This post is a part of 24-day Marathon fiction called Yaariyan.
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Niket comes to Mumbai for textile exhibition on Wednesday, July 21. The exhibition is for two days – Wednesday and Thursday. He goes to shop for trekking gears along with Arpit to Decathlon store in Thane on Wednesday evening. He would catch a train back to Rajkot on Thursday evening, once the exhibition is over.
Both meet at Ghodbunder road, Thane – Niket has lost five kgs and looks fit. ‘So how’s your gym going?’ provoked Arpit, ‘Abhay got behind my life, I could literally listen to my attempts to breathe deeply, the gush of oxygen felt like I’m pumping coal into an already burning fire. But I felt alive in those moments. Constant follow up by you and Siddhi helped me continue showing up at the gym doorsteps every morning! Abhay declared me fit for the trek last month!’ replied Niket. ‘That’s awesome, but what exercise are you doing now that you’ve stopped going to gym.’ ‘I’m doing yoga and go for jogs with Siddhi in the morning.’ ‘Wow, I’m really happy for you and Siddhi. She has made an amazing impact on you. Where are things headed ahead?’ ‘At this pace, I think we’ll get engaged the moment I’m back from the trek! And we both are fine with it’
They reached the store and were shocked with its sheer size. They stocked every equipment for every kind of sport possible in Mumbai – right from camping, hiking and trekking gears to bicycles, football, basketball, cricket, skating, yoga, and more! There were huge tents, foldable chairs kept in the middle of the shop. Niket looked at Arpit wondering where should they start from? Arpit gave Niket the list and asked him to figure out on his own as he went ahead to check out his skating skills.
Niket picked up a basket and started going through the racks, the list had a details of things to be bought and quantity beside it – They had to shop for Swami too – He started picking up headlamps, walking sticks, UV protection sunglasses, water bottles, fleece jackets, small daypacks. Now they had to only shop for trekking shoes. Arpit had managed backpacks for himself and Niket – so cost was saved to that extent.
Looking at the shoes, they got confused, there were different models for different purposes. The salesman helped them figure out what kind of shoes would be required. The trek organisation had recommended Forclaz 500, which was high ankle, water resistant and had great soles. They checked their sizes and took one size bigger ones as recommended by salesmen. ‘During descent, feet tend to come ahead and there has to be some space ahead to accommodate them, else one starts feeling itchy’, he had explained.
Done with all shopping, they went through the checklist and proceeded towards the billing counter. ‘I want to thank you for allowing Abhi to come along with us. I know you are curious to know what he has been up to in these four years, though you’ll keep showing you don’t give a damn.’ ‘What do you expect me to say – that I miss him? Yes I do, but one question still hurts me – how could he do that to me?’ ‘You don’t know the truth.’ ‘I don’t want to know it. I’ve made my peace with it, its all past now.’
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