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Wrong Person, Wrong Place...

Friday, November 20, 2009

 Naveen Kumar Jaganathan
Information Technology Management
GMBA - April 09

Neatly dressed in business formals, I was furiously running in the middle of the road at 8:15 AM .This was in response to a frantically waving hand at a distance.“Innaikum bus vitutengala saar!” (“You missed your bus today too!” ) asked Suresh smiling at me.

Suresh works in the Tea stall next to the bus stop where I board my company bus. He is a bubbly character and has opinions or suggestions for every topic on earth. To know him better, all you have to do is to get a glass of tea from the stall and throw a topic in the air. Suresh will promptly air his ‘expert opinions’. Nobody can miss his demeanor. His day typically begins with washing used plates and glasses from the previous day, cut vegetables for sambar and poriyal and prepare idlis for breakfast. All this before he ensures that I catch the bus on time.

Most of the days, if not all, he has been my savior. But for him, I would have had to suffer the moments of insanity in madras public transport where ‘you are never alone’. And today was one such day. Hoping for the best, I moved on for the day.

Next day, I started a few minutes early. For a change, I wanted Suresh to take a break from watching and holding the bus for me. I completed the 500 m walk from my door step in less than 5 minutes. I peeped into the tea stall. It was unusually silent and I noticed the unwashed plates and glasses. I realized that Suresh didn’t turn up that day.

I enquired with the stall owner.

“Suresh is lucky saar! He is the special guest in our area school today”.

I was surprised. It didn’t make sense. I checked my watch. It said ‘14, November 2005’
Oh yeah! It was his day after all. The nearby school was celebrating children’s day and the theme that year was ‘child labour’.

I was pondering over the owner’s words on “lucky Suresh”. Was he really lucky? Where was he and where was he supposed to be? Worst of all, how did I not realize that Suresh was not at the right place. Was it because he was holding my bus everyday ensuring that I don’t miss it? I kept pondering.

“Seekaram yerunga sar!” (“Board the bus quickly, sir!”), screamed a voice. That was my bus driver waiting for me.

I moved on… 


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