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Sunday, July 31, 2016

Millennial Age - My Personal encounter

‘He is the most uncoolest guy I have ever seen. I wish he was she… he should have been a girl… he would have had more following.’

One of the girl told her friend when they were travelling towards Bangalore Airport in the public bus.

‘And she you know, she has lot of attitude, she shows of all, many times she brags and she knows she is doing wrong, she is hurting me, she still never says sorry. She has lot of ego. You know last time she told me she got KPMG job because of me, I felt good, I felt really nice, she is a good girl, but you know, kind of attitude she shows, I don’t like.’

The other girl who was listening to her was speaking in a very low voice. It was just a whisper, politely punctuated prose. The voice of her fingers on BBM keyboard were louder than her verbal cord. I couldn’t make out much what she spoke. I wished I had the sixth sense and skill of making it out from the keyboard punching what really she was typing. Anyways by now the other girl started again talking of her friends, school and college and kept giving her opinion on almost each dimension.

‘Oh She, she was so nice in studies, so serious yet could not get good placement. And he, you know once he told me that in friendship one has to be mutually active both intellectually and sexually not necessarily emotionally and I reacted to him’.

‘No all three are important for good friendship, intellectually, emotionally and sexually being active.’

‘You know he is very demanding. I came for him to this airport twice, just to see him off and receive him, I really like his company, at times it is good you know to have a demanding friend, I enjoy this. And you know, it has made me demanding as well.’

Again the other one whispered and told –

‘you know she is also following our bus, just now, she BBMed me, she is in white taxi’.

‘okay, that’s good’, the first one replied and continued.

‘Once we reach the airport I will tell her, see, we reached first, you know it shall give me a high’.

Just then, her mobile rang, and she started responding in pure hindi. In the whole conversation before she had not uttered a single word of hindi, and it was difficult for me to believe that she could speak such nice hindi. She was responding to call of her grandmother. The first salutation she used was ‘jai Jai shri dadi’, I followed the conversation of this young girl with her grandmother.

‘dadi, aap kaisi hain, dadi Kishore chacha ko kehna ki jo foto unhone pichli bar bheja tha usko duwara bhej deyn ya video bana kar mujhey mobile par bhej deyn, mujhe Thakur ji ki photo chahiye, Kishore chacha ko ya anshul ko keh dena, apni tabiyat ka dhyan rakhna, mujhe kal se aai bee em (IBM) me internship join karni hai, aai bee em ek computer company hai, O dadi Jaana padega, ngo me bhi jana hai – sab kar lungi, arey aapko pata nahin hai, main kitni smart ho gayi hoon, arey koi ulta palta nahin hoga, jai jai shri, haan haan theek hai, abhi aap khayal rakhna, davai samay par khana, theek hai, jai jai shree’.

(how are you, grand mom, tell Kishore uncle to send those pictures again, or else let me make a video and send it to me on my mobile, I need picture of ThakurJi, tell Kishore Uncle or Anshul, take care of your health, I have got internship in IBM, I would join tomorrow, IBM is a computer company, I have to go to that NGO also, don’t you worry I shall do all that , you don’t know how smart I have become, don’t worry, nothing wrong would happen, jai jai shri, OK, take care, take your medicine on time OK, jai jai shri)

As she stopped talking the bus was nearing Airport.

‘Mantri’, I read on a hoarding at the center of the road.

This girl started explaining to her friend in English about her mobile conversation that she had just a while back with her grandmother.

‘you know… she is so caring… she was missing me that’s why called me… you know these days for one week we do Thakur ji ki puja in our house… everybody is there and she is missing me… she was asking me not to go to NGO… she was saying… you know ulta pulta,’

Her friend said ‘I understand, something opposite opposite no’.

I heard the sound of their smile (wished I had an eye to see that smile) and could not control my own smile, though very low. I made sure they do not notice it. I was in the front row and they were just on the seat behind me.

She said, ‘ulta pulta means silly, she was saying don’t do any silly thing. See she is so concerned about me. I really love her.’

This was about her grandmother. I controlled myself.

Otherwise I was just about to say ‘almost all of us love our grandparents, that’s our DNA, that’s when they really become our friends, they start understanding us better’.

I kept listening to them, not really them, just one of them, the other one was hardly speaking and that too hardly she was audible. Only her fingers on the keypad of her mobile were giving me a feel of some nice dribbling sound.

I was busy reading the newspaper, Times of India and the interview of Phaneesh Murthy, an IIMA alumnus, erstwhile irate senior executive of Infosys (had sexual harassment charge in US and the company had to pay huge compensation to the complainant in order to have out-of-court settlement) and former CEO of iGate. His interview in the newspaper gave me some little insight into his family. For a moment I thought - how embarrassing it might have been for him to face the world and his own family. But this feel lasted just few nano seconds. Old habits die hard. He seems to be leading a comfortable life and mentoring his children from far and from within.

We were almost reaching the Airport.

I see Virat Kohli in BSF uniform on a hoarding on our left just before reaching Bangalore International Airport. He is youth icon of India and in his own way represents the millennials.

These two young girls, one hindi speaking and another one may be somewhere from southern India, who does not follow hindi, in their early 20s, staying as paying guests in Bangalore in a way represent Indian women mindset, their value system, their sense of adaptability, concern for friends and their attachment to their family members. I loved their rootedness and appreciate their sense of responsibility and commitment for their job, family, society and for self as well. They have just come to airport to meet one of their common friends and to see her off and to share their concern together, spending some time together on this Sunday.

These two girls were sitting in the bus, when I boarded it from Sivaram Circle. I overheard one of them asking the conductor, ‘at what time shall we reach Airport’.

The Driver responded, ‘before 8 30 am’.

And now it is just 8 20 am and we off board the bus. I take a trolley and watch these two girls waving to their friend, who is getting down from a Meru taxi some forty yards away.

There was no conversation between us. Yet it seems as if I knew them. I feel, I am going to miss their conversation while I board the flight. We were not really even platform friends.

I watch them waving still as I enter the Airport lobby. I collect my Photo ID and ticket from the uniformed personnel at the gate. The paper ticket reads my destination as Guwahati. But I have enjoyed my bus journey much more than what I expect of my journey towards Guwahati.
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