Saturday Like of an IT girl!

This Saturday I woke up with a start as I could hear some rattling noise. I checked my phone and it was showing 5:15 am.

My husband was getting ready for his morning session of Badminton coaching. I am so happy seeing all the hard work he is putting into his newly established Badminton facility. It’s been only few months and he is working all 7 days a week; 16 hours per day. I am actually jealous of him for he is getting to follow his passion and make a living out of it along with achieving his dream of nurturing young children’s sports interests.

I closed my eyes and after a few minutes as I am drifting back to sleep, I feel a light peck on my cheeks as my husband kissed me bye! I smiled and drifted back into deep sleep.

I woke up around 8; brushed my teeth wandering lazily across the house. The day wore on as usual. I had some cornflakes with milk and an apple; started cleaning the big house. Even though it was only the two of us staying, I had forseen that we would need an extra room for either one’s parent’s or any guest’s visit. However, we used only one room and the other one was filled with clothes and other unopened boxes.

It was a perfect day; the sun was shining bright and the birds were chirping; still I felt kind of bleak. I slaved off for 9 hours from Monday to Friday and the weekends were supposed to be filled with happy occurences like brunch with my loving husband followed by an afternoon nap and late evenings partying around the city or shopping at our favourite destinations.

Since when the academy had started, he was hardly available on weekends. Every breakfast/lunch/dinner we had together was a bonus and I cherished every minute of it; talking about various topics ranging from the rise of entrepreneurship in Bangalore to the recent girl gossips among my colleagues.

I myself was a state-level Badminton player; hot headed; morning person and the enthusiastic, happy, organised kinda girl. But something had changed since marriage. I took things slow and kept things to be done for later on. My day used to start with a glass of warm water mixed with lemon juice and honey, followed by a run and a healthy breakfast; follwed by classes during college and later on by office work. A year after the marriage, everything seemed an utter waste. What was the point of following your passion, meeting friends and laughing about the nostalgic childhood days when I can actually sleep and rest for the whole weekend.

I had stopped pestering my husband for taking me out. I had put on weight and it didn’t bother me at times but otherwise I would sit alone and feel sad for myself. Soemtimes I just want to bake things or make sweets and please my husband; atleast let one of us be happy. I also wanted to start playing badminton but that would mean getting other household things done; cleaning, cooking, laundry and doing the dirty dishes to align the timings with that of my husband’s; and it is tideous. I feared that I wouldn’t be able to move on the court as I used to. All the earlier excitement and happiness would rush through my mind and I was not prepared to let me go through that stuff. So I avoided playing.

The phone rang and brought me out of my reverie. It was my husband.

Me: Hello

Him: Hey Baby. Whats up?

Me: Nothing much. I am done with all the work. What time are you coming for lunch? I have prepared something special for you.

Him: Wow! I am leaving now. Do you want me to pick something for you?

Me: Yeah. Can some yogurt while you are on your way?

Him. Sure. Hey, you wanna join me for the evening session at 4 p.m?

Me: hmmmmm…..

Him: You can play for an hour today as there is only one session and I’ ll be free afterward. Get your sporting gear out. We shall have lunch and then leave around 3 p.m.

Me: Are you sure? I kinda feel tired.

Him: Come on Babe. Be ready. We ‘ll go together and later we can shop for a while in Orion mall and get you all the stuff that you have been wanting to buy from a long time.

Me: Oh alright. Come soon then. Se you at home. Bye

Him: Bye bye.

I could feel the excitement oozing out from a corner in my mind and filling me, an making me anxious. I checked for the stuff I would be needing and packed an extra pair of regular clothes; searched for lost hairclips and socks.

After lunch, we watched T.V for a while. He took a nap while I continued watching movie.

As we rode through the cities of Bangalore, I grew silent; watching the buildings pass by; watching the two-wheelers overtaking the four-wheelers; there was a lady taking her kid for tennis coaching; fruit vendors pushing his barrow slowly. It was a dull day.

By 5 p.m, I had my shoes on; pony high on top with lose strands of hair tucked tighly underneath hairclips. I stretched a bit; ran across the court and warmed up. The academy was silent with only the sound of feet scratching the green mat on the other side of the premium courts where a woman was practicing her footwork. I remembered my teenage days when I would stay back after everyone left and practiced my footwork.

