To my wifey

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Dear my better half,
          I heard that herding one cow is as tough as herding 10 cows. But when it comes to raising children, I think it is opposite. More kids mean more trouble at home. I can feel the chaos going through.
           When we had our first child-daughter, there were two pairs of hands to take care of her. I could take care of her when you attended to other chores. Although it was heavenly to have our other halves, there were some painful moments revolved around us.
         The careers and family; we made five years successfully, to say so. Then we planned for our second child and discussed the change of my job. You gave birth to our beautiful other halves. He brought us happiness which is still going strong. The career plan got materialized and I could only share the close moments with our son for only 3 weeks. It saddened me even after I knew I had to face this soon.
         I have told you about the new place here. I have also shared how soon I adjusted to the new work place and learned to harmoniously co-exist with the new colleagues. You are happy for me.
          If physical comfort has to bring happiness to people, I would love to see the names of the billionaires hitting the top places every day. There is no trend as such and although I am not a billionaire, I will tell you why physical comfort is not a criterion to make person happy.
          My life has slowed down. Unlike in the past, I start my day from 8.45 in the morning. I reach office at 9 most often although I see the liberal to report any time. There is no traffic on the way. I don’t remember a time I had to grumble unlike I used to on Thimphu roads. I eat from the common mess which sells any kind of dish at half the price. I stay in the office until I have my dinner from the same mess and go home around 9 in the night. The house is quiet and cold. With no one inside I can walk around in my birthday suit.
         If you think I live like a king, you are wrong. I often think of you with kids. We have two lovely kids now. But it pains me to think there is only 1 pair of hands to hold them. Women may be great to be able to do many things at a time but without other helping hands, it will be challenging. I feel guilty. This freedom is painful.
        I miss all of you every night. I have to console myself. I think that I have not gone away from you to battlefield where homecoming depends on the enemy’s bullet. I console myself that I am not in the country mopping the grossly whiskers from master’s bed. I console that I am in our motherland just few mountains away.
      You know, one morning, as I sat to have my breakfast, a colleague told me that he found me “so decent”. He explained that he did not find me roaming in the odd places with odd women. I knew what he meant. I would not do that. There will not be purge from my mind even if I soak in the holiest water for eternity. It is good that girls don’t make the move first. I have the upper hand not to make that move. By the way, I have come up with this thought that all women should marry dumb husbands. Ah! In another thought, all smart men become dumb husbands after marriage, right? Just kidding.
      I am looking forward to meet you all. This time, I will have three of you to make me churn my stomach. I will blush and fall in love all over again.....again and again.
     Good night
Your better half,
  Porkie Pie

From Trongsa (III)

Monday, July 29, 2013

After staying in the guesthouse for 3 weeks, I have shifted to my flat today. It is constructed out of cement fiberboard as main walls insulated in between with thermo-coil. The ceiling has glass wool to retain heat in winter. The cozy luminaries form a perfect interior. The flat boasts of 2 bedrooms, 1 living room, 1 kitchen & 2 toilets. It is furnished with sofa sets, 32 inch LCD, dressing mirror, 1 cupboard, 1 queen-size bed, 1 single bed with mattresses, pillows, towels, curtains, bed covers and dining set. The kitchen and toilets are connected to geysers each. The refrigerator is on the way. Everything should cost me Nu. 2600 per month as house rent. It is cheap and I scream “fantabulous”.
But this flat is too big for me. It will only become small if I have my family but they will never come here. Therefore, I am looking for an alternative option - to get a new family. Of my colleague and his wife who do not have a house right now. There are many like him, who have put up in the private houses, without basic utilities, as far as 10km from the work place. We talked about it last night but I saw a glimpse of reservation from him today. It must be his wife, I thought. Not of the kind of feeling insecurity living along with a single person but from the privacy point of view. I told him the wall is sound proof.
Did I see that naughty smile? I stressed upon having a rakhi system in our culture so that I become brother to his wife right away. Later, he told me he will wait for another month until new house comes up in the colony. I told him I lost my new family and corrected that our culture is fine without the rakhi system.
Until then, for all the exorbitant house rents that I paid in Thimphu, it is the “revenge” coming all the way from type III of temporary colony, Langthel, Trongsa.

