T-board at 2330

Curved plastic shielding six – or when the sky is clear, twenty – odd people chattering away about three doors down, pandit ravi shankar, or the wavelength of x-ray for diffraction of the micro-crystal, or particle physics with equal ease. All of them clustered around the black cement table that couldn’t hold twenty cups without seeming crowded, out for a break during lab time, for a birthday, for a tea, for a breather and a freshener before diving right back into whatever they came from.

Sharing tea, swapping stories about work (or life, which might almost be the same thing for this lot), and friendly and malicious gossip about friends, acquaintances, absolute strangers, and mrs. sharma’s daughters. Absolute strangers, of course, who didn’t stay strangers for long in a closed campus with limited privacy, since five years – at the least – in one place made sure you got to know people whom you may otherwise never – or only – have talked about.

Most tables occupied by a person sitting alone and contemplating who-knows what, or two people engaged in quiet, if sometimes vigorous conversation. And more rarely, when three or four gather, managing to pull off a controlled, if not dignified appearance despite loud disputes that can be heard clear across the place.

The chipped cups, the black tea “lemon beda”, and soothing yellow lighting where atlas could shrug. And someone else would pick up the burden, just for the curiosity of it.

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7 responses to “T-board at 2330

  1. I am missing the 7 Rs Maggy noodles, the vadai chatni, the samosa and the chikkis of the Tea board 😦

  2. I like this place even w/o visiting it. 🙂 Graphic.

  3. One stained tea cup elsewhere, a laptop with hardly any battery and an effort to get connected.. not just to the internet.. 🙂

    Loved this one.

  4. You forgot to mention the fights. 😉

  5. @Jugger
    Well, it’s more expensive now… but I am sure even if you came back in about 12-15 years, it would be the same.

    @S
    You can still visit it. Come back to Bangalore, girl, and visit India Coffee House and IISc. You ain’t seen bangalore until you’ve seen these places.

    @Incognito
    Exactly.

    @tM
    Fights. Ah. They are so much a part of life that one hardly notices anymore 😉

  6. Where is this place? IISc or India Coffee House? There’s a similar atmosphere in Koshy’s…ever been there? btw..thanks for dropping by 🙂

  7. Rii
    The post describes the Tea Kiosk at IISc. Similar atmosphere at ICH and Koshy’s — yeah, I’ve been there 🙂
    You’re welcome, I’ve been lurking for a while at your place but I never knew WHAT to say to the poetry…

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