London Again

This was about six years back – somewhere in March’07; that was the first time I had been to London. There were four in that group and none of us were married back then, not that it was a problem or advantage of some sort, but has a very noticeable connection to the story I am about to tell. 

As you’d probably understand, the excitement of walking the streets of the same city that we’ve only heard in stories or in films was intense. We touched the grass in Lords cricket ground, walked in front of the old office of Scotland yard, visited the Buckingham palace, spotted the MI-6 headquarters from the enormous London wheel – every bit of that tour had a bit of surprise – but biggest surprise was probably watching couples make out in public, a visual element hitherto unfamiliar for us urban boys. On our way to see the legendary British Museum, we were in this elevator at Russel Square, a tube station in Piccadilly Line which is a couple of layers below ground level, where it was absolute silence inside the elevator full of people only to be broken by a significant sound of lip lock from a young couple. The elevator delved into silence soon after the disturbing sound and it was silently reached atop. When we got out, 3 of us were in sheer laughter while the other, Arnab, who was probably dating by that time, said –
 “There is no fun in here unless there is a girl with you. Guess I've to come back once I am married, but then we'll walk ahead of you guys. You can follow from a distance.”

Years passed and we parted our ways. However, call it coincidence or not; Arnab was back to UK with his lovely bride. I got hold of him, 
“What about our plan of going back to London? Don't you remember what you said?”

Clearly the newlywed Arnab didn’t remember his promises and when I reminded him of his very own words, he winked at me, 
“Oh that! Yes, of course I am going to London soon but you guys aren’t coming after me at all. Stand far behind may be, if you so wish.”  
We shared a hearty laughter; been to London many a times since then but our paths never crossed. 


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