on his apartment floor have been running in continuous loop and the guard couldn't figure it out. Of course, I have timed it well. But, today better safe than sorry, I am going to disable them. I need them to know that somebody was here and altered everything here. His apartment looks well, RICH. I have had the layout but he did a pretty good job decorating. But, it is going to be such a waste. He won't be able to stay long enough. I had to be cautious not to misplace anything. Anything out of the context could put my plan in jeopardy. Luckily, I was able to find his revolver, a 9mm and a great choice. May be it was gifted by someone. It has an engraving JM, his name. I scanned around the house, the AC was on. It was never off. I assumed it was the cold weather filled with the aftermath of the rain. Oh, he has a beautiful scenery. The city looks beautiful in the night and from this height. The car, his car was headed towards the apartment. It is almost time.
It was so easy getting. A small jump from the adjoining building landed me on this apartment's rooftop. And I just had to get into the penthouse. I knew the security codes. Two days of surveillance was enough to decode his security code. It was his wife death date and his daughter's birth date, something he could never forget. I got in from the main entrance as if it was my own apartment. As I realized he had taken the elevator directly to his floor, I hid in the balcony behind the door. He entered the apartment and didn't suspect a thing misplaces or the presence of an intruder, the possible killer. He had no idea of what his future would be and how short his life would become. He opened the balcony to let the fresh cold wind replace the air conditioned room. At that moment, my heart skipped a beat that I would be discovered and that my purpose will be served but in a lot messier way. But he didn't come out. Instead he lit a cigar. Probably his last cigar. I watched carefully from the tainted window of the balcony door beyond his purview of sight. He left the glass of scotch on the handle of his chair and the cigar smoke danced around his fingers. He had slept. It might have been a tiring day perhaps. I cautioned myself and briskly made myself into the room from the balcony. The curtains flew under the cold wraps of the wind. He was fast asleep. I wanted to wait for the cigar to burn his finger and then he would wake up to see me, his death. The longer I wait, the more clues I leave behind. I must hurry up. I nudge the glass on the chair handle and it slowly fell down. The fur carpet absorbed most of the noise but that was enough to bring this man into senses. He saw me with a frightened look which suddenly disappeared as he jumped up to the cupboard on the side to grab his revolver. Oh the revolver, one nice little piece.
"Looking for this", I scoffed as he stumbled to look back at me. "I am just borrowing it for a little while. I promise to return back", my voice still mocked at his innocence.
"What do you want?", he asked me as if I was here to rob him. Oh, I was here to rob him, but not just his money, but his life.
"There is nothing in this world you could pay me off with. It is time you accepted,
accepted your fate".
"What the hell are you talking about? Why are you doing this?".
"Don't act so surprised. You knew that this was coming. Why else would get a revolver?".
"I have no idea what you are talking about?".
"Oh, don't worry about it. It is all going to end tonight. You will have nothing but peace in the end. I can promise you that".
"Who the hell are you? Why are you doing this to me?"
I placed a page in front of him. I wanted him to realize why he won't be able to see another day. As he picked up the paper, I could see the life go out of body. He knew what it was and he had known the consequences at that time. But he never expected to see it again until today. I lost his balance and in the moment of panic he jumped for the alarm button just at the edge of the cupboard. But he fell down with two shots in his chest. There was silence afterwards. I went out of the apartment from the front door through the service elevator, the one place the camera was old and wasn't functioning. As I got onto my bike, I switched of the remote access to the security cameras which gave the guard in the apartment that something was wrong. One camera wasn't working. He called the cops. I was long gone. Everything according to plan.
Mark reached his office later the next day just to be welcomed by storming press which were as agitated as he was. They needed answers and so did he. They had questions, and well, so did he. It was getting a little out of hand, all this new business with the killer with no answers in hand. Mark made an mental note to drop by the crime scene once the melodrama at the office was over. All this pressure was taking a toll on him. He had just completed an half year being sober and he couldn't start that again. Never. Again. He told himself. Instead he grabbed a coffee from the pantry, filled it in a take away cup and took a sip. He knew that this drama was going to continue as long as the mystery is solved. Just as he was about to get out of the Office to find out more about the lawyer who died the other night, he was called in by his chief. He inquired about his progress and mocked about his skill which wasn't helping them in recent past. He also lay down a deadline failing which he would be handing over the case to the State and then there would be nothing they could do.
"Are you capable of solving this?", asked his chief with a disgruntled look as Mark was still wearing the same clothes as yesterday and his swollen eyes due to lack of sleep. What was he up to, thought the chief. But whatever his inquisitions were, he had the faith in him despite all the odds. He was good at what he did and there was no doubt about it. But was be becoming reckless? Has the past caught up with him? No. He brushed aside all those thoughts which could jeopardize his skill in the investigation.
"Yes, I am well above my senses regarding this case. As a matter of fact, I was just heading back to the crime scene to find some clues. May be I could grab something that I might have missed yesterday."
