6 November 2023

For a 30th birthday, that was not bad!!

The phone rang. But she did not pick it up.

Tried her husband next. Went straight to voicemail. Called back. This time it rang. Subhasis picked up.

“Rajib, that is a surprise! How are you?”

“Well, I just landed in Dallas. Sorry for the airport background noise. I have a meeting tomorrow morning. I know it is 8pm already but I was going to swing by your house for a glass of wine.”

“Oh! How long are you in Dallas?”

“I leave tomorrow afternoon”

“Dang! We are in Los Angeles celebrating Rishi’s 30th birthday. We will be back tomorrow evening!!”

“Oh! say Happy Birthday to Rishi. Sorry to have missed you this time.”

“Yes. Please let us know next time. We really missed you.”

“No problems. Let me go to Sunil’s house and see if I can bug him”.

I kept the phone down, grabbed an Uber and headed towards Santa Monica, California.

Now, you are probably wondering why would I take a Uber for 1,500 miles. Here is the backdrop. I was lying thru my nose. I had just landed in Los Angeles airport.

You see, I had called Rishi (our dear old Gampu) on his 30th birthday and he let me know that his parents – our good old friends Debjani and Subhasis – are visiting him. We talked about the time he and I met in New York when he was in NYU. And the great discussions we have on the phone every yer. We promised to meet again soon.

That is when it had struck me that I had a conference to go to in Long Beach. Checked with him and yes! there was an evening of overlap.

A few hush hush text messages and the whole surprise was set up.

I was sitting at the bar, quietly waiting for them to show up for dinner. Audrey came in a little earlier than others. This is the first time I met her. I had missed their wedding a couple of years back. We grabbed a drink each and waited for the unsuspecting friends from Dallas.

Moment we spotted them, Audrey took her position with her phone.

I grabbed my wine, roller suitcase and tried to brush past Subhasis who was waiting next to their table.

“Excuse me, sir!” I said, as I pretended to get past him.

“Sure,” he said while stepping aside.

We made eye contact.

And THAT is exactly when the SCREAMING started!!!

[The place was a little dark so the pics are a little blurry]

Thank you Rishi and Audrey for helping me pull this off!!

That was a great finale to a week of celebrations for Rishi’s big birthday!!

Posted November 6, 2023 by Rajib Roy in category "Intersection Points

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