Festival of faith?

Waking up at 6AM on a Sunday?! Are you kidding me?

This is how I’d have responded under normal circumstances, but the long impending Cycle Day plan had to be put into action. So on 27th, despite being sleep-deprived the whole week, we decided to attend the Cycle Day at Malleshwaram. Rosh, Gaja, Mahesh and Shravan turned up just before the last few cycles were rented out. I was waiting in the queue when a grandpa standing behind me asked if he could borrow a cycle using my ID proof. I was wondering how he would pull off this feat, considering that we are given only one cycle per identity proof. When it was my turn, he told the volunteer I was his grand daughter and that we would be taking two cycles. Kudos to his enthusiasm! We exchanged numbers so he could contact me for returning the cycle and parted ways. The event kicked off, and I was panting by the time we covered half the track. Stamina by the time we reached the starting point: zilch. Gotta thank my stars for not having passed out in the middle of the course. I was out of breath by the end of round one. My (temporary) grandfather returned with his friend for another round of cycling! Yep, you read that right. I just hope I am as energetic as him when I’m his age.

After the cycling event was done, we had street games as usual. Board games like ali guli mane (played with tamarind seeds), chowka baara (played using cowries) and ludo thronged the entire lane. The SwachaGraha stall showed us how kitchen waste can be turned into useful compost. Another stall was dedicated to the art of making paper bags. It will definitely come in handy someday, since Bangalore has banned the usage of plastic. We played hopscotch and badminton on the streets. The traffic police joined us for a friendly game of tug of war. Needless to say, they won. We’ve decided to go as volunteers next time. Totally worth the pain of waking up early! Period.

Monday was unusually boring, as most people were on leave/working from home. Tuesday made up for their absence with an overdose of food and gastronomical delights. Sonia returned with my favorite childhood sweet made of coconut, Bernard had got boat loads of chocolates from the US, Revathi had brought back some lip-smacking prawns from her hometown, Kevin came with sweets and banana chips from Kerala and finally there was chicken pie and Bengali sweets brought by Arindam. Drooling much?

Anjali missed all of this, as she lost her wallet in the bus. She realized her bag was open only after entering the shuttle, with all her wallet belongings gone. She had to go back to block her ATM. Poor girl, she was in tears. I offered to accompany her but she refused. To top it all, her phone was not in working condition. Thankfully she was able to block her ATM well in time and requested for a transfer of money from her home branch to Bangalore account. Phew, what an ordeal!

I turned twenty three last Wednesday. Both dad and mom wished me in advance (so glad to see my amnesia has not rubbed off on anyone at home), and that was all I needed, honest. A year ago I would have gotten all gung-ho about my birthday but somehow this time around I wasn’t as excited at the prospect of turning a year older (and none the wiser). I’m still excited about getting handmade greeting cards though. I firmly believe that the most expensive gift you can give anyone is your time. Sonia gave me one beautifully written birthday card. On seeing that I couldn’t stop myself from asking everyone else to make me a handwritten card too. After a good amount of pestering, Bhavya and Malin wrote for me. I returned home to a box full of yummy sweets (courtesy of dad) and a calligraphy set gifted by Gaja and Rosh. I could not for the life of me fathom how they managed to give it to mom in my absence!

I met Pooja Chavan from MCC in the bus while heading back home last Friday. We spoke the entire length of the trip, she’s doing her M.Sc at VIT. Felt good bumping into her after nearly five years. How time flies! Meanwhile in BMS, Utsav had kicked off.

I went to college rather early on Saturday, Mad Ads was going on in the main stage. Thankfully I found Asha and Sachin, else I’d have died of boredom. Last year the Fine Arts Club had done a fantastic job of decorating the campus. Every inch of the college had either a banner, poster or a cutout. It was such a visual treat. This year paled in comparison. Somehow the excitement was running low. Gaja, Kavya, Chethan and Rosh came around 4PM. After their arrival I realized it was their company I was craving for. Regardless of  how entertaining or boring the fest is, it’s the people you’re with, that makes all the difference. It has always been that way.

On Sunday we went around 5PM. There was a dog fashion show which was absolutely kick ass. It was a first of its kind event and boy, were the dogs lovely! Christy left after the show. We stayed a little longer (bad choice), met a couple of our long-lost friends, it got so incredibly boring that we went out to eat, by the time we returned to college it was well past nine, watchman denied entry into college, so we headed back home. Yawn.
Utsav has officially gone from ‘festival of faith’ to ‘just another excuse to catch up’. Sigh.

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