"Yeah you do that. Meanwhile I have this press to deal with. They just don't believe I will be telling. They just keep hitting back with more questions. We have had no progress yet. So, please get me something. Powerful people are dropping down like used shell casings which is raising a few more questions from the superiors. They are scared, sure but they will be up our asses until this is solved. We need to end this. But you keep up your best and hope to see some results at the earliest."
"I always do my best and you know it."
"Yeah, I do. But don't flatter yourself. Just get me some good news".
Mark left the office with a coffee in hand. He reared his car in reverse setting it straight to go ahead to the crime scene. He reached the scene only to find the Yellow Do Not Cross police tape outside of the apartment. It was a penthouse, a luxury one indeed. He scanned the surroundings but started with the entrance. The door doesn't seem have been fiddled with nor any signs of forced entry. The killer might have been inside the apartment before the lawyer had even come. Did he have a duplicate key? If he had, he also had to know the security lock code to disable the alarm. What about the cameras in the doorway? That should help a little. He picked up the report of the observations by the forensic and skimmed through the details. Nothing useful, he told himself. The cameras have been disabled. As a matter of fact they have been working in loop for a couple of days before they were disabled the other night. That means the killer had an elaborated plan to get him. But what was the need for a stakeout? If he wanted to kill him, he might as well do it. Looks like he had an ulterior motive. If that is the case, what was it? The balcony door seems to be undisturbed, but that is not true. It was the only possible access to the penthouse. If he had made his way, it could be either from the roof or from the floor below. Mark looked for clues to find any clues that the killer might have left behind. He was very careful not to leave any. He looks like a professional hitman of sorts. Not even one shred of clue is left behind. How can this be possible?, thought Mark. A strand of hair or sweat or something should be here somewhere. What about the note? He went to the scene of the crime to find a chalk etched outline of the lawyer who was killed last night. Beside the outline of the body was a note in white paper on which it was printed 'FOR A BETTER SOCIETY'. It was printed and nothing more could be done except the kind of printer and paper. That won't be of any help. If it was hand written, may be the hand writing analysis or the use of words could have indicated the state of mind of the killer. State of mind! chuckled Mark. State of mind, my ass. He is a god damn psychopath and he needs to be put down. After scanning through the stuff, fridge, balcony and everything that could possibly be linked to the killer which was around in the apartment as it was clear that the killer had been waiting for him for a long time, he tried to recreate the scene in his mind.
James McGumry was the name of the lawyer whose embodied outline lie in his apartment while his corpse is being investigated by the Forensic department back in the office. He looks like a rich wealthy person judging by the interior of his house which was possible designed by the best interior designed in the town. And also the Mercedes that was in the parking lot, a limited edition. Though it is practically impossible for a lawyer like himself to be owning such a priced possession. He drove his own car which meant that he wanted to be in control. Of course, he is an lawyer and the control over things comes with the territory. So, after a busy day at the court he drops by for the dinner party at the Mayor's house. He has a little too of Champagne but he feels he is in control and drives himself home after the party. It wasn't a long drive from the Mayor's house to his penthouse. As soon as he reached his home, he entered his house just like everyday, casually. He didn't suspect anything weird or anything out of place. If he had noticed something out of place, he would have known that something was wrong. This means that the killer was careful not to disturb anything in Lawyer's apartment. May be the lawyer was too drunk to notice, which could be a possibility. But living in solitude does give the person a sense of caution towards his surroundings. So, he would have known. He looked at his wife's photo on the beside where he kept his keys safely. He looked at it and put it face down as he took the glass from the minibar beside and poured a hard scotch into it as took a sip. He might have walked back to his chair facing the balcony. He sat there as he lit up a cigar and took a sip of the scotch. He might have been thinking about his deceased wife as he looked at the bokeh of city lights that shimmered in front of him from his pent house balcony. He dozed off into blissful sleep only to woken up by the the glass that fell on the velvety furry carpet. He might have seen the intruder in front of him and stood up to take action. The killer didn't shoot then, but he waited as the lawyer searched for his revolver in the side cabinet only to find nothing there. The intruder looked deep into his eyes and might have said something before putting two bullets in his chest, the sound of which subsided by the silencer on the gun. The intruder made his way out from the front door itself and stay unnoticed. The door had an automatic lock which could lock itself once the door is closed. But how did the intruder get inside in the first place? The balcony is the only possible explanation.
Mark wanted to examine the body and find whatever he could that the forensic experts might have missed. He made a mental note to check back once examining the body and could indicate any clues about the state of mind of the killer. He reached his car and as he threw the cigarette stubbed between his lips, stamped on it and looked up to open the door of his car. He found an envelop on the windshield of his car which had an inscription "YOU HAVE BEEN SERVED", the same typewriter handwriting found beside the outlined body of the lawyer in his apartment. This sent a shiver down his spine as he looked at it even before he opened it.
P.S. : I am writing fiction after a very long time. Hope this is not as awful as I fear it to be. Lets' see how this turns out to be. Gracias.
