Sunday, 19 August 2012

The flight-episode 5

"So, what's your name ?", the Chinese looking  man asked with a casualness bereft of any real intention to know Sukanya's name.

"It's Sukanya", she replied in a curt , distanced tone.

"So, are you really a good girl, I think that's what your name means, right?"

Sukanya was amazed at the man's response as he was definitely not Indian. She had evaluated his being a North Eastern  but had waved it off because there was a certain foreignness in him.She looked long at his small eyes thinking if she could have been wrong .He, as though reading what was troubling her mind shot ,"I am not an Indian, completely though. My name's Lin, Lin Chang."

"Ohh, so how come you know  Hindi?Even the meaning of my name..."

"My mother is an Indian.So you may call me half Indian, half Chinese"

"Oh really?,"Sukanya was relieved that atleast he was somewhere Chinese and not Japanese, Korean or the other breeds she had nastily called him , a few minutes ago.

She felt the heavy baggage of hatred and discomfort released and her innate belief and trust in people take over.She smiled and when he  questioned her again if she was really a good girl like her name suggested she said,"Yes I am. Have always been one. Never been bad."

While she said that,  a voice from deep inside thwarted the entrails of her soul wanting to break free and yell loudly ,"I am a good girl.Yes I am. But I wanna see how it feels to be bad, I wanna see whether I am happier being a good girl or am I really not that innocent. "
Suddenly another thought came crashing as the lightening that strikes the dark night,"strength of will" and she felt herself numb again.

"I am sure you are,"said Lin in a mocking tone.

"Let me tell you a little story of another good girl", announced Lin.

Sukanya fell silent .She waited for him to begin the story.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

The flight-episode4

As soon as she was drowned in the dizziness of the drink, all she could think of was  her dreary , dead life. but life was not always the same fo her.She had been an athlete in her school time, a bubbly,cheerful kind of a girl : what an irony. Her thoughts crossed over some twenty years ago when she was about fifteen years of age.

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The young  girl was preparing for her first major race. She was in the school ground full of children of all sizes , ages and colours .She took her position and bent down at the starting line.The  physical education teacher called out in a loud, clear voice-- three , two, one and go.

She started running for her life. Ritika , her greatest competitor took the lead which frustrated her more. But she had to prove it to her mom that she could also get the medal. Her mother was an allrounder in her college  and hoarded a shelf full of cups and medallions for races, debates, poetry recitals etc.Though she was good , but she wanted to be the best.It was not her herself but for her mom.She doted on her. So, she ran with such a might that she defeated Ritika easily and gladly hugged her mom waiting for her at the finishing line.

"So, mom, what is going to my gift?", asked little Sukanya, while they were walking down the road after the Prize Distribution ceremony.

Mother casually said,"Beta, you know whatever you want , I would take you that today.I'm really proud of you. But if I were you , I would just ask one thing from God."

"What's that mom?"
'Strength of character"

Her mom went silent and so did Sukanya.She didn't understand what it meant though at that time.

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Now that she was in this flight ,sitting with this Chinese  looking man, all that she needed was "strength of character " to bear with him. She decided to keep mum, ignore his foolish upstart kind of humour and teach him a lesson in dignity. He had already made her shift her seat rudely , misbehaved and also let her "Dharma Brashta" by letting her eat the sickening non-vegetarian dish.

Now, no more, she told herself quite firmly and looked outside the toughened glass  window.
Outside she saw  magnificent snowlike clouds carpetting the sky.She wished again that she were a swallow or a skylark.The drink had made her tormented, lonely soul relax.

"strength of character "...yes surely I have it in me,she mused...

Thursday, 9 August 2012

The flight-episode3

"A wanderer, ahem?, she thought in her mind, is he some Chinese descendant of some fifteenth century explorer who's come to India to set our world right? Or  has he some hidden agenda of  the Chinese government to find out the loops and holes of Indian economy? 
Why should I bother in any case?"

Meanwhile the flight had taken off swiftly and the announcement about the freedom of the sickening belts was also finished.

The air-hostess came  down the aisle with the welcome drinks and some 'shitty' snacks.
The Chinese man called them "shitty".

"Excuse me, Ms" , he said, as soon as he gulped down the veg cutlet that was served to him,"What is this?My snacks were supposed to be non-vegetarian!!.This is blasphemous.You are serving a non-veg passenger with a veg cutlet and the lady here with a ham burger?"

Sukanya threw out as soon as she listened to the word 'ham'." Is it really a 'Ham -burger','she asked furiously.

"Ss ..Sorry m'am,there has been some confusion, I think you are on the wrong seats.My list says that this particular seat number has to be served with non- veg food."Mr.Wong had opted for non-veg food."

Sukanya stared at the Chinese man in disbelief who had disturbed her while she was  reading her book and had nastily shifted her seat in a super confident cheek.
"Mr.Wong,the wanderer! How could you?"I'm a brahmin, infact how can you know what a brahmin is, I think you are Chinese or are you a Japanese or  a Korean? Look , it doesn't matter to me where you are from but because of you my mouth has had a taste of some shitty , fucking crap."

"My apologies ma'am but I think this cutlet was  the shitty thing."

The poor air -hostess , looked at both of them with confused perplexity on her face and finally said,"Sir and  Ma'am , please calm down , whatever has happened , we are sorry about the inconvenience. Let me get another set of snacks for you. And as a complimentary drink ,would you like some sherry ,ma'am?"

"Surely ,I would .I think that's what will calm my senses', brooded Sukanya, and quietly nodded her head in agreement.She had forgotten what happened to her  generally in a state of inebriation.

"What you like to be served, Sir?"

"A chilled beer would suffice."

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

The flight -episode-2

Her mind wandered off to the morning details before she had reached the Delhi airport.The maid  had not turned up so she had a number of  mundane chores to be finished.The clothes had to be put inside as it was the monsoon going on, the kids had to be bathed and fed and dropped to her parents house.
The milkman  had to be instructed not to deliver the the milk  for a week. Also the house had to be locked properly before coming down the stairs from her third floor flat .

While her mind was boggled with the minor details  from the morning, suddenly she felt a breath near her ear.She was startled to find the Chinese looking man so near her that she almost jumped in her seat. Beholding the quizzical look on her face , the plain looking man retorted,"Ms. Your heel is pinching my foot.Can you please sit properly?"

Embarrased, red with shame she realized that she had been extending a painful squash from her six -inch heel."I am so sorry " were the only words that could come out.

"So ,are you going  for a holiday?",asked the man casually.

"Ya ,kind of.Going to spend some time with my husband in kerala.He is posted there." Sukanya was relieved to find the man initiating the converstaion after what he had been a very embarrasing start of a journey.

"What does he do there?"

"He is an  environmental engineer doing a research on Kerala backwaters and forests."

"Oh, thats a very innovative field I must say",commented the man.

"What do you do?,"asked sukanya coyly.

"Iam a wanderer.
I don't plan a thing
If I want to dance
I better learn to sing."

"The man seems interesting". My time would pass very easily.