So I have been playing this hide and seek game here for quite a while now! This blogger's block is lingering for more than usual. And of course, I have more reasons than one for becoming so laid back.

But that sure should not give you any reason to think that any action was missing. For there are still things to talk about beyond the ever-rising mercury! (For that, I actually feel the need of an air conditioner all the time! Does Shahrukh's thanda-thanda cool cool really work? I think not as I haven't seen those ad this summer!)

And from the many adventures around me, I'd give the award to 'House on Fire'! The reward, of course, is that it gets talked about 'here'! Right over to the action!

A working Saturday is a sad day for me. No matter how hard I try, I cannot make myself to work. Though it does motivate me to reach office as early and leave as quickly too! Clients are usually not working, so that's a respite!

So, come last Saturday and I was up at 6.30 (and that is way too early for me!) and in office by 8! Phew! Beat that! And back home at 5! Trust me, even hot sweltering evenings are better enjoyed at home! So there I was cooling my heels after a long hard day at work. With some shopping to do and a late-night movie to catch, I sure needed some rest.

And then, I heard! It was some thumping/thudding sound, or may be banging, coming from afar. Paying no heed, I continued day-dreaming.

And it grew louder! And nearer! And louder! And nearer! More louder and more nearer!

Till I realized that it was actually coming from my roof! I sneakily opened my bedroom's balcony door, sure to find the monkey family enjoying a Saturday evening too!

They were not there! Nobody was there. Just the bangs and the thuds.

I rushed to the main balcony to check from the front. Before I could look up, I had to look around me! For there were all these people on 'their' balconies and the road...all looking towards my home, rather my rooftop!

I looked up and saw black smoke fuming out! And before I could think what's wrong, I heard people calling me out, 'Get down! What are you doing up there!?'

The gen set of the tower on the roof was smoking away! Which tower? Well, it's the MTNL mobile tower! Yeah...right on top of my head! Or better put, on the fourth floor of the building, where I dwell on the 3rd! Now, don't get asking what it is doing there. After renting out the basement, 1st, 2nd & 3rd floor, this was the best my landlord could do to make some more moollah! And seeing that very tower be the centre of attraction (distraction! Worry!) this summery Saturday evening made me first worried, then fume!

I started for the stairs and ran back towards my bedroom! For whatever might or might not happen, I needed to carry my handbag with me! Oh, and what else did I need then? I have never made that list of things to carry when your house catches fire. So just the handbag was fine, me thought.

I rushed downstairs, clutching my handbag in one hand and mobile phone in the other. In my bathroom slippers! Still wearing the sweat-ridden top and jeans I had been wearing all day. And all the while, thinking if there is anything else I need to take along! Maybe some of my funky jewellery. Or at least, a decent footwear! Or my laptop! And some pictures!

You can laugh there, for now as I write, I realize that there were still all my important documents inside my home with the burning tower on the roof! My certificates. The fruits of my entire life's hard work and toil! Yes, not once did I think about them!

And while I ran down the stairs, I called my landlord's number, which was unreachable.

Then I called up his wife, who was not at home either!

Woww! Was I going to be the only victim had I stayed back! A thought comes and goes.

I had still another flight of stairs to descend when the lady at 100 took all the details. 'I'll send the fire brigade,' she had said calmly before hanging up.

There was a whole crowd on the road, on the balcony, all of them spilling over, all of them looking at my rooftop. The black smoke continued, the banging got harder!

I called the MTNL Customer Service and told them in hysterically that their tower was on fire. 'Please call the fire brigade, Ma'am,' he said calmly before hanging up!

I stood there trying to calm myself down, worry and anger now beginning to take over!

Then came two policemen on a PCR bike. They went to the neighbours. Took first-hand information. Debated whether to go upstairs before the firemen arrived. Shook their heads and subsequently rubbed their bulging tummies. Looked up again. And decided they should check for themselves.

I tailed them upstairs. Watched them go to the rooftop. Well, if they did feel scared, which their hesitant footsteps showed, their eyes betrayed that emotion. They are trained!

After a quick recce, they made their way downstairs. Wrote down my details. While I gave them the information, I so wanted to tell them that I was not responsible for the fire. I wanted to tell them that though I hated working on Saturdays, I never got as mad as to set my own rooftop afire!

I think my innocent eyes convinced them and they went on to call MTNL. And voila! They got the same reply!

Then came the firemen. Some with the bulging tummies (those who stand and instruct!), others with flat ones and instruments in their hands. They went to the rooftop, did some more banging, broke a thing or too, I suppose. Then some more banging with louder instructions from the one with the bulging tummy. The original sounds from the box had died. The smoke ceased. All that remained was the sound of them breaking the box and the voice over the walkie-talky!

