A fishy day out

Al Ngullie

Double Hallelujah for my cool Boss! After a week filled with sweat and deadline-chasing, everyone here in the office got treated to 3-hours of fun. The surprise, sudden as it sounded then, landed only after we’d got to the place. It virtually wiped away the sweat from our bodies and deflated those Ray Ban-sized bags that hung under our computerosis eyes. 

We’d been working like nuts and out of the blue bolted down the Office Assistant from the top floor barking at us to start packing the things since the entire office was going out. We were a bit suspicious if this was a ploy to jerk us out of the computer induced fatigue. After all it’s not everyday one gets shoved out of office, like at 3 pm.  Every one started asking where. The only answer we got was “O-tate jabole ase! Jolti, Jolti!!” Fearing a cut in salary if we failed to respond promptly, we started packing. There we were bundled into 3 cars. Kheto, from the Ad section, got four smelly females (mind you, it had been a hot day!) in his vehicle. One of them kept asking expectantly if the vehicle had an AC. Kheto had a hard time convincing her that Jeeps don’t come with ACs. The Boss got a smelly mixture of 6 smelly persons in his Pajero. And as for smelly me and a fairly stinking Thann, Reporter, leapt into the Editor’s Zen.We have every reason to suspect our fetid selves might have choked the AC in the Editor’s car because even it started to emit a powerful, funny smell –a cross between stale butter and unwashed socks. There we zoomed off, all the while poisoning everyone in the streets, thanks to the glorious stink we raised.

So there we were. Country Barn! The entrance had this huge board in the shape of a Bull’s head (or a Burmese buffalo?) with the words “Enjoy the food, Partner and do ride in again!” Wild, Wild West! I desperately kept looking around for Horses and Cowboys and perhaps Clint Eastwood too. Unfortunately only the lusty Moo of a hungry Cow somewhere could be heard. Anyway, here’s a place that had not only food and chairs but shark…Er…fishing facilities too! After a bout of excited chatter, we made off, each of us with fishing kits and heavy dreams of landing the biggest “maggur Maas”that ever swam this side of Atlantic. Of course faint questions could be heard if there might be sharks in the fishpond. I was especially concerned if a Whale might rear out from the ponds to attack me but hey, it was time for fun not danger!

So there we fished (Squealing would be the exact word). The ambience was wonderful – a motley bunch of squealing fisherpeople with little or no experience about anything aquatic to know whether or not sharks live in the ponds. Apem, the gorgeous red-eyed girl from the Ad section, landed the first fish that had all the others feeling a bit green-eyed. Then Kheto hooked a “makur” and proceeded to land 4 more. Our Office assistant fished just yards away screaming that the fish were “bostimanus” because they never figured around her bait. The girls had a poor run at the angles, amply proving that long painted fingernails are a hindrance in fishing Makurs. Then Sorei, our web designer landed the biggest. A half kilo and another! The feet-deep cow dung nearby didn’t deter our hands to reach deep inside for some unfortunate earthworm that unluckily happened to be away from its family and now to be fed to a hungry fish! Oh what fun – the collective stench of sweaty bodies, raw fish and cow dung mingled with the hopes of landing a dolphin! The adventure reenergized us and suddenly we were ready for any challenge in the office! 

And did I land a fish? Of course I did! It was big. I mean it was as big as an Ink-pen’s cap. In fact it was almost invisible. I dedicated my catch to my co-Journo Merenla, who was unfortunate enough to be away at Delhi. The problem? Meren’s gonna have my teeth if she finds out I dedicated that invisible fish to her. Because she’s bigger than the Undertaker. And size-wise, that’s an insult.