Friday, October 3, 2014
When two roads seem to cross paths, it gives the indication that everything that is happening is for a reason and that, it is the fate, or whatever it is termed. Sometimes even when the paths have seem to have crossed, they actually don't. They run along side each other to the destination that is yet unknown. But along the way there is this enchantment that binds the roads together. We call it love. What it is? I wish I knew. As a result, I would be babbling whatever I feel about it, until I have a first hand experience with it. But keeping my story aside, there are people always around me portraying that enchantment in their own way. I have been amazed with what that could to do to people and how the people get mesmerized in the enchantment.
So is one story of a guy I came across in my recent encounters who also happens to be an ex-colleague. He happens to be in deeply in that enchantment. He is yet to muster his courage to step up from his inhibitions and take a stand for himself and let himself be heard, if not to all at least the person who should. But that step is quite a difficult thing to do. I have always wondered why it could be that difficult. It just involves walking up to her and just say his heartfelt feelings and everything that is keeping him from sleep at nights and that the reason is none other than her. Right? How hard it could be? I realized that I was deeply wrong about this when I was asked for a presentation and you can't even imagine how bad it went. I killed it, literally. I had prepared for it and yet I just couldn't speak my mind. The question of my blog does put an end to all that assumptions that I might suck at presentations. But I did, and the yet bigger problem is I still do. I haven't yet come around this hurdle as I continue to dwell in the past experiences. Anyways, it is very difficult to speak your mind especially when it is all about the so called enchantment, is it not? There are consequences, of course. Of all the two possible outcomes, it is either living happily ever after with certain hurdles as expected. Or probably taking the help of alcohol to ease the pain, which I have never understood. They do say that there is a lot of fish in the sea. To which my own mind contemplates with a counter attack saying "She was my sea". Well, that left me rather speechless for a moment as I drowned in the depth of what it actually means. The problem wasn't the fear, but the fear of rejection. And it was precisely the reason for his holding back. I did encourage him to take a chance and let the quote fate unquote take its natural course. But then again, nerves get to us, as we all know. Cold feet. He was never prepared. He couldn't risk losing a friend over a proposal which if didn't turn out according to his plan.
He doesn't come often to meet us. Us as in the other group members who all work at the same place while he got a better opportunity and is working elsewhere. So, whenever he comes he makes sure that he meets everyone. By everyone, I mean he wants to make sure his crush(lets' call it that for the time being) is present that day else he won't. And in the process of confirming the presence of all the people of the group which is not divided into two due to some discrepancies, he stepped on the wrong stone. In his defense he wasn't aware of it as he did that. But, he did. And another reason for his coming unexpectedly was to mend that broken group. But after a few weeks of just observing, it was concluded that it wasn't in anybody's hands now. The only consequence of trying to fix would be that it would just do more damage than it already has. It has slipped through the hands. But nevertheless, life went on.
On a casual encounter, I was bombarded with questions by the girl in question in the previous paragraphs, which were more of a concern and to which I had no answers to. I actually did but what I had with me was more of a secret than of an answer. I couldn't just tell and hence, I had to waive off a concerned and equally quizzical look just to avoid suspicion. But I do feel that the cat is out of the bag and it not not far when she realizes what is happening and how dumb (read : foolishly) we people have been acting about it around her. May be she already does. But it is just a matter of time, if not yet. Because as I was being on the opposite side listening to the questions, I had a feeling that it might not have been clear what was happening with regards to the aforementioned friend of mine who is head over heels about this very person. The step on the stone that I mentioned earlier is the cause for all these questions. The only thought that I had was "Isn't it that obvious?". It is as clear as water and there was nothing more to it where I had to step in and offer an explanation why he did what he did. It was that obvious. But well, there are things which people choose not to believe in or don't want them to be true. And may be this was one of it.
I really hope there is a common ground they find and leave the past behind and start over may be. As for the obvious fact, there is too much at risk than floating freely among the clouds. And the common ground that I mentioned earlier accounts this also.
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Things are getting out of hand. Or probably not. But there is something going on these days which could be termed as odd? Don't beat yourself up before I get the chance to shake things down by explaining? Or probably just tell? Explain it is! I am a vigorous writer, not in a good way though. Sorry to disappoint.
