I enter the bathroom and think another day is wasted since I could not make a good reason to skip the school. I take my own sweet time to brush teeth and after some time, a banging sound is heard. Its my younger brother shouting that ' Amma is saying hurry up, come out soon'.
I put my uniform and then head to the hall. Appa gets me ready in no minute and says ' Go out, keep cleaning the scooter. I will come in a minute'. I take out the cloth and start cleaning the good old Bajaj scooter.
After few mins, Appa and amma are at the door with few bags and other stuff. We head to our first pit stop, my school; where the gates are waiting to close on my face to say that ' Boy, you are late again today!'. My dad zooms in his scooter to finally land at the gate at the right time..
As he guides me down to the ground, I say 'Appa, I need some money. I would feel hungry while coming back to home'. He says, "No money. Go home and eat whatever you want'. I stand firm and say I wont go to school. Sensing that gate would close in no time, He quickly searches for loose change and hand over a rupee.
All the pale and gloom in my face transforms into a million dollar smile and I run towards the school gate. The guard shouts 'Run, prayer is about to start'. Tucking the shirt, adjusting the tie with one hand and putting the coin safely into pocket using another hand, I sprint towards the assembly hall. I am there in the Q at the right time before the PT teacher gives me a stare.
All the 8 periods, I kept thinking about how to spend a rupee! I wanted to eat any of bakery items or one of the new chocolate's in town.. I wanted to try the new flavor of lolly or buy one more 'big fun' chewing gum so that I can collect wrappers. I was thinking whether to buy an dilkush, dilpasand, applecake, toast, etc. Actually, the Iyengar bakery had so much to offer that sometimes I felt nice just looking at the glass shelves.
The attender at the Iyengar bakery was little rude and used to cover the glass shelve with an old bedsheet so that boys like us dont end up staring at the shelves. The privileged access was given only when you showed the money to the mean creature behind the shelf.
I was lost in all these thoughts, when the teacher gently tapped on my shoulder and asked me to write my notes in Social science period. I think it was my lucky day since she did not catch me day dreaming.
Looking at my watch (HMT strapazapa one! :-D), I realized it was just one hour left for the final bell. The last one hour looked like one day and finally when the bell rang, I took my bag and ran out from the school.
Without waiting for my friends , I ran across the road and headed straight to the Iyengars bakery. Showing the lone rupee coin in my pocket, I asked him to give one piece of dilpasand. Hot dilpasand with all stuffed coconut, cherries and roasted bread on the top, was one of the favorite at that center. The delightful aroma of these items baking in that center used to attract people around that bakery.
Clutching my dilpasand in the hand, I walked towards home and reached in no time. I was happy to have a dilpasand since I decided what to have and did not have to plead with Appa or Amma about my decision to buy it. I was feeling good about having the dilpasand even though I have eaten it many times before. This was the power of rupee , 15 years before..
A rupee was enough to satisfy all my needs and I used to be happy by having one rupee coin in my pocket. I used to feel enthusiastic about spending it. Today, the same happiness is absent when I munch the 50 rupee pastries in A/C rooms. The same happiness is absent when I visit the numerous coffee days, barista, sweet chariot etc present in every nook and corner of Bangalore.. Bangalore has changed tremendously and sleepy laid back suburbs is a thing of the past. Even the power of rupee !!