From Trongsa (II)

Monday, July 22, 2013

I have put up in a transit camp. It has the facilities of a three star hotel except there is no wi-fi and data card fails to connect it. I spent the first weekend in Langhtel in the project office. There were other colleagues who came to work. They are all hard working people. No officer leaves office at 5.30. They remain seated working on the bills until 7 p.m., play table tennis which is nearby, have dinner in the mess and leave to their respective beds around 9.30. I envy how each of them take their work professionally. Having come from civil service very recently, I could only draw huge contrast of professionalism in these two public sectors.

I have one cozy empty bed beside me (which instills natural yearnings to see it occupied by someone who leaves long strands of left over from her head the next day). It has become a dumping yard of my clothes. In the mornings I don’t waste time wearing gho. Nobody wears gho. The tunnels have yet to see people in Bhutanese attire. I got a pair of gumboot which I have kept in the office. They are big. The size that fits me is out of stock. I got yellow safety helmet. Yellow helmets are worn by laborers, the store keeper told me. White helmet followed the fate of black gumboot. I am a worker so I wear them. In big gumboot and yellow helmet, I drive bolero to the site. I don’t expect rocks to identify me as engineer from the color of my head. It is my head that instructs contractor to put correct methodologies of work like an engineer. And that matters.

There are no cock-teasers (intentionally did not look for synonym of this word) around. Most are males. There are few females but a man in yellow helmet and over sized gumboot behind the wheels doesn't make their heads turn around. I am safe inside my pants.

I remember telling my friend that we should remind ourselves of not letting loose in the wild while being away from our homes. “It is the test of commitments,” we agreed. And the reality, there does not even exist one entrance exams for us.

Hello from Trongsa (I)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

A few updates here. I am globally positioned in between the rough coordinates of 250000 easting and 300000 northing. Locally I am along the longitude that cuts Bhutan into two halves. I am in Trongsa Dzongkhag at a place called Langthel which nests at 1230 meters above mean sea level. I have been hearing about hydro power projects for years and now I am into it to help turning four giant turbines to produce 180 mega watt each from Mangdechu.

It was not in my wildest dreams that the river which flows under Bjeezam would provide me food, clothing and shelter. I have crossed this river several times in the past. I don’t remember once that I tried to look twice as I passed by it. Caution to note: nothing in this world is there to ignore altogether. An old tree standing below the narrow road could prove pivotal if an ill fated overturned car is stopped by its stem.

Six pairs of eyes glued onto me in the 12 x 15 feet room. The number 1 asked me questions related to my past experiences. I kept my answers precise and to the point while covering I have technically practiced everything under the sun that shone in Bhutan. “It is only the field of hydro power that  is absent in my CV,” I said. “It is as good as I have constructed airport for it consists of runway and the buildings. I have constructed roads and buildings before. I don’t see railways coming to Bhutan and therefore, I am left only to construct tunnels and dams.” I waited for the next question.

“You had handled only small packages,” the number 2 said. I had constructed water supply schemes to buildings to roads to bridges and to them I was the small time project manager. It was no time and place for me to retaliate. “Our one project is above Rs. 5000 million. How will you handle such a huge project?” number 1 asked.

“Sir, I will try my best. I am a hard working person. I can work in extreme pressure. I know I can do it,” this reply is a bullshit. I did not say it and would never say it.  If I am the interviewer, I would immediately reject that interviewee.

I cleared my throat, tactically placed my brand new lagey on the table and locked my fingers. “Sir, the figures don’t matter to me,” I said. “It is the workmanship that counts. It is about abiding strictly to the technical specifications apart from timely contract management meetings and following the financial rules that counts. If we follow it, the figures how big they may seem will fall in place automatically,” I replied.

I was then asked series of questions which don’t warrant to remind here. A week later I received a call of my result that leads me to appreciate the river the flows under Bjeezam all through the times I passed over it.

