Does it happen only to me or others i wonder!!! I hear my name called out at random places, only to find the person to be my ex-colleague, school/college mate or family member… And there are times when i cant remember their name at all, am a complete blank,no matter how hard i scratch my head, nothing comes out of it.. And it is always the Other person who squeals out my name…
Here are some instances when such surprise/accidental/coincidental meetings have happened…
1. Railway Station
No, i have not met familiar faces in Chennai station, but in other towns.. Once, i am waiting for the Shatabdi express in Blore, randomly taking pictures of the station and buildings around when i hear my name and turn looking on either side for the soul that yelped… I found a short girl and she was all smiles’ Hi, Aarti, wow, fancy meeting you here after all these years..How are you”… My brain goes into freeze mode,and my face is giving this “Gosh, am so excited to see you” look and starts off a conversation..I kinda sorta think J is her name,but not too sure, so once on the train, i meekly pass my phone to her seat[ hers was right behind mine, how about that!!] and ask her to enter her FULL NAME with her number and promise to stay in touch!! Bah… i was right… :D.. not seen/heard/touched base from/with her since then..
Its almost like people are waiting for me to exit the theater to scream out my name and come give me a big hug… Not once, or twice, but like a zillion times this has happened to me… and everytime it is someone different – College mates who i dint want to meet even in my nightmares, ex-colleagues who suddenly turn all sweet till i discover they have favor to ask or friends i’ve not been in touch ages.. I never see them, its again they who come running/waving towards me….!!
a) We are in Flower drum, the entire family, waiting for a table on what looks like the BUSIEST day ever,and suddenly a voice pops out of nowhere “Aarti ma’am,how are you? you took my interview and gave me some tips on how to fare better, remember?…………….
“Umm, errr, actually, not really,but how are you doing now?” is about all i can mutter… Mom, aunt and cousins are giving me the look”Oooh, your popular, but can you just work your magic and get us an effing table already!! ” and gramma sitting on a chair a little distance away has the look that says “who is that guy and why is he talking to you?”… lol…
b) We are in Pondicherry, had gone for a wedding and i stayed back so i can show grandparents around.. we are just about to head to a cafe near the ashram.. get out of the car and take one step into the restaurant and a big “hello” i hear. I was busy guiding gramma up the steps and failed to notice the guard beaming at me. “How are you doing ma’am, nice to see you!”…”you dont remember me? i used to be in the 6th floor, and you would sign the register before walking into the office”, he rattles.. a
And then continues to have a conversation with gramma about how i worked crazy hours [ 10am to anywhere upto2am] and even during weekends/holidays/festivals i was there… Gramma in turn uses the opportunity to crib about how tough life was for me and how tiring it was and how glad she is i quit!! Left me wondering” maybe i should get a conduct certificate from that guy”
I had gone hostel hunting for my cousin who was moving to Chennai for higher studies. And in one dump[yes,i call it so cos it resembled Jail cells and was dingy], as we are walking towards the available room, a girl comes out rushing “Hi Aarti, how are you? remember me.. i am joining XYZ co.tomorrow”… ‘Cool, congrats and good luck” i mutter before walking away!!
Done with shopping,,we walk out towards the car when am stopped in my tracks by an ex-colleague. “hey Aarti, wow, lovely seeing you here, how are you”… “you know our head of Corp HR keeps asking about you and mentions you everytime there is a HR Staffing meeting, you have set high standards for others to follow”… Luckily, this one time i remembered her name, had a sensible conversation and parted with a smile lighting my face!! 😀
Am sure there is more to come… every incident leaves me wondering whass wrong with me or was i that loud/notorious/fun/unique that people remember me!!