I have always been fascinated with caffeine. I get around like 4 times a week to the same coffee shop that is there in my vicinity either it is to read or write or just about anything. So, I am a loner that way. The guy at the coffee shop knows better than I do. He knows me because there is the same person almost every day of the shop. Earlier it was on a rotation basis, I guess, or probably the gaps between the visitations were quite large. Well, that can't be true. But anyway that dude over there knows what I have. I could just walk up to him and saw "My regular please" and I would get it to my table with in 5-10 minutes. Now, the other day I witnessed a problem. My regular that I mentioned earlier didn't include just the kind of coffee. No Sir, No. I don't just satisfy myself with a King size cup of coffee. It has its additions, like a big cake piece/ pastry with extra chocolate syrup (thats' the name and also it changes with the location) and then something spicy or normal like a French croissant. Has anyone tried that French croissant? It is so soft that it just melts in the mouth. So awesome. What? Yeah, it costs a little too much for too little of a thing(s), but why does this have to be about money? Anyway, as I was saying the problem! My so called regular is apparently very regular that once in a while I drop one or two things but the third one remains constant. But whenever I do that, oh I forgot to mention something. As I enter the shop, the guy behind the counter kind of already has an idea of what I am going to buy. The other guy literally starts preparing the coffee or slicing the cake. I walk up to the counter tell what I wanted to have as if I was trying out something new and he is like mentally praising himself for being right. But whenever I decide to just have one thing and tell the same, he just looks at me as if I forgot something. In the meantime, I think that the computer is just a little bit more time to complete the order. But then he asks me the obvious question, "And Sir, chocolate fantasy with chocolate syrup and that". I turn my lips into an awkward smile and say "No, not today, Thanks!" and he could see his face frown probably he was mentally un-checking the most obvious order. I feel good that he remembers what I have, yeah genius, no kidding, it isn't a inverse relative theory formula (wait, there is no such thing, don't beat yourself up please) but a little bad for disappointing him in some way. But the other day it is again the same routine. The worst of all is when I decide to have just one and tell just that one, but then again he continues to tell the remaining things of the most obvious regular order as he always does when I don't mention it, I get attracted to it then, if I had decided earlier not to have it. This is not good, right?
Starbucks! The bucks factory. No, not the place were money is created but, collected. It came to Bangalore like an year ago or probably less than that. I was / am a coffee addict as we all know, even that guys at "my" "regular" coffee shop also know plus a few other people, umm, the bottom line is everybody knows. So, I wanted to try this just like I tried at all other coffee shops, most of them since it is not as easy to go around searching for a coffee shop. Wait, nobody does that, right? But I had not been to Starbucks till two weeks prior. I wanted to go, but some circumstantial work or something like that. So I went into the shop and since I had a laptop with me ( a planned coincidence) because well, I wanted to write something. Keeping that mind it might take a while for settling down my mind and then get down to business, I ordered a Cappuccino Grande, the largest cup of the lot. Now, I wanted to spend some time there. But I don't remember saying him that it was a takeaway, but he gave me in a takeaway cup. That is what I hate about exploring places on my own, I have to visit the same place just to get familiar with how the things work there and what to tell. So anyway, I grab my Grande cup after a loud shout of my name along with a couple of sugar packets and head out to the open area just outside the Starbucks shop where the tables were there. I settle myself, open my laptop and pretending to appear busy and "geeky", though miserably failing and saw a few eyes directed towards me with a question "Is this guy for real?". Oh, I didn't mention that I was trying to act smart and hence dressed according, but I wasn't meeting either of the criteria and hence the awkward eyes towards me. Anyway, I pour two packets of sugar mix it and then close the lid. The takeaway cups come with a lid which has a tiny hole for letting the vapors out and another for drinking. So, I fiddle with my laptop typing something which most didn't make sense, wait, it wasn't English or any language that I know of. After pretending to write for something, I take my grande cup of coffee and take a sip. Only that I didn't take a sip but was greeted with hot something on my stomach. I wasn't quite sure why I wasn't able to take a sip, so I pulled it up a little more and then I realized that I was feeing coffee to my stomach and slowly went down from there. I didn't look up, I didn't move as if I saw some ghost, as if I were dead but in a sitting position. After a minute or so, I placed to cup as if I had a nice sip of coffee and was pleased with it and pretended to look at my laptop as if I just received an important mail just that very second. I slowly saw up and there were people all around, some passing by, some having coffee, some just sitting. No wonder it was a big mall and this was in the open in the center of the mall just outside the shop. Nobody I could see was laughing or may be they were laughing or I didn't notice properly. I just wiped out as if the stain would just go. Not to mention I looked like I just peed. That damn lid. I did close it but not proper enough, clearly! The rest of the time I just stared at my laptop cursing and my plan to write something just went down the drain again. I did write but it involved more swearing and just F words like the tape stuck at that word in the stereo.
What's more? One last thing about this coffee thing and I am done. At my office there is usually free coffee. Earlier during my training there was a coffee machine in almost every floor of the building and yeah, it was free. Now this coffee machine had various options that we could choose from, like we would just ask the guy at the counter looking at the list of different items available. Exactly the same but self service plus it was totally free. We could have any number of times in a given day, though during trainings most of the time was restricted to the labs and classrooms, but still. But afterwards when I started working in the actual thing, they limited the number of coffee intake. How, you ask! They started this system with a small booklet which contained like 60 odd leafs and that was it for the month. Then the revolution of clean environment BS like Save Paper thing came up, which was a good thing actually since we didn't had to stand in the queue to get that petty small leaflet. Now the policy was to swipe our ID cards and each employee has a limited number of swipes which is 60 per month, no carry forwards no borrows. It is not a shocker when I usually get a mail regarding the same that I am only left with 15 odd swipes after the tenth day of the month. Then again there are various options from which we could choose from. A Bru Coffee which is kind of odd since my organization has a Tata Tea under its pocket but no Tata Coffee. But anyway, I chose that from among other 10 different varieties available there. Looks like, I have become just too obvious these days because even the guy who serves us the after taking our choice of order, I get mine before I even say it. Lucky me, right?
