As I was walking back to my place after having my regular plate of momos from the popular guy on the raised pedestal by the side of the road, I saw a Sedan coming towards me, in the wrong way. The momos were quite popular and I had seen cars lining up just in front of his stall, not paying any attention to the amount of road they were encroaching since there was no such parking space. ust one of his elite customers ︹€? I said to myself as I kept walking, slowly realizing now that the Sedan was slowing down right in front of me. Had it been moving fast, I might have thought someone sent a car to run right over me.
Na, I just being overly dramatic here.
I couldn’s help but notice the weirdness though. And it all got even weirder when it actually stopped right in front of me. I was about to walk past it, when a middle aged, very neatly suited up gentleman from the backseat, got out of the car and walked upto me with a smile on his face.
淓rr do I know you? I had to ask, since he was standing right in front of me in a few seconds, stretching his hand out for a handshake with that same smile he had on his face. I shook his hand out of courtesy.
o, Sir. You don’s. But I would really like to talk to you for a while. I am hoping you would be willing to come with me. /p>
Now that was weird. I wasn’s at that age yet, nor had I achieved much in life to earn myself the privilege of being addressed as ir I could see a lady sitting in the backseat; they looked like a middle aged couple. I was too far into assumptions, but well, I am not to be blamed either.
hat would be kind of weird. I mean, I don’s even know you. Why would I want to go with you anywhere? /p>
I had that neutral-yet-in-a-good-way kind of face since the man seemed from a well to do family. And well, the Sedan was an Audi.
Yeah, the story just gets interesting.
He smiled back very gently and spoke again.
do understand your confusion. But trust me, I am no kidnapper, and I have my wife with me in the car, if you don’s believe me ︹€? he said, pointing at the lady in the backseat.
€ would just like to talk to you for a few minutes, and it kind of difficult to talk here, right in the middle of the road, with no place to sit even. /p>
For once, he had a point. But then, my fears and my hesitation were completely natural. Even though the man did look convincing enough, it was always going to be a risky move. f at all he would turn out to be a kidnapper along with his wife and the driver, the team has to be the slickest kidnapping trio I would e seen so far in my life. My thoughts had by now started to turn audibly loud I could say.
here do I have to go with you? /h2>
I had decided to give my instincts the upper hand over my logical thoughts.
e could go anywhere you feel comfortable, anywhere we could sit and talk. Maybe over a cup of coffee, or even dinner, the decision is upto you. /p>
Woah! This was getting interesting with every passing minute. Almost like a new book which kept getting more and more interesting with every new page.
淓r kay. There a mall nearby. We could go sit in the food court. We don’s have to eat dinner, just sit, and maybe order a coffee or something. Will it take long though? /p>
will keep it as short as possible. Trust me, I don’s want to take too much time of yours. I am already bothering you with this sudden request to sit and talk. I hope you’l excuse me for that after you e listened to what I have to say. /p>
Things had started to seem serious. I could see the lady sitting patiently in the backseat, with that same gentle smile on her face. All this seemed well thought out by the two. There was no hurry. They had expected the delay, and need for the added persuasion.
ould we go separately on our own, to the mall? I would really have no problem walking till there, it not too far. /p>
It was clear, my fear, my hesitation and my nervousness. The gentleman could see it clearly.
hat absolutely fine with us. If that what seems more comfortable to you, let do that. We will be waiting for you at the entrance then. /p>
With that, he got into the car and drove off. I took some time to collect what transpired in the last few minutes, standing still at that spot. After I was clear of what just happened, I had two voices. One urging me to quickly walk back to my place and forget all this, assuming some kind of foul play in this whole act, or walk quickly to the mall, where the couple must be waiting for me. As you all must have guessed by now, once again, I went with my instincts and walked towards the mall.
We got ourselves a table and were now sitting together. It seemed hard to believe that I had not even seen them once before in my life, and now here we were sipping coffee together, food been ordered despite me trying to convince them it not really necessary, and most importantly, ready for he talk
few months ago, my father got seriously ill. He was already down to complete bed rest owing to the aging, and the further worsening of his breathing compelled me to admit him to the hospital where our family doctor works. Things then slowly got a little better and much to our delight, he was responding well to the treatment. /p>
I was listening intently. The first few pages of the book had done enough to now interest me beyond limits.
fter about a week or so from that date, I had to attend a meeting outside the city. It was a pretty important business meeting with some clients who had travelled all the way from Australia to meet me. Ohh God! I am so sorry, I haven’s introduced myself yet. My name is _____ and this is my wife ______. I am the owner of _______ group of hotels. /p>
Right after he had said his name, my brain had started to run through my memory book to recollect where I had heard that name. And when he mentioned his hotel chain, I could finally remember. He was the owner of a five star group of hotels, which had several outlets both within the country and abroad. They were opening a new branch right in the heart of the city and, I had read about talks of it being designed by some fine architects from Australia.
really don’s know what to say. All this seems surreal now. I mean, very abrupt to digest. I am sorry if I seemed impolite earlier. I hope you both can understand the reason I was hesitating at first to accompany you. /p>
o, it fine, really. I mean, you don’s have to be sorry. Infact, you were very kind to accept my request. Why would a stranger agree to spend his time with us when there no real business? I completely understand your surprise at our sudden meet. I just wish there was a better way for us to talk but unfortunately, I couldn’s find one. I am really grateful that you are here. /p>
t my pleasure, really. I am sorry to interrupt you. Please continue. /h2>
The air around suddenly seemed a lot more friendly. It was almost as if I now knew them well. Although, again, it was too early to completely assume that.
