Sunday, October 25, 2009

844 : You will see, if you watch :-)

Picture this. I am sitting at the Abu Dhabi airport, in the Etihad Lounge. I am with my cup of Masala tea (which I can drink infinite amounts of).

I am reading "Beastly tales" by Vikram Seth.....but I am slightly dis-enchanted...I don't want to read. So start looking around, trying to observe people.

On the opposite table, a tall lanky girl....very desi features, but very Australian sense of dressing....(the kind of attire, that keeps you ready for an adventure sport at a fraction's notice).

She is wearing a black pullover, blue tracks and sitting with a mountain of cut fruits on her plate. (Shame, and here I was sipping tannin...)

I move my eyes around, observe others (more on that later). I come back to her in a few minutes. By now, a young man has joined her. He is also a desi, incorrigibly handsome in a very Asian sort of way, a la Imran Khan (yes, that is the first impression I got), albiet an Imran who is in his early black tees and jeans.

For some reason I assumed that they were a couple, as in a "couple".

The guy looked slightly grumpy, and was not eating anything. A few roving glances (around the room) and minutes later my eyes return...situation not changed.

Then lanky lass moves to the food area, grabs two plates, fills it with meat, bread and fruit and comes back. She places both on the table. (They are both sitting facing me).

She is definitely focused on the food, Mr. Handsome is more focused on the "aunty babe" sitting next to me...he has only eyes for her. I assumed he is our average alpha male, high on testosterone, and needs his daily fix of female visualery.

Lanky lass, is not noticing this at all....instead she is focused on the food, and soon starts coaxing "handsome" to chew into something. He is not interested, not moving.

She leans over, grabs his fork, jabs at a sausage bit and holds it near his mouth. He opens it up like a baby and gobbles (reminded me of my little nephew...).

She continues with this, while he fills up his alpha male tank. In a few moments, they both get talking. His grumpiness is receding now, but to me, it (now) appears, he was not grumpy with her at all, but with some other bit of life. Infact all this talking, eating and "ogling" is leaking his grumpiness away.

Very soon, they are chatting. They are now observing others in the room and making comments, the guy leaking a smile, while she heartily grinning. At least twice, she reaches over to ruffle his hair and pat his head when he "coughs".

The more I saw, I seemed certain this can't be a "couple". This was most probably either a very old friendship or a sister-brother relationship.

Why? Various reasons:
1. The familiarity between them seemed deep, and yet at a "little finger" length, like not using the same forks.
2. She seemed comfortable with his "ogling" to an extent that she did not even notice it.
3. The ruffling of the hair, seemed to have a "tenderness" in it, which was profound and very innate (as in coming from her innards)
4. The conversation, the seating posture, the shared mirth...all indicated a sense of comfort you only get when you have spent years in "the other" skin.

My bet, (if that matters at all), is she was the elder sister to this handsome guy, albeit by just a few years.

Maybe, I am right, maybe, I was wrong....but yet, the few voyeuristic moments were worth it. They exemplified what life is supposed to.....a bond, a relationship....which neither holds not lets go....just hanging by a fine balance.

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