Sunday, January 03, 2016

Memoirs of a Workaholic 2


PS  - Work of Fiction

Continued from part 1


“Excuse me, Sir. What's your problem?” The Lead Cabin crew member said to me.

“That's it," I said and asked,"Why the hell is she staring at me and wanting to talk to me?” 

“Who sir?” She enquired.

“It's her," I  pointed my finger towards  the flight attendant who interacted with me. "She is constantly stalking me since I boarded the jet."

"Stalking?" The flight attendant mumbled.

I cleared my throat and continued, "First of all my day has been ruined by my boss and she is nagging me."

"When I say that I don’t need anything then I mean each and every word of what I say." I continued.

“Priyanka." The senior cabin crew member looked at the flight attendant  and asked, "What is this?"

"Well, Mister. It's our duty to serve people and our airlines pays us to do this," she said and continued,"We have to ensure that no passenger is unhappy with our services."

"Why on Earth should I stalk you?" She asked and said," I don't even know you, sir."

"I didn't do anything wrong and kindly accept my apologies if my actions hurt you." She said and left. Her eyes were moist as she spoke each word.  Everyone was looking at us. It must have been an embarrassing situation for anyone and I realized that it was my mistake. 

"Avoid interactions with strangers!" I recollected what I read at morning.

"Oh God!"  I slapped my forehead.
My day was turning from bad to worse.  My first interaction of the day  wasn't a fruitful one.  My boss had cruel plans of sending me to the E&Y Project audit. First of all this sudden plan came out as a surprise to me and I wasn't prepared at all.

I felt guilty for hurting a girl. Not just any girl - a beautiful air hostess! 

She was standing near the emergency exit door. I looked at her but she didn't give a damn to me. She was visibly upset and she had all rights to be angry on me. 
I tried smiling at her but she was not ready to look at me. 

Well, no girl would do that. Her anger was justified. 
I had to be sorry. I felt like I had done a big blunder. I had to apologize. But how? Several thoughts started surfacing my mind. 

The plane landed at the Indira Gandhi Airport at 11 AM. The ensemble of Air Hostesses gathered at the door to bid adieu to the passengers. Some of them even clicked photos with the passengers.  Priyanka shook hands with each one of them. She wore a lovely smile on her face.  But her smile vanished as I raised my hands forward to greet her.  She quickly moved aside. The other girls laughed and giggled at me. I moved forward. I looked behind and saw that she was clicking selfies with a group of young kids.  My day would have been made if she had smiled at me. But seeking a smile after  terribly hurt someone is the worst thing to do. God forbid!
The worst thing was that I could never muster enough courage to apologise to her.

Sooner, I left the airport.  On my way to our Delhi branch, I had my lunch at the Akira Back without realizing that Lunch arrangements were made for us at Office.

The meeting was rescheduled to be  3 PM. I took this opportunity to take rounds of the office premises. I  took a puff of a cigarette and roamed outside the office.
"Is there any representative of the AT&T CICS East Team?" The Audit coordinator asked outside. I quickly dropped the cigarette butt and went inside.

My train of thoughts was disturbed by whatever happened inside the Flight.  I desperately wanted to meet the girl and apologize. It was my mistake and I was too harsh.

"Where is the meeting?" I asked the Audit coordinator. 
"Chanakya. Take left on the second floor."  She riposted. I took my seat inside the conference room.  Everyone including the E&Y  auditors introduced themselves.

“Varun Kapoor here representing AT&T CICS East  team from Mumbai,” I announced

I met  the others from the AT&T team. Though our interaction with them is limited but I knew them. I was looking forward to meeting all of them after the Audit meet.

The auditors were discussing the key learnings and lessons learnt from our previous  releases. They were scrutinizing the records and the review  documents. 

The meeting got over in 3 hours. It was more of a review meeting. As I about to leave, I heard someone calling me.

"Hey Varun."

"Hi," I said and continued, "I'm sorry I am not able to recognize you."
"Aniesha Mehra here."

"Aniesha.. the Project Manager of the CICS West Team, right" I confirmed.
"Correct. I was looking forward to meeting Bakshi," she said, "Is he here?"

I wish I could tell her that Bakshi was being an asshole and send me to represent our team. 
"No, he isn't," I said with a straight face.

