Have you ever been carried away with promotional offers promising discounts and free gifts, only to find the terms and conditions killing all your expectations later? I love visiting stores during sales as that is the only time I can think of buying the overpriced stuff which is expensive even after the discounts. A lot of times I end up taking clothes, accessories and shoes to the billing counter only to know that the ‘Buy One Get One Free’ was on purchase of above 3000 rupees only. Damn the terms and conditions, they are the devil’s plot!

So, one day, I was meeting a friend in a lounge. He was in the city to meet people, I happened to be one of them for some reasons. We hugged each other, settled down and ordered some chicken with freshly brewed beer. He mentioned something about a girl he wanted to approach for marriage and she was in a time demanding career. He was all gaga of being supportive of her traveling late nights and far off lands alone even after the wedding. Women empowerment and independence was taking a new leap in the country, I thought.

I asked the bar tender to repeat the dark ale.

‘Do you drink with every guy you meet?’ he asked

Huh, no.

‘Good, girls should drink only with best friends, brothers or boyfriend. Women tend to lose consciousness and guys can easily take advantage’ he opined.

Huh, maybe.

‘Women lose their modesty by being irresponsible. Good to know you don’t drink with all your male friends. In this case, I guess am lucky’ he chuckled.

Huh, check please, I signaled the waiter.

A few days in the big old city and I was bugged with the constant sweating. I was about to lose my job. Though it happened every now and then, I freaked out. I wanted a BREAK. I shared this with the family and said I had to travel alone to find solace.

‘You should go on a backpack trip’ they advised.

Huh, Yes.

‘You should check for trek groups’ they said.

Huh, Definitely.

‘You should go in an only women group, I would meet the group and if I find it okay you can confirm the trip’ the group’s alpha proclaimed.

Huh, what?

‘You don’t want to be the head line yourself one day, do you?’ the alpha tried to make an ironic statement

Huh, never mind, I will take a break at the marine drive.

No job and no backpacking made me browse the social media all day. Once I found this adorable video of Deepika Padukone and Vin Diesel. The macho was holding the beauty in his arms. I was out with my female friends and thought of sharing the video with them.

‘Deepika looks hot, isn’t it’ she was excited.

Huh, totally.

‘Such a shame she is this big flirt’ she gave a sigh.

Huh, really?

‘Yeah, the depression, the standing up for her cleavage picture and the women empowerment video she made was all good. But, she is hurting Ranveer being all flirty with Vin’ she stated.

Huh, everything fun in the video just vanished.

This particular week ended with another amazing conversation with one of the folks. It was the TALK – marriage, biological cycle and settlement topped the agenda.

‘There is a proposal for you, a marriage proposal’ he shared the big news.

Huh, really not ready for it.

‘Are you with someone?’ he questioned.

Huh, No.

‘Then what is the problem, this guy is settled abroad, has a good salary, you can carry on with your journalism and writing and earn a few thousands while also live lavishly on his few lacs’ he discussed.

Huh, Commitment phobic.

‘Then are you planning for a live-in, we are totally supportive, only we shall select the guy you live in with’ he was trying to sound cool.

Huh, creepy.

All this while I felt like I was being cheated on by the hypocrite brand of a society. I visited their store during the big freedom sale. I selected everything I wanted to do as an independent and strong woman. I was attracted to their colourful proclamations. But just like every sale has a hidden trap, this one too had planned a shallow plot.

I was watching DDLJ the next day. The movie was approaching the end and the heroine was told, ‘Jaa Simran jee le apni zindagi’ .. stupid woman forgot listening to the part that mentioned *terms and conditions apply! Huh, fallacy!

Silver Lining - We know the loopholes and have learnt all the tricks to get the best from every deals.


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