Due to my increasingly worsening ADL, I’ve been unable to post for sometime. The situation has not changed even after they came and fiddled with the computer…. Anyways, here’s something I found on my computer. Old story…. New funda!
If I had to chronicle my life from birth to the time I am sitting here talking about what is happening to me, it’d be a yawn fest comprising of nothing but “I got up, did my daily chores, went back to sleep.” Not exactly the stuff of legend, you must agree. My yearning for an adventurous life was only matched by my propensity to obey every single sign for whatever it said. It could be “Do not Walk on Grass” and “Women, do not wear trousers in place of worship” to “Danger 550V”.People tell me that this nature of mine is keeping me from opening up whole new vistas.
Anyway, the last time I heard from a family friend, he had been in the midst of Kashmir and in his own words “I shot two terrorists and got a medal, Ma’am”. Now, why couldn’t I shoot two terrorists and get a medal? Common sense must provide a satisfactory answer, but my dreams were filled with a brave heroine (me, of course) rescuing people from landslides and floods and shooting Bond-worthy villains left, right and centre. The dreams provided a wake up call, weirdly enough. “Get up and go looking for trouble” would be how I would paraphrase what it said, looking back in the cold light of the day, but at the moment, it heralded a whole new way of life for me. I was going to be a REBEL, laughing in the face of authority with all the suavity of a female Don Quixote.
So, I set off into my brave new life, kicking down some pretentious signs on the way, literally walking the fine line. By which, of course, I mean the path I trode over the edge of the not-so-beautifully mowed lawn in the public park. I paused by the side of a dustbin that said “Use me” and nonchalantly dropped a used plastic cup right by its side, along with the tonnes of other cups, plates and multihued plastic bags containing godforsaken garbage. Imagine my consternation, then, when I realised people had already beaten me to throwing their waste just inches outside the dustbins. On that spot, I made a solemn oath that I would find one innovative way to bend the rules that no one had ever before devised.
Thus began my incessant quest. On my yearly walk around our quiet colony, I chanced upon a pristine wall that proclaimed “Stick no bills”. I looked furtively all around, pulled out my purse, took an expired laundry receipt (a BILL, duh!) and stuck it with chewing gum. Feeling like a happy camper, I walked on, thinking “That was simple!”. Unfortunately, I had picked election season. The next time I passed the wall, my bill was nowhere to be seen amidst the garish four toned posters asking people to vote for the least harmful candidate. There was a lot of gnashing of teeth and I steeled myself for a very long ordeal.
Other opportunities of lawlessness presented themselves at the wheel of my car. Waiting at a red light along the main thoroughfare in the city, I was struck anew by the sign (no, not literally) that said “No Horn, No Bright Beam in City Limits”. It being day, I could not disobey the second of the diktats. But, I leaned long and hard on the horn, turning it into a piece fit for Bach, right into the ears of an unsuspecting motorist. As luck would have it, I hadn’t counted on the light changing and an immediate cacophony of sounds arose like the screams of tortured souls in Hell and I momentarily became dazed. Whereupon, glares came my way and realisation dawned that my getaway had to be quick, so down came my foot on the accelerator and I was out in a jiffy (which for your information, is one tenth of a second). Cruising through the roads, my eyes lit up at the speed limit signs, since they seemed awfully low for what I was doing. Looking around, I dismissed the claims of that piece of rebellion as most vehicles were speeding past me like I was stationary. Seeing a “No Parking” sign on the side of the road, I made an illegal U-turn and parked right under it. Looking around, there was no other motorist who had shared in my little bit of mutiny. Heaving a large sigh of relief, I trotted off to the shops nearby. I came back and saw a nice pink ticket waiting for me. It informed me that I was poorer by a thousand quid.
The sad saga continued. Driving privileges were stripped and I was reduced to laying rubber down on footpaths instead. I was also assured by reliable sources, amidst gales of laughter, that they had also resorted to parking in forbidden places when none other were available, and never with such disastrous repercussions.
Browsing through a store, I saw a “If you break me, you pay for me” warning. Even though sorely tempted to attempt the feat, my empty pockets cried out in protest. Squaring my shoulders, I strode off in the direction opposite the tempting notices, ignoring the “Do Not Touch” labels adorning yet other shelves en route.
I had never before realised how many “Trespassers will be prosecuted” (“to the full extent of the law” Optional) festooned the forbidding walls of many public buildings in the city, until I had set out on my search. Now, what the law said about the punishment meted out to people who traipsed through the hallowed (err) premises of, say, The Indian Institute of Higher Secondary Learning for the Cranially Challenged, when clearly they should have sat at home and twiddled their thumbs, I did not know. Well, I was going to find out. Wasting no opportunity to ignore the dire warning, I walked in through a hole in the fence and found myself in a mini-jungle of the kind made famous by Tarzan. I hadn’t taken two steps, before I found out what exactly happened in the aforementioned forest. Delicacy prevents me from elaborating. Needless to say, I made a quick exit, perhaps scarred for life.
I sat in bed glowering over my strange misfortune, when lo and behold! I saw that our neighbours had procured a ferocious Alsatian and posted outside their imposing gates “Beware of Dog”. To my pleasant surprise, people seemed scared of the mutt’s scary visage and actually steered clear of it. Immediately, I had to be contrary. So, one day, I sidled over to their house and started making faces at the canine from the relative safety of being on the right side of the gates, namely out. The dog trotted over to the other side and went through the routine of barking, growling and baring its over large teeth. (Wonder if that’s were they get the word canine from). After it was satisfied that it had fulfilled its duty with respect to the rigmarole it was expected to enact for my benefit, it wagged its tail and woofed with real pleasure. I guess it had seen a kindred spirit. Sighing with dismay, I opened the gate and patted its shaggy head, fending off some licks.
Long story short, I take Prince out on walks now and the only thing you have to beware of as far as he is concerned is getting too close to his tongue. He can give sandpaper a complex. As for me, I have finally taken the hint Fate gave me and definitely decided that the adventurous life is not for me. The windmills are safe from further invasions.