In every relationship that speeds towards its end there comes a moment where we wish "Let this minute last forever". We try to celebrate that relationship in different ways, we try to involve ourselves in those moments for these are those last moments after which we may never get that feeling again. We leave a stamp, an imprint of sorts with what we do. When a dear friend parts ways we give him/her a warm embrace, an embrace so tight that we wish that our hands never come apart for we know that we shall never meet him/her again. When we part ways with the one we love we involve ourselves in a night of passion, we spend every minute holding their hands, remembering every moment we spend with them, registering her laughter, her wink, her smile, her touch, her feel in our minds. We wish for the moment to remain still, we wish the hands of time never move. When I gave my last Sodexo coupon to the lady at KFC in return for a tub of chicken breasts, I wished to commemorate that event by prolonging every bite, every chew of the breast... of that chicken.
There was a part of me that said "Do it fast, get it done with already will ya!? People are giving you disgusting looks when you eat that chicken breast... look at that woman over there... Oh My God she knows you are a bit loose in the head!"
And there was the other half of me that said "That Sodexo deserves a proper goodbye, you pay your tribute to that coupon for this sumptuous meal by relishing each bite, every bone, every wing, every breast that falls between your teeth!"
And relish every bite I did.
To you it may not seem like a post worth reading, it may not seem to connect to you in any way. You may be wondering what a Sodexo coupon is, "What is this fuss all about and why does it mean so much to him?" you may wonder. You can find your answer to these questions by asking any nerd walking on the streets of OMR , for most of these nerds work in those numerous software companies which lie on both sides of OMR which actually is not an Optical Mark Recognition, but Old Mahabalipuram Road. Chennai's very own Siliconpettai.
And he will describe you of its beauty with the same fervor with which a hormone raging (read horny) teenager describes Megan Fox.
A Sodexo coupon was the symbol of freedom and hope. It gave us the freedom from carrying our Tupperware and it gave us a hope of dining in KFC to McDonald's to Subway relishing their junk food paying no attention to the extra weight it was adding on our asses and hips. There were times when we dared to forget our employee ID cards, but never did we dare to forget our Sodexos.
A Sodexo coupon was more like a second mother to me, a mother who never raised an eyebrow when I splurge my coupons on an ass-fattening cheese crust pizza at Pizza Hut, a mother who urged me to sink my teeth in those overpriced yet orgasm inducing ice-creams at Baskin and Robbins that also allowed me to experiment with any combo, a mother who never twisted my ear and said "Abishtu! Abishtu" (which in simple English means "Dumb Ass ! Dumb Ass !"). when I looked at a KFC joint with lust.
If a software techie is confronted with a "Mere paas maa hai" line he could now unashamedly reply "Mere paas Sodexo hai!". And there ends the argument- Game Set and Match for the software techie!
There are only two days in every month that a techie working in a software firm waits for fondly - payday and the day when Sodexos are distributed. When in the former cash would already be credited to our accounts automatically, its the latter that injects a heartbeat amongst the otherwise dead as dildo programmers (read copy pasters). It is much like little Charlie Bucket eagerly awaiting his ticket to Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory, we have the excitement in our eyes, the same excitement which one can see in the eyes of an impoverished Somalian kid when he hears the news of being adopted by a busty Angelina Jolie.
Sodexo coupons are much like our ticket to Disneyland, and in Chennai it was Ascendas, the tech park that holds the sobriquet of "The Disneyland of Junk Food". We are handed our coupons by the friendly ever-smiling Parvathi Akka, there may be a few who may not know who the founder of our company was - a multi-billion dollar American who probably owns a dozen yachts and also owns our asses. But there could be no one within the company who can say that they have never heard of Parvathi Akka, the bearer of Sodexo coupons. She knew everyone by name and by location of their seat, she was someone whom we saw once a month as she handed out our Sodexos to us with a never-fading smile and a harsh word or two said with love to behave in a civilized fashion as educated men and women (which we were not) while collecting them. At that moment she was no less than a Mother Teresa who handed out packets of food to the hungry and unruly children.
We never treated Sodexo as money, maybe because it resembled those fake money which one uses while playing Monopoly. Where do you find a 25 Rupee note which does not have a Mahatma Gandhi chuckling away as if he had caught you butt naked? We failed to realize that these were as important as money hence we would go on a splurging spree when we entered food courts. Food courts beware! Hungry copy-pasters with Sodexo coupons on the prowl! There were a few of us who had a lot of unspent coupons, there were some booklets which remained untouched, as untouched as the virgins of Virginia. And as the month was about to end with another visit from Parvathi Akka round the corner we would unleash ourselves to all that was on offer, from ice creams to pizzas to burgers to all that in the menu which Ol' McDonald, The Colonel, and good Ol' Wang had to offer.
As my tenure at my workplace had ended, I had now moved on to a different place where no Sodexos were offered. I was now forced to sweet talk my mother into packing my lunch, my wings were clipped. From being a hero at home whose Sodexos were used at the groceries to pay for commodities, I was now reduced to "Just another Average Joe with Tupperware" as I was looked at with pity. As I munched down the last few remains of the chicken wings thanks to those last leaflets of my coupon I realized that my affair had ended, I said a silent prayer, not for the chicken but for the Sodexo for having filled my stomach with every single item on the menu that I had dreamt of devouring, and for having made my every day a better day. The affair came to an end, but it was an affair worth remembering.