Our plan to set out to Kashid/Murud/Panchgani/Lonavala/ANYWHERE on 2nd evening got cancelled. The rigid me spoilt her mood even though I understood why we could not go. We could not even have gone partying for the same reasons.
Through the early hours of that night, I looked up places close to Pune where I could go myself the next morning. I liked Wai, but dropped the idea because of Anant Chaturdashi on the 3rd. Tamhini Ghat was next. The pictures looked good. The distance didn’t seem too much either. And so I knew what I was going to do on my 23rd! Away from the black cat who was crying non-stop in the hostel that night!!
We maintain the standard midnight cake culture here on campus. But I was not expecting it to happen because of last minute changes in plans, and also because of the fact that we had classes till late on the 2nd which would have meant that nobody could have gone to the city to get the cake. I forgot that Priyam was missing from the last class.
Ridhima came to invite me at 11:55 p.m. Yumm chocolate truffle was waiting. With some 18 people. The damn mood finally behaved.
Lots of people, lots of smiles, LOTS of cake on my face, cake horns, a few phone calls, flowers, hugs, pictures, and a cold water head bath on a kinda chilly night, and it was 1:00 a.m.!
The girls – Ridhima, Swetha, Priyam, Ruhi, and Vrinda – had more plans for the night. There were balloons, alcohol (minus the soft drinks), and music. My room: Swetha’s speakers connected, lights dimmed, and the floor had Ruhi beginning the dance-y bull shit of the night. 😀
How the next couple of hours went by, maybe Priyam can tell best because she captured every single moment on her camera. The obscene dances, the mad laughters, the yuck whisky with kaam chalau iced tea that everybody still had, and the non-publishable pictures made for my typical birthday night in a girls’ hostel.
Swetha’s injuries from an accident the previous week had put her in too much pain the next morning. She could not have afforded to exert through the day. I hated leaving her behind! But the rest of us did carry on. Add Robin and Sahil to the list of girls mentioned above, and we were ready to drive out!
It was a much longer drive than we expected. The waterfalls were nothing like the pictures Google threw at me. But the drive was superb! It was raining, and the view was brilliant! We sang along with the Pune radio and just laughed through the two hours of the journey. Sahil sat with a long face through most part of the journey, but he improved over his long face of exactly a year ago. So we have to give him the benefit of doubt here, especially because he got perfectly okay once we reached the waterfall.
The water was a little cold, it was still raining, none of us had a change of clothes (even though we all knew where we were going), but what the heck! We HAD to climb up the slippery rocks and play with the water. AND we forced Priyam to let us use Mr. 1000D for the pictures too! Who knew that Robin, the creep had his digicam nicely packed in his bag! Ridhima was the only one dressed for the occasion (as always). A combination of her shorts and Vrinda’s green made for the perfect Liril (la..lalalala….) moment! Sahil just enjoyed the moment.
Once the tryst with little black worms (who WERE there in spite of running water) and all the slipping on the rocks was done, we began the journey back. The radio stations’ frequencies were getting mingled and we got to hear some of the worst remixes of our lives. It was still hilarious because mindlessness was the order of the day. Being completely wet and sitting in the car was a tad bit uncomfortable in the beginning, and the lack of washrooms in the wilderness on this cold rainy day made it extremely uncomfortable by the end of it! To beat the cold (or not), we took out a bottle of Old Monk that was left over from last night. We had Coke on us this time! But the ones sitting in the back of the Tavera put neat alcohol in the Coke bottle, said it out loud too, but Priyam ignored (read never heard) the disclaimer and had a huge sip of the same. She was a sight after that! Uff!! She was the entertainment factor for the next half hour.
Pizza Hut is becoming my birthday lunch ritual. I have lost count of the number of birthdays I have gone to that place to eat on. This time the reason was exactly the same as last year. Last time it was Ganesh Chaturthi, this time Anant Chaturdashi – most roads were blocked because of the processions and celebrations. Pizza Hut comes closest to good food in the accessible areas.
The wet us started shivering the moment we entered the air-conditioned restaurant; that was funny too. And then we started hogging!
While we were there, one of the many processions were passing by on the road outside. It was a group of young boys in white kurtas and red stoles with huge drums. The rhythm with which they played those drums was to die for! I swear I generally don’t find these things too entertaining, but this group was plain BRILLIANT! I stood outside and thoroughly enjoyed the whole process. The beats, the symmetry, the ambience, the frolic… it was all out of the world! I especially liked the fact that they were not dancing to filmy numbers, and were instead doing it in an authentic style.
Exhausted, we got back to campus in the evening. I took a little nap, attended a few more phone calls, and quietly closed the birthday with four Muskeeters from Rohini. 😀
I had not had time do this year’s birthday shopping until today. And what did I buy? An expensive, girly dress!
With lotsa green in it!! 😀
And now I am completely broke. But completely satiated. 🙂
*It somehow translates into ‘My 23rd!’ in my head. 😀