Just Emkaying: April 2012

Apr 26, 2012

Prey 2

(Cont'd from Prey, Recommend you read it)

He was seated comfortably at the recliner, watching her intently. And the show that was unfurling.

"How the hell did this person get in?!" the supervisor yelled at her, pushing an unassuming looking person out of the gate.

She was caught unawares. She suddenly got back into attention, her eyes moving from the kid to her supervisor. Her fingers instinctively played behind her back. Which was more to do with her feminine response than that of a trained CAIF personnel.

"Sir, I was at that end, I didn't see..." she mumbled

"PRECISELY!!! You didn't see. You weren't paying attention and people walk in from the side gates, the ones which you are manning!!!" said the supervisor. His dark Moustache twitching as he stood to his full 6'3 heights, obviously enjoying the spot in which he had caught her napping.

" Sir magar,..." she switched to Hindi, hoping to get to a more emotive level.

" Do your work and stop dancing around!!!" said the supervisor, as he turned around and marched back into the security check area.

She looked down and waited for him to vanish. The only person who had the authority to pull her up for any misdemeanor was her reporting officer. She checked the revolver at her side, which was secured by a clasp that made it secure, no smarty could pull it out without her knowing. Of course, if she let the so said individual come up so close.

He smiled. He had seen one of the top security forces in the country so easily distracted. He thought it was a good moment to utilize.

At that very moment, she noticed him. He sat in the front row. He wore a prayer cap, wore spectacles which were probably a guise, and had a long flowing beard. He was dressed in a flowing white kurta over a dark blue jeans. He was reaching for something in black back pack, and was in the process of standing up. He had a nasty scowl on his face.

She had just been reprimanded on letting in non passengers into the waiting area. Maybe there were others, she had the right to check against a boarding pass.

"SIR!!! Can I see you ticket please", she called out.

No response. The man was still reaching for his Black bag.

"SIR, I need to see your boarding pass or ID, now please" She called out again as she moved towards him.

The man stood up, without looking at her, and his bag was now in front of him, one hand in the bag reaching for something.

"SIR, I NEED TO SEE YOUR PASS NOW" She raised her voice, now hardly 10 feet from him.

He looked up at her. His brow was sweaty, and his face showed panic, as he brought his bag with his  arm inside it to a full stop right in front of him, almost taking aim.

Her instincts took over. In a flash, the clasp was off, the security lock released and the revolver in her hand pointed right at him, shouting out loud, "SIR STOP", The 'SIR' not leaving her manners even at this point.

The man panicked, the bag fell off his arm, exposing the black devise that was gleaming.

She Fired. It hit him right in the chest. The Second shot took hardly a second, and as he reeled back from impact, the bag fell from his arm. Blood spurted from the shot as he collapsed without a gasp.

His camera tumbled on to the floor. His Press ID hanging from the back of the camera, now covered in blood.

The next day, the headlines screamed the violent side of the CAIF, and how an innocent press reporter was shot in the airport for behaving suspiciously and trying to take unauthorized photos


Apr 25, 2012


The Airport was hot. And everyone was busy fanning themselves and gulping down water from expensive branded bottles, the same brands that would have been available for half the price outside the Airport. Apparently the authorities felt it was ok to fleece people who come within the property of the NAI.

After the recent attacks, security was tight. The CAIF was manning every major entry and exit but in the sea of suits and salwars, they looked completely out of place in their army fatigues. Every one of them was armed with either an AK-something or a pistol. Some had stars, some had berrets, some had nothing. They checked everyone's papers and their photo id's before letting them in. You could say they had become almost mechanical.

But her eyes were watchful, marking each and everyone against their said positions on the map in her mind. Years of training and practice had made her strong and tough. Or so she thought.

Her features revealed nothing. She had dark eyes that were accentuated by the Kajal, her short hair tied in a neat bun. The Blush was colour coordinated to her lip gloss, and went well with her fair skin, making her look beautfiul, the very reason she blended in. Her clothes were designed to ensure minimal obstruction in case things went wrong, and in this case every moment was critical. She had to be alert.

She stood at the lesser fortified entrances, looking around as any passenger would. Only, she wasn't just another passenger. It was monotonous, having to wait and watch, as others also fell into the play. The game twas meant for more of their kind to fall prey to the wile and evil scheming minds of their handlers. She began fiddling with her buttons.

Soon enough, she was distracted by the baby girl. She smiled at the kids antics, who, unaware of all the hostility around her, made it a point to dance around the whole floor, walk up to anyone and everyone and gurgle a wide smile, proudly showcasing her single tooth. For a moment, the airport became a huge play ground for the kid, and everyone, irrespective of caste, creed or religion felt obliged to smile. This went on for some time and slowly but surely, she was loosening up. She was intrigued, and was looking keely for the child's parents, who strangely didn't seem to be too worried about their child's whereabouts. She continued watching.

