Friday, October 7, 2016

Odd and even - Yaron ki Baraat

For the first time on Indian television, ZEE TV brings you a fun-filled chat show Vivo Smartphone presents Yaaron Ki Baraat co-powered by and Brooke Bond Red Label that will put celebrity friendships to test through a series of fun challenges and tasks. Tune in to ZEE TV at 8 PM on 8th October.

Friends, our alter egos with behaviour as contrasting as the Sun and the Moon, but gelling and hitting off as a pair to paint our lives red;(maybe not red as it is too jarring, well you choose the colour) while I shift to green owing to my personal affinity to the bountiful nature! Cronies who are the extended family, the cornerstones of our joyful lives, partners in guzzling beer, accomplices in pranks,  companions in concerts and film shows, navigators in times of distress, consorts in love and war, the search engines during doubtful periods , the collaborators in conspiracies, associates in adventure, allies in networking and the iconic reasons for this post!
Let me have the joy and privilege of taking you all, back in time to the effervescent eighties filled with songs, shares, styles and shenanigans in abundance and studies in miserly terms with my bosom buddy Minu!

 The undergraduate class of 1987 in one of the prestigious and trendy colleges of Cochin beckoned all the freshers with animosity, trepidation, excitement – a cocktail of all emotions and we the new comers trudged  happily into the gallery class facing the azure blue  back waters of the Arabian sea.  
Minu was a different kettle of fish altogether, a slim girl with long straight hair that she let loose and on top of her forehead, a mop of wavy hair, always tossing it up gracefully and me, a spring rolled, not so slim , awkward and not so elegant. So absolutely chalk and cheese as far as biological similarities were concerned! Demeanour wise too, I marched to a different tune while she was downright soft spoken and a horse of another colour. 

Lost in an ocean of new faces and stylish stilettos, I occupied a vantage top berth to get a bird’s eye view of the sea and a 360 degree panoramic view of an all girls’ class. Next to me sat my new demure friend flashing a sparkling smile every two minutes while I was itching to break the silent conversation that was happening between the two of us! As the teachers, ranging from savvy to strict to smart to somber and silly marketed themselves and their subjects, my game plan was to talk ourselves out!
She fell hook, line and sinker for me, proving right the maxim ‘opposites poles attract’. A tete a tete that started with the zodiac sign (For Linda Goodman was a crazy obsession those days!) and ended with everything under the sun! The days turned into months and we became steadfast friends and as she was from the science stream, I had the honour of being an uncrowned queen helping her out with accounts and finance.
The three years in the degree college had all the masala of a pot boiler movie; the college was run by Christian missionaries and so ‘discipline’ was their second name and Minu’s family was strict and orthodox and so we took extra happiness in bunking classes (by bribing the gatekeeper) and hoodwinking her parents to watch movies together. Nothing can match the thrill of the adrenaline rush in breaking the convention and rules, to hide from known and familiar faces and brave all odds to accomplish our goals. Friday afternoons were long lunch hours and the favourite icecream joint was a glorious hangout, a great redemption from the service sermons of the chapel  and we had the jubilation of breaking the Shawshank prison!
The umpteen songs of Richard Marx, our romantic music hero still echo in my ears, reminiscent of the past- 

many hours that were happily spent in her palatial bungalow which had a mini theatre. Her mom would serve us all the delicacies while her big brother (lovingly nicknamed as commando) would watch us over like hawks! Despite the strict vigil, we did manage to give him the slip and indulge ourselves in all the forbidden pleasures, but well within the framework of the written and oral constitution.
Both of us would be lost in that exotic dream trip to alluring avant garde locations in an open gypsy, with music blaring and driving at insane speeds to be with nature’s bounty, carefree and crazy, beating all draconian laws and rigid parents. The gypsy of Maruti Suzuki may have become obsolete but the mirage of the mind will never disappear and I have safeguarded it in my memory vault for thirty years !!!
When two celebrities can come together on a fantastic chat show and re-enact the yaaron ki baarat sequence from the super hit film of dostana after 35 years, nothing can stand in the way in reconnecting with a sidekick and I am eagerly waiting for that D day!
We have sung, danced, guffawed, cried, screamed, studied, pranced and dreamt together and these simple joys bonded us for a lifetime  and it is time to break into a song...

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