The new place, the new work - the responsibility is huge. I had never been a leader to many people. But I feel lucky I came from an organization that induces leadership to its employees every day. It is the show time but I am being mindful of my colleagues and others around me. It is the test of time that I remain emotionally intelligent without losing the focus of outcome we collectively desire in the end. I have made the promise that I live up to their expectation and they categories me as a good human being, a good colleague and a tireless no-nonsense worker at the job.

To son, to daughter

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The eyes that don't see a thing
The lips that don't speak a word
The ears that hear only rumbling words
The skin that changes its color every day,
I am coming home my son
To test if you see my circling finger
To lock your mouth
To sing you a lullaby
To change your nappy
Holding your tiny toes.
Daddy is coming home soon, son.
You have become a big sister
But to me you shall always remain my little girl.
Two nights, the terrible nights
I have choked to tell you the tales.
Mamma told me you cried
Before you went to bed.
I am coming home, my girl
To tell you the stories you like
On fairy tales, of you
All through the night.

Mantra count down

Monday, June 24, 2013

This is my last week under civil service rule. I am not feeling anything about it. The count down is not about this last week as civil servant. The count down is going away from my family. Of course, I will make my time with them more frequent as possible.

It will be difficult for my daughter. She will be 5 this August. For the last five years we have not stayed apart except for one or two weeks in a year. She is closer to me than to her mom.

Ever since she was in the formation stage, I used to sing every evening. I heard that babies are sound sensitive that they can recognize the songs or voices when they arrive outside. So, I sang one particular song every evening. My wife had to tolerate my voice though.

I could not sing on the first day after daughter came to this world. If I had, I could have agonized those husbands who were holding babies born from Cesarean section. But I tested the theory the next day when both my females were discharged. I sang near her ears, soft and melodious (exaggerated). She slept peacefully. I sang the song whenever I got the chance. At one month old, I could see her head positioning to my song. I confirmed she did recognize the song.

At three months, I hummed like this - unu waktsa, unu waktsa (this baby, this baby) while holding her. Her head on my palm, legs towards my abdomen, I hummed 'unu waktsa, unu waktsa...". I still do it today although I can't hold her in that position for long now. Her growing legs don't allow it too. But it was at 1.2 years that she shocked me. As usual I picked her up and positioned her head on my palm. Before I hummed my mantra, she hummed it synchronizing to my hands' swing. It was a magic to me. I took her to all her uncles and aunties to boast of my miracle. She obliged whenever I swung her head up and down. Still today, she hums it  when ever I keep my palms under her head. Her uncles try to copy me but she does not hum for her. I think this trend will be continued until we grow old. I can imagine a time when she announces to become a fiancee that I will lift her up and repeat our childhood memories. Her man will find us crazy when she hums "Unu waktsa, unu waktsa" that time.

And what do I have different now? I have a new arrival. He is 15 days old today. Another one week, I will be gone from him only to see him changed his face. I heard babies can change their faces for nine times. I only hope his ninth face is as handsome as his daddy. That should make him proud throughout his life.

Well, what do I do with my son in this limited time. I sniff him. Yes, like a mongrel hunting for a deer. The baby smell is sweet. The smell is stronger in the hands. I smell his gloves. They are wet from putting in his mouth. The breast feed makes it sweet. Every time I sniff him, I implant it in my brain. When I am alone tossing in my bed, I want this smell to come to me. I will be instantly near my baby. So, I sniff him like a mongrel hunting for a deer. Of course, my wife finds it funny. She does not know my brain is capturing every olf of our son.

He is a peaceful boy, sleeps 24 by 7. I got a mantra for him. With the limited time to stay with him, I want him to grow as big as possible in three weeks. I want him to talk to me. I want him to tell me jokes. But he is a little fellow who knows only to sleep. So I hum along that line, in bit of frustration as "Yib yibsa, yib yibsa" which translates to "always sleeping, always sleeping". My daughter caught me while humming to her brother. She too leans towards him and hums along with me. "Yib yibsa, yib yibsa" we sing together for him.

