Miracle Dip on a Starry Night

Credits: here

Credits: this guy

Imagine this: a chilly weather, a clear night’s sky with twinkling stars, hills, meadows and forests surrounding you and nothing but time to waste… seems like something out a story book, right?

I was fortunate enough to experience this! It was a night I remember fondly. Maybe it was the fancy things that stands sharp in my memory – like the peace and quiet that the small town I was visiting brought with it. Or perhaps, it was the close-knit group of friends who sat with me on the terrace on that cold night, sharing and caring. Who knows! But one thing is for sure: it was something fantastical.

You see, when you are one of those typical students in India aspiring to be an engineer (in IT, no less), you need a break. Break from all the routine stress, from the mediocre life you think you are leading whilst you try to figure out what ‘Encapsulation and Polymorphism’ is exactly and from the pressure that’s building around you in the form of tests, exams and of course, your parents. In such a perilous time, you need fun. You need excitement. You need something different. In my case, I needed chip and dip.

And so, barely a week after my exams were over, I found myself huddled around a stove. With me were a few of my closest friends. It was not only a great night, but a messy one as well. We were preparing to face the pure tranquillity of the small but delightful village we were visiting. The cold was still sharp like daggers. And the thing we were trying to create would cut through this cold. Supposedly.

The cooks in my group were the forerunners of our little “project”. Experimentation and making a tasty mess of what we call food was something they were adept at. The rest of us were just there, hovering in the background pretending to help. Desperately cold and hungry, but also a little excited about it being past midnight and the fact that we were all awake for something other than studies, we clanked and clunked around the kitchen, fumbling for something to make. The five of us ran around, hunting for logical ingredients to put in our cooking pan, while the other two stood around the stove, trying to light it whilst yelling orders. I grabbed the cheese, someone else grabbed the sauces from the fridge and another grabbed the garlic butter. And so, the miracle dip was born. In no time, the stove was on, searing the pan. The garlic butter was bubbling on the pan’s surface as it sent wafts of smells around the house. Added to the fact that the house was a packed box of us seven, to stop the cold from entering inside, everything aromatic in no time! With extreme clumsiness and hurry, we added the ingredients one by one to the butter, whilst the two – ahem – chefs stirred.

I have never been excited about cooking food. Don’t get me wrong, I love eating food, but actual cooking it is something that does not tickle my fancy. However, that night, it was like seeing magic. Maybe that was just my hunger making me see things but when the cheese had melted, when the garlic had infused with everything else, when the sauces had turned from white and yellow to a burning orange, my stomach grumbled.

The seven of us raced upstairs, carrying the rest of the stuff in our hands. It was like a synchronized mechanism: two of us stood upstairs, ready to take the stuff and keep it on the terrace; three more stood below, passing the stuff upstairs, while the remaining brought the stuff from the kitchen. We had drinks (soft, of course because we don’t drink alcohol. No, we seriously don’t. Mummy promise), we had food, we had sweaters for warmth, we had music…

And later, we found ourselves huddled around the dip on the terrace, below the sky, drinking soft drinks and ready to attack the bowl with three huge packets of chips. The fire this dip had awoken in us roared. Our hungry stomachs were holding their breaths, waiting for the onslaught of awesomeness. Our minds were sceptical: would the dip even be good?

It didn’t matter, as we each took a chip and dipped it in the liquidy-goodness. It smelt, looked amazing and turns out – as I bit the chip hungrily – it tasted amazing, too!

And thus began a campfire-like night, dotted with stories, secrets, selfies and music. The dip was consumed entirely in no time, and we lay on the cold floor of the terrace, star-gazing through the cold night, with one hand rubbing our full stomachs, contemplating if every night could be like this: eternally fulfilling and blissful.


Hello Bleedsters!
I hope you are having a great time! This is another one of my favourite write-ups and I sincerely hope you enjoy it! Comment with any similar experiences you might have had!

Love,
Kunal


As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow on Twitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images or from my own personal collection or other sources which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise. Contact me if you want it removed.

The Cheating Couple #1

The Cheating Couple

1

Rassa-boy and Salami

Saloni stood on her toes, her feet digging into the sand. Her left hand covered her eyelids, shielding her obsidian-like black eyes from the sun. For a setting sun, she found it very harsh.

She glanced around, peeling her eyes away from the calming water. Few people dotted the beach, here and there. It seemed like a special day; the beach was usually never this empty. She craned her neck and tried to stand taller, balancing herself so that she could see afar. She couldn’t find whatever she was looking for.

So, she turned back to the thing that calmed her the most when she was anxious – the Arabian Sea.