It is quite clear that I am more than a coffee addict. I have succeeded in establishing that with almost everyone even with people across time zones. No wonder there was a story based on me and specifying my encounters with the Coffee shop. Though this has turned out to be something that people nowadays mock me with. Like when they ask what did you do on the weekend, I would probably say that I hung around at the coffee shop most of the time. The next obvious question is all alone? to which my obvious answer is Yeah, which then leads to the primary question or rather a statement "Oh, you are waiting for your dream girl, just like in the story"! No. Because I know that it is most unlikely to happen and my dream girl is not one person to start with, umm, lets not get into the details of it. But come on, where has anyone seen a girl just walking up in the coffee shop and talking to a perfect stranger. However badly I want that to happen, there is no way on gods' green earth that is going to happen. Ever.
So, is this going out of hand? Or I am just afraid of change? No, I ain't afraid of no change. Oh God! That sounds horrible! Too much TV *sigh*, I confess! Let me try again. No, I am not afraid of change, it is more concerned about the other things that I am not big of a fan. Though however badly I want to try new things, I can't do without a guide? 'cause mostly it deals with the procedure of how it is done. Last time i ordered a Irish coffee, I had one hell of a time drinking that one large beer-cup-with-narrowing-bottom cup or whatever it is called.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
It all began two years ago. I wasn't sure about what the rush was all about back then, nor do I have about now. 'Who would have thought?' was the most obvious question of this time, but nothing superficial either even if it was quite out of the blue.
It was an unusual day for me. Being an insomniac, I have developed this new, well, you could call it an odd pattern. I start sleeping just at the brim of the sun starts showering the morning bliss of sunshine. It is quite odd, isn't it? "What about the office and work?", you ask. Well, I got that under control, most of it. Or may be not. So, that usual day something unusual had to happen and it turns out, I was late for the morning bus. I still had a couple of minutes, I mean literally just a couple and I couldn't cope with brushing, rinsing myself, pressing the clothes, searching for socks within that couple minutes. What I did was I decided to wait for another bus which comes nearly two hours apart from the usual time. It was a company transport, so I decided to go in late.
I reach office an hour late, well thanks to my weird sleeping habits only to be greeted by a young hyper-active lady who seemed more happy and jumping around than the concerned party. "Hey, wish him 'Congratulations' ". As he was standing just beside us, I did congratulate him even without knowing what I was doing that for. "He is getting engaged", she shouted. "Oh, congratulations for getting engaged". Well, as for me, I didn't quite believe it the first time, nor the second time. Another person who was rocking the same boat as I was said that he wasn't going to believe and I couldn't agree more to him. It was all of a sudden and we were never even hinted on this matter. Sure, we had discussions about what kind of girl or marriage the past couple of days or weeks, but anyone particularly getting married or engaged was never on the platter.
Eventually, the whole of the office knows about it. Well thanks to the hyper lady around here, who in fact has a guy and when asked about marriage, she isn't quite sure when that might happen. Well, no shocker there. But it was a done deal which was quite evident from all the other people poking fun at him for going to get engaged, the kind of stuff that everyone does to the person going to "settle" down. Well, I had anticipated this sooner since the search for his better half began nearly two years prior to now. So, it wasn't a shocker altogether. He had been hinting about his mother searching for a girl since I know this guy. And also he wanted to get married as soon as possible and one of the most obvious the reason being receding hair line(well, he says this for fun, but not quite this). *Looks at my hair*, oh crap! *Adjusts the wig*. But nevertheless, it was happening and his engagement happened last weekend. I wish him all the best for his future and his better half.
The chatter is still consistent with his theories of what he will do/might do / or even plan to do. Anyone in his friends' circle have a pretty good picture of what's the weight of all those "future plans" of his. Believe me, you are going to hear everything he could do and his voice gives the impression that he most definitely will, but the very next minute the plan changes and sounds as convincing as the first one did. And later he would quite simply strike everything out saying that "People tell a lot of things that we would do, but do we do everything". Well, that's everyday story and perhaps that is going to change in a couple of months.
"So AJ, when are you planning to get married?". Whoa, easy there buddy as I let out a funny laugh. I and marriage don't travel the same road as of now and the day we cross paths are ages away and I mean it. And I don't understand what's the rush about all this marriage drama nor do I understand the people's curiosity about others marriage. Cool dude, I believe everyone has their own crazy sh*t to take care of. So, lets' get back to it. Peace out.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
It wasn't an easy step for Vivek to have taken the high road. He wasn't sure of the what might have happened otherwise. But it was the risk he was willing to take. He always had a thing for pretty women. Well, who doesn't? Unless, of course the stereotype is different. And then the pretty thing happened to be the girl from the same office, same friend's circle. But who would have thought. Love. Love happened. When did all this happen, how did all this happen still linger to be quite a mystery. And who would that lucky lady be?