I don't know whether he will be able to recognize my voice when I hum it the next time I see him. If it does not work, I may have to think of another thing. With circumstance, anything will come to the rescue. I will go for a long distance technique that time. But for all the time I have at home with my family, I can hum "unu waktsa, unu waktsa and yib yibsa, yib yibsa" 24 by 7.

Random thoughts

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I am swallowing changkey. It is been the only alcoholic drink I consume lately. I can't consume stronger alcohol. My legs are suffering from 'neuropathy'. They deprive me of celebrating my second child. But I take it as a blessing. Soon I am going away from my family and I know I would drink almost every evenings. Now I won't.

The countdown has begun. I have exactly 8 working days to be in civil service. I will be no more a civil servant. It is a long journey in a single life. In last decade, I have changed 3 organizations. I have always believed in office hopping. My belief towards experiencing everything I can within short span of life is going strong. Every job becomes just another job with time. I have experienced my motivation level falling down after 3 years in one organization. It tends to affect my work. To maintain the tempo of performing above marginal level, I need to have zest in my blood. I get that when I change new organization. I have to keep my energy meter raised to the top. And this time, it is an overhaul. I resign from civil service. I am joining one project for 3 years. Perfect duration. I may not be civil servant. But I will be one of the public servants. Looking forward to it. My energy meter is at the top.

Changkey is mild a drink (if I can call it). I think everyone should take it once. It is not readily available though. I thank my wife for delivering us a son. For you, my son. It is my second mug.

I have many things to do in the new place. I wish I get time. First one, I have to complete a set of drawings for my uncle. They are pending for a month.

Second, I have characters waiting in an attempt of a movie script. I know, my friend Ngawang is losing his patience. Whether it finds screen or not, I will make it to the blue print. It is pending since last Thimphu Tsechu.

Third, damn, I am so guilty. My manuscript needs to complete soon. I have enjoyed writing this book. For the first time, I have laughed over what I write. It will be a priority to reach the shelf earliest this year end. Some forms of shapes are already happening in my mind for the third one. I get jittery feelings to attempt an investigative genre. But for now, I have to suppress it.

So much to do, so little time. Ah! third mug? No, thanks. I expect another group of baby showers tomorrow. I will finish off their changkey when they are gone, just like today.

The most unwanted spam in my email account

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Destiny has been defied when one particular spam starts following me. It is been over a month I get additional mail hiding in my account. For some reasons, I deleted the first few even before opening them. However, my curiosity gradually got aroused and thus I opened them, one by one. 'Everything does not happen according to its fate or destiny,' my belief confirmed. Out of all the spams in the world, it never occurs I need to follow the contents of it. The spam reads as follows:

From: Size matters

Two years back, I wrote a story declaring myself as a man who has a content manhood in my groin.

Whenever I get these spams, I trash them instantly with a proud smile on my face.

I consider something is still left in me

Friday, March 15, 2013

If anything had gone smoothly as per plan, I would have been in position to publish my second book by next month. The writing stopped abruptly last September when many official things came up eating away my time. As soon as I settled down after reaching home, I could sit behind the desktop and typed up to 500 words every day. It had reached 75% of the story when I failed to put life support to the characters.

Unlike my first book which I had shared some of the first few chapters on the blog-site (, the second book is secretive even to my closest of friends. Now, I feel pain. The characters don't visit me in my sleep. Gazing away from the window has failed to inspire me. I lack conviction even to face the characters of the story. Yesterday, with a heavy heart, I opened the draft and read some chapters I wrote. The comedian failed to put smile on my face. The girl did not like the poem the boy had written to her. The boy no longer possessed the idea to romanticize. The idea of a light-hearted romantic story was seen as a tragedy that did not get justice in the end. I excused from the family and went for a long walk taking Kuenselphodrang road.

