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Monday, October 29, 2012

A fishy affair


“So this is when I am going to feel awesome”?

“And alive, too.” I updated. "Alive is awesome", he mimicked. We were standing at the banks of a river, watching the water rush past us. It looked quite alive, the water.  A bit too much, if I am to be candid.

“I still don’t know how you managed to convince me to come for this trip.” he said ruefully. Quite right to feel rueful, for it was cold and windy and stepping into the river, at this moment, was not exactly what I was dying to do.



“You know I have to write about adventure bathing experiences. And the other bloggers are writing about how they kissed dolphins in Singapore, dived in the Maldives, slept with a blue whale in Iceland. What was I supposed to do?” I argued.

“So you made me drive you all the way from Delhi to Uttaranchal, so that we could skinny dip in this stream and you could blog about it!! If ever a man felt violated, it would be right about now. That reminds me, you haven’t paid me anything for the fuel.”

“Now now, what’s a little fuel between two friends.”

“Don’t fuel my temper.” He was going a little red in the cheeks but it could have easily been from the nip in the air.

“A good story is one, only when the author has breathed it in his heart. Just think, how vividly I’ll be able to capture this entire experience now. A river that is out to hurt, bristling and roaring, frothing and hurtling. A sagely mountain in the background, looking down upon this beast of a river, and shaking its head sadly, wishing it had brought up the river well. You, descending into the river, and being purged by it. And I, generous that I am, I stay back on shore and let you enjoy the water all by yourself. And then I ..err..”

” I had to cut short my prose, for he was looking at me in a manner not very docile.

“Let’s enter the water before I kill you.” Righto!

And what was the big deal? We had always been the tough sort, the kind that could go into the wild, the kind who’s hearts shone bloody red, the kind that could battle a lion and whack the bejesus out of it, the kind who could take a spear in the stomach, and pull it out and toss it away and walk into the sunset.  Water, what could this mere, bristling, roaring, frothing river do to us.

So being those alpha males, we entered the water as gingerly as possible, and then sprang out, screaming because the water was too cold.

So maybe we were two alpha males who had just discovered that if they went into the wild chances are they would get lost, that their hearts were not actually red but a nice bright pink with a ribbon around it, and if as much as a thorn pricked our thumbs, we’d go howling to our mothers. But you know what. We looked at the water, we grumbled a bit, and then we stepped into it again.

“Are you feeling alive?” I asked hopefully.

“Cold yes.  Wet too. Maybe it takes time coming, this alive business.”

“Evidently, sarcasm doesn’t take too much time to come to you, land or river. The water’s lovely. Want to race to that rock?”

“Wait, I think I dropped one of my nipples. Yoo hoo nipple, oii nipple, where did you fall!”

“Good that you lost it. The water has already turned both mine blue. Hey, I see a fish, is that a fish.. hey Nemo, come here, little one”

“Quite fishy,  how you just behaved. Anyway, lets race to the rock.” And we set off, kicking and pushing, straining every bone to win the race, and the fish around just rolled their eyes. "Men", said one.

Half an hour later, we were sitting with our coffees, on two wooden chairs, in a small café. A small yellow bulb was all the light that the shop had, but it gave all the warmth that the place needed. A couple of pictures of Che Guevera stared back at us.

"I would have won if you hadn't pulled my shorts" he growled. 

"I almost lost my sight when that happened. The world has never seen a more grotesque posterior. My eyes will never be the same again." 

"Women have told me that its shapely. One of God's better works of art. A model of good geometry. 

"I think I even saw a fish throw up right then."

" It was good man, that river. Been quite long since I did something like that."

"You can thank me by paying for this coffee."

"That reminds me, you still have to pay for the fuel."

Now now, what's a little fuel between two friends.

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You must be used to the drill by now. This is the 6th post in a series for the AIA Campaign. Here are the rest,

5) Vaikom Diaries: And that's how the Narayanans roll! 

4) The Heart of a Goof

3) A Night Adventure with a Croatian Backpacker

2) The Merry Adventures of Hector Narayanan

1) An Andamanese Affair