Sunday, March 30, 2008

Fire in the Boiler

"Yaar ye baar baar power cut kyon ho raha hai?" somebody asked. We were all busy discussing movies and music in Abhishek's room, just next to mine. Or we can say my room is next to Abhishek's, as he owns the first room of the Mohalla, the corridor of friends we are proud of.

"It seems Dutta has put on his big boiler again." came a reply from somewhere in the room itself.

We kept up our discussion.

Suddenly power went off again.

This time my mind's power came back and I was running before I could actually think much.

I went into my room and saw fire coming out of my boiler. Mittal, my roommate, was sleeping a few feet away, oblivious of the fire. And my boiler was burning to ashes. Power was not there, of course, and the fire in one corner of the room was making a pretty horrific scene.

It was a small plastic boiler with a capacity of little more than a glass of water. I needed some hot water for a cold n cough medicine so I had poured a glassful of water, switched the power on, and went out of the room for a spoon.

And they were discussing some song, and then some movies, and I forgot I had left the boiler in my room. To burn itself.

I called them as fast as I could. And all of them came in within seconds.

No further questions. They all started trying to put off the fire. Motz was trying his best to put off the fire when suddenly a falling piece of boiler fell down on my hand and fell down to the ground. It had touched my hand for an instant but I felt it was burnt badly. And within seconds I was at the wash basin, with one hand on the tap and the other under water.

Actually it happened so fast that I could not even feel any pain in my hand.

I could now see the while peeled-off skin of my hand.

That was when Amit came in and saw what had happened to my hand.

And before I could think, he decided we were going to the health centre.

It was 12 in the night.

I really could not think. I asked them if I really needed to go to the health centre. I'm sure it was. But I didn't realize it at the time. But that doesn't really matter. Cause when I came back to the room, the centre of attraction had suddenly shifted. The fire was gone, there were only ashes. Pretty hot, of course. Some one of us had switched on the power too. And I do not know how many of my friends were walking with me. One holding a mug of water, in which my hand was immersed.

Soon we were on the ground floor, with Jeet and I-don't-know-exactly-who-all watching every step of mine. My hand was once again under the cold, chilling water tap, while we were waiting for the Ambulance.

I stood outside the block with a half wall beside me, my hand still in the mug of water.

Oh, how good my friends were.. All of them were there with me.. Some 8-10 right in front of me.. These were the thoughts which were crossing my mind when I realized I was fainting. I collected all my strength and called Jeet who was standing nearby and told him I was fainting.

"Don't worry. Ambulance aa rahi hai." He said and sprinkled some water on my face.

I didn't faint. But I was not in my senses either. The ambulance came and they almost lifted me and put me in even though I tried to walk up.

And then we were enjoying in the Ambulance, talking the most senseless things which I do not remember now. Jeet, Ritvik, Motz and don't know if anybody else was there. Probably Apoorv.

Finally I reached the Health centre and was surprised to see Dr Reghuraman there. He had already had an encounter with my fainting problem the last time I was in for a blood test. Well, he simply suggested a silver sulfadiazine and the nurse did the bandage.

Motz had also got slight burnings so he too got the lotion.

We came back in the same ambulance and this time I remember we were talking of movies. Resuming what was going on in Motz's room a few mins earlier.

"Amitabh Bachchan and Mallika Sherawat," I asked my question, lying on the bed in the ambulance.

"What? Any such movie exists??"

"Darna Zaroori hai."

"Chup ho ja yaar! Tere haath mein problem hogi bolne se..." Jeet had no other way out.

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