Nearly a month back from now, just to keep in touch a mail loop was started. Little did I know what the future holds? My friends were looking for a get-together, with almost all the things planned. Then someone whispered in my ears, “Why don’t you join?” That was it, just 20 days left for the meet and here I’m thinking of how to plan everything. As the saying goes, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way”. Thanks to few people who helped me with my booking and I was ready to meet the great gang, most of them I’ll be meeting after a gap of nearly than 2 years.
The journey started as planned, with a beautiful hiccup. I mistimed my start of journey, instead of 2 hour in hand I started with nearly 1 hour!!! I had to take an auto-rickshaw to airport and when I checked in, I was told “boarding starts in 10 minutes”. I was shocked, any further delay I would’ve been strangled by my own money. Watching beautiful air-hostessess in flight (one I saw when I went to Delhi this January, but I’m sure she wouldn’t recognize me). The flight was smooth with minor turbulences, seat-belt lights were ON for more than 30 minutes prior to landing.
Kolkata… had to call up my friends for address but I preferred to explore a bit and in this explore mode, I found more beautiful girls in 2 hours than my 2 years in Chennai!!! Ruining nearly 5 hours of first day at my friend’s office, with couple of breaks each lasting 30 minutes, it seemed as if my journey has hit rock bottom. I didn’t know if this was the lull before the storm. The whole trip was a roller-coaster ride.
Went on to receive 3 great guys at airport, one Air Force, other GATE aspirant and third who brought them together to us. What one can expect at airport, a hug from friends. But we did go a little far. A full cake splat on the guy who celebrated his birthday few days back. Garland for the Air Force hunk along with a big cake in shape of aeroplane with beautifully crafted welcome message. All of this behind CCD (Cafe Coffee Day), who demanded Rs. 3000, if we celebrate in their premises. Taxis stopped to witness the madness 10 guys were doing there (which were definitely us). It was quite late and hunger was at its peak. How about a nice dinner at night 1:00? Gorged on delicacies till 2:00 and returned at nearly 3:00. I guess we still managed to stay awake till 4:00.
How can we wake up early if we sleep at 4:00 a.m.? We didn’t!!! Woke up, freshen up and straight for lunch at a Marwadi restaurant for the unlimited meal. Again another celebration, which was the most memorable thing of the day. Minor scratch on the celebration was that a stupid waiter gave the gift to the recipient we intended to give. And major dent was after the lunch we went to watch “Raavan”. Bored from movie had to wake ourselves with a great tea, as few had to return to office the other day (in their respective cities) so bid adieu to them and returned home (while many, including me bunked).
I don’t know from where it struck to my friend (with whom I was staying), he took me to meet his ILP friends and that was around 12:00 at night. Met for the first time and talked to them for nearly 3-4 hours and then realizing they have office the other day, had to leave them at 3:00 (now it’s not the other day, it’s the same day. I thought we’ll leave early, but you never know when you meet such nice people you can never keep a track of time).
The most memorable day of the trip was day 3. I know my flight is at evening, still went for McDonalds lunch. By the time we were finished, the table was barely visible and only thing seen was papers all over it. From McD lunch had a bike ride to Vidya Sagar Bridge, a masterpiece – suspension bridge. But as my journey started, it had to end the same way. Caught by the police…. who demanded fine of Rs. 1500 per head. With bikes Fazer, Unicorn, Pulsar and Royal Enfield, we claimed that we came to Kolkata one month back while no bike looked no less than 3 months old and each with West Bengal number. Finally the police settled down to Rs 3000. Now how can you expect us not to say that our salary is just mere Rs 7000? The police with a dash of humor added, “My salary is Rs. 4000”. Finally all settled in Rs. 1000. Now that’s too much of details. Had to rush to nearly other end of city and fetch our bags and then to airport. Bikes rushing at 96 KM/hr, 100 KM/hr and 103 KM/hr, this could’ve started India’s first superbike championship. Finally reached airport to know my flight is delayed. When I boarded the flight, I tried to flashback the days gone by and then realizing I could write something on it, I knew this will be nothing on paper as compared to the exhilarating experience I had.
Dated: 19-21 June 2010
Dedicated to: (Partners in Crime, in alphabetical order)
Special thanks to:
- Rohit Mody
- Satya Prakash