Something about this particular sea turned her nerves obedient. The funny thing was, there was nothing about the sea that was special. There was nothing about this beach that was special. There was nothing about her that was special.

She pondered the facts for a moment. The beach was – well – a beach. Not just that but an Indian one. Littered, smelly, impure and ruined. Its crispness long gone, the seemingly endless sand was contrasted by sharp, ugly plastic. Bottles, plastic bags, garbage and filth was strewn casually about everywhere. People around her simply seemed to ignore the impurity. She was one of the people.

The water that was calmly receding was also similarly ghastly. The air reeked of shit and salt. Her nose was sensitive to it, but habit had made her accustomed to it.

“Fuck, he is late,” she said to herself. An old couple, who had been passing by behind her, looked around and shot her a dirty look. She caught their look and rolled her eyes. “Control yourself, Saloni! Don’t do it!” she muttered under her breath to herself.

She sighed and decided to take a seat. She plopped herself down on the sand, making sure that it did not enter her jeans. She covered her feet in sand, burying them in its warmth. It felt perfect, and the slightly humid but cool breeze complemented this feeling. Her hair was thankfully tied in a bun, so it did not fly around messily.

She waited five more minutes, expecting him. A dog barked in the distance, but it was so loud that she jumped.

“Stupid dogs,” she grumped, shooting an angry look at the dog, who was chasing a beggar in the distance.

She recognized a familiar face beyond the dog and the beggar, walking towards her while waving frantically. She smiled. The enthusiasm that Adhrit showed never failed to amuse her. She waved back, gesturing him to come faster. She had been waiting for nearly an hour now.

“Sorry, sorry!” he begged for her forgiveness as he approached her. “Mum had me run an errand at the last minute.”

“Auntie cha rassa?” she asked him mockingly.

He kneeled down, hugged her warmly and fell down beside her. Scoffing, he replied, “Funny, Salami. You are really funny, because my mom always sends me to buy rassa.

She chuckled. She remembered it had started a couple of years ago. They had been hanging out when Adhrit’s mother had sent him for an errand (not unlike today) to buy the famous ‘rassa’ from ‘Dadaji’s Corner’. At the time, it had been a simple and understandable request. After all, her own parents had done the same. Even she herself loved the gravy-like dish from Dadaji’s Corner. However, Adhrit’s mother liked the ‘rassa’ a bit too much. She made it at home a couple of times and frequently sent Adhrit to the café for it, when she would get bored of making it herself. Adhrit’s friends had all dubbed him as the ‘Rassa-boy’ of the colony. When Saloni had found this tit-bit out, she had teased him endlessly. This was when they were younger. Now, it was just an inside joke between them.

“She does,” Saloni argued. “Even today! I am sure of it… Auntie hasn’t changed one bit, I am positive!”

There was a pause. Something awkward hung between them. Silence turned the evening cold. The stupid dog had disappeared, so the barking had stopped as well. She turned to Adhrit, who looked at her with a sad smile. “It has been a long time, hasn’t it?” he said after a moment, breaking the silence.

“Let us just watch the sunset!” she said defensively, gesturing the slowly disappearing sun. It was getting darker. She hoped Adhrit couldn’t see her sad face.

“Oh! Come on, Salami. We need to talk about it, at least. We owe each other that much. My mom misses you too!”

“Ha, I am sure,” she replied sardonically. She had not been to Adhrit’s society for a while. Actually, it had been six or seven years since the last visit.

“No, seriously. She was actually a bit surprised when I told her I was going to see you…”

“Oh?”

“Yeah! Remember how your mom used to give us chocolates to eat? And how once my mom called your mom-”

“-of course, I remember. But that was a long time back! Wait-” Saloni paused. “You remember that?”

It had been a long time. Her mom had always collected chocolates from her kitty-party friends. She used to secretly give Saloni and Adhrit them. Saloni and Adhrit used to have them whenever they felt like. It was a privilege to have a lenient mother, Saloni realised. Once, Adhrit’s strict mother had caught him having these secret chocolates. She had phoned Saloni’s mother to demand an explanation. The incident made her smile with nostalgia. How the times had changed!

“Why wouldn’t I? Isn’t that the reason why you stopped showing up in my house?”

“No! I came plenty of times to your house after that!”

“When?”

“Diwali? Your birthday! When your friends didn’t show and I was the only one who did. Even for that dinner one time…”

“Oh, right…” Adhrit stopped. Suddenly, with a soft voice, he asked “What are we doing here? Why now? Why this place?”

