It was a bright sunny day and I was super excited. After all, I had been waiting for this day for such a long time! I landed at the Delhi airport. ‘Ohh and what a sight it was !’ I recalled Papa had said, ” Beta. book a train. You do not have to rush. So why waste money on flights !” Will he ever understand that I want it big in life! I do not know how but I want to break free from this life of compromises!
The depiction of various mudras of the hands, copper-colored, huge in size at the airport wall made an impact on me and I stood there for a few minutes trying to contain my excitement. After all, I was very excited to visit an airport for the first time! Even the busy crowd looked beautiful to me. Everyone seemed to know where they were headed in life! Is everyone so sure of what’s happening in their life? Is it only me who feels lost as to what I actually want in life! Someone brushed me aside quite vigorously and I was jolted back to reality. When I looked around, I saw a female figure walking with her headphones on and she had a rhythm as she walked. I could not properly see her face as she had a cap on. She seemed lost in her own world. Her backpack looked quite funky and was neon green in color. Instead of apologizing for pushing me aside, she just walked by, and exactly when I was just about to call her, my phone rang.
Uffo, always wrong time! I thought to myself and cut the call.
I booked a cab.
“Delhi University,” I said with beaming pride in my voice.
The cab went on at full speed and I sat with my head swayed back on the edge of the seat and my posture was a little laid back. I put one foot on another knee. I turned on the wifi, connected my wireless earphones and plugged them into my ears, and started playing my playlist.
The long halt at the traffic signals, the maddening rush, the heat, and humidity … nothing affected me. Rather I had a smile on my face. I had finally managed to bag a seat in St. Stephens and had opted for BA( economics ). Papa wanted me to opt for science. But something in me denied it. And I had a big fight with him over the choice of subject and somewhere being the only son helps me win in such a critical situation. This situation was no different. My aspirations were different and I needed to do what I had in my mind.
“Agaya aapka stop. Delhi university “, the cab driver announced.
I stretched out both my arms and with a wide smile stepped out of the cab. The classes were about to start in a few days and I had to complete a few formalities at the University.
I entered the North Campus through gate no one of the University and headed towards the Department of Economics. The sprawling gardens, the gigantic campus, and the environment inside it captivated my senses. It was a different world and one could feel it as you enter the gates that divide the academic world from that of the world that lies outside it.
I had a smile on my face as I saw students, of my age walk around the campus, some in groups, some as pairs, and some solo. The crowd certainly looked different than that at my place. Girls wore short tops over jeans, colored their hair and a few even wore nose pins and paired it up with short skirts. I noticed a few even had shaved their head bald and walked around with a jhoola bag and with fierceness in their face they looked like a different breed altogether.
I blushed when I saw a few love birds holding their hands and walking cozily together, whispering into each other’s ears!
And I thought to myself, ‘Ab meri bhi zindagi mein hariyali bhar do Prabhu, to jeene ka kuch to maza aye !‘
I went to the department and as I was filling up the form. I started writing my name along with all the details. “Hmmm…Banke Brijmohan Srivastav… Lucknow !! Aur ek nawab agaye ji , swagat to hum karenge …padhariye !”
To my shock, I turned around and saw two boys standing near the counter where I was trying to submit my form!
Who are they and what do they mean?
“Seniors hein aapke . Sambhal ke rahiyega thoda.” The man, who was half bald and pot-bellied, sat at the counter told me with a strange smile on his face.
I thought it was best to keep quiet at the moment as this was a new place for me. I had to do so many things before settling down so as to be ready for the classes to start! Had it been Lucknow, I would have already answered back, and certainly not with words, I kept my thoughts to myself. I submitted the documents, put all my belongings in my bag, and was about to turn when I realized someone just tapped my shoulders from the back.
Can I have a pen, please? I forgot to bring one. I heard someone say.
“Humse se pen kaun mang raha he. Jaise mujhe apna pen dena acha lagta he. College aye hein aur pen nahi he aapke pass . Ye hein kaun mahotarma!“
Thinking this as I turned around, I saw her! She smelled so beautiful that my senses stopped working for a few seconds. She wore a body-hugging peach-colored t-shirt that made her curves eminent and had paired it with rugged blue denim. Small Parts of her thighs were visible and I guess there was a small tattoo there on it. But one had to struggle to understand what it was as it was playing peekaboo. Half of it was seen and half of it hidden beneath the layers of her jeans. She had an oval face, wavy hair, wheatish complexion, and a sharp jawline. Her radiant big eyes with kohl in it seemed as if they could hypnotize anyone they wanted to.
“Hello, I am talking to you, Do you mind! Pen please !”She said in a demanding voice.
My hand slowly went into my pocket and I handed over my favorite Parker Pen to her before I could restrict my own involuntary actions.
She took it quickly, well almost snatched it, and kept her backpack below, near her legs, and started filling the form bending half and putting her face almost into the form. I saw the backpack. It was neon green in color.
It was her!! The ‘Airport wali ladki’, who had brushed aside me. Yes, it was definitely her!
My heart skipped a beat when I saw her write Economics as her honors paper.
PS: To be continued …