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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

she's slouched on the conference table, stifling a yawn. the unbelievable drone continues mercilessly, assaulting listeners. end this presentation please, will six minds. oblivious, the CFO continues pointing out his dept's trajectory, as everyone aches to move on. unbelievably, a hand raises. parted hair, pristine white shirt, black thick rimmed coke bottle glasses, he actually asks a question, which the presenter thuoghtfully pauses the slides from finishing and answers the question.

god in heaven kill him now, she thinks. she hears someone talking outside, and listlessly hopes its a diversion. the bubble of sound approaches the small room, words like "saab nahin aa saktay, yaay aap kya kar rahey hain!" garble through the walls. "aik second aik second" comes a quietly authoritative and strangely familiar male voice. the sounds are still muffled, and she's still puzzling over what could be happening outside when the door opens and unbelievably there he is, striding into her conference room, wearing the custom made "banker" shirt she bought him, tie flawlessly in place, holding a GINORMOUS bouquet of pink flowers. lilies. babies breath. roses. chrysanthemums. he's taking the four purposeful steps towards her - her brain inanely has a wild errant thought how did he know where i was!?" her mouth - and the mouths of some people around the table- gape open. like a bunch of seals puckering for fish at sea world, and her husband holding some bass to toss to them for treats. dear god in heaven tell me this isn't happening! she still doesn't know where to look, frantically looking around the table for an explanation. none comes, but behind him, magically revealed, are her giggling office mates. it all make sense.

he's reached her now, and there's no denying it. he must be here for her. before she can even say hello, he's reaching down, and kisses her cheek and says "happy birthday darling". the table erupts in polite claps as he hands over the flowers. how did they get the chrysanthemums that color? her boss is stifling a smile. there are a few smirks.

he turns and says - "thank you afshin for letting me do this (afshin! he called my boss afshin!) Sorry for interrupting the meeting, it was my wife's birthday and I couldn't miss it!"

happy birthday! happy birthday! people echo, and i think i start seeing spots of black as i physically start to die of embarrassment. thank you, thank you, i manage to utter. i try to smile, but must look ghastly because one or two people look quite startled.

"I'll pick you up whenever you're done?" he says when the hullaballoo hums down. i can only bobble my head silently, like a stupid car ornament.

"bye everyone" and ducks out.

the room is silent. my face is red. i have dripping flowers all over me, which i quietly kick under the conference table.

everyone looks a little confused, but the director says chalo kaafi excitement ho gaee, ab wapuss kaam ka time

like a tennis match we turn our heads to the cfo.

he arhemms, and then mercifully continues his drone.