It the middle of January when we heard the news of a friend, Sameera's sister's marriage. As a formality she had invited this little group of friends for the marriage. I wasn't sure about all this since the person in question is an unknown person and we going there might not look good, may be. But anyway as the day neared, we planned a small trip of 3 days. And obviously, someone had to bail out. So, Karthik bailed on us just a few days before the planned trip with the sole purpose to meet his brother who was coming to the city that very weekend. So, that left us with four people with Asha being one of them. If I were in her shoes, I would have given it a pass, but she didn't. Well, the reason was obvious, but we weren't sure.
The night saw the busiest of the traffic and the darkest of all nights. I am usually the insomniac, a noted one. But journeys aren't my strong suit in this aspect. So, if I don't have a laptop or a book, the obvious thing that I do is sleep, of course. Who wouldn't, right? But for the next 2 days, I was the guy who slept the most. I was seating comfortably in the rear, while Gautham was in the front to guide the driver as he knew the way better than we did and also the fact that we were going to his hometown, his home. That was the plan for the first day. I slept like a coma patient, totally unaware of what was happening around me unless they stopped the car to get something or the destination arrived. And from that onwards, they mock me whenever it comes about journeys and sleep. Believe me, I can go for 3 days in a row without sleeping. You would probably black out after day 1.
The car silently took the curves as I lay indulged in some creepy dream of sorts. Asha and Vivek were sitting beside me, while Gautham was fiddling with the Google Maps in the front seat of the car. The chemistry that was building up beside me was not a bizarre thing. We always had an idea of what was happening, but we couldn't be so sure. Why because Asha is elder to us except for Gautham who is the eldest of us all. So, why pinch the sleeping tiger and mess everything all up. And we were quite about all this even though the progress was visibly visible. After two days of long tedious and tiring journey where I enjoyed the company of a curled up sleep and crazy dreams while the chemistry bonded over 500 miles of journey and a lot of talking and talking. If it weren't for that trip, Vivek wouldn't have been so forthcoming about this to her and vice versa. And if it weren't for this trip, we wouldn't have to see these couple cosying up in the office or any place as a matter of fact. If it weren't for this trip. If it weren't for Sameera's sister's marriage. If it weren't for Sameera to persuade us to come.
But what happened in the past month, God could only imagine. Sameera, Asha, Vivek and Karthik are on bad terms. Really bad terms. Sameera thought it was better to withdraw herself from whatever was happening. And the rest of the people kind of agreed to the excommunication. I am stranded in the middle still dipped in a sea of confusion of what had just happened and could that be that great/big of a reason to break. It started off with Sameera and Vivek and Karthik reeled in a second later. And then Venky had to add the fuel. No, he wasn't the main reason but when it came to pointing fingers, one did momentarily. Truth be told, I have no idea what the freaking hell was happening. And since Vivek is involved and the front runner of all this, Asha took a stand along with him. Of course she had to, or not. It was her choice to make. The result was drastic, one I could never imagine.
I could get glimpses of Asha passing comments on Sameera every once in a while, about what she does, did and was doing. They were good friends before all of us. And now, not quite so. If letting go was one thing, stop complaining or passing comments and most importantly stop referring to people as third person. They have a name, either use it or stfu. Well, whatever. Moving on. Seriously though, I could never move on until this is resolved. Or is it resolved already. Has the differences set everything straight? I chose not the believe this, no matter how true it turned out to be. Once a friend stays a friend, am I wrong? I probably am.
The roads, now merged as one travelling to the destination unknown. Hand in hand, syncing their songs of togetherness they walked down the trodden road, exploring and beheld with questions of what was in store for them. Everybody, Vivek and Asha , simply inseparable !!
P.S.: I guess it didn't turned out the way I wanted it to. I don't know. I got carried away but the ticking clock, may be. No, not exactly, I am just finding excuses to make me feel better. But anyway, hope I don't get people running away.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Private India By Ashwin Sanghi & James Patterson. I am not at all good at review because I am that guy who doesn't like to sway away from the technicality or normalcy, or something like that which ever makes sense.
Genre : Suspense, Thriller, Fiction
Rating : 2.5 / 5.
What is this book about? It is about a person with a Vendetta, seeking revenge by killing people while a team of Professional Investigators try to solve the mystery of who was committing all these murders in the city of Mumbai. Not only is someone on a rampage killing people, there is also a bomb blast by the Islamic liberator who is influenced in his childhood about the same and angered by the way people were treating their community. It does bring up an intriguing web of connection linking almost every character portrayed in the novel and the killer has some or the other link to most of the characters. It is a nicely weaved story, a gripping one as well. No wonder I dozed off to sleep for the last couple of days while reading this book. The excitement and the enthusiasm slowly dies out the killer is slowly revealed in the end of the book.
What put me off?
