I should have put this post yesterday midnight. But I know that this particular person may think I am a little silly. For a person who went through a lot last year alone, her attitude to take it easy has always amused me. In the last one and half years, I can say she is the best thing that had happened to me in addition to the already awesome list of friends. I assumed everybody will reach a saturation point in terms of friendship. In 2015 July, when I added this person to my facebook friends list, I didn’t know we would get along too well. I mean, I kinda had everything and everybody in my life. I had a close circle of friends and a good number of acquaintances. There was really no need to add people to that list, is what I thought. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
I had stored her number in my phone as Fashionista. When we first met in cafe kinda setting, I was expecting some other person to talk about Digital marketing and stuff for bloggers but that lady was intimidated by the crowd. This person stepped and gave a quick talk and wrapped it up nicely. I had always like people who take things head on. That was when I started noticing her. She is tall, She is dusky and has impeccable sense of humor. We started bonding over food (means biriyani). At that point of time in my life Chennai Bloggers Club was very important part. When she went on blogger meets to various hotels, she started pitching and it meant a lot to me. When the time came, there was no better chance than her to become admin of Chennai Bloggers Club for which she may still hate me but not say it.
This fancy title of Administrator in Chennai Bloggers Club is no way same as the work she had to do. We travelled long distances to meet with potential clients, some of them, who asked us to meet them but in vain. She settled disputes and ego clashes when I became highly volatile and unstable because of personal issues and spewed hate and filth on everybody. And then we went on to become partners (ahem ahem) of a digital marketing company. I wish I could say, I don’t judge people. But I do. This girl meant business. She brought in leads, slogged long hours to make a client happy and coordinated with numerous vendors to deliver project on tight deadlines. All this, when she lived alone, cooked for herself and also being one of the best lifestyle bloggers in Chennai. For some weird reason, she believed in me. I think she still does. When I fell in some bad phases, she took the bill for all I ate. She ordered white rice for herself and let me eat biriyani when she paid the bill.
This girl is a true feminist. One who demonstrates things and not just talk about it. So once there was this big launch of a big book in one of the retail stores who was our client. I was supposed to go there cover the event with photographs and stuff. But I had the company of Kingfisher and Glenfidich the night before and slept off, that too some 30 Kms away from the city. When I woke up, there were messages from her and I hurriedly got a cab and reached the store. There she was single handedly maintaining the crowd, taking photographs and she event got few video bites. Needless to say the client was happy. I expected a backlash. I know people who would have talked on length about male privilege or just skipped the whole thing citing I was not there. Not for this girl, she meant business.
She is not good at senti dialogues or even pacifiying for that matter. But she will stay with me whenever I was frustrated even most of her replies would be simple “hmmm”. When she started her YouTube channel, the first video was about my book. The name of the sister character in my book and her name is the same. Lots and lots of people mistook that I based the character on her. When I come to think of it now, after one and half years, I feel they are correct. For all the hours we spent scouting new business, new events, new blogger engagement programs, we just have one photograph together.
Happy Birthday Sindhu JP. May you be happy and smiling always.
Then there is this lady, my alpha reader. I am not going to write a lot about her and give all my secrets out. I know this crazy girl through Facebook only. I have met her only once, that too last week. She is a great alpha reader. If you give her a 100K word unedited manuscript in a evening, you can expect a detailed feedback with corrections and suggestions to change the next day afternoon. Actually she could send it in the morning itself. But it is too much effort for her to wake up in the morning. Her gift for me this birthday is “A Suitable Boy” by Vikram Seth which was drenched in chocolate. Apparently three months in Dubai made her forget the heat in Chennai. A go to person to get brunch suggestions, she will list out restaurants by alphabets and then by budgets and then by ambiance. A brilliant writer, a talent which she would refuse to acknowledge. It works out to my advantage as I get to read her stories before it goes to any lit magazine.
Happy Birthday Elgee. Be your awesome self as always.
And then there is this guy, I have spoken enough about him but there is always something more to tell. He is a friend who feels bad in his gut when I feel low and immediately calls to see if I am OK. Whatever I am today, personally and professionally is because of him. That is why we don’t talk about it so much. He is not a friend anymore. He is family.
Happy Birthday Prason. Thanks for being there. ALL THE TIME.