The thin crescent moon had just come out of the hill. I walked further up the road. The streetlights started to radiate the valley of Thimphu below me. I sat on the culvert and took long breaths. The chilled air brushed my cheek. Behind me, the darkness had already enveloped the pines. I searched out for the moon. "I am a failed writer," I murmured. The thin dapple of cloud had shrouded my moon. "Do you see me?" I shouted. "You should be able to see me. You see every part of the world. Ah! You don't see me. The cloud had shrouded you." The wind blew hard. The branches of pines swished. "I did not ask you," I shouted. My body had become cold. I wanted to head back home, then and there.

Whether I was the first to stand up from the culvert or the moon had cleared the cloud, I was not able to say.  I thought we have acted at the same time because I took the seat back when behind me the pines no longer hid in darkness. The thin crescent moon had gained its strength to shine the world beneath. I could see the silhouette of mountain peaks taking their shapes just as any artistic hands of a painter are capable of. I was left gazing at the peaks for some time and then goose bumps covered my skin. "She had to read this," I thought. "He had to write this poem to her. This time she will enjoy his poem."

This morning, I woke up before the crack of dawn. I opened up my draft and read through once again. The same story, the same characters, the same poem, the same comedian -  everything had the story to tell. I smiled, I cried, I felt romantic.

Why were they different the other night? Was the comedian too drunk to make me laugh? Was the protagonist suffering from a rheumatic heart disease that he did not love his girl? I closed the draft and knew what I just have to do.

I hereby

Thursday, February 28, 2013

After almost a decade in civil service, I have decided to resign from it. The resignation comes after much contemplation and introspection. It is not an easy decision by any matter when whole of world is going through financial crisis with companies downsizing the staff and when unemployment level has reached the peak. And not when my career was taking its tempo. They think, resigning from P2 or grade 5 is such a stupid idea when I had the possibility of reaching to the specialist level even at the younger age. I just did not want to reach anywhere. Friends also showed the concern on how I would keep supplying the food on my table. I had nothing to think about it because it was the only risk I had in my mind.

As young as fourteen summers ago, I stood before the panel of officers who laid in front of them a few choices of engineering I could choose. Perplexed, I chose Civil Engineering with a single shot of thought. I could work in a private sector was the thought that ran during that time and I ticked beside it. Four years made me a professional that did not deter me to stand under any weather conditions in the civil service. I became darker working under the sun as the splashed concrete hardened on my clothes. I cared nothing even when slump of mud or dusts sat on my scalp. I learned the language of Bengali, honed the skill in Hindi that many would mistake I was yet another noisy labourer shouting his lungs out. I could only jest to my family that I wore Lagey so that passersby knew I was the engineer of that particular site. So many cubic meters of concrete have I casted, so many tonnes of steel bars have I buried permanently inside it. So many pages of measurement books have I scribbled, so many of broken measuring tapes gone not to wastes. I learned the charm of working with due diligence which gave me peaceful sleep at nights. But nothing came easy on the way. I missed many good holidays that I feel completely exhausted now. I did not miss my daughter's birthday last year because I had to attend to a broken ankle of an expatriate labour in the ICU the year before. Both ways I loved my time.

Indeed, it was the most vulnerable sector I have seen. Money talks but I stand proudly now that no one had dared to buy me. I followed 3 Fs (Friendly, Fair & Firm) very strictly from day one of my tenure. There were incidents contractors tried to come to my house. The next lesson drawn was never to tell them the location of my house. It was my stupidity  to tell one contractor about my drinking habit in the evenings. One evening, he called me up to ask him if I wanted anything. I smiled of his smartness. He thought he could do the trick. People fall weak of conviction when drunk. I am glad I did not. "Can you really give me what I want?" I asked. There was a huge relief of sigh from the other end. Before he said anything I told him I wanted the quality work and complete it on time and put the phone off with a warning not to call me on such matters. We did not talk for a few weeks then but I got what I wanted, the work on time with not so of sub-standard quality.

Now the time has come for me to make a change. It is my dream I dreamed since childhood, to be in a private sector. Although it does not come at an appropriate time, perhaps, I prefer to choose now. The test of will comes not at the good times but when everything seems to fall apart. Just a few months more and I am eligible to draw more than two hundreds of ngultrums. I decided I don't want it. I have lost more than what I should if I account the details. If I cling to it, I am not going to enjoy my dream.