She was not more than 35 years old but she looked too young.  Her charming personality and her way of talking impressed me. 

"Ok, I will meet him at our company Leadership Summit later this year."  she said and asked, "Want to have coffee?" 

"Sure!" I said and we both left for the cafeteria.
"It's good meeting you in person, Aniesha!"

"Same here, Varun." she took a sip of coffee and smiled.
"How's work?" she asked.

"Going good."

"What's wrong?" She asked, "Is everything fine?" 

I was clearly upset about  everything that happened at the morning. I wish I could tell her everything. But why should I? 

"From what I know  about you, you seem to be a jovial and fun-loving person."
"You look disturbed and distracted today," she added.

"You can share your problems with me if you want," she said and continued," Or is Bakshi harassing you?" She joked.

Bakshi doesn't have the balls to harass me yet. I wish I could say this to her. "No Bakshi is a nice guy!" 

"Then?" Aniesha asked, curiously.

“Yes..somewhat disturbed...I actually hurt a beautiful woman,” I said. I narrated her the entire incident which took place in  the jet.

"Life comes with its own clause. And some clause is such that we break the boundaries and go beyond the extremes."  I said.

"Talk to my face. Don't talk like Philosophers," she laughed.

"I happened to hurt a wonderful woman out of frustration." I said and continued, "But  it just happened out of impulse."

"And who is the poor lady?" she asked.

"The Air hostess." 

"Poor thing. Air hostesses are cute," she giggled
"And you hurt them and made them cry," she added.

"No, she didn't cry. She seemed defiant and looked like the rebel kinds," I said," And stop taunting me okay?"

"And by any chance is she working in Spicejet?" she asked curiously.

"Spicejet! Oh yes!" 

"Viola! I can help you then," she said and winked at me.

"Help? What? How? Really?" I sat dumbstruck, watching at her in a state of confusion.

(to be continued..)

Memoirs of a Workaholic

 
Disclaimer -This is a work of fiction. 

It was like a bad dream, a kind of morning which I never expected. I opened the daily horoscope and quickly browsed through it. 

"Sagittarius!"  

"Sometimes it's fun being an uninvited guest and today you will be one. Await a week full of misadventures and travel. For your own good, avoid interactions with strangers!"

"Interesting," I said with a straight face.

"Always ready for the challenge," I mumbled to myself.

6.30 AM. I opened the window to get a glance of the morning sun which shone at my face. I checked my mobile phone to see if I had  any texts or missed calls.

"Yikes! 8 missed calls by Bakshi." My heart started pulsating.

Cursing myself, I called him back.  I am sure he certainly had plans of ruining my Sunday. 

"Good Morning Boss," I greeted Bakshi.

"Morning Varun.. Why didn't you pick my phone call?"  Bakshi said. 

"I was sleeping!" I said, brusquely.

"Oh yes, I am quite sure you must be online talking to that European girl Nikita," he added.

"Ahh!"  I tell you never share your personal secrets with your boss. They might use that as a weapon to attack you in future.

"Bakshi, what's the matter?" I asked curiously.

"There is a surprise client visit. Their Israel E&Y team is here in India for an Audit," he said.

"So?" 

"So, I need to send my right guy to New Delhi to face the Audit," he said and continued," You are the man, Varun."

"What?" I almost stumbled down and fell from the chair. 
At times, it's essential to be a hardly working employee. Hard working resources are subjected to too many risks. 

I should have guessed that he had plans of ruining my Sunday. Yes, he planted an atom bomb  to destroy my happiness. 
"Bakshi, look, I have some plans for today,"  I said.
"What plans Mr. Varun Kapoor?" Bakshi said rudely.
"You don't even stay with your family. I have some great plans for your future and I'm telling you that you are a valuable resource to the project. Don't let me down."
"Err..But..." 

"No buts..I have asked Rajeev from the Transport team to book the flight tickets," he said.
"Mostly Spicejet!" he added.

"What... Spicejet? Why not Kingfisher?"  But by then Bakshi had disconnected the phone call. 
"Always travel by Kingfishers. Kingfisher se travel ni kiya to kya kiya!"  I remember these words said to me by my friend Ganesh. No, he didn't work for Kingfisher airlines but he said that the air hostesses there are beautiful.

"Shit!"