Gone where the days of hard work; excitement; Now, the days stretched before me with nothing more than texting, watching T.V or movies in theatre. This is what we wanted right? A comfortable job with a big house and a loving husband; a regular paycheck; weekends empty enough to relax and enjoy life?

Then why was this all empty?

Just then, my husband/coach poked me and asked me to step on the court.

He threw the shuttle in the air and serviced it towards me. I put ll my strength and hit it right back at him.

The rally went on for a while and before no time, I was gushing for air. My feet were throbbing with pain and I was perspiring all the way from head to foot. But it was exciting; fun and endearing. I welcomed the pain and rushed forward to lift the shittle before it hit the ground and jumped backwards and attempted for a smash. It hit the net and dropped on my court.

My coach saw me gasping for air, came forward and motioned me for dropping the shuttle near to the net. It was an easy job where I could take air to my lungs while attempting to drop the shuttle as close as possible to the net.

I was done by 30 minutes.

Following a quick stretch and a bath, I rejoned my husband at the cafeteria, conversing with a prospective client. It was a family of two and the wife was slightly over-weight. The husband wanted his wife to engage in some kind of physical activity and chose badminton as it was near to their home. I watched as my now husband/businessman was giving the details of the course with hand motions beckoning to the various know-hows of the famous sport. I watched him in wonder and realised that I have such a great coach/fitness trainer at home and I am not making the most of him while there are people parting from their money to get a few minutes of coaching from my skilled husband.

I was ecstatic; refreshed. That feeling you have after sweating on the court playing your favourite sport.

We went for shopping followed by a lovely dinner watching the stars and talking about love, life, career and future.

All was happy and well that weekend.

 

Day 2: Ooty

The sun shone brightly on the hill tops. I woke up groggily to NO ALARM. That was the point of vacation. To be up at your own time without the sound of alarm ringing in your ears. It was 8:30 in the morning.

I slowly dragged my lazy back across the hall and opened the windows;

Huge mountains lined up next to each other with the sun shining brightly over them. There was no fog today; the sky was clear blue with puffy white clouds drifting above. The view was absolutely breath-taking; I could just stand there and watch the green mountains kissing the blue skies forever.

A warm hand touched my shoulders. My husband stood behind me and we both watched the morning beauty for what felt like forever.

We had a oil massage scheduled in a while; the lethargy body was transformed into a supple and charged one after an hour long body massage and a shower. It was already 12 pm and we were due to check out.

After our check out, we were moving to a home stay named ‘Two seas’. As usual we googled the place. However due to some inconsistencies due to mountainous region, we ended up doing down the hill through a very bumpy road. After getting directions from the local people we headed back to the city and found that our destination was just 3 kms away! Us techies….. *rolling eyes*

It started pouring down like crazy. All of us were cozy in our seats when we reached ‘Two Seas‘ and none of them were ready to let a drop of cold water fall on our body. A small man with big mustache came to our rescue. He tiptoed through the gate towards our car under a huge rainbow umbrella; My friend who was driving slightly lowered the  glass and told about our reservations.

Rain water spilled inside the car and there were mild shrieks rising from us girls as the cold water touched our skin. The caretaker went back to the cottage and after a minute brought 2 more rainbow umbrellas for us. He handed us the umbrella and moved back to the safety of the cottage roof.

All 6 of us debated whether we should go out or wait in the car. Mixed responses came about but truly none of us wanted to even lower the window glass. Realizing that no one will move out of the car, my friend started the engine and finally we decided to at least have lunch.

Hijacking the rainbow umbrellas we again went inside the city and found a place for lunch.

Ponmari‘ is a Kerala cuisine restaurant and it was bustling with people savoring food. We reserved a table for 6 people and rushed to the restrooms. It had been a while we had been out of the car and it was raining outside!

The botanical garden was just about the corner from the restaurant. After a scrumptious meal, energized we went to the Botanical garden. It was huge; the garden was spread across 55 hectares. Varieties of colorful flowers bloomed throughout the view and there was a lawn so large, it met at the foothills of the mountains.

