20 October 2023

The difficulties of making a secret plan

For a very open, people-person like me, the difficulties of making a secret plan are simply unfathomable.

There was the planning part. I tried to make a ruse that I would visit Suriname when she would go to India. There was a credible ring to it since she did not know anything about the country but she knew I was committed to traveling to places most people do not know much about.

The execution part was a bit messy. Imagine this – she is in India on Indian time. I was in Atlanta in Eastern time. And then I am making up stories that I had reached Miami and will get on to my flight to Paramaribo. So now, there was the Suriname time to deal with. And after an 8 hour of inexplicable and very uncharacteristic quietness from me, I was in Paris in French time. I was a mess every time I was texting her trying to remember where the heck I was and what time it was supposed to be and avoid, for example, calling her at 2 am – my alleged local time!! Lest she asked – why are you calling me now? And I would be like – why? the sun is shining in Paramaribo… oh! wait!!!

The second part is how to undo all the plans she had made for me when she was to be gone. The day after she left, a huge amount of Indian food showed at my house that she had ordered from a local chef to tide over the period she would be gone. And there I was, scratching my head, wondering – “I wonder what TSA might have to say about two big packages of chicken tikka masala and paneer kofta on that radar like screen they keep staring at at the checkpoint”. Deciding that was a problem for another day, I simply stashed it in the freeze.

The reasonably easier part – but the one that worries her the most – was dealing with Jay Jay. Heida and Sigurjon immediately offered to help me with the secret. You can see here SK and I on the roof of a local bar – the midnight before I left – hashing out all the Jay Jay details. So that you understand where Sharmila comes from when it comes to her confidence in my ability to deal with Jay Jay – she marks his food in the fridge with big Post Its that say, predictably enough: “JJ’s food”. I still don’t believe it that she does not consider me discerning enough to realize the difference between my food and dog food.

And the final hurdle – and this is the most painful part is how to go thru my best part of life – traveling, taking pictures from the sky, meeting strangers …. AND NOT POST IT ON MY BLOG or Facebook!! That is not for somebody who is as faint of the heart like I. The counter challenge is if I did not post anything, she would get worried whether I was feeling well. Finally resorted to some other innocuous posts like map puzzles to fend her suspicions off!

Eventually, after a few missteps (that included me telling her that I had jumped on to a direct flight to Suriname instead of the one thru Panama after I realized that I had completely messed up the time zone I was allegedly in)… here I am! And none the worse for the wear, either!!

Posted October 20, 2023 by Rajib Roy in category "Vacations

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