An interesting sunday

“man, its really hot.. How long do we have to wait for her?” “just a little while more, her cousin is coming to give us the the main gate”

“oh no way man, thats two whole blocks away.. grrrr..ok, lets walk”

They started at gate 3, and walked steadily towards the main entrance. The two boys had abandoned them, and unchivalrously gone into the match, not caring about the eve-teasing going on around them. The side walk seemed to vanish underfoot. They wrapped their dupattas around themselves tightly, squinting as the dust flew in their eyes, the sun bore down hot and humid. Carefully, skirting around the hoardes of men with their catcalling, and lewd comments, she thought, “darn, I hope these silver slippers dont snap”.

“there he is”, her friend excitedly motioned to a tall lanky fellow, in a pink button down shirt, talking irately into a cellphone. “All ready for the match girls?”, he smiled, and motioned them towards the bag-checking lady.


3 body searches and bag checks later, they stood facing the stairs that led to the vip gallery. Both girls heavedd a sigh of relief at being able to have gotten away with keeping their cellphones, and cameras. The president was coming to the match, security was tight. The guard, having a soft spot for females, ushered them in and made them promise to keep their phones off.

The stairs seemed to go on for ever, and they huffed and puffed their way up the stairs, burstiingg forth out into the open aired gallery, like fish that jump out of water for that split second. The girls looked around. The ground was a brilliant green, spotted with players in sky blue and others in royal blue. India, pakistans biggest rivals- and sri lanka, currently Indias biggest competition.

“lets go get a seat..the match looks really promising”.. Both friends smiled at eachother, and went to sit down.

Musharaf had decided to grace the event with his presence. The doors were padlocked and abandoned by gatekeepers 2 hours prior to his arrival. What had started out as fun, had now become a tedious, dehydrated and slightly repetitve event marked by too many pictures snapped – the only interesting sight was now the crows perching on the roof in the floodlights, illuminated almost like an ascent into heaven..

The clock turned from 9 to 10, and 10 to 11…. at 11, the cellphones came out and the texting began in response to phonecalls from anxious parents watching the match at home… The conversations mostly went like this..” yes, ma, the doors have been locked since nine… we will come home as soon as possible…”.. and , “abbu, what can we do…they wont let us out, not even for a drink.. yes yes, we are coming as soon as mushy leaves..”. Little did everyone know that he was there to hand out the awards, and a long long LONG wait become inescapable.. Slowly but surely, the indian and sri lanked flags started to melt off sticky faces, the humidity intensifying with the promise of rain. Long sighs followed, ipod touch’s precariously balanced on railings, waiting for musharafs arrival on the ground..Camera’s stayed poised waiting for the moment of glory.


Suddenly, it happened…The match ended, and charcoal suited figures ran to form a big circle, interfacing eachother, the ring of unbreachable mortal security (not very reassuring one can be sure). The Pakistani cricket team huddled round Musharaf as he walked out surrounded by his entourage in a green suit, patriotic, and walked and waved to his adoring fans leaning over the railings and shouting his name. After the lefts and rights were over, he walked onto the stage, and the award ceremony began.

Camera’s went *click* *pop* *flash*, fake smiles came on, and the never-tiring effort to speak “english” continued in its broken and much interupted wake.

*boing* *Boing* *BOING* – This time check was brought to you by – Pepsi! yeh dil mangey more!!


The screen flashed for a brief minute, airing the sponsers advert. The hands had retracted from the railings, and tired feet shuffled over the wooden planks to form a queue. Women wound their wraps/stoles around themselves tightly, trying to manage their whiny children who were tugged at their pant legs. Carefully, they sandwiched themselves into single-file lines in between several male members of their families, in an effortt to avoid being felt up unneccessarily.

The two friends clasped hands, and skirted their way around, weaving in and out of the crowd near the head of the line. The doors finally opened,  and they spilled out of the veranda, which felt like a cage after all this time. Someone jokingly commented, “It looks like a flight has just landed”. The girls rushed down the stairs, trying to keep pace with friends who were also leaving the stadium. They were so stiff, their legs failed them, and once or twice they fell behind before resuming the struggle to catch their ride home.


“Phew, that was close..I thought the bus was going to hit you for sure”, her friend looked at her worriedly, her features wrinkled in the streaming streetlight.

“Honestly, man, I didn’t even see that bus coming..Thanks for pulling me through”, She leaned back against the sunken car seat, eyes closed, shoulders sagging gratefully.

They had crossed the busy streets and made it to the rusty old mehran. Both girls were now home bound. They lurched forward as the rash driving of an 18 year old took over, and they hurtled through heavy traffic. Seven times she saw her life flash infront of her eyes…seven narrow saves.. They could have been smashed on the sidewalk. Her stomach lurched as they ploughed on ahead.

It took two hours, 4 stops at opposite ends of the city, two packets of chilli chips, and an empty smoking radiator till she finally got off home..somewhat shaky..and stumbled upstairs towards her first solid meal of the day..

  1. hahaha hey this story’s not new to me. However, its so well narrated…well reported rather, i enjoyed going through it again. pooa batty !! *hugs*
    this gives u a lesson u rnt supposed to go out without me 😀 (Y)

  2. Your account contrasts savagely with John Major, having lost the 1997 election in the UK, spending the next day at The Oval, quietly watching Surrey play in a County Championship match!

  3. amshoo – lol…verry funny..this just goes to show ur not supposed to abandon me!!!!

    welshwillow – tell me more about this contrast 🙂

  4. well done i daresay to have lasted through a match at the national stadium which didn’t even involve Pak, the last one i went to was in the general stand hahaha..i still cringe when i think of it sometimes.

  5. The contrast for me was in two specific areas: Musharaf’s ‘royal progress’ around the ground, and the level of security.

    Major was pictured sitting quietly in the members’ area (he had long been a member of Surrey and avid cricket fan), just watching the game. I’d guess perhaps one of the people sitting near him was a plain clothed policeman, but there was no fuss and no bother. He was there to enjoy the cricket.

    Of course, given it was an ordinary county match, there was hardly anybody there anyway!

  6. Next piece? I am away right now Batty, but when I have a moment will share my experiences of a typically English Test match!

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