Tag Archives: Story

Shhhhhpppplaaaaaaashhhhhhhh!

There are few things more irritating than people in cars splashing muddy water all over you. The situation can be even more annoying, if its raining & to avoid the pelting rain you’ve taken shelter in a bus stand and a callous driver drives by, making the most of the puddle in front of the bus shelter.

The helplessness of the situation, a combination of a bruised ego, a wet attire and an indifferent ‘prick’ driving away usually leaves you livid & a choice combination of expletives most assuredly follows the trail of the car

You feel offended, you feel violated. You’re wondering how in the world does a guy like that even manage a driving license. You might even choose to get even more personal: maybe it was inadequate parenting or maybe schooling…Whatever it be, the guy had to be lacking, right?

I, who consider myself to be fairly civilized, enlightened in the ways of ‘being human’, cultivated in etiquette, was an unfortunate participant in a similar episode that played out on a wet Sunday afternoon…and, however brash this may sound, I was the driver!

With Dengue playing out like one of the original 10 plagues, my mother-in-law (MIL) was also not spared & she had to be admitted in the emergency room of a hospital, not because it was an emergency but that it was the only remaining room in the hospice. As a dutiful & loving son-in-law, my core responsibilities included lending emotional & moral support to the family & ferrying food & family members between home & the hospital.

It was the responsibility of ferrying food that I was fulfilling when this regrettable incident occurred.  With the rain creating rivulets on my windscreen & the wipers working overtime, striking the optimum view was tricky. However, with the hazard indicators switched on & speed reduced to a snail’s pace, I was pretty confident that I was the epitome of a model citizen.

As I approached the turn to the hospital, I could see a number of people taking shelter in the bus stand. This crowd included people who were genuinely waiting for the bus, bikers (even their raincoats weren’t good enough for this downpour & frankly, I prefer having the bikers off the road!) & people who generally didn’t want to get wet. All huddled together in the temporary refuge, they made a sorry sight. While I did notice the bus shelter & the crowd, owing to the relatively clearer side windows, I failed to notice ‘The Puddle’ right in front of me (refer: rivulets, right balance etc..).

The Puddle, if it were a motion picture would have the baseline “The colossal”. Long & deep, thanks to the stellar efforts by the municipal corporation to harvest rain water, this mass of water was ‘clear & present danger’.

The reduced speed, originally meant to be a driving aid, now became my worst enemy. The car’s pace was optimum. Optimum enough to splash maximum water on all the unsuspecting bystanders. While the written equivalent of a splash is ‘Splash!’, this particular splash might be more aptly put into sound as ‘shhhhhpppplaaaaaaashhhhhhhh’

As I slowly passed through the length of the bus shelter, I could hear cries of shock ,of being confounded at the monstrosity of what I had done. An entire mass of people who thought they had made the best decision in that moment of time had obviously been proved wrong.The very space that was meant to be a refuge from the rain had become a mass shower room for them. While I hope some may have welcomed the unexpected splash, I am assuming most would not have been open to the idea.

Looking back through the rear window, I tried to get a glance at the mess I had created but was granted mercy by the very rains that had led to the creation of the puddle. Slightly perturbed but largely nonchalant, I continued my way.

PS: I humbly apologize to all who were at the receiving end of the splash. I have also learnt not to be too judgmental of driving errors, especially ones which involve splashes

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Hear My Prayer Oh Lord!

Jesus-Lord & Saviour
Oh Lord who dwellest in the most high
Hear Thou the pain in my cry
Through the night as I sit and sigh
May your presence with me be nigh

My soul longs to be with you my Lord
My heart- It longs for your love my God
For you are a God of Love and Mercy
Grace and goodness, Hope and Righteousness:As many have come to see

Hear thou my prayer, Oh Lord
May my afflictions be comforted by thy word
May thy Spirit in me always dwell
Through Joy and Suffering, may my mouth forever, have only your story to tell

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This is my story

Man in lake

A family to feed, a home to rebuild

A loan to repay, a life to build

This, my friends, is the story of my life

This job, my only chance to survive

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The Rubber Band Episode

13 years in a boys school (St. Columba’s, New Delhi) is like watching an action packed thriller movie. Girls, stunts, villains, heroes…its all there. Memories of events in school are so deeply embedded that ,even now, it is easy to recall stories 9-22 years old. One such event happened in class 9 and involved a certain character by the name of Francis Pattom.

Francis Pattom was one of my good friends throughout class 8 and 9 and were probably the only Sagittarians who became good pals as well.

Francis, as any other class 9-C student, was expected to be naughty and constantly on the lookout for pranks to play on others. It was one of such episodes that led to him having a strong Congress imprint across both his cheeks.

It was the Hindi period and Mrs. Kumari (name changed to protect myself) was, as usual, in her asthmatic demeanor, trying to teach us a lesson in literature. A short and fat lady with hyperactive sweat glands, Mrs. Kumari epitomized the teacher, who, given a choice, would rather stay at home, sleep and watch saas bahu serials through the day.

Francis, like most of us, was bored and with his hand on his chin was pondering on how he could manage to survive the 45 minutes class. As Francis glanced towards the floor, his eyes weary, he suddenly saw an object that could entertain him and his friends for the rest of the period. The object: A rubber band, large and oval, with the potential to sting and cause pain.

Francis picked up the rubber band and started stretching it, sometimes towards me (on his left) and sometimes towards Joshua (on his right). The apparent fear on our faces was thrilling enough for him to continue threatening us over the next 10 minutes.

Thrill coupled with foolishness constantly motivates you to surge ahead and his next move was to point the sling at Mrs Kumari, while we giggled and challenged him to release it. Francis was enjoying the attention…”Chodd doon?…Chodd doon?” he would ask to which we would respond ” Abey ja na..kya choddega…fattoo”. 

In one such exchange of dialogues, Francis, with his head turned towards me and the band pointed towards Mrs Kumari, accidently released the potent missile.

“Aaaaaaaaaaaaaah”, Mrs Kumari shouted in pain”Ye kiski battameezee hai?” The class: deathly silent. “Kaun tha jisne yeh harkat ki?” No answers.

Francis, meanwhile, was being mauled down by his conscience and the fear that someone might take his name. He decided the best course of action was to surrender. Slowly, Francis stood up…”Yeh tumne fainka tha?” Mrs Kumari asked. “Yes ma’am par galti se” Francis replied. “Tum idhar aao” Mrs Kumari ordered Francis as she felt her red forehead, the target of the rubber band.

Francis slowly made his way to the podium while the class looked on. The usual suspects were shocked at the audacity of the attack while some of us still giggled silently at the turn of events.

“Sorr”….Phataach…the first slap right across Francis’ cheek reverberated across the class room. “But ma’am”…Phataach…this one seemed louder than the previous one. phataach phataach phataach…5 slaps in all. Even the naughtiest kid in school wouldn’t have expected such intensity.

Francis was shaken, but he was, after all a boy. As he walked back to his seat with Durga (read Mrs Kumari) glaring from behind, he attempted a faint smile at me. Now visible clearly, both his cheeks held imprints of Mrs Kumari’s overzealous hands. 

Clearly conscious of the gallant act he had accidently committed, Francis needed to capitalize on this occassion to establish himself as a hero. As the class ended and Mrs Kumari left, still holding a handkerchief to her forehead, Francis stood up and announced to the class ” Mujhe kuchh nahi hua”, expecting the class to applaud his effort and congratulate him on his ‘success’

His attempt was at best, meek, and a second later, all of us were rolling down on the floor in fits of laughter, while Francis resigned to his fate as a fellow classmate

 

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