The Friday before this


March 20

Unlike today’s which involve a lot work from the morning, beginning with having the cracks on walls sealed at home and then going to my favourite doctor to have mom’s medical tests checked, and then eventually sitting for the pending feature on war criminal forces for the upcoming Xtra issue, the last Friday was an awesome weekend.

A long awaited hangout of four friends had finally worked out. Initially the plan was to meet at 1, but ms don’t-you-touch-my-orna had apparently run into a war. Basically she had gone shopping at Aarong and there was some sale there.

But jai hok, I had my Jumma prayer to say. And by the time I finished she had joined ms defacto-in-charge-of-trends and the good boy. So while I was waiting at Anam Rangs, the three had arrived in a rickshaw. And guess what, ms don’t-you-touch-my orna had tangled her orna during the rickshaw ride and tore it.

While one fold of the orna was on her shoulder, she would hold the other using two fingers keeping it at distance for it had caught dirt. Amazing!

We now needed to get her an orna. And of course, when would ms defacto-in-charge-of-trends come to help. In spite of a little difficulty to find an appropriate one, she had eventually got a nice black orna which had golden beads tailed with the threads at both ends of the orna. It didn’t look good but shopkeeper said it can be removed. Well wouldn’t you assume that perhaps, the beads would be untied or pulled out in some sophisticated way? But no 🙂 it was a literal hammering on the beads to break them off.

So, done with the shopping, we went to KFC at Dhanmondi. And while having food on a pleasant afternoon, ms hygiene conscious receives a call informing her about fire at Bashundhara. It was a BIG blow at Bashundhara, the intensity of which I had taken very lightly until I had received some 10 calls about the same incident and surprised many by my laid back reaction. All I can say is that, my colleagues and friends know me as the first person to be on spot during every major breakout in the country but today 🙂 I was so relaxed.

So from there, we went to Andersen’s at Dhanmondi for ice cream. Had fun there as well. But I was more surprised, when my friends and especially, ms excited-by-the-fire wanted to visit the spot and experience what was one of the most dangerous places to be. So we went there. Black smoke and the fire was still blowing from the top six floors of the Bashundhara. The helicopter was lifting only one person at a time.

While ms thrilled-about-the-experience and I were on one rickshaw, sharmin and layes took another and because of the crowd and traffic on the street, our two rickshaws landed in two different places. We had approached the Bashundhara for a closer view. Layes and sharmin were initially stuck in a lane and then walked off to the main street near the Sonargaon hotel.

After observing the fire for a while, and getting pushed constantly by the onlookers and people running up and down, we started to walk towards Sonargaon. The place was so crowded that we could hardly move our feet. And after a few steps up straight towards the Saarc Fountain, we were pushed back by wave of nothing-better-to-do people who perhaps were chased by the police. And so we too had to walk back. We eventually found a lane and someway down there, a rickshaw that we got on and breathed a sense of relief.

And then up on the main street, far from the fire at Bashundhara, even at the Kathalbagan Dhal and the surroundings of Karwan Bazar, there was no space whatsoever to walk. One man while walking past us mocked at the choppers up on sky, ‘ai helicopter pani niye asho’.

As we try to find ourselves ways to meet up with our lost-in-the-crowd friends, I observe another frustratingly irritating person asking someone on phone, what the television was showing about the fire. Arre bhai, why are you here blocking the road if you are so interested about the television air?

So anyways, after much struggle we found layes and sharmin on the other side of the road and rather off-the-crowd. From there we started off towards Gulshan coffee world. Met the managing editor sitting alone pondering over how he could improve the New Age marketing.

From there layes and sharmin were off to home. I and  ms traumatised-from-the-experience took another rickshaw towards her home. It was a pleasant ride and for the first time I had actually gone up to Adarsha Nagar where I stepped down. Took another rickshaw and started for Gulshan FFC.

Little kid after all had his birthday that I was supposed to attend. Reached there just when they were packing bags and were about to head home. But anyways, the day was full of fun, thrill and excitement. Treasured days!

But this Friday (March 20), I am writing a long feature that was due yesterday and I am not yet done. Have so many plans. Oh ms love-my-phone has got a new Sony Ericsson W910i for her this morning.

I have a plan to meet at Khubbi’s house now but I am still not done with the story. But lets see what fate has for me.

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