Thursday, April 22, 2010

Early Morning Date

Mushy post alert!!
If you’re the kind that doesn’t like to read mushy stuff, I suggest you just close the window. If you still want to go ahead and read this, don’t say I didn’t warn you! And you know me, I have a habit of going into details!!!

I haven’t gone on a proper date in so long, that I am tempted to call a visit to the Temple in the morning with Sandeep, a date. And if you see, once we were done with the darshan at the temple, it was kind of a date.

We had been to Siddhi Vinayak Temple today. You may think it is because the exams are approaching, but our reasons to make this trip ten days before the exams, are totally different. One, we had been planning to go there for quite sometime now since we got together – on his birthday or on mine – and somehow the plan didn’t work. The second reason was, when we were speaking over the phone a few days ago, we discovered that after our meeting last weekend for my birthday (did I mention that it was my birthday this weekend?? Probably not. Wait, I just did! :P) that it would be almost a month before we could see each other next, because our exams end on 17th of May. During that discussion, he had hinted that there was a tiny possibility; one percent chance that we could meet between my birthday and our exams. So we shouldn't leave that option out. We wanted that to be true and that’s how we ended up at Siddhi Vinayak today.

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We wanted to be there early to avoid crowd – not that the temple would be crowded on a Thursday; but we still didn’t want to take chances. We decided to meet at Dadar at seven thirty in the morning, which means I would have to leave the house by six thirty for which I would have to get up at least at five (to dress up of course!) So ordinarily, I should have been asleep by eleven in the night, latest. Now, even though I’m not nocturnal anymore, I still don’t sleep by eleven. To tell you the truth, I was up almost till two thirty in the morning. Don’t worry! I didn’t sleep through the date and I wasn’t late either.

I knew getting up would be a task. So I set six alarms - the first starting at four thirty; the next, ten minutes later and then four alarms ringing every five minutes; just so I could guarantee that I would be awake. If we go by the above schedule, I didn’t sleep for more than two hours (effectively – because the first alarm rang at four thirty.) Surprisingly, I was up before the last two alarms rang – at four fifty.

I had set a little extra time for dressing up because I wanted to wash my hair as I was going to the temple and I need time to blow dry and set it straight because lets face it, it’s summer and there’s a lot of humidity in the air. So if I leave my hair to dry on its own, we all know what a big mess it could become and I absolutely did not want that.

I was out of the bathroom by five twenty and was ready with my hair done and everything by six ten. I was also wearing the new Kurta that Kanchan gifted me for my birthday!

I didn’t have any breakfast as I wanted to fast till I had my darshan and had offered my prayers. So I just put some stuff in a bag, told my mom (who was about to wake up in a few minutes) that I was leaving and set off around six twenty. I was at the bus stop by six thirty and almost immediately got the bus for Dadar and even managed to reach a little early. I was at Dadar by seven ten. Sandeep was still at Andheri but he said he’d be there in sometime. So in the meantime, I walked up till Dadar station and crossed the bridge to go over to the other side and we both reached there barely a few minutes apart.

At the risk of sounding too mushy (because even my mom reads this and sometimes my dad too!), my heart skipped a beat when I saw him. Actually, it did a few somersaults and it was a while before it started beating normally. 

Anyway, we went through the flower market near Dadar station and took a cab to the Temple. There was absolutely no crowd at all. I mean there were people there; but compared to the crowd that I have seen there in the past, this was barely anything. For the first time, I was able to stand in front of the deity and not think about having to move in a few seconds so that the people after me could have their darshan. We stood there for quite a few minutes at leisure, admiring the gold colored insides of the temple, the floral decoration all around the deity, the aromatic smell of insence and quietly offered our prayers.

