Monday, December 3, 2012

The Final Day (hopefully not!)

Justin Timberlake's famous song from the album "Future Sex" - what goes around...comes around - is playing in my head right now which is occasionally shuffled with an equally awesome "Life in a Metro" song - Alvida.

Because, if everything goes according to the plan and promise, 30th November should be my last day of being a Rickshaw-walla! Its a very emotional moment in many respects and as it happens with most of the things in life, the wave of emotions are often very weak on the 'D day' but hit much harder and make you nostalgic long after the day has gone.

The only silver lining is that I am a horrible planner but the dark cloud is that I am not a good ditcher! I promised my mom on the day of my homecoming (21 Nov) that I will end this project by November end and now it would be very difficult to give up on her. I guess I need to talk about my plans with my parents. If they understand, I hope to write a similar blogpost without the bracketed words on the new year day. Inshallah!

Its very easy to tender resignation for a job which you do only for money, a job in which you complain burnouts despite sitting in an AC chamber the entire day, a job in which you celebrate weekends more than weekdays ... oh wait, i guess it's not easy, else 90% of India (if not world) would be jobless!

But its very hard to bid adieu a job which you took up because you wanted to do it. Where there was no external pressure but internal motivation. Where you even worked on Diwali because that's the best way you could find to celebrate the festival of lights!

Just like Diwali, I tried to make my final day special in all possible ways and to the extent my job allowed. Which means I couldn't hug or at least thank from the bottom of my heart each an every rickshaw-friend of mine for giving me these awesome three month because it would seem so weird. But I did make it a point to meet as many of my friends as possible and shake hands with them or at least do that patented salute - raising the right hand partially with a gentle nod of the head and ear-to-ear smile - from a distance while crisscrossing each-other while pulling the rickshaw.

I tried to reach early. This is exams season in DU, and the exams start by 9:30. Hence there is a mad rush of students from 8:45 to 9:15. I arrived at the metro station at 9 AM - like a drop in the ocean of students. But by the time I reached the garage, picked my rickshaw and reached the station again, it was 9:25 already. The ocean had dried up. The Metro station is very unforgiving - if you are late you are late. Aren't there pleasant ways to learn lessons on punctuality?

There was an Indo-German conference on semiconductors going on in 'Faculty of Arts'! Goes without saying that I wanted to attend it despite the grave risk involved of dying due to boredom! The security guard of Arts Faculty has some special regards for me so when he saw me, he shook hands with me, talked for a while and asked me to park my rickshaw in the vacant space next to the main gate. Of course it's not allowed. So I asked him, "would this put you in trouble?" To which he replied quirkily, "I will sort it out. If somebody will object, I will say, 'sahab aaye hain seminar attend karne'! (A gentleman has come to attend the seminar!)

Hours passed by. Light gave way to darkness and warmth gave in to unfriendly cold. My friends who still pull rickshaw in a shirt start feeling the chill by 5ish in the evening; more if they have to wait for a sawari because standing idle cools them down further. But something warm was also brewing alongside - a plan to celebrate my last day !

My best friend, Sanjay, knew that it was probably my last day, and hence readily agreed to this impromptu party plan. But before we could crystallize it, he had to leave for Indira Vihar (girls Hostel canteen) with a box of oranges for a meager sum of 30 Rupees. I was so infuriated that I thought I would slap that 'Honda city b**tard' for paying so low and Sanjay as well for accepting that money. He deserved Rs 50!

In the meantime I talked with Tomas - an exchange student from France, once my sawari and now a very good friend. It didn't took him long to offer me a beer when he learned that it was my last day. His hostel-mate Kishan from Bangladesh also joined us and an awesome 'threesome' was on!

But Sanjay hadn't dropped the plan and neither had I. So like a witch hopping clubs on Halloween night, I was hopping my own farewell parties on my last working day! But I wasn't complaining. I reached my friend's 'villa' at around 9 PM and he was already done with cooking rice. I must tell you that he is a very nice cook. Once I even asked him why doesn't he work in one of the hostel messes and he said, "the life there is very restricted, much like a prisoner!" Wow, I never thought rickshaw-pulling had that huge an advantage over a regular job. 'Freedom to work' should be made a fundamental right, I guess!

Not prolonging the climax further, I should tell you that we bought 1kg fish and had a sumptuous dinner. I simply love fish and to have it on my last day with my special rickshaw-friends was certainly a memorable experience.

Talking of climax, I recall that there are few condoms available in the market that come with the promise of giving you 'extra time'. I wonder if there is something available out there for me to prolong this 'climax' and give me some extra time!


  1. the first thing i did today was to read your blog, posted to FB by a friend. pity that this the last post... but also happy that i'll get to read a promising blog. absolutely loved this blog post.

    1. Thanks a lot Sanjay Sir for reading my blog and your appreciation. Good news, this wasn't the last post!
      would love to hear from you more.

      PS: my sincere apologies for the delayed reply!

    2. I look forward to it.

      Thanks and cheers.

  2. I enjoyed reading all your posts. I started reading about a week back and I am sad to know its already over.I checked it almost everyday. I hope when you try something interesting later you will blog about it too.

    1. Hi Jharna,
      your name is interesting, just like your comment. Thanks a lot.
      I can only say, it's not over till its over, and the reservoir of my rickshaw experiences is still replete! so do keep checking it!
      If I do something interesting, surely I will share. Cant afford to miss out on such great readers! cheers

      PS: my sincere apologies for the delayed reply!

  3. All, I can say is "Applause." You've done a wonderful thing, and may I suggest something. I know, i don't really have any rights to comment, since I could have never done something as courageous. However, I'd still like to suggest that you convert this into a book. Incidents like what happened at the police station etc, need to be highlighted. I am doing my bit to spread your blog around. Whatever you decide to do, my sincere salutes and respect to you.

    1. Hi Rubal,
      thanks a lot for reading and spreading my blog!
      You dont need an authority to give a good advice. In fact, I hope and I wish to convert my experience in a book but it's still in infancy!
      lets see how it turns out to be.
      Thanks a lot again.

      PS: my sincere apologies for the delayed reply!

  4. I think u did a fabulous job, now you know your country people more than anyone else. Finally your mama will also happy!

    1. I hope I know them a bit better. But certainly its just a drop in an ocean.
      She is gonna be happy only when i get a job. lets see if that happens.... ever! ;)

      thanks a lot for ur comments and my sincere apologies for the delayed reply!