Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Part 2

Veena had been in that office before, where she was going as new executive, for the reason that, she was trained in the same office for the job she was appointed. And so that place was not very unknown to her however, today she was feeling different that now on, she will work as an officer and will be responsible for the work assigned to her. The day passed wonderfully; every body in the office greeted her and wished her a good future in that office. People were coming to introduce them and asked about her. As that was her very first day her boss did not load with much work but spent most of the time explaining to her the nature of the work and such other relevant things. On the whole, the day was wonderful. She was very straightforward in telling her new office colleagues that she is new to his city and also new to this surrounding and that, they please be kind to her and help her if she makes any mistake. On such a frank appraisal on her part actually every body in the office amused themselves.

The day was over and as she moved out of the office and came on the crowded street she got baffled and felt very unsecured in that strange place, kept on walking to see the city the place she has now accepted as her new home. Looking around watching shops lit with very bright lights, decorated show windows packed with variety of merchandise and people she had never seen before moving quickly to their destination. It was a new experience to that village girl and Veena was thoroughly enjoying it. The bus stop was a few blocks away and she approached that bus stop finding it crowded people standing in a form normally called a queue but it was very difficult to know where it began and where the end is. She saw a few of her new colleagues already waiting in the queue and she greeted them, on that they signed her to come to them and Veena for the first time realized how to break the queue and push yourself in the middle of a queue, unmindful of all the protests from behind. This was a new experience, she in her own mind even though did not like the idea of pushing herself in that manner, she had to oblige as they were her new colleagues and wanted to be close to them anyhow. Bus came sluggishly wading through the busy road already traffic jammed. As the bus stood not exactly on the stop but a few paces away people in the queue heedless of the number, who is first and who is next, they poured on the entrance and began to rush in the bus. Finally Veena had learned her first lesson of getting into a bus and that too quite successfully. One of her new colleague, her name Rashmi with a gleeful smile hailed her saying, “Veena, you have done it very well, when I came to this city and tried to catch a bus in such crowd, you know I missed a few buses before could get in one finally, comparatively you seem to be pretty smart”! These comments made Veena feel very comfortable since, these comments had automatically built up her confidence.

It was all fun to be in the city, she recalled some of the comments of the experienced villagers, who had told her quite a few stories of the difficulties in the city but now she realized that things are not that bad but may be more is to be seen to understand this city properly. She recalled her father saying that, city or village, they are all places lived in by men and women like us and the basic behaviour of all people is same and so he had consoled her that she should not worry too much about the city life and not to be mindful of all the frightful comments of these people. Bus conductor came up to her and she purchased her ticket; putting it in her wallet she was carrying to keep office papers and stood along with her new friend Rashmi. The bus was packed to capacity, as next stops would come some people get down and new fellows entering the bus, all in a hurry; she was being pushed by men and women unmindful of the gender apology. In the meantime, one passenger who was sitting near Rashmi’s position got up to leave the bus and their she saw a small commotion in the standing passengers to occupy the emptying seat. To Veena’s surprise it was Rashmi who got the seat in the scramble; looking victoriously to Veena smiling, she lovingly asked her to pass on her wallet to her, Veena instinctively gave it to her. Rashmi put it on her laps along with her own purse and other bag she was carrying. Things were moving smoothly for Veena; now she has at least one friend in this strange city. Finally bus came to the stop, Veena should get down, and she walked pushing men and women the same way she was pushed while she was standing in the gangway between the seats in the bus. She realized that in city this is not to complain for. One must be in do not care mood while traveling in a bus or such public transport. Veena was down, almost thrown out as if the bus was pouring out the passengers. Looking towards the passing bus she spotted Rashmi who was expectantly looking backwards to see Veena off. They both waved to each other, the bus vanished in the crowded road; Veena looked and was actually quite tired, stood for some moments and slowly moved towards her chawl where she was presently put up at her aunty, Yamuna Sathe.

This Story continues in the next posting.
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