Unknown to her, someone else was watching her, and rattled off some instructions into the walkie talkie.

(To be cont'd)


Apr 23, 2012

Flight 6E

The announcement was weird. The flight name was a play on the word "Sexy", which was shamelessly self patronizing. "Oh so Pretty..." their current ad campaign said and it was exactly what their hostesses looked liked. Leaving the Reds far behind, these chic looking ladies trotted around the airports in precise unison, and made him ponder if this was some kind of marketing gimmick. He never did like Red.

His attention was diverted by the guy shuffling back from the front to the back of the serpentine Que, a rare event in Indian Airports. He had missed his security stamp on the backpack, which meant going all the way back to security checking. These airports were full of characters, people from all parts of the country merging in large cold, heartless auditoriums, to be flown to different sister auditoriums. What broke the monotony, was either the shrill shriek of a baby, or a good book. In this case, in spite of both , his mind floated amongst the crowds of tops and short skirts, Skinny Jeans and tight T shirts with no purpose, with no intent.

Apr 18, 2012

Growing up

Everyone has a growing up story. I really have short stories, because I was in this growing up phase in different places at different times. But the most important lessons are always learnt at home, no?
As middle class people, my parents didn't have it easy. I don't think many did have it easy in that age, but as parents they never let kids know. I realized it much later once I had the luxury of sitting down and observing life.

As any parent, my parents always wanted me to do well. But it was never stated or drilled into my head that I had to be the top or the best. Marks did matter, but it wasn't like I had to get a hundred. Anything that was a good score was good enough. But what they did instill in me was a sense of not being a brat, and of the importance of honesty. It was important to be courteous to guests, to always offer before taking, to say Thank you and Please, and Sorry. I think the importance and power of these things are lost these days.

There was this one time, when I scored a 9/10 in a class test. I had to get my Dad's sign on the test book. It wasn't something I'd be mortified about, I'd just keep it on the table, and he'd have a look and sign on the way out. But for some reason, I forgot to get his signature. Day 2, ditto. On Day 3, the class teacher makes us all non-sign-getters to stand up and threatens a trip to the headmaster. Now, Junior me, scared as shit, gets a brain wave. He decided to sign it himself!!! So I do it, a ditto forgery, and am saved!!! But, the guilt starts building and building, and by the end of the day, another brain wave. I decide to white-ink the forged signature, and get Dad's original signature. Like a consolation of types.

But when I did show it to Dad, I discovered another thing, That if you look at the back of the page, you see what was "white-inked". Needless to say, I got the whooping of my life. I was in 4th grade.

Have hated that feeling of  "guilt" ever since.

They also taught me to respect and be nice to people, no point hating eh? I took that on a slightly different note, writing my first "appreciation note". In 3rd grade!!! The girls name was Deepti and she was a Punjabi. She had these cat eyes and a very doll-like face. The "note" fell in to the wrong hands, and I have to rate the humiliation as one the top of my embarrassing moments list. I guess that's why am so into "writing " :-)

My mum has always been suggestive in the pursuits I took up. They got me a piano, not because I wanted one or that they wanted me to learn it. But because I used to play a small pencil box piano all the time. They got me basketball classes, because I wanted to get tall and hated the monkey bars in the parks. A Walkman, because that's what other kids had. The only thing I ever asked for would be some or the other kind of toy, before I came to India to complete my studies around 7th grade. Am still fascinated by Lego and remote controlled monster trucks!!!

I got swimming classes, because I loved the beaches ever since I was a baby, they were my favorite haunt. None of my courses were ever chosen by my parents. I have been self reliant through out. The decision to send me off to a hostel must have been very hard on them as it was on me, but today, I can proudly say that I can survive anywhere. I may not want to, but I can. In the whole scheme of things, I've also done public speaking, acting, singing, dancing, painting and photography, the school band all in school and college. Never stuck to anything long enough though.

They've given me a lot more than I could ask for. It's a different thing that I screwed up here and there, but all part of the larger scheme of things - I keep telling myself. They're last worry is  on getting me hitched ASAP. Which I have assured them is not going to happen any time soon.