Saloni raised her eyebrows. The sky had turned black. The clouds covered the moon. The stars twinkled here and there, dimly and faintly. Street lamps shone far behind them.

“Why? Shouldn’t we? Can’t we do this?”

Adhrit shook his head. “No, you certainly can. But why here? This beach… You know perfectly well why I-”

“-I do! But I like this place. Come on, it has been two years since your break up with that bitch. You can’t seriously still be affected by that! And even if you are, why should you let it affect this beautiful place.”

Whatever little light there was, it helped Saloni see Adhrit widen his eyes. “This beautiful place?!” He chuckled. “Did I hear that right? Are you okay, Saloni? I know I have been away for a while, but this place has not changed a bit. You might find it beautiful… for you own silly reasons… But the truth is, it’s dirty and unpleasant. Not just with garbage, but with bad memories. And not just for me; for you too, this place is hell.”

“Why? Because of him? That’s in the past!” Saloni cried out. “My ex-boyfriend was a stupid fuck. Cheating on me with yours was not the best idea, was it? Thank god I caught him. Wait,” she paused and looked around. She saw a group of carts on her left, selling beach-food. To her right, she saw a pile of rocks and behind them, a row of clean, handsome bungalows. Once upon a time, she had dreamed of living in one of those houses overlooking this beach. Once upon a time…

“There,” she finally said, pointing to the rocks. “Isn’t that where you found Dave kissing her?”

Haan,” Adhrit replied in a low voice.

Saloni slapped her forehead. “Sorry, baba. I forgot. You take your own sweet time in moving on.”

She ruffled Adhrit’s hair and chuckled once more. Adhrit was looking into the distance pensively, perhaps letting the sea bring back memories of his K…K…Kiran.

She felt guilty. She took her hand and entwined it with his. The sand was now covering both their hands and feet. The wind caressed their face. It had become chilly. They sat there, looking at the moon, which was crescent and now peeking – no, twinkling – from behind the grey clouds.

“I miss Kiran. But you know what? It has been two lovely years of self-doubting and loathing, but she did give me some memories…” Adhrit said after a while. “I don’t know how you do that, Saloni.”

Saloni took a deep breath. He never called her Saloni. “Do what?”

“How you got over him so quickly. I still think about Kiran, but you? I mean, I know that if it hadn’t been for Kiran and your Dave… we would never have…”

Saloni hesitated. “… I know, right?” she said and smiled. She leaned her head on Adhrit’s shoulder. “Sometimes, I think that if I hadn’t caught Dave, then we would be different. You and I…”

“Haha… You’re awesome, Saloni. Awesome at moving on… I have tried to learn that from you… But I haven’t, as they say, mastered the art just yet.” He was stroking her hair.

“No, I am not…” Saloni said softly. Her heart was beating fast. Her breathing had become deeper. This was it. She had to tell him now.

“What do you mean?” Adhrit asked her.

“The truth is, the reason we are meeting here today, and not the park is because… I saw him…”

She raised her head from Adhrit’s shoulder. Adhrit wore a blank face. Realization struck him.

“Dave? You saw Dave?”

She nodded. “Remember how I told you I was on duty today and tomorrow? Well, when I was going to work, I did something stupid. I saw him near the bus stop and followed him here… I want to confront him…”

“What the fuck, Salami?” Adhrit said, getting up. He looked around frantically, with fear in his eyes. “He is here?”

“Not just him. His wife, too…” Saloni said. She couldn’t believe it. She almost had tears in her eyes now.

“WHAT?” Adhrit yelled. His voice bounced off in every corner of the beach. Some heads turned, but they ignored them. “Kiran is here too? Oh no…”

“I am sorry! I just couldn’t resist…” she replied.

Adhrit shook her arm away and rubbed his face with his palm. “You are my best friend, Saloni. We have been the closest friends for two years now. I mean, come on. You know what they both did to us. She cheated on me with your Dave and your Dave cheated on you with my Kiran! And then they both got engaged. We swore never to talk to them or think about them. That was the foundation of our friendship. But you calling me here, trying to chase him after all this time…”

He was breathing heavily, his nostrils flared. Out of breath, he paused. Saloni got up too, raising her arms in defense. “I am sorry but I want to know. I was almost about to confront him. I wanted to stop, but I couldn’t! That is why I called you. Had you been a minute late, I would have rushed to that bhutta stall and asked him why he…”

She turned to her left and now could see Dave and Kiran at the stall. They were giggling and acting couple-y. It made her sick.

“YOU? I just can’t believe it… Salami, you are the strongest person I know! Or I thought I did. I was really happy that you had moved on from Dave. You just said it… You said I took time moving on. And here you are, still hung up on him!”

