Meeting over a Coffee — 3
The happiest breakdown
What happened so far?
“What shall I say to their parents? They’re asking me about our opinion.”, Mom calls me early in the morning to get an answer.
Yes, she is super worried about my future, I get it. But this was way too early to call me for answers especially when I was feeling ambivalent myself. She is on a roll to find a bride for me. She is looking for other prospective brides in parallel.
“Mom, please hold your horses. I need some time before I can say anything. I need to know what she thinks of me before I commit anything to you. This is life, ma!”, I was all shouting at my mom. May be it is because she woke me that early or because this girl isn’t giving any signal to me.
“Why are you shouting at me? Your generation is at fault.”, and she continued lecturing on how my entire generation behaves without responsibility — all based on the fact I was asking her time to make my life’s most important decision. She was around the topic of how her generation respected elders all the time when I lost track of the conversation. It must have gone on for another fifteen minutes before my mother realised she was the only person contributing to the conversation and cut the call.
I opened Rachana’s WhatsApp contact and started staring at her display picture, thinking if I should call her or not. If I should end this wait — one way or the other.
I can see her picture suddenly pop-up onto my screen. I don’t understand how I must have called her by just thinking about it. I realise WhatsApp shows your call to the other person , even though it doesn’t get connected. My heart is in my mouth and I was already thinking of excuses that sounded decent enough. I suddenly realise that SHE was calling me!?! I get excited and started jumping out of the bed. I go to my window and attended the call.
“Yes,Rachana. How are you?”
“Not so good.”
“Why? What happened? Why?”, started blabbering as I heard that she is not good.
“My bike has breakdown in the middle of the road and I can’t seem to find any mechanic around here.”
What does she think of me? Do I seem like a mechanic here? My ego got hurt with me being a judgemental person.
“Can you please help me?”, she asked in soft little rabbit voice.
I imagined her asking with puppy eyes. “Yes, why not? Where are you right now?”
She sent her location in WhatsApp and I got all ready to get there in my bike.
She is at the side of the road, stranded on a deserted road. It was too early for all the shops to open. I went to her and put my bike aside and greeted her.
“What happened? Are you alright?”
“My bike stopped all of a sudden and I am having a hard time deciding what to do now. I don’t know anyone in this city now. My best friend just left the city and you are the only person that came to my mind. I’m sorry for disturbing you so early in the morning.”, she was saying all this in her sad tone while I was trying to fix her bike by all means. After all I should not let her down.
“I think this boy is broken. We need to take him to mechanic shop.”
“Please wait while I find out if there will be any open nearby”, I said and left to find anyone around that could direct us.
“Rachana, the nearest one is around two and a half kil0meter from here. Shall we take it now?”
“Sure. Thank you for helping me. I really don’t know what to do. You’re a saviour.”
“Okay, I’m not repairing this. I’m just taking it to the garage.”
With that conversation, we started walking with the scooty to garage. Maybe it’s god’s wish to put us up together and give me chance to talk with her better. I was happy to help her.
“Sorry for troubling you.”
“Okay, that’s too much — more that I can take! You should stop apologising.”, I said and pulled out a chocolate and gave it to her. I didn’t forget that even in such dire circumstances. If it was not a chocolate I didn’t know what might cheer her up.
“Wow! Thank you.”, a gleam of joy finally on her face. “Do you sell chocolates on your free time?”
“Ha-ha that’s funny! Well if you want to know, the day I met you, I bought a box full of chocolates.”
“Oh, really!”, I could see her cheeks turn crimson. That was the best sunrise I have ever witnessed in life.
I smiled back and continued the walk of a lifetime. She started nibbling the chocolate as we walked. We started conversing about much better than in that coffee house the other day. I could see that there was much more ease between us now. God was pleased with my determination to woo her. Garage was open, negotiations were done, wait time was told.
“Rachana, you seem tired. Do you want to get something to drink?”
“Yeah sure. Where?”
I pointed to a road side shop and took her there.
“This isn’t your Irish Latte but the real taste is here.”, I said after asking for 2 chai.
“I never really tasted anything like this. My friends are too classy to come out here and you don’t see a single girl at places like this.”
“Yes, that’s true. You see, this is me. Not the one in that cafe. I am a simple person. Initially I thought of impressing you but then I figured that you get a taste of the real me.”
She just smiled at those words. The chill air under the banyan tree hit my sweaty face. Wow! Nature becomes so romantic.
“Okay, I’m getting late. I’ll take an auto from here.”
“Why don’t I drop you?”
“I don’t want to trouble you anymore. Also, I’m tired to walk back there.”
“We will take an auto to get back there and let me drop you. That is only if you’re comfortable to go with me”. I didn’t even wait for her to answer before hailing an auto rickshaw; I suspect I knew the answer.
This is the first time she is getting on a motor bike with me. I’m all excited. Will she get on one side or both side. I’m in all imaginations. Many songs started playing in my mind like a playlist. Finally she got on one side taking the help of my shoulder. I wanted to make a good impression and not to go fast.
“Rachana, where do you want me to drop?”
She guided me the location and any speed more than 40 would scare her. Scare like, she would press my shoulder hard as if she thinks that is the brake to bike.
I dropped her in front of an apartment community and she thanked me profusely. She wouldn’t stop although I have made it clear that I would never let her go anywhere alone when I was around.
With all the pleasantries exchanged, she left into the community slowly — glancing back at me intermittently!
~ A story of Rachana & Vamsi