Thursday, May 31, 2012

Parul, Powai and the Purple brigade


Parul, Powai and the Purple brigade



 “I am really worried about Raghav’s behavior lately, Swapna.  He has been acting very weird for the past couple of months”.  Parul sounded worried sipping her venti mocha at her favorite Colaba Café Coffee Day.   There was a reason why a generally jolly Parul would sound that way.  Raghav stays late at work and often comes home at mid-night complaining about his recent change to the US shift.   Their 5 year old Ranshu has been missing all her Yoga and Swimming lessons in the weekday evenings, all their 7th anniversary celebrations had been put on hold as he was working on the weekends and did not have time to go shopping at their favorite Infiniti Mall at Malad West and most of all he has been avoiding a visit to his parents at Bandhra west during the weekends.


“He is genuinely busy with work, may be?” comforted Swapna.  “I don’t know, he is not one of those work-y-work types.  He had never been this disinterested in family, since the last big fight we had and I am really worried that there is another women in his life”

“I have never seen you complaining about Raghav like this before.  We all think that you were the happiest couple that we know since you guys since you guys move here” Swapna continued after a brief pause “I am not sure if I am going overboard in suggesting you this, but this can eliminate the confusion you have and I am sure this will turn out to be a non-issue.  There is a personal detective that we engaged six months back to find out more about a potential groom for my sister’s daughter.  Do you think you want to try going that route?”

Parul felt there was no option left for her to handle this situation.  She engaged the detective to follow Raghav and was waiting on the report.  Four days later…

“Mam, I think I have some news for you.  I am not sure if you are going to be happy or sad about what I found” whispered the detective on phone.

With her heart pumping at a furious rate, Parul replied “Can you please tell me where the hell he has been going lately?  Is he cheating on me? Has be become a drug addict? Is he divorcing me? What am I going to do along with my kid? Can you open your damn mouth and tell me what is going on?” she couldn’t control her emotions

“I really have to rush to another assignment right now.  I think it is better if you could come see for yourself.  Please be at this address tomorrow at 8PM.  You will find out yourself” he hung up the phone, giving the address for her to go this Sunday.

Parul could not believe how the detective left her thoughts in the open.

8PM on Sunday, she arrives at a lake facing bungalow near Powai.  She could hear Raghav’s voice from near the door and decided to listen in before she could walk in and crash whatever that Raghav was up to.

 “Tarun, I cannot believe how much I missed this.  You have no idea what I have to go through for years”

“I am happy too my man.  But do you think it is going to work out for us” replied another concerned male voice.

“Stop being pessimistic Tarun, you have to believe in us.  We will eventually get the respect and dignity that we much deserved” Raghav’s voice replied.  Parul’s eyes began tearing up as her mind started untying all the knots about what she potentially could have found out.  Several things flashed that second.  Dostana’s John Abraham on the beach side with his undies on was one of them.  She strengthened herself up, wiped off her tears and continued to listen praying that whatever she was thinking should not be true.

“Trust me Raghav, I am trying to convince my dad every single day, but he just won’t listen to me.  He never understands or appreciates how we feel.  His thought process is completely different” said the stranger’s (now she knows is a guy named Tarun) voice.

“Forget your dad mate.  He obviously thinks he is always right.  Typical Chennai mentality.  Just because the world has seen things happen one way, it need not happen in the same format all the time.  If we are let down by our own country folks, we always have the international support backing us.  Don’t bother about his conservative view.  We will come on top.  Just wait and watch”

“I am praying that you are right.  Our journey is going to be very tough.  Look at all the road blocks lined up against us.  We just have to tackle one at a time, I guess”

Parul could not handle this anymore.  She banged the door open and screamed “Raghav…how could you do this to”

The moment she walked in, she was taken aback by all the Purple posters all over the wall.  A 10 foot Sunil Narine was starring at her with his Mohawk.  Gambhir to his left, Kallis to his right.  Sidhu was seen screaming on the 52 inch TV playing Set Max.

“Welcome to the finals of DLF IPL Season 5 – Kolkatta Knight Riders vs. Chennai Super Kings.  The match we all have been waiting for!”

“Parul!” Raghav’s eyes popped.  “What are you doing here?”

“Shouldn’t I be the one who is asking questions here?  I mean, I just cannot read what is going on? And why are you watching a freaking IPL match with a stranger?

Without knowing the intensity of the frame of her mind, Raghav casually continued “Parul, meet Tarun.  We are college buddies from University of Calcutta and we recently bumped into each other after several years”

Tarun’s father Krishnamoorthy walks out of the restroom with his Yellow jersey.  “Are you going to introduce me to your wife, Raghav?”

“Sorry uncle, Parul – he is Mr. Krishnamoorthy, Tarun’s dad.  He is a very ardent Chennai Super Kings fan”

A more confused Parul calmed her nerves and asked again “I am going to ask you one more time.  You were supposed to be at work taking care of your US clients, remember?”

“Let me explain Parul.  I am sorry that I lied to you and for not keeping up the promise I made you for not watching Cricket any more.  I swear, I stuck to that promise till the last couple of months.  You very well know how big of a cricket fan I was before our wedding, but when this sport played a spoil sport in our relationship I decided to put an end to this madness.  It struck me hard when you left me for a month because I was being an idiot spending too much time watching, discussing and playing cricket.  After I made that promise to quit watching cricket, I realized how much I have missed in our relationship. I am not making this up and you know it”

“You realized all that to come to this situation, where I had to spy on you?” Parul still needed her answers.
“I just could not help it and this is the last game of the season.  You know how much I love Kolkatta and this is the only season where they are playing some quality cricket.  I couldn’t stop watching this season after Tarun practically dragged me into a sports bar to watch one of the league games earlier this season.  After being down at the bottom of the table for so many years, I just simply could not miss this season where they have reached the playoffs and are now the final”

“So you lied to me to watch a stupid Cricket game? Wait, but you hated SRK”

“But it is not about him, it is about our Knight Riders and Kolkata cricket.  Our Knight Riders batting and bowling powers are finally coming out of the closet to redefine history by trying to beat the super kings tonight” Raghav’s eyes were glowing in excitement.

Turning to the Yellow T-Shirt on the left, Parul questioned “Uncle - and you are supporting this madness?”

“No dear, I always support Sanity.  I support the Super Kings”.  Parul realized that she was in a wrong crowd.

She looked for a wall to bang her head so hard, till she bleeds profusely.  She was angry, she was Sad.  She was happy and confused just a tad.  Happy that her husband was not cheating on her and more importantly his sexual orientation remained intact.  Sad, as he had to lie to his wife to watch a game of cricket.  Angry at herself, as she realized that she might have over restricted Raghav to not watch any sports at home, period.  She actually thought that he was genuinely happy watching “Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata hai“with her every night.  She never realized too much restriction could balloon into something this weird. 
She made up her mind to forgive Raghav and also decided to go easy on the ‘No-Sports’ rule moving forward.

Raghav now watches just the play offs for every IPL, skipping all the 600-odd league matches, takes her to the Infinity mall every other week and has enrolled himself in the yoga class with his daughter. 
  


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