Another fifteen minutes followed before the firemen decided that the needful has been done and they could call it a day. They made their way down, not before telling me nonchalantly, 'Don't worry, madam. Just a short circuit. We have taken care of it.' Don't fires break out due to 'just a short circuit'? Before I could ask, they had left and left me with my thoughts.

The action was finally over. Thankfully, the unwanted attention was also over! By now, people had left their balconies and the roadsides. An occasional glance from here and there was all that the tower attracted now.

Relieved with the sudden silence after an hour and half, I locked my home and made my way downstairs. A shopping spree and a good movie were something to look forward to after that ordeal. Now if you want to know which movie I watched... well, it was the much-hyped Kites! Yeah, that WAS another ordeal!

PS: Blogdosts, I am calling off the surprise gift thingee for the first two comments. Call it superstition, but the two times that I flagged it, I received heart-breaking news. But keep heart, I am going to send a gift to all my regular readers (and comments also!) and will post their names in the next post. Till then, take care and stay precious!
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15 Responses
  1. Nu Says:

    I'm first and I don't mind :)

    This was real scary lady !! I just could think what would I carry when I have to run in 10 secs out of my house...shit ! Too tough to decide..but then we will have to if at all faced with this condition and you experiences is telling me one should be prepared na..these situations never tells us beforehand and come !

    I'm glad you're safe and rest of your belongings too are intact !

    KITES ?? Why the hell did you go ? I was warned by few and I'm thankful I haven't been there :)

    Watch Badmash Company..I liked it !

  2. OH my goodness girl! So happy that you're okay! Yeah, I should think you deserve a good shopping trip and movie after all that!

  3. Nu Says:

    just noticed that my comment has loads of punctuation mistakes..sawwry ! :)

  4. Melissa G. Says:

    Oh my goodness, Neha! I'm so glad your ok and that your house is ok too! I would have been thinking of my pictures and laptop too as i was running from a fire!

  5. Yogin Says:

    Well, now you can surely answer those self questionnaires that asks what will you take with you if you were running out of a burning house.. but I guess they'll have to tweak their choices to include "the handbag and the cell phone" as one option... :P

    BTW, I've noticed lately that trouble seems to find you pretty easily... Or you go and find trouble yourself, like watching Kites or Houseful :D

    You should have watched Iron Man 2 instead.. or maybe you can go and watch Price of Persia this weekend if its releasing there...

    Have a fun weekend..

  6. Amandeep Says:

    That's sounds so scary Neha!! So glad you're fine... Since the movie turned out to be a torture, treat yourself to a nice dinner, with some nice compnany! You deserve it girl!

  7. Haddock Says:

    So sad about fav hero.....
    Instead of Kites we are going for Shrek

  8. aparajita Says:

    hope u r fine neha ......... really a hard day ..

  9. Zainab Says:

    oh God u never told me abt this! it jus now ....... thank god u are ok .. its really scary ...

  10. Zainab Says:

    oh God its too scary n u never told me abt this! have read it jus now ...thank god u r ok .......

  11. Neha Says:

    @ Nu - Thanks dear; and don't ask why I went to watch Kites! I thought it would be a good watch, but even Rakesh Roshan disappointed this time!

    And don't worry about punctuations...main bhaawnaaein samajhti huin :))

    @ The Hall Family - Thanks :). And though the shopping went fine; the movie was a disaster :(

    @ Melissa - Thank you dear. And yes, I sure am going to make a list of things to carry when house on fire soon!

    @ Yogin - Well, yes. I do manage to find trouble wherever I go. Seem to be a pro on that now!

    And I've watched Iron Man 2. Didn't find it as good either :(

    @ Amandeep - A good dinner...that's exactly what I need just now. Thanks dear :)

    @ Haddock - Disappointing, but true. Kites was only hype :(

    @ Aparajita - was a hard and gruesome day! Good to see you here though :)

    @ Zainab - ab itni lambi kahani kaise batati chat pe. itna details toh yahin de sakti huin :)

  12. Brittany Ann Says:

    WHOA! That's terrifying! I'm just so glad you're OK! You were so calm! I'd have been hysterical!

  13. Chatterbox Says:

    Sorry to be a bit late here.
    That was very scary indeed. Having to make such difficult decisions in life as to choosing what to escape with can be very difficult.
    I am glad you are safe and fine.

    Take care :)

  14. Neha Says:

    @ Brittany - From hysterical to calm to amused...that was my state! I was actually laughing at the end of it! Guess the tension took over :)

    @ Chatterbox - Thanks :). And true, makins choices like those are difficult. And I took my handbag only!

  15. ani_aset Says:

    whats with the ad on the blog? and do i get any gift? :D