birdwatching: part 3.

Read part 1. Read part 2.

The team spotted some more birds post-lunch. This time they were roaming around Jubilee Gardens. Taking a back-route from near the swimming pool, they reached the back side of CEDT where they spotted a five feet snake.

Since both the species had their stomachs full, none of them got impressed at the sight of the other. It was 16:00 and bhOndOO was damn tired carrying the load. He wanted a break and asked his companions whether they could have tea in CEDT canteen. Siddhu took some time to agree, as he evaluated all the options of any possible mischief by bhOndOO.

They all joined the queue, bhOndOO being the first one like a non-gentleman. Siddhu, like a gentleman, allowed the girls to have tea before him. Finally, Siddhu took out his wallet to pay the bill and had a mocking glance towards bhOndOO who settled at a table. bhOndOO’s face turned pink and he started drinking tea, keeping the bags below the table.

The girls settled around bhOndOO and they started chatting — bhOndOO excluded. Siddhu was waiting at the counter for change from the canteen owner. At the same time, an elderly person entered the canteen, took a tea, paid, glanced at a table to witness a boy surrounded by four girls, nodded in negation and went out to get a seat outside.

They had tea. bhOndOO felt relieved.

The excursion continued towards CES where they spotted some more birds. After walking for another hour, suddenly Siddhu shouted, “That’s Upupa epops!”.

“Where?”, “Where?”, “Where?”, “Where?”, disinterest: were the replies.

Chingi suddenly got excited, “Oh! My! I am seeing this for the first time in my life! I am so blessed. It is so colorful. Some people say that it is very fortunate to spot this bird. I am so lucky. We are so lucky.”.

The only unlucky person was disinterested.

“Hey, bhOndOO, give me the camera…” and Mungi’s mouth kept open ending with camera. To say the least, she was shocked. The other girls looked at bhOndOO and “Where?”, “Where?”, “Where?”, “Where?” were the replies.

Siddhu looked at bhOndOO and shouted, “Where are the bags?”.

bhOndOO tried to make an innocent face, “I don’t know. Those were over my shoulders only.”, and to extrapolate the innocense, he tried looking at his shoulders searching for bags.

“Where did you leave the bags?”.

“I don’t remember. I had those with me all along.”. This time bhOndOO kept searching around him.

Siddhu understood and he gave a very angry look at bhOndOO. Chingi looked gloomy with the thought of losing her camera. Siddhu took the lead, “He had it until we had tea. Let’s go back and check in CEDT canteen.”.

They all went back. The canteen was closed.

“Shit!”, “Oh!”, “Oh!”, “Oh!”, “Oh!”, Wow! were the replies.

Chingi started crying. Her friends tried to pacify her, “Don’t worry. We will get our equipment tomorrow.”.

bhOndOO stood silent thinking about the lucky Upupa epops. The bird had turned out to be unlucky for the rest of them.

Siddhu finally declared, “Okay, there is no point in further birdwatching. Let’s get back to hostels.”.

bhOndOO opened his mouth, “I am going to the department.”.

Nobody replied. They parted ways. Chingi continued sobbing.

bhOndOO, on his way back, continued whisling, “Humka Aisa Waisa Na Samjho Hum Bade Kaam Ki Cheez…“.

He merrily entered the lab, logged in, and opened CSA webmail to see one new email from Prof Krishnamurthy, his advisor. The mail was sent in the morning and contained a one liner, “Can you meet me today?”.

It was 18:00. bhOndOO pressed Ctrl-Alt-Backspace and ran towards Sir’s room. He felt glad to see his room open.

“May I come in, Sir?”.


bhOndOO got in. Prof Krishnamurthy put forth his hand. bhOndOO was about to hold it for a handshake, but then suddenly realized that it was a signal for him to sit. He followed the signal.

“You seem to have checked my mail pretty late.”.

“Yes, Sir. I was actually not around.”.

“You had gone out?”.

“No, Sir. I was inside campus itself. But I was just… just birdwatching…”.

“I know what kind of birds you were watching since early morning.”.

bhOndOO was surprised to hear the end of his sentence, How does he know?

“Anyway, I think it is time you appear for comprehensive. Approval from the senate committee has arrived. I have fixed your comprehensive exam on Jun 22, 2009.”.

“So early?”.

“Yes.” and Prof Krishnamurthy kept looking at bhOndOO. bhOndOO understood that he better not argue. He kept quiet.

There was an awkward silence for 5 seconds. Then Prof Krishnamurthy continued.

“Okay, start your preparations. Send me the slides by Monday. We will have a mock interview on Wednesday.”.

Prof Krishnamurthy’s look stopped bhOndOO from speaking anything.

“You may go now.”.

bhOndOO nodded and came back to the lab. He continued wondering about the lucky bird Upupa epops.


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4 Responses to “birdwatching: part 3.”

  1. birdwatching: part 1. « iisc life. Says:

    […] Read part 2. Read part 3. […]

  2. birdwatching: part 2. « iisc life. Says:

    […] life. Life of a student researcher — bhOndOO. « birdwatching: part 1. birdwatching: part 3. […]

  3. Arun Says:

    bhOndOO felt relieved. …. This line in italics… interesting

    bhOndOO showed a lot more sense than I credited him to have.

  4. Vadhana Says:

    Kind of mixed emotions on reading this blog. Hilarious, Interesting, Sympathy, Disappointing.. thinking of one smiley that will speak of everything.

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