Monday, February 20, 2012

The 'Booo...' chronicles (redux)

Ok, enough of spooky stories.

How about some real-life accounts? ;-)

But before that, a foreword:

I started penning "The Boooo Chronicles", right here on MHIMH, a few years back, based on some real (some I suspect, not so real) experiences of my friend (I'll call him N), who is quite a colorful character. You could even say I got some of my inspirations for all things spooky, from this guy. He's been regaling us with his 'other worldly' escapades since school. Let's admit it, we all had one such guy/girl during the wonder years, right? Someone who believed in the occult, someone who had spoken to all things ghostly, someone who knew just what would happen if you turned back at that peepul tree?

Well, he's one such guy.

He'd been out of touch for a while, save the occasional email or phone call. But when he lived with us for a few weeks some years ago, he'd go on endlessly about his trysts with...well, you know what. And it all started there - The 'Booo chronicles', I mean.

So then, he called me today, out of the blue - and after all the pleasantries, guess what he launches into?

No prizes for guessing. But wait, not so fast. You'll not get that here immediately. You must first know what this guy experienced many years ago. I'll get to the present, later. :P

So then, ladies & gentlemen - I present to you the first in the series (the rerun of 'The Boooo chronicles').

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Ghost Guzzlers (The boooo... chronicles)

This is a true story, and I kid you not.

My friend N is a unit manager at one of the top Thai restaurants here in Bangalore. Before coming here, he was in charge of an entire mall in Kolkata (am not disclosing the name and area of the mall for obvious reasons), responsible for overseeing the operations of the eatery and the movie section of the mall. Last night, somehow the topic veered to (yeah, what else...) ghosts, and what he narrated in the course of that conversation, made me think. That ghosts, are...well, some ghosts are nice and they're best left alone. And they allow you to do your thing. Read on.

The year 2000. N had just landed a job at the mall (let's call it 'The Plaza complex'. If you remember, all these earlier versions of malls sans the movie halls were suffixed with 'complex', as if that'd make things any easier), and it was business as usual till one evening, when he stepped into a pub in the same vicinity around five, to check on the stock - the beer mugs, bottles, inventory and stuff. It was a fairly quiet evening, as the stewards went about their business readying the place for the guests who'd start trickling in by about six. N headed to the bar counter where a steward was wiping glasses, and generally humming a tune. After a cursory 'good evening sir', 'how are things' kind of a dialogue between the two, N walked to the men's rest-room and he'd barely closed the door from the inside when someone knocked - hastily. Five to six quick knocks. Irritated, N pulled open the door to give the steward (who else could it be, customers hadn't yet arrived) a piece of his mind. But to his puzzlement, there wasn't anybody outside.

N walked over to the steward at the bar counter who was oblivious to the entire thing and had his back turned to the counter.

"Hey, listen," N said.

"Yes sir?"

"Why'd you knock on that door when you knew I'd just stepped in?"

"Which door, sir?" the steward said, surprised.

"Arre, the rest-room's. Just now. Didn't you knock?"

The man shrugged, and then suddenly as if realization had dawned, he muttered a quick excuse and sauntered out from behind the counter and headed to the exit.

All the more puzzled, a bit annoyed even, N followed him out.

"Why'd you walk out on me, I was speaking to you, wasn't I?" He brought on his 'manager-to-steward' tone.

"Sir, you'll have to forgive me, but I had no choice."

"What? Why?"

"Sir, what's the time now?"

N frowned at his wrist. "5.20, why?"

The steward nodded his head sagely. "Sir, that's the problem. The time. You should'nt have gone to the rest room now."

"What nonsense, why not?"

"Sir, keep this to yourself, but there's a ghost in that rest-room, and he is around between 5 and 6 in the evenings."

Unable to believe his ears, N put his hands on his hips with that 'yeah-right-like-you-want-me-to-believe-this' look. The steward called out to a few other staff guys, the janitor, a security guy, and a couple others and they nodded their collective heads in ghostly unison.

"This is truly ridiculous guys, you want me to believe this?" N shot back at the pale faces.

The janitor, the senior most, spoke up slowly. "Sir, if you don't believe us, please step into the rest-room once again. There's no one else around, right? And this door is quite a distance, so none of us can follow you."

N mulled over this. The janitor raised his eye-brows, as if to dare N. So N sighed and walked back to the rest-room, and just as he was nearing the place he turned to check. Yeah, they were all outside. He shook his head and went to the door.

This time round, the door was locked from the inside.

*****

12 comments:

Rohini said...

Wow... thats one combination that's tough to master. Humor, spook and subtlety. Thumbs up!
Incidentally, I have been planning to post a set of remarkably similar incidents. Hope they turn out to be somewhere near this. :)

Tongue-fu Lady said...

I am glad that your boy-wonder inspires you to write such amazing stuff..bravo to N!

phatichar said...

Rohini: Lovely...will head over to your blog soon :)

TFL: :P

manan guju said...

NICE!

Blue Lotus said...

Spooky...Thanks to you I wont be able to use the restrooms in pubs in peace!!!

CD!!! said...

Even I have had few experiences but I dismiss each and every idea thinking them to be hallucinations.This was scary!

Seяendipity™ said...

Okay, so now you tell me all the spook your genius mind generates is because of N ? Tell him your readers love him for igniting this fire :):)

Heading over to the next part :)

sumitra said...

Whoa! No way would I ever be going back in the direction of that washroom ever in my life if that happened to me. N has some nerve!

phatichar said...

manan: :) thx.

Blue Lotus: Ha ha..

CD: To each his/her own :)

Seяendipity™: No, no - he's part of the inspiration. See, I've always had this fascination for the 'other world' (though I myself haven't experienced any of it), but this guy would fuel it further. Like I wrote earlier on "...some of my inspirations...". So there. :)

Sumitra: Ha ha..he sure seems to have (at least when he recollects those accounts) ;-)

Seяendipity™ said...

I pray to God, May you receive an 'other worldly' experience very soon :D

Kanthu said...

Did u post this anytime back? I remembr reading it once, before this.

phatichar said...

Kanthu: Yes, as the post title and the foreword above suggests. :)