We clicked many pictures with flowers and human faces mingled throughout.

Outside the gates of the garden we found boiled corn, boiled groundnuts, cotton candy and other delicacies. All of us bought our own favorites and savored the tangy flavors of raw mango.

Our only worry was about the caretaker who might be cursing us with the harshest Tamil slang for stealing his umbrellas. We headed back to our humble abode which seemed like a normal teeny tiny building one would find in Bangalore suburbs.

It was nothing like that. The cottage was huge and had three big bedrooms, complete with a living room facing a fireplace, a kitchen with a bar counter and green lamps hung from the ceiling spreading a green hue across the living room. The living room had a  balcony which looked up to a carrot farm, bordered with meandering roadways connecting the mountains to the city.

As my friend mentioned that it is a carrot farm, I retorted back asking ‘then where are the damn carrots?‘ One of my many lame jokes! Yet people find it funny.

Ginger teas arrived after a while; we all sat around the unlit fireplace. It would be nice to have a fire crackling during night but alas the wood were drenched in water and wouldn’t light up.

Evening moved to night fall and we were introduced to the card game ‘UNO‘. UNO is a card game look very similar to normal cards but instead of signs it has colors and the rules are very different. The otherwise calm and serene people turned into absolute savages and tricksters playing UNO and wouldn’t look right or left, husband or wife, friend or partner while trapping others; people were drawing +4s and planning espionage on their neighbors.

The day ended when one of us realized that it is mid night and all of us slowly retired for the day. We have had a schedule to wake up early for the next day’s itinerary-Coonoor.

A detour from the work life: Ooty

Finally the day arrived when we planned to visit Ooty with our friends. We were commemorating our third wedding anniversary and also going for a weekend getaway from the hurry-bury city life.

I was up before the alarm rang 4 and danced around while brushing my teeth. Bags were packed, phones charged and the car was loaded with fuel. I brewed some coffee for the road trip; also my friends were coffee-lovers.

We set on to our friends house and we were out of the city before Bangaloreans were up and running about their chores! We were 6 friends, 3 couples married with a gap of almost 6 months; Talk about romance in Ooty!

After breakfast and a few coffee stops we entered the hilly region which were surrounded by huge Nilgiri trees. It was drizzling and filled with fog. We couldn’t see the tip of the mountains as they were hidden behind thick fog. Sun rays didn’t reach the ground since they were blurred by the tree tops covering the surface like a huge, wide umbrella. Sweaters, shawls and beanies  popped out of our bags and all of us were cozy inside the car; all girls shivered slightly when the wind blew and were rescued by our respective husband’s hugs.

Ooty is a small town sitting on top of the Nilgiri mountains and surrounded by lakes, forests and water bodies. As we reached the main city, it was drizzling heavily. The whole town was silent. You could feel the silence pressing upon us; as if there was a thick blanket spread upon the city. But we were the unusual outsiders creating havoc and disturbing the serenity of Ooty.

After a heavy lunch, we moved to our hotel. We had a hotel booking for the first day and a home stay booking for the rest of the trip. The hotel was not a typical arrangement of rooms across various floors. Rather, this hotel ‘Lovedale‘ was built on a mountain and as we know mountains slant down from the top.

We checked in to the reception area; while one of them was filling out the necessary forms, we girls moved towards the glass wall on the opposite side and found a breathtaking view of the city spread across the landscape amidst a green carpet. There was a garden area after the reception and then the top of the rooms started pooping into view one below the other!

A long stair case came into view which ran down after the garden and there were hut like rooms on either side of the staircase. Looking sideways, I saw 5 more such stairways and innumerable huts spread across, one below the other. Every room had a balcony facing the fog covered mountains.

We made our way through the garden which was brimming with huge colorful flowers; taking in the fresh aroma which filled our nostrils and our hearts too. Our minds were empty; unlike the quick, worrying workaholic Bangaloreans, we adapted ourselves to Ooty’s pace and settled inside our rooms. After the long journey, we were tired and the tiny room with a queen sized bed was very welcoming.

After what felt like a long nap, we woke to a windy nightfall. All us friends gathered in our room and danced and sang like there was no tomorrow.

Day 2 in Ooty will be continued….