Hmmm!!! Some people can be soo touchy. I mean, a guy, any reasonably normal guy is used to doing things in his car, like changing his dress- from formal to casual and vice versa depending on our schedule. I spend a lot of time in my car commuting to various hospitals for consultation and I have the fast dress change practiced to a art form by now- although the recent “remove dark films from car windows” order has somehow crimped my style- I am now reduced to changing only during the time my driver is in the front seat and I in the back. Previously I just used to park for a few seconds somewhere and gentleman ganesh would soon turn into debonair ganesh or macho ganesh or life-of-the-party ganesh or whatever the occasion demanded. That reminds me- I have more costumes/change of dresses stored in my car than at home and I change dresses more frequently on an average day than a ten year old girl does for her Barbie doll. Well, there I confessed. Ok?
Now to get back to context. There was this mid year meet with group of fellow bloggers I met online, recently at Wild Amazon restaurant, Mylapore. As usual with such meets, I turned up to be the first person. And no, it was not because I was starving or fasting or anything- perish the thought. As surgeons we always try to be on time or atleast a few minutes before- discipline and punctuality and all are hard wired in us- like pilots are trained to do preflight checks with eyes closed. So I turn up early as usual and no one, including the organizers are there yet. But when has a little something like that ever set me back? Immediately I took on the mantle of self-appointed organizer and went onto cnfirm the bookings and kept hanging out around the entrance to welcome any other hesitant new comers. For most of those turning up that day were just faces seen on facebook and not really sure they would really look like their profile pics (photo shopped and all). I then met the only other punctual type like me, anand and together we set up the welcoming committee at the entrance.
The first person we welcomed was Sinduja a surprise turn up at the meet considering that she rarely drops into the group. But anand and me, we did our best, to try and impress her that her participation is more than welcome. The next person in, was my old teammate Mahesh, closely followed by another girl we didn’t recognize from any of the profile pictures. When we asked her if she would like o have lunch with us, the girl declined, ran outside and returned with her a big, beefy boyfriend type. Only the timely intervention of Sinduja on our behalf saved us from pointing out to the boyfriend that we believe that “all Indians are my brothers and sisters” and we were merely trying to ease our friend Mahesh’s doubts about the girls relationship status. But thank god, for tough looking girls. One look at Sindu and the man eased around the corner without a fight, leaving us to continue harassing all the patrons to the restaurant. I also made the major mistake of telling one Sandya, the route to the restaurant , which mistake I will not make again and will probably direct her to maskanchavadi or marudamalai or parts thereabouts the next time she calls me about the venue.
By this time, the whole group had assembled and introduced ourselves and after singing our invocation to google/blogger we went up to take our places at the table booked, there arose the problem of pairing off vegetarians and nonvegetarians. As I indulge in both I offer to mediate between the two groups and took the neutral place between them. lunch was all about the girls telling us who had the biggest ice-cream where and who had the best cocktails like “sex on the beach” etc (although I first heard it as “sex on the bitch” and had to request Gita to repeat it again to see if I had heard it correctly the first time- I had not, btw) because Sindu kept repeating “oh my fucking god” everytime a platter of food came to the table. I just don’t know what it is with girls and food. Looks like a made for each other combination. Thank the good lord that we men still have some functions to do – which cannot be replaced by food …..i mean..things like paying the bill etc….meanwhile unknown to anyone else, or thinking himself unobserved by anyone else, Kalyan on my left was sneaking in food from both the veg and non-veg platters although he was a professed vegetarian. I let him get away then- so I can make fun of him now in my blog.
And I also learnt that our Ashwini even manages to eat things half-cooked, which either meant that she was too hungry or she is the half-boil omelets type like me. And then we were joined by a late addition nirmal, who had the painful duty of sitting next to gitanjali. Now anyone who has read gitanajli’s blog will know how she savagely makes fun of people seated next to her anywhere (her blogging speciality, so to say) and wisely all of us had opted to leave the seat next to her empty and straight into the breach went poor newbie nirmal and I was left wondering how he was going to feel tomorrow on waking up and reading about whatever gitanjali posts on him. Will he survive the insults or will he turn towards a 8-yard rope?
Anyway after a hearty lunch, with multiple visits to the dessert table, not me of course, I am on adiet, you know, but by our effervescent foodie Kappu, the lunch which threatened to extend to dinner at the same place finally got over and we left the place to head over to a new venue- the nearby Marina beach to continue our conversation. Some of them left us then, without realizing what all they were gonna miss and some new, lucky people like Jothivel joined us just in time. And then the incident happened which I talked about in the first Para- my quickie dress change in a moving car, turned into a public spectacle due to the sudden and unexpected turning of a traffic signal from green to red. And as for all those who turned down their car windows in a hurry to get a peek at me, well, I hope you got your money’s worth. A real man is never afraid of a little public faux pas is he? Embarrassment is like water off a ducks back for me.
Meanwhile at Marina, we conducted little games and quizzes like “who is the most feared blogger among us?” the fear factor being determined not on blog writing but more on their display pictures on their facebook profiles. Meanwhile a soothsayer had wandered up to us and offered to read our palms. While the group proposed me to be the first one to show my palm to her, I declined as I do not believe in such foolish things and I cant compromise on certain beliefs. By this time, all the constant jawing had probably tired out the bloggers who one by one started slipping away and we decided it was time to shut down the meet and head home. After heartfelt goodbyes we parted to meet again at the next blogger meet.
P.S. the one i missed most was our resident Fashion blogger Bhusha who didnt turn up for the meet – i was so looking forward to comparing make-up kits with her and asking her about which shade of lipstick looks good on me- coralline or crimson…but maybe next time.