will be little honest with you here. I wasn’s my father favourite son from among the three of us. We were on good terms, but it wasn’s like I was way emotionally attached to him. I loved him, that for sure. But it just that we weren’s very close emotionally. So when I had to choose between travelling out of the city to attend the meeting and staying here with him in the hospital, I chose the former. My wife and other family members were anyway with him, all throughout, taking turns spending nights looking after him. Everything was being provided well in time, for him to recover at the maximum pace. The meeting was just as big for me. We were just getting into the talks of opening a branch in this city, and so I had invited the architects from one of my previous hotel works’ team to discuss on several things. It was going to be a big day as I was supposed to sign a deal with them and incase I failed to show up, there were chances of me losing out on a lot of good resources, and money likewise. I know that I sound very business-minded here. You can judge me all you want. /p>
I didn’s know what to say. I was still crushing my head trying to figure out my part in this whole act. A big businessman wanting to talk to an ordinary guy like me, and now discussing his emotional conflicts with his father, every bit of it seemed extremely confusing to me. I had nothing to judge him for, though. I didn’s know him that well yet.
h, I really am not thinking anything as of now Sir. Please continue. /h2>
set off for the meeting, but all through I kept feeling a little uneasy. I was getting all sorts of bad thoughts in my head, about the deal going wrong, my father health worsening, everything seemed kind of very uneasy. Almost like a tide in an opposite direction to my swim. I couldn’s keep my head straight or think of things I had to talk about at the meeting. It was when we were driving through that road I met you today on, that I saw you first that day. And then, something struck me. Things became clear. We instantly turned around and headed straight to the hospital, skipping the meeting plans. /p>
He paused a little. I could sense something bad was coming up next. So far, it had seemed like a story where I was intently listening to every bit, trying to figure out my part in it. But now, things were about to get kind of heavy, I felt.
y father died that evening, just an hour after I had reached hospital that evening. /h2>
There was silence at the table. None of us spoke much. The crowd had gotten noisier around us, but we seemed to have a rather silent, serious cloud of air around our table. I was quiet, not sure about what to say.
am really sorry to hear that, Sir. /h2>
He composed himself and spoke again.
hank you. It was really fortunate of me to get back just in time, to hold him once before he was gone forever. He didn’s speak much. We were still distant emotionally, but it was still important to me, those few minutes I spent with him; perhaps, even more important than the whole of my life that I had seen him. And all of it was possible because of you. /p>
I was taken aback. Confused as I already was, his statement pushed me deeper into the world of questions.
am sorry? I can’s seem to understand my part in any of this. /h2>
He smiled again.
ave you read what written on your t-shirt? /h2>
I looked at him for a few seconds to confirm that he had actually said what I thought I had heard.
I looked down at my t-shirt trying to read it from the top view.
Money can’s buy life.
That what it said, quite clearly in pretty big letters.
I looked back at him. Now trying to make sense of all that he said, and how and where I played a part in all of it.
was already having bad thoughts, and then I saw you, wearing this very t-shirt, and all of a sudden I knew I had to drive back to the hospital. I know it sounds very dramatic, but believe me, you were like a God sent messenger for me that day. Had I not chanced upon that quote on your t-shirt, I might have kept struggling with my inner thoughts. And who knows, by the time I made my decision, it might have gotten a bit too late. I can’s possibly thank you enough for the way you showed up in my life that day. /p>
I had tossed the t-shirt away for a long time before I had finally thought of wearing it that evening and then, I had him walk out of his car and straight into my life. Everything was now making sense to me. It was just so hard to believe though. It all seemed straight out of some movie. But then, aren’s movies straight out from the happenings of our daily life?
don’s know what to say, Sir. I am just really glad you could get a chance to be with your father in his dying moments. I don’s know if I should be taking credit for such an important memory of your life. I never paid much attention to the quote after having worn the t-shirt the first few times. /p>
e can call it luck or my good fortune! I just happened to see you today there and I knew I had to talk to you. I had you in mind ever since that day, but then, I knew nothing about you to track down your contact details. Guess it was all just destiny and the universe, bringing us face to face again after that day. Maybe you never paid much attention to the quote, but it did really change a lot of things for me. /p>
I couldn’s really digest the fact as to how such a small, silly detail had impacted someone life so much. But then, life has its ways of surprising you. After all, many a times, it the insignificant details in life that can bring about some of the most significant changes in the world around us. All we have to do is be ready to witness those changes. I had just witnessed one such miracle.
Ah, the power of words!
We got up to leave. It had been a good talk, a huge revelation for me. I wasn’s the same person anymore. Things had changed. I had changed. The gentleman gave me his personal card, and an elite business card offering me free stay in any of his hotels any time I wanted. It seemed like a dream, but, I had to politely refuse the offer. It was getting just too much for me. Not like I didn’s want to have the luxury of staying at one of his hotels, but just that it seemed too much of a favour to accept. I thanked him for the amount of gratitude he showed towards me, just so he would feel contented at me believing how thankful he was to me and the way things had happened. I did however, keep his personal card, as he gave me his word to help me out any time I needed him. They both walked towards their car, not before they had ensured I was convinced that they would be extremely glad to have me visit them some time at their place. I thanked them for the food and such gracious offers and bid goodbye to them.
As I walked back to my place, the second time in the evening, I kept playing the whole set of events again and again in my head. It all seemed too much to be a prank. It was all real, the people, the happenings, the story, the card, everything was real. I was living in reality, one where a simple quote from a t-shirt held the power to change the life of a top level successful businessman.