“Oh, but so are you! We can confront them together! Kiran is there too! We need answers, right? They cheated on us and when we confronted them, they just left the damn country!”

Adhrit growled at her. “Salami, they didn’t leave the country because of us! They eloped! And anyway, that doesn’t matter now! I am not hung up on Kiran, anymore. Today, I spoke about her only because of this stupid beach. That is how I remembered her. I had moved on, I really had. In fact, I don’t care. Neither should you… Let us just…”

The night had become colder than ever. The beach had become hauntingly unfamiliar. She knew what a big mistake this had been, chasing Dave and Kiran to the beach, stalking them for almost an hour and a half… But she needed it. After two years of pretending that the break up hadn’t affected her, that she was strong, the memories, the feelings, the pain… everything had resurfaced the moment she saw the happy couple.

“What? Leave? No! He ruined me, Adhrit. Why do you think I work at a call center? It is all because of him!” Saloni yelled. “He made the mess that is my life today. He cheated on me, he broke up with me, he left me and yet he had me fired! All and that too, without an explanation.”

“Look, Salami. I have known you since my childhood. Our families know each other. And I also know we weren’t that good friends before. And yes, I also know we are so good friends today because of them. And that is precisely why I won’t let you do this! Whatever they did, we have to forget…”

Saloni played with her hair, contemplating the friendly advice. She stared at Adhrit. Somewhere deep down, she knew Adhrit was right. But she wasn’t looking for right. She was looking for fair.

“No, I can’t…” Saloni said.

“Can’t what?” said two voices in unison behind her. All of a sudden, Adhrit’s face morphed into something else. Fear and anger turned his face red. Saloni turned on her heel, sending sand flying everywhere.

Standing behind her was the couple that she disliked the most in the world. Dave and Kiran smiled at them, but only officially, as they waited with hot, fresh corn in their hands.


Hello, Bleedsters!
This is a random story that popped into my head. Is it complete? No! Do I intend to complete it? Dunno! Let us just say that this is the first chapter of a potential story about two people. Depending on how you guys like it, I will continue. So if you want to read more, what happens next etc… PLEASE support me by sending me a message or commenting down below showing support and your interest. And share it with your friends…
Love,
Kunal.


As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow on Twitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images or from my own personal collection or other sources which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise. Contact me if you want it removed.

 

The Night of Happenings

Credits: Siddhant Rajadhyaksha NOT FOR REPRODUCTION

Credits: Siddhant Rajadhyaksha
NOT FOR REPRODUCTION

The Night of Happenings

There was a sharp sound in the dead of the night. The wind chime sounded melodious. A swift breeze had set it in motion. The chime’s melody bounced around the extremely spacious hall of the house. It was chilly.

I got up and checked outside. It was a starry night. It was a cold night. It was a clear, pure and heavenly night. And we were right in the middle of it.

So I suggested my friends, the Mansion Man, the Train Fanatic and Mr Sherlock X to head up to the terrace to look at the sky. That beautiful, star-spangled and clear sky. Its vastness looming overhead.

The four of us climbed the steps, the excitement palpable. The house, this beautiful house owned by Mansion Man’s parents, was an architectural beauty. It had big, airy rooms (yes, multiple), its location was perfection, it had two terraces and multiple bathrooms too and most of all, it was situated facing a fantastic scenery. We passed the two bedrooms on the next floor (it was a one storeyed house) and we picked up our coverings. I needed two jackets and socks because of the extreme temperatures. My fellow friends were fine with just one hoodie. I still can’t wonder how they can stand that cold.

But we finally ascended the flimsy ladder and climbed onto the best part of the house: the upper terrace.

The terrace was big and had a small rectangular wall which served as a skylight for the house underneath. And over the terrace, it stood vast and beautiful. It was something I had never seen.

A long ago, I had dreamed of this. My friend, the Train Fanatic, had suggested to go to a faraway hill station for a vacation at night and just stare at the skies all night long. He had said how the stars shone more fully without the artificial lights and how the sky looked complete without the polluted clouds. Since then, a dream had been formed inside my head, of this unseen nature’s beauty. And it had been fulfilled, finally.

The sky was truly spectacular. An inky black canvas, sporting tiny white dots in a specific pattern that Mr Sherlock X rambled on about. It turned out that stars fascinated him as much as trains fascinated my Train Fanatic friend. He showed us the Orion Belt and pointed out some other constellations that were clearly visible from this wonderful town of Vadgaon.

