My airport bar friend

I met Bartea at an airport bar, while waiting for my flight to Chennai from Mumbai. She was also waiting for the same flight and I said hi and we got chatting in Sep 2008.

After that, we have gone on trips like to war-ravaged Srilanka in 2009, the minute civil war ended and what a fun trip it was to initiate our friendship. She thought that I would not turn up at Chennai airport for the trip, since this was our first meeting after the meeting at the airport bar. And, in that trip, in Taj Colombo, we were almost thrown out since our avocado bag broke open and all the avocados started rolling on the floor, like live grenades, waiting to explode and we almost had a security incident at the hotel, which was just limping back to normalcy.

We have done multiple trips after that to Pondicherry, Bangalore & to Turkey. Turkey was the best trip of my life till date with a friend. It was a trip full of mishaps and disaster waiting to happen, but it was so much fun, with Bartea, by my side. We even sat in a laundry truck and travelled up a mountain and climbed a wrong bus when our private taxi was waiting, yet still managed to reach our destination.

My city was quite boring, in early 2011, when the city was still opening up. It was hard to find like-minded friends. So, we used to hang out quite often for movies, drinks & dinner. And what fun we had, stuffing our faces with pizzas, sandwiches, pastas and Thai food. Name any new restaurant within 5km vicinity of our workplaces and rest assured that we would have visited it and sampled the delicacies. I think food was the original binding glue in our relationship.

Bartea is an original in the fun and creativity department, having worked in advertising and marketing. I worked in Human Resources then and used to handle a lot of Employee Relations cases. We used to have immense fun narrating the foibles of the people that we worked alongside, whilst maintaining privacy and confidentiality of the individuals and organisations concerned. I remember during breaks in the movies, we used to narrate stories from the previous fortnight and that used to crack us up so much that we used to howl with laughter and people would turn and stare at 2 women having so much fun in an otherwise boring movie. It does help that both of us could narrate a story with such ease, as though we are narrating a story for a cocktail crowd listening with rapt attention for the next cliff-bending climax.

Sometimes you need to sample the arty side of your city. We used to go for plays, concerts together and enjoy the creative side of our city a lot. I enjoyed these outings, as we could see the Page 3 crowd, the arty crowd and the wannabe crowd too! Just added flavour to our boring work lives on some days, when we had fun commenting on them.

She is no longer in my city

For the last few years, she has not been in my city as she has emigrated and it has been my loss. Yes, I do have a wide variety of friends, but deep down one knows that friend with whom you had the maximum fun with, is no longer your wolf pack buddy. I had maximum fun in my city with her and for that I am truly thankful to her, for enlivening my social life.

Thanks Bartea for being such a good sport and making life so much fun between 2011 and 2016 in Namma Chennai. Miss you loads.

#Weekly Prompt, #FriendsforLife, #Fun, #GirlsRock, #UnexpectedJoysoflife