Saturday, March 23, 2013

Lunch Nostalgia

I went up the familiar vendor in the cafeteria and stood in line , thinking about the meeting I had to rush to afterwards. 'Two soft tacos as usual' . I said 'and No meat' ,I added as an afterthought. I looked around and found an empty table for myself.  As I looked out of the fourth floor window into the snow covered grounds, I was struck by a wave of nostalgia .

I remembered the school lunches , where it was a race as to who would finish eating first and rush out to play catch catch , police and thief, run and touch the coconut tree and so on.

I remembered the lunch breaks in high school and 12th grade where we would gather around a cycle shed , post lunch , gossiping , and planning mischief until the rendezvous point had to be abandoned because of an allegation that we punctured the tyre of a teacher's son's bike.

In to my mind came the lunch times in college , where we would go out to the canteen to buy a vada or sit for hours at stretch at the Indian coffee house with just a coffee or a lime juice. And the awesome times we had at birthday treats where you gorged like you'd never seen food before and then with out batting an eyelid gave the name of the rival college , when some disgruntled restaurant owners asked us where we were from.

At Infosys , my first company , we had a small gang of friends who always had lunch together despite being in different projects and located all over the huge sprawling campus. As more people got busy with personal lives , the number in the gang dwindled , but the ones who remained followed the request acknowledge mechanism using emails and missed calls to have lunch together wasting minimum time.

As life took me through different jobs and different places , lunches became more of a time of introspection . A time to be with myself in my busy schedule. No missed calls told me that it was time to have food any more. My current routine was to rush to the canteen , usually minutes before they closed , get my usual food and find an empty table overlooking the window.

Wistfully , I longed for those lunch times when there was laughter and fun and jokes on the table alongside food. And friends to share them with.  I was jolted back into reality by the phone of the person at a nearby table and as I rushed through the rest of  my meal , I made a mental note to myself to call some of my friends from school soon.

I hope this time , it will not buried once again in the continuous monotony of life.


  1. I pray too that it doesn't get buried in your busy schedule. We just get so busy trying to make life perfect!

  2. The nostalgia of it all. So well expressed. I do hope you called some of your friends!
    And, you got me wondering, which Teacher's son's bike was it? lol!

    1. Thanks Ma'm. The truth is , I don't remember whose bike it was ... Will have to call Vani /Anitha to ask..