The chilly air was no longer a concern. The numbing feet and hands lay forgotten behind my head. I lay down on the cold, tiled floor, with my eyes fixated on the stars and the moon. How shiny.

It was an experience of a lifetime. A perfect way to spend the nights in a hill-station in winter.

The house we were living in was also near to the town of Talegaon and had a train station in the distance. So of course, we could see and hear the trains pass by. The happiness of Mr Train Fanatic knew no bounds. Different types of engines and routes were explained enthusiastically by him to us. Meanwhile, Mr Mansion Man and Sherlock X took copious amounts of pictures using DSLR cameras of the vastness above. They tried and tried but did not come remotely close to artificially replicating the nature’s beauty. But that is how Nature is. Irreplaceable and untouched.

The night continued, paired with a cup of hot and spicy noodles. It was a perfect combination which went hand in hand with the borderline unbearable, but otherwise cosy cold atmosphere. We slurped those ramen noodles in one go (okay, that is exaggeration, but still!) and the warmth they provided was amazing. It was one of those moments where everything fits.

We proceeded to take pics of each other with something called Light Painting. We posed in a funny way, made patterns and signs using a torch light and did all kinds of crazy stuff on that cold terrace that added to the effect of the night. And it only helped that Mr Sherlock X was a great guitar player. His strumming in the background provided a different, sort of warm melody to our hearts.

Credits: Siddhant Rajadhyaksha NOT FOR REPRODUCTION

Credits: Siddhant Rajadhyaksha
NOT FOR REPRODUCTION

We further climbed down, after lots of pictures and talks, some exciting, other time passing ones, and finally decided to have some dinner. Mr Sherlock X, being Sherlock X, declared that he wanted to make the dinner. And what better dinner in a cold temperature than Maggi noodles.

But of course life isn’t a straight path. It is a winded road. And the Maggi Noodles failed. Miserably. From a bowl of wonder, it turned into a bowl of porridge. It was tasteless, un-eatable and smelt horrible. Mr Sherlock X joked that the thing he had created was perhaps even radioactive.

We made some more, this time I made it correctly, and ate it and Mr Sherlock X and I headed into the chilling night to dispose of the mess.

The night was colder outside than it was on the terrace. Chilling to the bone, the wind swept my hair back. I shivered, but my thin friend Sherlock X was somehow immune to the cold. We dumped the “radioactive waste” in the wastebasket a few metres away from the house and ran back inside, before I turned blue from the cold.

But the initially planned normal night was turning into more of an adventure. And it continued.

Apparently, Mr Mansion Man had forgotten to notice the frigging ARMY of ANTS that was covering the door to the house. And without that knowledge, I had merrily stepped inside the house, scraping my sides on the door.

I jumped in horror, shedding my coat faster than light and screamed in awe. I swear the screams were manly! But my heart left my body and leapt out of my mouth. THOUSANDS of ANTS were dancing and running on my coat, now spreading on the floor, covering the whole house. I yelled to my friends and they looked surprised too. That is when we noticed the Army of Ants on the door and quickly closed it.

Mr Mansion Man turned out to be an efficient one too. And Mr Sherlock X, though not a very great cook, was a big bowl of CALM! They both extinguished the army with one blow of Bug Spray and the brave ants died, one by one. We swept them off the floor and into the night. My coat was finally ANT-free.

We sat on the floor a few minutes later, breathing a sigh of relief, whilst laughing over it. We mused on about the twinkling stars, the radioactive Maggi Noodles Porridge, the Army of Ants and of course my “Super Manly” screams (I swear, they were!). We headed upstairs and sat cosily in one of the rooms, playing Scotland Yard and Poker. Why do you think we call Mr Sherlock X just that? Because he is a very good Scotland Yard player and as Mr X is very chalu (clever).

So the night seemingly came to an end and we stowed ourselves between the deep bowels of blankets, finally closing our eyes. The night was at an end, and the new day would bring us new adventures.

NOPE.

A rooster. That fucking rooster. I don’t usually swear in my blog posts, but this one rooster deserves the worst of the worst. It was nearly 4, for god’s sakes! This rooster cawed (or cried or roosted or whatever it is called) so loudly that the whole house shook. It kept crying out loud, telling us to wake up. It had no freaking business cawing at 4 in the morning. And that is how I nearly stayed up all night, for the first time.

The next morning, we woke up groggily, groaning. Because the rooster, that fucking rooster, still was cawing.

It was a night full of things. A Night of Happenings.

Heya, Bleedsters!
Just wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas! Have a great one and enjoy…
Kunal

As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow onTwitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images or from my own personal collection or other sources which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise. Contact me if you want it removed.