ANDAAZ – ARRIVING IN STYLE
Chetan Murthy, Workshop 1
It was the winter of 2012, when my wife Sowmya and I visited Jaisalmer, one of our dream destinations. The sand dunes were marvellous and we were busy clicking pictures, when we were disturbed by a feeble voice. It was a banjara woman, in colourful dress, holding the reins of a camel.
“Madamji camel ride lena hai…sunset bahut accha diktha hain aagey.”
My wife, being the CFO of the family asked, “Kitne ka hai?”
She also noticed the woman’s jewellery and enquired if she had made it herself.
“Haan.. hum yeh sab ghar pe banate hain,” replied the banjaran, with a hint of pride.
Me, being the Chief Strategy Officer between the two of us, was super skeptical. I stared at my wife, even as she was walking with the lady, towards the camel. By now, Sowmya had learnt her name – ‘Sundari’ – that she had 2 kids, and that her husband conducted camel rides. I was really not happy with the plan but followed my CFO without protesting.
We reached the camel and started our ride, which turned out to be wonderful. “Bahut accha tha, aur mujhe aap kuch bangles bhi de do,” my wife said to Sundari, as we departed.
We got back to the car ,with me still expressing my disapproval of the ride (inspite of enjoying it) because it compromised our safety.
On the way back to the resort, our car broke down and we were stranded in the middle of nowhere. The driver was trying to fix it, while we were getting anxious. It was getting dark…
Suddenly, we heard the sound of bells. Lo and behold, it was Sundari and her family, with the camel. Sundari immediately recognised my wife, and our predicament.
“Madam ji, fikar na karo..aapko hum resort leke jayange…wo bi andaaz mein”, she laughed.
In no time, we were on the back of the camel and reached our resort in style. Sowmya and I thanked Sundari and her family, and walked back towards our room.
It was Sowmya’s turn to give me a stare and a life lesson.
“You see… making friends is a good investment…which I why I am the CFO.”
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