The whole idea of the story was gripping and the suspense was steady till the last hundred pages or so when the killer is slowly revealed. The reason for committing murders is reasonable but for that what the person in question does is a little not-so-ordinary . If that were the case assuming that people would to that extremes to seek revenge, but the reply after getting caught puts it all away.
Next thing is I still didn't understand why was there so much melodrama about a Mujaheddin trying to blast something in the city. The city was already plagued with one deadly killer and on top of it this blast. And again, the way it is avoided gets you into asking, "Really? Is that it? What was this for? Why even put up that agenda in the book in the first place." While we are at it, lets add aliens as well. Because ... well, why not?
Then there was a personal vendetta and the main lead is a drunk. No spoiler alert. But he has been a drunk. I assumed that he became a drunk after the incident and the blasts and everything. But seems like, he was a drunk since he was a kid, or something like that perhaps.
Overall, I just couldn't relate the characters, all Indian ofcourse and that is the reason probably. But I just couldn't draw a mental picture of these characters, I just had to bring a few from the other people I knew mostly foreign. I was trying to play the scene in my mind as I read through the novel but the Indian characters felt just out of place. May be I have been reading and watching western movies , TV series or reading books, but a guy with a cane, come on, where in India have we seen that. And a rock band back in the day I wasn't even born? Are you kidding me? This was too western to be true.
Would I recommend you to read it?
Yeah sure, why not! Despite whatever I think, the suspense is what keeps the reader intrigued. And oh, by the way, there were a few pages at the end of the book after the story had ended titled "PRIVATE : How it all began.." and this was more interesting than the whole novel.
P.S. Now, you know why I don't book reviews. I suck at them clearly. And that is the exact same reason I don't get any guest posts or anything of sorts. But I am glad that I have been able to waste some of your time. I shouldn't be glad about that, should I?
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
The wait was finally over. The time felt right, or did it? It had been almost six years and one of my friend - colleague had been working in the same project (almost) since he joined the corporate industry. I met him nearly a year ago when I still a newbie to all this corporate thing and also after I had wasted a good part of the year doing nothing. Well, thanks to the establishment I was working under, it had it's perks, what would I say? I could have just used that time to do something more useful, something more important and found a better job, perhaps. But I was too lazy, could I say? Or I wasn't sure what the next big thing was supposed to be for me. Anyway, our person in question has come from a very good college, the kind of college which compels to ask questions like, "You studied in that college and are working here? Why? You could shift to a better paying, better qualified work as per your intellect. ... " kind of questions and suggestions kept hearing for a very very long time.
But he chose to stick to the same organisation even though he knew that there was nothing big for him or for anyone. He would give suggestions to me to get into some higher studies or likewise. But I was being me. Well, the wait was finally over. This is for the fact regarding an onsite opportunity. The project he has been associated with is a Canada based project. The process of getting Visa or other formalities wasn't a big thing compared to the US visa, but there was still a catch. There is always one. The catch here being that a person has to have minimum five years of experience in the same organization. This was one of the biggest BS norm I had ever heard of.
When I came to the project still fresh, while the mind was totally empty, thanks to the 8-9 months of prolonged exposure to TV series and wall ceiling of my room, I was as sharp as a ....umm.... exactly. The person in question had received a certificate for successfully completing 5 years in the same organization. Great, innit? Anyway, after nearly 6 months from that date, the Visa process was finally initiated. Almost everyone he knew would ask the question of his onsite, some even thought that he already went and came back because they did. But he was still here all the time. He used to feel bad when the people younger than him and with whom he used to work in the early years have gone and came back, already. I had no idea why a person with that much intellect and expertise in his field would still be doing in the same organization that doesn't give back to him much, let alone much anything.
But when the whole Visa process was initiated, he was kind of hopeful. But then again, after a struggle for nearly 2-3 months, the Visa was approved, but there was no opportunity on the onsite, as in there was no requirement for a developer. That fate is literally a bit*h, I must say. But, but, almost a week away from completing six years he was told to go to Canada that very weekend, with a notice of 3 days. Well, it wasn't like he was going to miss that chance anyway.
Over the period of one year, I have been his lunch buddy. We used to have a group of nearly 5 people when we started this going-out-of-office lunch thing, because the food at office sucked like big time. Or at least was it free? No, you had to pay for it. Well, thanks to the biggest organization which can't provide a lunch meal for the employees. I wonder what it does with all the money it has amassed over the time. Well anyway, the group of five got reduced to four since a guy was rather inconsistent in coming to office and also that the project I was working with him had to ramp down due to so called "budget issues". So, the four of us were a regular batch the 3-4 restaurants that were in the vicinity of the office. It was going fine until last couple of months, when the fourth guy recently got engaged. That still wasn't the problem. The problem was that he was un-allocated as in the project he was working in ended and also that he was planning to shift to Kolkata. Now, the group of three, however odd it seemed were on the daily rampage of exploring and eating outside as usual. And then out of the blue, the third member, the person in question got an opportunity to go to Canada, a long awaited dream, one could say. And within a day's notice he was gone.
