“Kithhe ho Soniyo?” I asked her on the phone. “MechC Jaanemann. Tu kaha hai?” she enquired. “I’m standing right outside the canteen for the past 10 minutes you liar. Jaldi aa” I hung up.
We had the most cheesy and uncool nicknames for each other. And, what seemed to be a perfectly amicable conversation with these garish monikers, would turn to the most unpleasant and ultra abusive argument with full maa bhen stuff flowing the very next moment. We did not mind that. We could be completely true to ourselves and to each other without any sense of sense of shame or guilt. That was the best part about our friendship. I loved her for what she was. She could be the most cultured and sophisticated girl to the world but I knew her every nerve. I knew what was under that skin. Cheerful, happy-go-lucky, nonchalant, foul mouthed and audacious girl. She was the perfect partner for 4 grilling years at Delhi College of Engineering.
“Sorry. And why do you look so ghastly?” She huffed as she approached me on the canteen gate. “2 reasons. I stay in hostel and I just woke up. Haven’t even brushed my teeth yet. And FYI you don’t look so pulchritude yourself” I remarked. She gave me a confused look. “What? Its a synonym. For beautiful.” she simpered before punching me and said “Don’t do your GRE shit in front of me”. I had been taking GRE classes to build my near non existent vocab. I flaunted that in front of her with the only intention of irking her. And succeeded, everytime.
“9.35. Fast, don’t drag yourself now. We’re already late by 35 minutes. She won’t allow us in this time.”
“Relax. We’ll get into the class. Let me first have something. I haven’t had breakfast”
“Again. Why do you pay the mess bill”
“They had fuckin’ aloo paratha again. What am I supposed to do. I can’t have that shit three days in a row.”
“I had it and it was okay.”
“Tu to rehne hi de. Sala kanjar” she rebuked.
She was the spender, I was the miser.
She was the cooler one and I was the funny one.
We reached the class further 10 minutes late thanks to Ms Dainty. REAL ORANGE JUICE. How does it matter whether its a Real juice or Tropicana juice? An orange juice is orange juice. Girls, there’s no wikipedia for them. The day passed, and so did our regular shit. The lectures got over at 3 in the evening, and we headed to the Nesci. We, at DCE, have this strange, completely bizzare way of naming college hotspots and other items. Like the Mechanical Canteen becomes MechC, the canteen near the Electrical Department becomes ElecC, Nescafe becomes Nesci, Calculator becomes a CalC. That is completely goofy when you hear it for the first time but thats DCE lingo. You kind of get a hold of it pretty soon.
We had been assigned a minor project to be submitted in a month. With 100 marks and 4 credits, there are some things you have to give a thought! I had a good accord with batch toppers and hence got into a group with these guys. Step 1 to get easy marks. Check.
“Interfacing 4 wire resistive touch screen using Microcontroller”. This was our topic for the minor project, apparently, and the first time I heard it, it was the same as if you had just told Newtons Laws to a grade 1 kid. And while I was till finding it difficult to tell the entire project title to people at one go, these guys had already prepared a rough draft of the report and some done practical work.
These should have been easy 4 credits and another page in the book of my life, only that it was not. It wasn’t just another page. It was the last page of the chapter. For a tryst without a twist is inevitable. Its college for God’s sake. Stay connected for the next part!