Bambai Main Aaya Mera Dost…
Each of us have it, you know – the favourite part of a favourite song. I mean, all of us have THE song all right, but even within the song, there is this little bit that we wait for. The highlight; that riff on the guitar, that piece on the sax, that roll of the drums.
Take mine, for instance. It’s towards the end of What It Is, a song by Knopfler, when the whole thing just builds to a fantastic climax, and nirvana is attained. Especially if a mug of beer is at hand.
So the point is, now imagine a weekend that feels like that little moment. A weekend that starts on seventh heaven and spends the rest of its allotted time banging away on the roof, wanting to hit the eighth. That was my weekend gone by.
Halfway through the Bacchanalian carnival that the rest of world called Saturday and Sunday, one got the feeling that this one might be really special, and magically enough, nothing came in the midst of that feeling lasting all the way through until the time of hammering out the post. And beyond.
Old friends, good friends and old good friends came together over the space of three nights and two days, and painted a rather rowdy canvas that seems too perfect to be true.
A canvas that is truly riotous in nature, and yet perfect in every niggling detail. A canvas containing an ensemble cast that played out their roles in synchronous perfection. If the panel on the left details a drinking binge that ranks right up there on the all time scale, the one on the furthest right pays homage to the ideal of the perfect Sunday. The panel in the middle describes a lazy Saturday that included visits to old, fond memories and a match, watched in a pub, that played out in wondrous fashion.
That lazy Saturday also includes six bowls of phirnee, reason enough for Kulkarni to tick the entire weekend a success.
Which is the point, really. No one thing stands out at the highlight of the trip. Everything, beginning with the prawns and bacon on Friday night, down to the last shot of tequila on Sunday night… everything was as if the good fella up there was dishing out benevolence by the ton.
And everything in between, including the Ramzan food, the fine single malts, the lazing around, the all time Indian Test team and other sundry vignettes of vicarious pleasure to all concerned… everything was just perfect.
These ones don’t happen often – and perhaps they shouldn’t, if you see what I mean – but when they do, it is important that they be cherished.
Ergo the following.
To Willingdon and Mac, then, and to three quarts that pretend to be trousers. To undergarments that pretend to be shorts.
To singing songs that cannot be recollected and to the chugging of mugs.
To walking in the rain. To buddy boys.
To waking up late. To hangovers. To canceled lunches, and to yet another nap in that living room. Again.
To butter chicken. And roti. And mutton samosa. And biryani. And phirnee, and phirnee and phirnee. Sigh.
To Gerrard. Damn, the man can play.
To Man Utd, to Arsenal, to Diaby, the referee and Wenger.
Not to Berbatov. Damn, the man can’t play.
To fate, offsides and raucous cheers. To a pub that reverberates to chants of “Man U! Man U! Man U!”
To greasy grub. To mutton, chicken and beef.
To phirnee, phirnee, phirnee.
To random rickshaw rides.
To Glenfiddich. Aaaich.
To waking up late. To the magical relief one gets on having a shower in Bombay.
And begins to sweat again in five minutes. Sigh.
To yet another conversation about cricket, old style. May they last forever.
To Leopolds. Rock on, baby, rock on.
To steak and onions. To beef chilly fry. To chicken sausages. To the beer tower. To caramel custard, to caramel custard, to caramel custard.
To walking around in Fort. With friends. Because.
To not going to Alibaug. Because.
To John and Denzel. Not bad, boys, not bad.
To Theobrahma’s. And the best cheesecake I have ever eaten. As also the rum and raisin brownie, the chocolate fudge cake.
To Churchill’s Cafe, and the mixed grill lasagna.
To start off for home, and realize no one is home.
To look at each other, and decide as one.
To insane grins, to Toto’s.
To American Pie.
To a train ride home after ages.
To all of that, peoples, cheers.