Now, this was odd. We were trickled down to two people, just two people. However odd, we felt we still did the same thing that we had been doing for the last one year or so. And then, another batch of colleagues just came into the restaurant just as we were about to finish. I had just finished but the other guy has almost there. This new group of four were occasional visitors as in like once a week or only-on-the-weekend type. On seeing them, my other colleague who was just about to finish just blurted out,"I lost my appetite". I would too, given the possibility if I hadn't finished by then.
By the way, any volunteers? We sure are going to share the bill, unless its' your birthday or your cat's or any special occasion that you could possibly think of. Seriously though, we need to recruit new members to this dry team of two. Probably, distribute playcards or vouchers of sorts. Just saying.
*Prints the vouchers saying "Lunch mates needed". Interested candidates can contact the below mentioned ..............*.
Wait, what are you still doing here? You weren't supposed to see this! Oh, crap!
Wednesday, September 3, 2014
People are fragile. It is not exactly the people, but it is their emotions and feelings. That is fragile. It is not rocket science to understand the complexity or the anatomy of what goes around with these things. But still it is a problem nevertheless. Because not many of the people read the label on the cover "FRAGILE" written in bold just like this minus the italics. This is what makes us human, or probably not. The differences and the uniqueness that each one has are absolutely amazing because it gives us a lot to learn, despite all the odds. But above all, the emotions are the key to anything, their feelings also not to mention specifically. They play a morale role in the nature and behavior of people. It is all nice and cozy unless someone has to say something and mess up the whole equilibrium that one has been getting along with. That one stone that causes endless ripples in the water.
Recently, I had the taste of it and god, was it bitter. Now, what was in it to taste the fragility of the people's emotions or feelings, you may ask. Umm, I agree that I have a very poor choice of words, but I feel exactly the same. Consider this - Two people and after an exchange of some words, they decide to never talk to each other, like forever. And these two people are among of the few good friends that I know. Was it a misunderstanding? No. Was it a argument (simple or heated)? No. Did someone get physical? Hell no. But the idea of two girls fighting is kind of on my bucket list. (God No. I was kidding. Who has that on a bucket list? Pssstt.) But then again it wasn't one on one take down. There was only one person on the other side of the rope in one team while the other had a bunch. It wasn't fair. Not fair as in the whole idea of segregation, keep aside the problems that followed which might have acted as a catalyst leading to more distance.
So, when all this thing had already happened, the first thought I got after realizing that the ties have been broken, was to mend them. But as days progressed the ropes diminished and reached a point where was no rope left to tie or mend. It was like everyone involved was trying to find reasons to stay apart. I wasn't sure whose fault (fault? It was no one's fault here. But it was something totally different and way above my head to even perceive or interpret) was it, or what was going on. I just knew that bla bla happened and the next thing I know, the ropes are cut, just like that, the bridge broken down and did it leave it there, no, but the bridge was set on fire. In the midst of this burning bridge, the flame caught up faster by the so called reasons. I didn't even make an attempt to put the fire out. I had no clue as of why or what was all of this was happening. I was with the impression that any trials to put the flame out would just burn it even more like gasoline on fire. As a result, I was the neutral party and still am. And this neutrality, believe me, sucks.
Every day, I feel the inquisition to put the thought of bringing them together, but I don't know, I am just not able to take that step. It is the right thing to do, but still there seems to be too much going with the silent treatment and getting back to normal is a bit of a problem. The thing is that both stand corrected and totally firm in their decisions and the main reason being each person on the other side of the rope are just trying to finding reasons, like I mentioned earlier. So, I have no idea whether I should take the risk of building the bridge and let the water flow in the stream uninterrupted or let the broken bridge obstruct the water stream in whatever way possible and be a silent spectator.
After penning all this down, I feel like an idiot to have waited for this long and only giving more room for bridge to break down furthermore. I should have taken a stand at the very instinct and did something and if not averting, at least I could have contained it somehow, I suppose. Sometimes, it's the risk that decides the outcome rather than the thought of the consequences of the risk. There will always be consequences, but I sure as hell hope that the consequences are of the right kind. And so the wait. They say time heals the pain or whatever BS that means or whosoever said that, but I believe that by a minor percentage.
So, what should I do? Take the risk, right? Then why do I have a bad feeling about this?
Last time, I mentioned about deleting the blog or doing some changes since I had this stupid feeling that I wasn't shown any love by anyone, metaphorically speaking of course. And that I will start up afresh. Or rekindle this existing blog somehow. But I sure have hurt a few people by even mentioning it which I deduced from the comments I received. So, my sincere apologies to even have mentioned it in the first place. I will not delete this blog, but rekindle? Hell yeah. But, with time perhaps. So, I just wanted to thank the people reading especially Red Handed and Aathira for being so generous for being able to give a shout. Thank you. Because of you two, I am totally over the idea of deleting and am hoping never to visit that thought ever again. But the change is on its way, a slow process perhaps. Just hang on, I guess. Poor choice of words, again? Anyway, take care.
- Ajay Kontham