But, what is my dream? What is my plan B? Well, I have none, at least now. Whatever little I have in my mind, it is too early to tell the world. Only one person in this world believes in me and she knows about it. My wife, she is such an introvert she would not tell anything about it to anyone.

I feel good. If one can wake up one day and think he is jobless and yet still not panic about it, the enormous energy of peace he generates can motivate him through out his life.

I have always preferred to wake up until I am done with my sleep and then go to the work. In all these years,  I woke up to go to work. At work I always missed something deep inside me. While I work zealously behind a desktop true to the nature of a professional, I was not. Behind this professional had a passion that wanted to wake up and take its course. Upon rationalization, I knew this passion would not get me bread. How many years it took that 'peace to oneself' is as important as that 'bread'? Could I draw the line between them? I pondered. Now, I saw a starting dot. How long will I take to stretch it depends on  when I make the beginning.

Thus, I made this small beginning from the tiniest of dot, I submitted my resignation. to continue it someday.


Thursday, February 7, 2013

One thing led to another. The years passed by - a baby boy turned to a golden man. Next the old man died with many others alike. And now we live in this world. Things have changed a lot.

Once upon a time, a family in the village waited for their guests to come to eat the meal together. Now most of the families wait for their guests to go away so that they can have the meal alone.

A cell phone rings. At the same time, a child cries on his shoulder. The father's instinct makes him to pick up the phone. A phone has become a priority over a child. Sigh!

Every house has a neighbour and not every neighbour knows the other. But every family knows the car parked in the front belongs to their neighbour. When has this machine become so important that human beings know them but not their owners?

A little boy is asked to memorize the address of his home. His father says, "You live in Druk Building, room no. 10, Gari Lam, above Pema's shop." The child is confused and asks his father to repeat again. The father slams the child and even calls him idiot. The rote education system still lingers on father's head. Teach the son like this, you big idiot, " We live in room 10. Room no. 10 is in Druk Building and this building is in Changzamtok. Changzamtok is in Thimphu." Perhaps, your son is not an idiot at all. Wink.

Nike, Reebok, Addidas, Levis, Gucci and what not brands. We buy them for the owners of these brands and not to ourselves. People have become preconditioned in the mindsets that these big brands make us good looking. Wearing expensive things don't make us rich, it only robs us from getting the basic necessities.

We eat as long as we live. Eat to live or live to eat, I don't care. But we definitely over-eat. All the diseases come from over eating. And the drinks, alcohol, we die from it. I pledge I will not die from the later.

(Courtesy: Friend Leki for this insightful conversation)

The morning fight

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

It has become terribly cold in Thimphu. It seems the mercury level has also dropped low in some part of Indian cities as one page on Facebook humorously says ‘The refrigerator door of Rajnikanth has remained open’. I have requested him to close the refrigerator door immediately but of course, he is so busy he does not heed to my request.

The cold always reminds me of Hum Jaiga and I try to become one. Every morning, I accuse my daughter for a fight, “Let’s fight, will you?” She accepts it and we agitate ourselves by hitting softly and running around the house. After five minutes both of us pant and feel no more cold.

But yesterday, my partner was in no mood to fight back. I saw her sitting on the couch watching her favourite Chota Bheem. I was in no mood to surrender. My accusation had no effect on her. I changed the tactic; I accused Chota Bheem. I said, “I wish Chota Bheem dies.” It did not affect her. Is she sick? I thought.

“What happened to you?” I asked her softly, sitting beside her. She did not reply. She remained silent for some time and when she spoke, this father got a new idea to agitate her.

“I saw a dream,” she said.
“What did you see?” I asked. I placed my palm over her forehead. It was cold to my happiness.
“I was going downstairs and almost fell down,” she explained her dream. I could only smile. That was the first time she narrated her dream. I wondered if it was possible to remember the dream if she had ever seen it.

“Don’t you want to fight with me today?” I asked.
“I want to watch TV,” she replied. She was adamant she would not have another regular escapade of hitting-running to keep ourselves warm. I changed my concentration to my wife.

