Tuesday, March 29, 2011

An Excerpt from "Mr. Bandookwala, M.B.A., Harvard," with Context Explained!


Sorry, I forgot to put this excerpt in context. This passage is just before the carnage in hotel The Trinity where extremists mow down people in the five-star hotel. Bandookwala has a sense of foreboding as he stands in the majestic lobby of The Trinity and looks outside at Marine Drive. I am trying to express the premonition he has of the mayhem he is about to witness, which creates a waxing and waning of emotions inside him. This happens before the malicious bloodletting which kills two friends but spares him. Please read and comment:

"Adi says he is busy with some client who has arrived from Delhi, but since it is a Wala-mulaqat he will meet us at 8 p.m. He says he will inform Screw about it. I look at my watch, 6.30 p.m. Standing in the huge artificially-cooled glassed atrium I stare at the cerulean waves that toss outside on Marine Drive, it's violence now dulled by the distance. For a moment I imagine the violence of the waves against the shore as it would appear from close by. A thought crosses my mind that violence manifests in everything, every living being unless controlled. It's been hot and raining these few days. A warm and muggy rain which looks as if it begins nowhere and ends nowhere. Some beggars are going from people to people begging for coins. I can see their pitiful imploring faces snarl when they don't get even a small coin tossed into their hands. They curse! They curse the worst regional curses there are. "May you rot and your body be ridden with maggots!" The huge glass panel shields me at the moment from the anarchy of weather and the tugging feeling of human poverty outside. It's an artificial security. In fact, I feel vulnerable. A soft music plays on the public address system, which soothes me a little. Not for long. A temporary inertia comes over me, an inertia bought by money which comes from a well-paying job. It's in such environments that the rich live and which make them callous to the poverty that exists outside. Suppose I lose my job? A temporary sense of dread and vulnerability washes over me again. It's a momentary feeling, a feeling which comes and is gone in a few seconds when I feel an ominous panic overcoming me. Then it subsides. I let myself relax and think of Evita and my childhood spent in awe of her. I am excited. I am meeting Adi and Screw, my buddies, after a long time. It is an excitement tinged with sadness as I will miss Tyre and Mosquito."

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