 7 AM. I soon washed my face and got ready.
Sooner, I got another call from the Transport Department Manager.
"Is it Varun Kapoor?" 
"Yes,"
"Rajeev here from the Transport team. Bakshi told me about the sudden visit to Delhi. The flight is scheduled to  leave at 9.30 AM. Milind will be coming to pick you up. Be ready ok? "

"What? 9.30?" I slapped my forehead.
"Sure Rajeev!" I said and disconnected the call.
I took a quick shower and got ready. I saw a missed call from an unknown number. I looked outside the window and saw the office cab driver Milind waving at me. 
I showed him 2 fingers indicating that I would be down in 2 minutes.
He displayed a thumbs up in response. 

Bakshi was my role model in many ways. I learned from him on how to manage a team and team management is an essential skill that everyone in IT field should have.

Being the Boss's right man was a difficult job. You got to cope up with the additional name callings and tagging. I was known as Bakshi's secret charm by few of them in the office  and few even addressed me as his lover because I was close to him.
But I never had time for all that because I had certain principles and objectives in life. To reach the zenith of the success ladder was the ultimate goal in my life.
I got dressed in a black suit and locked the room. Before I locked the room I ensured that all the lights were switched off.

Fifteen minutes later, I recollected that I had forgotten the tie. But by then we were already late.
"Varun sir, Rajeev sir had sent this ticket for you." Milind smiled at me and handed me the flight tickets.
"Spicejet 109S!" I read.
"Thanks, Milind bhai!"
"Need kharab kar rakha hai," I blurted out

"Work for 6 days and again work for Sunday where others enjoy with their loved ones." I grimaced with disgrace.
Milind looked at me with a straight face
"Can you be quick? We are already late," I added.

Fifteen minutes later Milind drove the car to a nearby Petrol Bunk. I got vexed for once as I saw this as a complete wastage of my valuable time. As of now, we were  5 km away from the Mumbai Airport. We finally reached the airport at 9 AM. I collected my boarding pass and did the security check in.
As I moved inside, I heard my name loud and clear.

"A final reminder  for Mr.Varun Kapoor to board the Spicejet 109S destined for New Delhi at 0930 HRS."
I quickly boarded the flight. Life can be challenging at times. Unpredictable things happen when you don't expect it. Sundays are usually meant for having rest. After having worked long hours during weekdays, life can be so harsh when you have to waste your weekend for official purpose. The meeting was scheduled to be held at 2 PM. 
"Spicejet 109S mei aapka Swaagat hai ( Welcome to Spicejet 109S)" We were greeted.
The cabin crew and the pilots were introduced. 
"Ahh!"  Even the Spicejet air hostesses were looking pretty. 

The Air hostesses  were beautiful and attractive. 
But I was feeling agitated because of Bakshi. He slaughtered my Sunday. Sweet Sunday!
The Air Hostess demonstrated how to use the emergency exit and the Oxygen mask when the Cabin air pressure was low. She also taught us how to wear the life jacket and other safety measures.  

One of the Air hostesses smiled at me as she passed by. I failed to realize this but was aware that she had something different in mind. I was, as usual, cursing my fate for working under a sinister.
I soon recollected what my horoscope had to say for me. 
"TRAVEL" Flashed on my mind. With a sad face, I closed my eyes to get some sleep.
"We are at an altitude of 11000 feet," The pilot announced.

I opened my eyes to see if everything was ok. I saw the beautiful valley created by the clouds. It was a wonderful sight  to see.
"Sir, Would you like to have some toffees." The same air hostess who smiled at me asked.
"Thanks. But I don't need any," I said. 

"If you need anything then we are here to help you," she said and smiled at me to which I nodded my head.
I failed to know what  her intentions were. Had she never seen a tall, handsome guy dressed in black suits before.

So now I was cautious and alert. I started monitoring her from the sidelines.
After 15 min, she woke me again. "Sir, would you like  to have some cashew nuts?" The same flight attendant asked me and  gave me a graceful smile.

I realized that no one else was treated royally as I was! What's the matter? I failed to understand

"That's it!" I stood up and got vexed.
"This is too much...," I shouted at her and an ensemble of Air hostesses gathered next to her.

(To be Continued....) 

Read Part 2 here  Memoirs of a Workaholic 2