Monday 4 January 2016

'No parcels, thank you!': loitering at the dhaba - Tarishi Verma

 Well now that 2015 is gone, I can safely say this was last year. Not many people will be happy with how I went about things ‘dangerously’.
A certain week in October, I was ditched by a lot of people for dinner. Campus mess offers nothing great so I thought okay, McDonald’s it is. It is in a mall, I’ll just have to take an auto and then I will be in a place with people and crowds. Sorted.
I took an auto at 9 pm for K-star. In the middle of my journey, I remembered that I could eat kulchas! Except that it was a place in Chembur camp and pretty deserted by this time; but the kulchas were so great; but there would be no one there and I am out alone.
Fuck it.
I redirected the auto to the place and I lost my way completely because I had only navigated the area in the bright light, not in the night time. By the time I reached the place, it was 9.20. If it is of any relevance, I was dressed in shorts and T-shirt, my favorite outfit for any day or any night.
I reached and ordered a Paneer Cheese Kulcha (which is the absolute best, if I may say so).
Pack karnahai madam?”
Nahibhaiyya, yahinkhanahai. Aursaathmeinek thumbs upbhi de do.”
The look on the poor guy’s face was priceless. He couldn’t believe I was going to eat there, with no one around except the owner. The lane was pretty deserted.
But the gentleman that he was, he sat outside after presenting me with delicious kulchas. I asked him to pack another one (because after 10 pm, you couldn’t take the auto inside the campus and who wants to walk!).
While I ate, the TV played SasuralSimarKa. I laughed at it. The owner tried really hard to stay awake to watch but he kept dozing off. The other guy kept asking me if I needed anything else. I paid and left to find the kulfithelanearby but he had unfortunately packed and gone home. I was reveling in my adventure. I have to admit I got a little bit alarmed when I couldn’t find an auto.
When I was telling my friend about this, she was shocked and appalled at me being so adventurous. So I decided it was better to be shut about it and enjoy the experience that I had. My only regret is that I didn’t take any pictures. Well frankly, I was too busy enjoying the kulcha and Simar’s antics.
Not only did I feel I should loiter around more, I also felt we should trust people more; anyone, from any background. Maybe through mutual trust and understanding, we’d be able to create a fear-free world.

A world where I can loiter, any time I want.