“Daughter has got hurt,” I shouted towards the kitchen.
“What happened to her?” my wife replied, concerned.
“It seems we have to take her to the hospital,” I said. I saw my wife coming out of kitchen towards us.
“Is she sick?” she asked.
“She had fallen down, from the staircase. We need to take her to a doctor to see if her legs are alright,” I explained.
It caught the concentration of my daughter. She does not like to go to a doctor.
“I did not fall down,” she screamed.
“Yes, you did. You told me just a moment ago. Don’t lie to your mother,” I said.
“Oww, mommy, yek cho ley,” she was breaking down.
Mommy squatted in front of her and asked what had happened to her.
“She fell down,” I intervened. “From the staircase in her dream.”

And next, it was not the daughter who chased me but her mother.

That F word

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

When something goes out of proportions, only one word takes over me. The face may give birth to a smile, the words may sling silver or perhaps I may shake someone’s hands firm but when the situation leads to an unnatural acceptance of my inner cognizance, I shout this word, F***, very loud.

Sometime, a month ago, I got a call from one of the private schools in Thimphu. It was a bad news the school could not accept the enrollment of my daughter. The reason was simple; her age did not fulfil the criteria. She was lesser by a few months to five. I cleared my voice.

“It is okay, sir,” I replied. “But can I say something?” I asked softly.
“What do you have to say?” he said.
“Sir, I knew the criteria of attaining five years old to get into your school,” I started. “Yet I applied for it.”
The man at the other end giggled, perhaps, having found me as a foolish person.
“Sir, you and I know, most of the kids are not five years old. They are made five, right sir?” I said.
The giggling stopped. “What are you trying to say?” he asked.
“Parents forge the ages of their own kids and I was told to do the same,” I explained.
The giggling started again. It confirmed, at least to me, he heard me correct.
“I submitted the original health card of my daughter because deep within me, I expected the school management would consider her application. I thought school would think on this line, ‘When we consciously know many of the submitted ages are not true, at least one father submitted honestly for his kid whose age is as equal as to those we approve yearly’.  I had this inner flame glowing you would call my daughter for a basic interview. I would not not mind if she was rejected from there.” I took a deep breath consciously keeping a low sense of humor in between.

“We are sorry, we go by books,” he said.

It did not seem he was hurt. There was no reason to get hurt, because I did not accuse the management of the school at all. On top of that, I made the statement light hearted through humble tone. It was only known to me that I was belittling him and his school tactfully by such a manner.

He did not say sorry. I did not mind it. Instead, I told him my daughter will come back next year and make his school proud. He laughed at it. But that was not how I wanted to end the story.

“Sir, don’t you want to know, why I did not forge my daughter’s age?” I asked rhetorically.
“Sir, I consider myself living an honest life all through. It would have been very bad of me to begin my daughter’s life telling lie. Goodbye sir,” I ended the conversation.

I still wonder whether he was able to understand that his school was a promoter of telling lies. Whether he got the meaning or not, I said this F word very loud.

Short, Fat and the Tall

Friday, January 4, 2013

One is short, one is fat and one is tall. The short is dark, the fat one a pixel better and the tall one fairer. The short is the ugliest, the fat one uglier, the tall one a plain ugly. The short one is from East, fat from Central and tall from West of Bhutan. The short is an engineer by profession, fat is an employee of NGO and the tall one is the educationist.

These three are not the muskeeters but a triad who met over the lunch. When the waiter came to their table, each gave their orders of their favourite dish. The life of the waiter was made simple because each one of them wanted to have the same dish.

The fat started to talk on a topic which  people on other tables mostly would not think of. He talked on books. The jaws of the tall man dropped while the short’s mouth remained wide open. How much each wanted to share their thoughts on the books? Hence, each talked about the passion of books.

The tall one then switched the topic to ‘blogs’. The jaws of short one dropped while the fat’s mouth remained wide open. How much each wanted to share their thoughts on their blogsites?

These three are differently same and they are Ugyen as Short one for, Nawang as Fat one for and Passu as Tall one for
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