Sunday, October 7, 2012

He came, we saw, he changed us.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

"Waking up, now that September has ended, from your reverie, is the best thing to do Reet. He ain't coming."

"Hope. Hope, Supreet. There is a thing like that in my lexicon. And I live with it everyday. And people can forget dates, they are humans after all. He will definitely come. And it is just October 1st, not a big mistake! One day is all right."

"Hope is okay. But FALSE hope is not! People like him are the same! They use sympathetic people like you, then they are in search for other people who are like you, over-caring, over-concerned, over-everything. And most importantly, stinking rich."

"Being used for a good quality, I think, is not a bad thing after all. If it is the way you say it is, then I think the person who uses me and throws me away is at loss, not me."

"Blind optimism- that is what you are suffering from. Why the hell are you wasting your time? You have got lots of things to do. He had said 9th September, then 21st, then 28th, and then 30th. Did he come? No. Will he come today? Heck, no. So get up, leave the baggage of this guy and move on."

I did not know what they were talking about. I was just sitting there, thinking who is "he". I had come from Delhi to meet my cousin, Reet, and here she was, quarreling with her best friend over a mystery man. I am just 12, so I was not supposed to intervene and ask who the hell was their matter of discussion. But my cousin being 20 I subsumed that she was in some kind of love-web, and Supreet Didi was trying to detangle her out of it.

What I did, was dig my head in a novel, and listen to the conversation, which was getting even more mysterious.

"There is so much happening the world. And you are sitting here, wasting one whole month, thinking that he will come and you will serve him as if he is the Sheikh of Brunei."

"Wasted? Do you think I wasted my time? I think it is totally worth it. And I know, he must have had some problems, and that is why he was not able to come. I have collected so many things for him this September. Good that he did not come, or I must have had nothing to give him. People like him go through many problems, and I think he has the right to take his time."

"You are impossible. 4 months ago you did not even know he existed. And you know what? 4 months before you were YOU- girl immensely into fashion, gossip, shopping, clubbing, playing, partying. And now, you have become an irritating saint."

"Irritating saint? That is an amazing oxymoron. Do you realize that the things you told I did 4 months ago, are so futile? I mean seriously? Was I like that? Shame on me. Good he came in my life, and he has changed me. He has not made me a saint, but he has made me a human."

"You are 20 Reet. You have every right to do wasteful things you did 4 months ago! When will you enjoy life? If you want to be serious, there is an age for that. And what do you mean by "made you a human". Do you mean we, your friends, are not humans? Just because we enjoy our lives roaming and clubbing? Tell me when to enjoy life? At 30? When you are dumped with every possible responsibility of your life? Heck no."

"I think I have enjoyed a lot. And I am not saying I will never do all those things I used to do. It is just that I will remain in my limits. His life has shown me that one should use their endowments wisely. You never know, what will happen to your wealth one day. Pappa ji has lots of money, and I used to spend it on my liquor, on my clothes, on me that is. And now, I spend it on various other things that make me happy, my soul happy, my family happy."

"It makes me happy too, Reet. But do not become so, so insipid and humdrum! I care for you. You were this bubbly girl who enjoyed life! And that guy has made you very dull, dull as dishwater!!"

"Supreet, you have never seen him, right?"

"No. Why?"

"That is why you are speaking so much. Wait, let him come. And you will definitely understand why I have changed. And why everyone of my age should change."

"Let me see."

After two hours, the bell rang. Reet's face lit up. She rushed to the door, and opened it. He was there.

Supreet came from the kitchen. And she was aghast, looking at him.

And so was I. He was a good looking man in his mid twenties, and his physique made us guess that he came from a well off background. But his clothes were dirty, his hair unkempt, and he looked very tired.

"I have 1 whole bag of these clothes, and these are some copies and books. The bag has got some kind of stationery also. Will this be enough?"

"Totally. Initially, it is more than enough. So when are you joining us?"

"Soon after college ends, Arpan. Soon. Will you like a cup of coffee? Or cold drink?"

"If you have lemon, make me a glass of lemon juice. I need lots of energy. I have to go to Amritsar today."

"Oh wow. What are you going to do there? And Supreet, can you get me that jug of lemon juice which is there in the fridge. Get me 4 glasses. We all will drink."

"Nothing. I wanted to expand my network to my birthplace also. And as I know very less people are interested in this kind of work, I have to work with people whom I know. You came by luck. Are your friends interested?"

"I have not talked to them yet. This is my best friend, Supreet. I wanted her to see you first. to see why I am ready to wait for you one whole month,to see why I have stopped wasting money on Barista Sandwiches, to see why I have stopped buying clothes everyday. My friends were angry why you didn't turn up this September. I have not thrown a party since I met you. And 3rd September,as you know is my birthday. I did not celebrate that too, as I was busy in collecting all this."

"Supreet! Sorry if I exasperated you or tested your patience. Well the work I do is a very tedious one. But fulfillment of promises are meant to be delayed in my world, not denied. I had promised I will meet Reet, and here I am."

"Tell her what do you do, who you are."- Reet said.

"Well, Supreet. You know K.S Randhawa?"- Arpan asked her, knowing that she will know the answer.

"Yes- that business tycoon who runs  4 malls in Gurgaon?"

"Bang-on. So yes, I am his son. And I was into drugs for 5 years. I wasted my dad's money and my youth. I had done nothing good in my life. One day, I just happened to walk on the road, half-drunk, aimless- when I saw a guy, clad in plain clothes, surrounded by people praising him, putting teeka on his forehead, putting malas, appreciating him. I tried to get a look, and I was surprised. He was the son of my maid servant, and he had passed Civil Service examination in the first go. Maybe it was for my busted ego and dignity, but life changed after that. It was shameful for me to see myself on the mirror, looking lost, worthless. That is when I decided to help the lesser privileged. I came to Chandigarh, and started distributing clothes to the street urchins in the winter. And this went on and on, and couple of my friends joined me. I spread the news in my college, and last day of every month, we collect extra items of our closet and give it to the kids. And I, with the help of my father, am putting up a business of clothes for them. Whatever we earn as extra profit from the malls, we use it in this work. Plus I am starting a small organisation for this work of charity.

In April, Reet saw me outside a mall, giving boxes of chocolates to the street kids. She asked me why I am doing all that, and she became interested when she listened to my story.

 And now I am planning to make a website, where people can sell things which are in good condition, but of no use, and then I can go on to give it in free for the kids. Reet has promised to design the web page with me. I was busy planning about my trip to Amritsar, and about the website, so I was not able to come."

Supreet was taken aback. She was not able to say anything.

"And she thought you were using me for my money!"- Reet laughed.

"Hey shut up. I am sorry Arpan, I did not know you were, I mean, I have no words. Well, I want to say something."

"Tell me."- Arpan seemed intrigued.

"Don't you think you need a graphic designer and daughter of an NGO's co-founder to work with you?"- Supreet beamed.

Reet and Arpan look at each other and smiled. Reet ran towards Supreet and gave her a tight hug.

"Now that October has started, we need to boogie and change many lives."- Arpan joined them and there, they were, enjoying a group hug.

"Hey, I know I am of no use but be polite!"- I shouted.

They laughed and made me join them.

I thought, looking at their determined faces- my elders, the present youth, are not that bad after all.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

1 comment:

manjulika said...

Nice one!! all d best