Once we were done, we stepped outside the main temple to sit there in the peace and quiet for sometime and had tiny hushed conversations; in between which he said something very sweet at which I couldn’t help but blush deep crimson. (Will save the dialogue for today’sMy Happy 5’ :D)

At about eight in the morning we stepped out of the temple and had breakfast (Idli Vada Sambhar) and tea at this small restaurant called Modakam that is just outside the temple. Since the waiter got the bill even before I finished my tea and people were starting to pour into the restaurant, we decided that we couldn’t sit there for long.

There is this park just next to the temple. We sat there for about an hour and had a wonderful conversation there. We watched our old and new pictures on his MP3 player and shared little incidents from the past. We also, slightly touched the topic of marriage (I didn’t start it, and since he didn’t seem to mind talking about it, I didn’t bother to change the topic as well :D) We didn’t speak about our marriage as such but we just shared our opinions on whether a wedding should be a lavish affair or should be a simple just-family-and-really-close-friends thing. With our relationship, there are a little bit of cultural differences too – because I am half a Punjabi and half a Tam Bram (Tamilian Brahmin) whereas he is a Konkani. But we seemed to get through that easily since all Hindu marriages from any region in India have the more or less the same set of rituals. So we figured there wouldn’t be much trouble. But yes, it won’t be a very simple wedding because – according to my dad – after my (paternal) grandfather’s elder sister, I am the first daughter in the house, and it’s kind of a big thing. So all our relatives from Punjab will be invited and would want to attend.

Anyway, moving on… As the sun started to shine brighter, we were starting to feel uncomfortable in the open park and wanted to go sit somewhere indoors. We walked out of the park, into Café Coffee Day that was right across the street from the Temple which was thankfully open by ten. We sat there for an hour during which I ordered a cappuccino whereas he decided to sit and look at my face. Kidding! He didn’t want coffee. He said he’d take a sip from mine. So this is what we had!!

We sat there chatting a little more and soon his friend who stays in his neighborhood joined us. I had heard about him from Sandeep, spoken to him directly over the phone as well but hadn’t met him before. So that happened today. We had a fun time and pretty soon it was eleven thirty and it was time to say bye-bye because we had to come back home and study. Typically me, I made a few calculations and told him that we would now get to see each other only after another twenty seven days. We didn’t want to, but we had to say our bye-byes.

I gave him a big hug in the middle of the road in broad daylight! I didn’t care. I was going to be away from him for twenty seven days!!!

I got into a cab from there to go to Wadala station from where I was planning on taking a train. In about ten seconds after I got in, I asked the cab driver if we would be passing through Dadar station and he said yes. I immediately called Sandeep to tell him I was going through Dadar station, and he and Rahul (his friend) didn’t have to take another cab, I could drop them. Turns out, they had already gotten into another cab! :(

While still over the phone, we told each other we had a good time and it was time well spent. I told him that I wanted to remember the entire morning and therefore was going to blog about it. He agreed with me completely! So here I am, with full permission, writing down the details of our fabulous Early Morning Date. We hung up in a few minutes because he was with his friend, and asked me to let him know when I reached Wadala and got into a train.

I had barely slept for two hours and was feeling very lazy to get out of the cab in just ten minutes. So I took the cab till Chembur and took a train from there. It was twelve thirty in the afternoon by the time I was at home. I was very very sleepy. But I had my dance class at six and I knew that if slept off, I would sleep for more than ten hours. So I’ve kept myself busy. It’s almost five thirty in the evening now and I’ll be leaving for my dance class as soon as I shut the computer down. And God knows I’m going to sleep like a log before the clock hits ten tonight!

Oh! Another fact that I forgot to mention. I used almost all of Mumbai’s public transport services today – auto rickshaw from home to the bus stop and from Nerul station to back home; the State Transport bus from the Highway till Dadar; taxi from Dadar station to the temple and then the temple to Chembur station and the train (which by the way, in the Harbour line are matching up to the trains in Western and Central lines with a Voice announcement system inside!!) from Chembur to Nerul! I am a true Mumbaikar and I love Mumbai!!!

P.S. I never thought I’d end this post with “I love Mumbai!” ;)