Monday, June 15, 2009

A 'Ground-breaking' incident in my life

A week ago on 5th June 2009, a certain incident took place. An incident which was to have serious consequences on my future. An incident which shook the very foundations of my over-the-top-spending, too-much-How-I-Met-Your-Mother-watching, playing-Mafia-Wars-on-Facebook ... life.
Well, I exaggerated in the last part. But it surely was a significant incident. This took place on the beautiful morning of 5th June, 2009. As usual, I woke up at 6 am, a good one hour before my usual (by usual I mean what I used to do one month before) time. And this was so that I could go for some jogging in the morning. Why jogging? Now that is a question that you would not have asked if you had seen me. The 9-6:30 job in front of a computer all the time had started to take toll on my health and quite naturally (and very usual for a Software Professional) I had started to develop a bulge. It didn't bother me that much 'cos I was never really the athletic kind and also not the I-date-girls type. But this one fateful weekend in April I went to Kemmanagundi (where I had taken this beautiful picture of my feet on the left) and had to trek quite a bit down to Hebbe falls and then climb back up. The trek wasn't too difficult but I was panting after some climb itself. Its then that I realized I had to work up and do something. And the most logical choice was to start running. So back to Bangalore, I went straight to an Adidas showroom, bought a brand new pair of running shoes and there I was ready to start the eternal struggle against the burgeoning bulge.
Hey, we are deviating from the main subject. Lets get back. So where was I? Yes. That morning. So after a round of nature's small and bigger calls (and having felt relieved after that, don't we all?) I put on my running gear which comprises of a pair of track pants and t-shirt and my Adidas shoes and headed out. I took up my usual route which was first a down-lane (I mean it was downhill but there was no hill, just a lane, so down-lane). All was fine. Since it had rained the night before, the route was a teeny bit damp and the air was chilly. I was enjoying the cool Bangalore morning breeze, looking up to the beautiful flowers springing on the trees which formed a part of my route and also keeping a lookout for the other flowers who took the pain to come out in the morning (they came out for their jogs/workouts/walks whatever but in the process they do shower a lot of happiness to the surroundings and people they interact with). So now there is this turn where I reach the farthest point in my jogging route and I have to take the parallel road back to my place. Its a kind of pothole-infested point and especially that morning due to the heavy showers and wind, a lot of stuff was lying around that area along with water which had filled up the potholes. And then it happened. My right foot landed on one such spot and as I transferred my balance onto that foot, I suddenly felt the ground give way (like what they say in Hindi - mere paon tale zameen khisak gayi). OMG! For a split second, I was under shock. Dhud! I fell down twisting my ankle in the process. My track pants greased the road and attained a whole lot of dirt in the process and for five minutes I was in immense amount of pain. It was through a lot of mental strength that I managed to not cry.
But what mattered at that moment was not the mental but the physical strength. So I garnered whatever ounce of strength I had in me and got up, dusted myself and tried to walk. Putting any amount of weight on the right leg was like asking a 5th grader to solve a Calculus Problem. Too difficult but not impossible! Somehow, I managed to limp my way home. My roommate, who had just got up from sleep and successfully managed to evade the need to go for jogging was stunned. Ki holo tor paye? (translated from Bengali to English it meant - What happened to your leg?) The pain in my leg managed to cut the story short to just 5 words - Ami dourate giye pore gechilam! (again translated from Bengali to English it meant - I fell down while running!) That spurned a sudden spike of activity wherein he helped me get to the chair and sit down. Next he put on the geyser and filled a bucket half full with hot water and another half full with cold water. I was to alternately dip my leg into the two buckets in what was the hot-and-cold-water-therapy/massage, something suggested by my dad whom I managed to call while on the way back home.
Ten minutes of therapy and I suddenly felt a lot better. But I was late for office. So I rushed (where rushed means quickly limping) to my room to get ready. Somehow I managed to do that and come to office. I had brought crepe bandage with which I duly bandaged my ankle and simply sat down on my seat. Since Fridays are typically lazy days in office with not much work, I was happy. But then nature's calls are something you can't avoid and a visit to the loo became the most difficult task for me for the day. Still I managed it along with a visit to the cafeteria for my lunch.
What was interesting was the number of 'get well soon' messages that I got. I had updated my status message on all my social network profiles viz. Orkut, Facebook, Gtalk, Twitter. People who had never scrapped me started sending scraps asking about the health of my leg. So many people pinged me on Gtalk. The comments I got on my Facebook status turned out to be a discussion in itself ranging from the status of my leg and the status of the ground where I fell upon. And that's when an idea struck me. Why not keep updating the status of my foot right through the week! So any improvement was duly reported as status messages on the respective social networks. And as I had thought it produced the desired results.
When I reported that I could barely walk, people asked me how bad was it.
When I reported that I could now walk but not climb stairs and all, people asked me if I had consulted a doctor.
When I reported that I could walk well but not run, people asked me the need to run and where the urge came from.
Well, I made the last one up. But it does prove that the little experiment that I did with my social networks did prove successful. So now I am finally reporting the status of my injured ankle.
The ankle is a lot better and I have successfully managed to give it the much needed rest over the last two weekends. Walking is not so much an issue but still running is. I tried to have a practice run last weekend but my first jump desperately told me to stop and forget about the idea for the moment.
Those of you who may be wondering what happened to that ground where I fell upon; well when I last saw it it was fine although I must admit I wasn't in the state for a more precise inspection of that piece of land. So this topic is still open for speculation and debate.

Talking about bulges or rather paunches, here's an Ode To A Bengali Paunch by Amit Varma.

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Abhishek Saha
Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
A NRB (Non Resident Bengali) or rather a 'Probashi Bangali'; born in Kolkata, brought up in Jamshedpur and now trying to make his mark at IIM Lucknow.
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