The clock ran past 3. The night was at its peak. It was breezy and pleasant. I was sitting by the window, thinking of her. She had said we would go for a walk the next morning. I was excited; waiting for the dawn to break.
The last time we had met, she seemed quite pleased. It was our first date.
Willow Cafe; 1600 hours; Thursday afternoon.
Odd Time?? Perhaps, it was. But then she was a busy architect and I was a blogger – any window would have suited me.
We were meeting after 4 years, I had to make it a special one. A custom coffee mug with her pic on it, the one that was very dear to me and that of Dr. Sheldon Cooper; Yeah!! The Big Bang guy – he’s her hero; I got it made a day before our date.
“A flower bouquet. Would that be like overdoing?? Would chocolates be better??”
“Casuals or Formal??”
I had been asking such questions from friends and cousins all through the week.
As if all those weird suggestions weren’t enough, I read through online dating portals – what to talk, which topics to choose for an interesting conversation – all that stuff you want to be sure of before your first date.
O! I was excited.
2:30 pm and I was already in the cafe, taking to the manager.
“Sir, if you could please serve coffee in this mug.”
I got the window-side table reserved for us.
Song playlist. Checked. Just in case I feel like dedicating a song to her.
All was done. The match was well poised for a win, but then it rained.
Yups!! It did, not literally. But then she called, called to tell me something I didn’t want to hear.
– “Hey!! If we could switch the venue to Brista – Sector 10, it would be really nice”.
With all the preparations done, I didn’t want to change the place, nobody would have. ‘NO’ was what was on my mind. But my tongue spelt yes. Capital Y-E-S.
– “Sector 10. Umm.. Ok. No Problem. I’ll be there”, I told her, as if it hardly mattered.
– “Great. Also, two of my friends will be accompanying me. I hope it’s OK with you”.
You know there’s this thing – If you want something very badly, the whole universe conspires for you to achieve it – Paulo Coelho said so in The Alchemist. No offence Sir, but i suppose I was to me made the first testament that this belief wasn’t always true.
How the hell did she think it would be O.K. with me?
But then, She knew it was ‘ME’ – the one and only ‘me’ who would do anything for her.
-“Two friends?? Ok. Not an issue. I will be pleased to meet them”.
“How would i present the mug to her?? Should I now, given that her friends are coming??”
When the distortion field faded away, I realized I was in trouble, and that too a big one. I called up my cousin.
-“Dude, go for it. If you like her, be bold enough”.
-“What about the venue??”
-“Go to Willow Cafe – Sector 11. Talk to the manager. Call her there.”
I went according to the new plan. She responded well.
1600 hours; I was there at Willow Cafe. She came by.
Just as she entered, with two of her clowns, of-course, I was arguing with the manager.
-“Its against our policy to serve in anything other than our own utensils”.
-“O! Perhaps, then you would like me to talk to your seniors, Do you?”.
We took a table of four. I thought she would sit opposite to me. But then it was ‘HER’, who was i kidding, as obvious, she preferred the other chair.
And now ‘The Situation’ – Her friends, Me and then there was She. Totally Awkward.
She broke the ice and slowly the conversation started to flow.
School, College, Hobbies – we talked over lots of things – with me sitting in a crooked position, trying to maintain the diagonal eye contact.
Those memories, they all sprouted up and then blossomed. I could still smell the freshness of the time we had spent together.
She was looking pretty that day. Her smile was beautiful. Her lips, O yeah! I did fancy them.
All the time i kept gazing at her face; what she talked about hardly mattered. Peace. Solace. Serenity. O God!! It felt so calm and soothing.
The order arrived. She had asked for a cafe latte.
The custom mug – it was there. The funny thing though was she didn’t realize it.
How could that be?? I mean, seriously, How does one not figure that??
But then, one of her friends pointed it out.
-“You are the poster girl. Check the cafe mug”
And I survived an impending heart attack.
Now, I could see the pearls on her face, they showed up as her lips spread wide with joy – her teeth.
I was falling for her. Again.
But the question was “Would she be willing to try me??”
I was confused.
But there was this feeling inside me – ‘She may’.
I had a good time. Her friends – I doubt about them. Her – yes, at-least that’s what her SMS said.
“We would remain in touch over the phone.”
She smiled and said “Yups!!. We will”
Crazy. I went gaga over her.
That was one of the best Thursdays of my life.
Days passed by. I texted her, called her.
She said we would go for a walk on coming Wednesday.