A post-dated colourful tale

Yes, it's coming a tad bit late. But what the heck, I have got to share my exhilaration with you. If you remember Holi was celebrated in Delhi on Sunday...On Friday night, I was buying film tickets for Eklavya at a theatre in West Delhi along with friends C and T. T's husband P was in the process of parking the car.

Now C expressed her fascination for a certain pattern on the shiny granite floor outside the counter. In two minutes, we realised that it was actually water that had assumed an arty tree-shape and that it was the result of some people thowing water balloons at the people queued up at the counter. Mind you, they were all grown-ups laughing loudly and taking potshots from a first floor balcony right opposite the counter.

I was in a very tra-la-la mood. Just two days back I was in Bombay and the feel of the city was still fresh in my mind. You could say that at the time I was in the Bombay-state-of-mind. And there was a perpetual dreamy smile on my face I guess. That made my friends grin too.

All was fine till I felt and heard a splat sound on my trousers.

I dialled 100. The first time I explained the whole thing for a long time to the cop. Midway he hung upon me. The second time I called, I made a point to tell this other cop that I was from the Press and I wanted them to come and do something about the matter. "Madam, aap rickshaw walle bhi hote to hum aate," he said. I felt like retorting, "And pigs can fly!" ( a trademark line of mine that comes out very often whenever I express disbelief). Difficult it was, but I had to suppress this particular expression and say, "Then just come and prove what you said."

Meanwhile, I was dying to do something about it. I was not sure that the PCR would arrive. I asked P where the police chowki would be. He did and before he could ask why, I was stalking off to the chowki along with C and T. We found two constables, whom we immediately dragged along with us to the house. While we were thus stalking towards the house suddenly I was thrilled to see a huge group of cops coming towards. So there we were -- proceeding towards the house in full strength. I vaguely remember the sounds of people clapping at the counter.

The entrance at the house was so dark that for a moment I faltered. The stairs looked exactly like they would lead us into a dungeon. Anyway, when we reached the door of the 'perpetrators', we found that theywere seated for dinner. The expressions on their faces were what I wish I could have captured on a camera. Because you have to see to believe how the guilty can pretend.

Initially there were two teenage boys and their mother (she had been standing and laughing at the spectacle of people being bombarded) who kept insisting that they had no idea what we girls were talking about. Then when the cops collared one of the guys, she caught hold of my arm and said: "You are doing something very wrong. When we go to the market, people throw stuff at us also." To which I said: "Then you should do something about it." And then she said: "This is going to come back to you..." and went on and on. I was furious. From somewhere this fat middle-aged Punju aunty emerged and started convincing C that she is her 'dadi'. C, being a sweet natured person, was nodding her head. While I said, "Dadi? Which dadi?"

Soon the cops hauled the guys downstairs on to the road where there was these mohalla wallas had gathered to partake of the 'fun'. One of them in an abhorring black shirt with loud silver sequins took my breath away. And an old man who was trying to tell me that I was making a mountain out of a molehill. Then suddenly anti-climax came in the form of T's husband P who came and listened to the whole thing and uttered just a few words "Ye to chhoti si baat hai".

Heavens! It was almost comical. But the matter was taken out of our hands when the cops decided that they would take care of it. They did note down my name, father's name, cell number and address. So we went ahead for our show while they, I am sure, wrung a neat dough out of the donkeys. Good for them.


You're beautiful, you're beautiful, you're beautiful, it's true, la la la la la la

Woke up to strains of James Blunt. Then sprayed on S's bottle of Beautiful. As did E. And almost instantly we were taken back to our days of staying together in Malviya Nagar. Umm... I sound disjointed. It's a random state of the mind. You know when you are so happy that you cannot just put it down in words. When you feel like flying around work and making everybody smile cause you are happy.

Now to throw some light on the above. I have been on a kinda roller coaster ride in the last two months. Great highs and great lows. But to quantify, the highs have been higher than the lows.

If I start from yesterday night, I would tell you how I had the most amazing time with ex-flatmates S, E and S's husband V. The evening started with S and E making me wait at Sarojini Nagar Market for half-an-hour. After which we set ourselves on shopping, shopping and shopping for 33-100 ruppee skirts and what not. In between, we were caught in this shoe shop (Soft and Sleek -- if you are a shoe freak, you must visit this shop in SN. It rocks and I am not exaggerating), mainly thanks to E. It almost felt like we were part of the staff at the shop -- only we were trying out all the shoes under the price tags that said 150, 200 and 300 ruppees.

Some more shopping and we were finally out of SN. Once at my place, we of course modelled all our clothes and each of us had two more opinions to count on (I shudder to think of my bed. It is a humongous pile of clothes). By the time, we were out, dressed in our respective new buys -- E in her 'bordello' top (an affair in red topped off with sheer net), S in her lime green sphagetti and me in my new tunic -- we were pretty late. So much so that we reached GK and found that we were walking down the middle of a ghost town. It was only 10 pm.

But Gelato Vittorio was open. "You got us here for gelato?!!" the two shrieked. But since it came right at the point through which we entered the market, there was not much choice left for them. I was conned by the guy behind the counter in to buying two scoops of Chocolate Hazelnut Crunch and Whiskey Irish Cream and shelling out Rs 135. "Divine justice," mouthed E and S.

Since there was hardly any dining option, we sat ourselves in Yo China. Where I did an Obelix. As in picked on three plates of Crispy Honey Chicken and ate my through a huge plate of vegetarian noodles. The fact that I could move on my feet after that was in itself a piece of good luck. Meanwhile V had joined us and had what he said was soup that tasted like nothing he had before. It was not a very appreciative comment actually. And E had met her friend who is getting married.

When all was done, the four of us headed to Shangri-la. This time for coffee. I have probably never laughed so much in my life what with old stories and reminiscences of our recent trip to Murud Kashid together. I think you have never heard of any one drunk on chicken. I was. It was so bad that I was planning to rest my butt on a water-filled platform in the hotel. S stopped me thankfully. Thus we ended our night or should I say started today.

But truly, simple pleasures create such great memories.