Of course, having stayed away from them for almost 17 years, I missed out on the Advanced Life handling courses. Like the one where you experience how the world is genereally not very welcoming. Or the one where being selfish is the only way you get what you want. Or the part where it's okay to screw around with people you love/ who love you. And of course when relationships can be turned on and off like a switch, or when a bro can become a non-bro. And where friend is just another button away on a stupid website. (the one which I am super active on)

But then because you have such fundamentals, you're on this path that you hold on to dearly, but so want to dump and experiment. And you're caught in between, which honestly is the worst place to be. But you learn every day, with everyone, and keep it going. We're still growing up.

I owe a lot to my buds who've been a part of very important phases of my life. Guess they're more like true bro's (and female equivalent) than any.


Apr 15, 2012

Mumbai - First Impressions

Technically, I have been in Mumbai twice and Bombay once. The time I came to Bombay, I was too young and have found only depressing memories. Then I came to Mumbai on an educational trip, and got a good long look at the Fort area of Mumbai, amongst other thing. The last trip was for my job interview, where the Taxi Driver promised me "Mumba Devi's" blessings. Whether the current situation is part of the blessing, I'll have to ask her myself.

Apr 11, 2012

NRI Taxi Wala

On my third day in Mumbai, I realized that the Auto wala was duping me into an alternate route. While the meter was not pocket burning, as it is in Bangalore to travel from M to G of MG road, I didn't like being taken advantage of.

Anyways, my fun started when I got into this Taxi, and reconfirmed with him that I was duped. He laughed and began this conversation. I try my best to narrate in "Amchi Mumbai cha Basha"

Drivr - "Sahb, yeh sab bahar se aakr yahan gaadi nahin chala sakthe, apun ko dekho abhi, yahaan jaise chalthe hain, galf (Gulf) main bhi aise chala diya. Char baar pakde the. Wahan pe samne camera, piche camera, kuch bhi karo tho pakde jaoge."

Listen to me

I longed for something
You gave me something else
Your lessons are too many
I keep losing my self

My faith is quivering
It\s hard to tell right now
Will I ever believe again
When the tears are running down

What more do you expect from me
There will be a time
When I'll turn away from you
And your steps I'll never climb

I hope this message you send
Is in time, my life to mend
Too tough, is what you are with me
With her, Is what I aked to be

What more do you want
An Oasis, in this bloody drought
And you give me these sensibilities
of which, nothing has come around

Am fed up with you,
You're pulling everyone away
What shall I do with these coins
You're throwing in my face

And yet I say Hi everyday
Honestly, Purely, no dismay
I asked for others, not myself
And yet, you persist
in keeping me out

I longed for something
You refuse this only want
What I have done to anger you so
Forgive me, let me out.


Apr 8, 2012

Bangalore and me

I going out tonight
Am leaving by a flight
To take a better job
In a city that is a mob 

To people that I knew
Leaving behind a few
And some that I'll keep
Memories that run too deep

I was running out of time
My heart was on a mine
Lets say its destiny
She's come by saving me

Lost some in 5 long years
Some Dues, Some Tears, Some Beers
I wear a lot of cheer
Inside its still not clear

All the jumps I've made
Did things that others forbade
I kept my trust in you
You've seen me smiling through

Of all the times we laughed
Kept going up the graph
And then there was the flame
Things have never been the same

You know that its my time
Any more and I'll lose my shine
You're sending me away
I'll fake these rainy days

The sand has run its course
Some sorrow, No remorse
Some stars have long been gone
And so shall I by morn

The moon will be just the same
We'll just have different names
The safety belt sign is on
Yet all I am is torn

Am leaving you for now
the Question is - of how

As I leave, am still debating
Is this a lesson?
Or am I to keep waiting.


Apr 4, 2012

Bangalore Final Countdown

Yes, its the final. Apart from being thorough spent on the restaurants and places, apart from total laziness (The unpacked luggage shall agree with me) I have decided to call it, err, Over.

Over the next few days, am at the mercy of my 5 year old Compaq Laptop, which more often than not, doesn't obey human commands. The I phone is my sole savior, but I don't think it can manage me.

So, with one more post after this, which is ready and lying in wait, I hereby declare the experiment successful.


Here were the places we chronicled!!!

  1. Windsor Pub
  2. Corner House
  3. SLV Ragigudda
  4. Kabab Magic
  5. Thulp
  6. Coast2Coast
  7. Kudla
  8. Meghana Biryani
  9. Punhabi Rasoi
  10. Halli Mane
  11. Nagarjuna
  12. Cafe Max
  13. Egg Factory
  14. Laa Jawab
  15. Woodstock
  16. Davangere Dosa
  17. The Only Place
  18. Daddy's Deli
  19. Urban Solace
  20. Chocolate Junction
  21. Kim Lee
  22. Bangalore Mandarin
  23. Punjabi Grill
  24. The Blue Bar
  25. Luck by Chance
  26. Kanua

Others, which I wanted to write about - Toit (Tintin Toit), Take 5 (Bacon) , Purple Haze / Jimmy's, Fava (Pita bread and Hummus), Cafe Noir (Everything) , Tascano (Prawn Caesar Salad, Pizza), Fireflies (Ambience!!!) Casa de Sol (Mutton Mince Steak) Jashn ( Kababs)

Next stop, Mumbai!!!


