Saturday, April 19, 2014

An Apology And Other Stuff

Later, the weather would be blamed.
It had been a sultry Sunday afternoon. Low-lying dark clouds added to the pressure-cooker situation, promising little relief after days of relentless heat and humidity. The doors and windows had to be shuttered by four to keep out the mosquitoes. By five, the stench of burning plastic and rotting garbage from outside seeped within, suffocating, the dial of some claustrophobia meter turned to high.
At quarter to six, a man stepped out of his house, sweating profusely, breathing heavily, muttering as he drove the car out, ‘The beach, that’s what I need.’
The car a/c wasn’t working. He kept the window down. He enjoyed the rush of air. He had barely gone half a kilometer when it started raining quite heavily. He had to raise the window. He did not mind getting soaked but the inside of the car was getting drenched. Without the a/c, the glass got foggy, visibility was bad and the car quickly turned stuffy. At the next junction, he, clearly ill-tempered, decided to return home.
He did a u-turn, quite carelessly, and nearly crashed into a car that had silently turned up from behind. He braked and sat still, eyes closed for a while.
When he opened his eyes, he saw that the other car had halted. It was still raining. He could not see the driver clearly but the dark form seemed to be gesticulating angrily at him. The passenger-side window then lowered and the driver’s wife glared at him before delivering an opprobrious sermon.
‘What an ugly mug,’ he thought. He saw the driver step out, looking angry, ‘poor chap… to have a wife like that!’
He too stepped out, in the rain, and approached the driver.
‘I am extremely sorry,’ he said.
The driver seemed mollified by that, for a while. His wife’s harangue continued in the background. It was probably that that made the driver mouth some abuse at him, or his apology had seemed too easy.
‘I said I am very sorry,’ he said again.
This time, the driver decided that it was enough and turned back.
‘Wait,’ he said to the driver. The driver turned to him. ‘How should this end?’ The driver looked puzzled. ‘Do you think I deserved to hear all that crap?’ Even then, the wife was going on, clearly in no mood to be pacified. ‘We can’t end it like this, can we?’
He gave a slow smile and uncertainty crept into the driver’s eyes.
‘Does your wife know that she is going to be a widow or the wife of a killer?’


  1. Hello Arjun,

    Why was it not tagged humour? I felt the humour in it.. The weather the irritation that came with it.. and how it traversed.. Not the irritation.. But the reason that would be blamed.. From the Mosquitoes... To the climate.. To the rain.. To the woman and finally to the uncertainty it created in the end..!!!!

    Although not my fav... I like this for few reasons.. 1. It could happen yo anyone.. 2. Looks like a fictionalized version of a real incident.. But then aren't all stories so.. 3. The mood was kind of catchy..4. Fiction is one place where everything is possible...


    1. Thanks a lot for reading this one, KP.

      Ah yes, this is based on real stuff ... like all the other stuff... :-)))))))))

      I wanted to contrast the polite apology and the "other stuff" that would come later.

      At times, I do wonder how situations can go crazy so easily. Well, best not to take anyone for granted. We feel we can abuse some people but who knows what they will do... just wondering...

      Thx once again.