This is a post that has to be wrtitten, especially after last night, which was in all senses, an evening to remember – the first one this year and only the third since the annus horibilis 2009 (and of the two last year, both took place in the span of one glorious week towards the last days of March). I may have referred to them in passing here, but now the time has come to write about them in full, accompanied by a conclusion or two.
But to begin with in a reverse chronological order, with the latest event as it is fresh in my mind. On the 15th (I will not go into the all the details of the calls received, or franctically redialled after seeing a missed one), I received a call from the office of the political counsellor asking me if I was free for a dinner on the 23rd and I immediately said I was. A few days later, (19th) I think I received a call from the same gentleman asking the address. Since he had the older one, I gave my current one so that he could post the invite. It was the 22nd when he called again to ask if I had received the invitation yet and I said I hadn’t yet and didn’t know if it was at my office yet, given I had been off the previous day. I asked him to tell me the address and time in any case and he did so.
I was eagerly looking forward to the event and even took the precaution of taking an off on the day in question to prevent any hiccups which could keep from attending. Initially, the day passed off quite slowly, until I had lunch and decided to indulge in a small siesta – a few things not possible the rest of the week. As it turned out, the time I woke up was much later than I had anticipated though not that late as to upset the timetable. I left for a small session on the internet to take care of some pending work and then to lay some supplies before I went since I had no idea when it would return.
The latter work took some more time than I had estimated and I was still midway in getting dressed for the occasion by the time I was supposed to leave for it. However, slowly all was accomplished though it was quite after 20 hours – the time I was supposed to reach the destination. But as experience has shown, reaching at the dot is not very wise as there might be none there except the host and it leads to a certain awkwardness.
However, I was lucky in getting conveyance right away and despite the idiot driver telling me midway that he did not know the precise route despite nodding when I told him where to go – not to mention the atrocious traffic on a stretch enroute (I sometimes wonder how people who cannot be trusted to steer model cars on a flat, open surface are entrusted with real cars on the road). After passing through them and a few stops for directions, I reached the house, climbed up two flights of stairs and was ushered in a opulent but tastefully done drawing room where I found (as expected) just one of the guests – and it was Col A.S. (with whom I had long shared cordial relations).
Soon other guests began trickling in – the ones to arrive after me were a deputy D.A from an eastern neighbour, and then Capt.S., Group Capt. A.J. and then some others and Brig.M.I and his successor, (who I learnt was Brig.S.S.). A spate of pleasant chats followed and too soon it was time for dinner – which was a most lavish repast though I gave it judicious treatment as I was more busy in discussions.
To be continued…..