Apr 2, 2012


They keep chattering
One after the other
Ideas and complaints
Some funny, some not so clever

Thoughts and Schemes
They let me dream
Pain and senseless banter
Control me, infuriate me

The less they know
The louder they get
Keep doing something
Else they keep going

All the time
One over the shoulder
One behind my ear

They can be friends
They can be Foes
Care to listen,
You can choose to choose

These Voices


(PS: Meditation helps, apparently)

Apr 1, 2012

Cracking a Job Interview

Everywhere I have been, there has been no shortage of people looking out for a job. Every single place, every single time, there are reasons a plenty to look out. Either the money's not good, or the job's not good, bad bosses, different location preferences, boredom, girlfriend in another town, homesickness, restricted growth, function shifts, graveyard shifts, Saturday working, etc etc

All said and done, no one is ever happy. Except when your nearing gratuity (4.8 months to be eligible) you manage to trudge along, and then its run run run. 

There are a million sites, which give you tips on job interviews. Dress well, polish shoes, perm your hair, Acceptable Jewel standards, Smile, carry near folder, etc etc. There is also the free advice you get from your everyone, don't jump companies, liquor is a bad place, service industry is a tough place to move from, shouldn't negotiate too hard on salary, etc etc.

All said and done, there is only one truth at the start. Getting to the table. Once your at the interview table, its all in your hands.

Bangalore Countdown Day 9-7

Bangalore Countdown Day 10 Read Here

Welcome to Daily Mirror, and you're reading the Bangalore Countdown, where we chronicle the best places to eat and drink with our host, yours truly.

For the record, I haven't been to the following places, for some strange reason, so they do not /will not appear in my lists - Khansama, Samarkhand, Shiros, Sahib Singh Sultan and Pecos. Yes, I haven't.

And we continue...

Day 9-7

1. Luck by Chance (Indiranagar)

Luck by Chance is a small, Off the road, Bakery and Chai wala. The name board says - "Luck by Chance" which was what caught my attention. I fancy this place because of their lemon tee, which is made from, err real lemons and not some packet mix. He tops it up with some tulsi leaves, and its really nice. Not that I have had all the best teas in the world, am not even a tea drinker, so anyway.  Its also special, because I've had many discussions with myself, over cups of "Suleimani" sitting over the pavement. Sadly, a few days ago, they seem to have half closed down for renovation. Symbolic of many things at many levels.

Again, I can't locate the photograph I had of the place, and Foursquare refuses to show it to me. Apt.

2. Kanua , Sarjapur Road

I am using my discretionary powers as the author (and sole reader) of this blog, to up my one time visit (yesterday) to this restaurant to one of the top places in Bangalore list. Why?

1. Its Authentic KONKANI Food, with a KONKANI Menu, Non Veg, and VEG options that don't start and end with Paneer and Parantha.
2. A Limited menu, and NO "Adjust" food like manchurian and all that
3. The Decor is brilliant - old fashioned South Indian House types, on the terrace (Yes!!!) with wooden furniture, soft lighting, nice breeze, sit in the balcony, etc
4. You bring Alcohol, they serve it option!!! (Temporarily on hold)
5. An old world washroom!!! I kid you not, its really cool.
6. A whole WALL of bottles displayed all the way to the top of the roof
7. TIMES Food Award
8. A Kitchen that....sigh.
9. Water served from an earthen pot
10. Spacious and quiet, good music

Go eat man, Go go go. Eat anything, and you'll feel great. The Vegetarian starters, the sea food, anything. To me, it was like homecoming yesterday. A word of advice, we do use a lot of coconut and all that, but if you can deal with the food in Coast 2 Coast, this is a breeze. Its a little pricey, and quite a drive away, but its totally worth it.

* * *

Sarjapur Road has developed beyond recognition. I used to visit the Spencer's and Total Mall there way back in 2009, but now its a whole city in itself!!! I met up with my friends yesterday, and quite foodies too, and there are so many new joints that have been up, and I haven't even noticed. By the time, and If, I come back to Bangalore, I won't be surprised if the place would have changed completely. The Place and the people, I presume, will not be able to handle this rapid change.

* * *