Monday, January 07, 2008

Love Struck? - Part I


The below story is a figment of my imagination. A work of fiction. The places, events and the newspaper columns are all very specific to London. It's my take on, "What if ..." those situations , did occur. I for one, do not believe, that column has any success rate at all. For more information on Love Struck, check this.

Yes, all those questioning my 'committment' after reading this piece of work, will be subjected to 50 lashes, individually, or forced to watch 'Aap Ka Suroor' dubbed in Chinese and with Swahili subtitles. 100 times, back to back! :D.

End Disclaimer.

It was 6 PM, when he wound the meeting at the client's office. It did not, go as well as he had expected. As he exited out of the building, the now, friendly, security guard, held the door open for him, with a smile. The same guard, who a few days back, had struggled to get, his name right. Huh! It was quite dark, already.

'The winters ....... ' he thought, as he walked along Fenchurch street.

'Good Evening Sir! Your copy of Londonpaper, Sir' , an earnest voice, of a newspaper delivery boy.

He ignored, the voice and walked along.

Twenty yards, ahead, another guy, wearing the trademark violet jacket, offerred thelondonpaper once again. This guy, met the same dismissive look. As he neared, Aldgate bus stop, he crossed a signal, that had the green man flickering. He ran across the zebra crossing, almost colliding with a guy standing on the other side. As he got up, he noticed, the other guy was ..... who else ... other than a londonpaper agent! It was as though they had taken over London! To make up for the collision, he decided to take a copy of thelondonpaper, from the guy. It was free anyway. As he cut along the road, crossing over to the Little Somerset street, he crossed the Duke of Somerset pub and headed to Mansell street, as he started to scan the paper. The newspaper, had hosts of articles that were typical. Madeline Mcann, Tories in lead, Increase in crime rate, unruly gang culture and a collapsing Northern rock. As he sifted through the pages, there was one column, that caught his attention. Lovestruck! Some samples .......

'To the brown-haired guy on the DLR on Saturday, 5 January. I smiled when I got on the Tube and you moved closer. You looked amazing but, instead of saying hi, I pretended to read. Drink? The Blonde"

"To Paula, the cute brunette living in Walthamstow. I’m the French guy too shy to ask for your number. We met between Seven Sisters and Tottenham on 28 December. Would love to see you. ANON"

"To the guy trying on the jacket in Zara on Oxford St on 6 January. I asked about it. Drink? ANON"

It was amusing, how people provided generic descriptions, and expected,the other to actually read that and respond and indeed meet up through that! :D. What could be the odds!! He reached his office on Mansell street, packed his stuff and boarded the bus 40, towards Dulwich Library. As he neared London bridge, he looked out of his window .......

Majestic, as ever was the Tower Bridge. It was a brilliant sight, a sight he was never bored off. Watching this architectural marvel over all the seasons, as he walked along the London Bridge, was always something he looked forward too. He got off at the London Bridge stop, and as he strolled down to the London Bridge station, crossing the Coleschurch house , and the Carphone Warehouse ..... his mobile Sony Erricson, w810i, belted out ......' Someone's callin you .... Baby .....Please pick up'. This ring tone, had got him into trouble in a team meeting, when he had forgotten, to change .... the profile to 'Meeting'. It was his offshore team, who had encountered an issue. After quite a while of haggling on the phone on a way to fix the issue, he decided , it could be speedend up, if he got back to his office. Anyway, his team was stretching far more and it was way past 11 PM in Bangalore.

He headed back to his office, walking along the London Bridge to the Monument Station. He was always amazed by the Underground network. An elegant set of 13 routes with interconnections at important junctions. Any place in London, was'nt far! It was expensive, but you got what you paid for! Yes, these tubes provided ample reasons, for people to get love struck he thought ...... ! As the display board, read, '*****Train Approaching, stand back***** ' and the tannoy system, warned people to 'Mind The Gap', indicating them to stay behind the yellow lines marked. He boarded the District line to get off at Aldgate East and head towards his office.

It was well beyond 11 30 PM when he solved the issue. As he made way to Aldgate station, to board the Circle line towards Monument. It was regulation journey of three minutes, from Aldgate to Monument .............. but not today .... that's when it happenned .......

To be continued ...... (Naaah, this is no influence from Soap Operas).

Picture Courtesy : Vyas Sreenivas. For more of Vyas's magic with a Nikon, check his flickr site .