The Strange Interview is my first semi-fiction work. I worte it a few years back, and it’s no story, just a day of my life. It’s close to my heart because after reading this, my grandma, an avid reader, said “you could write Ayush.” It was 99% out of her love for me. I’m publishing it to get your expert comments. So here it goes…
The Strange Interview
That Thursday morning was not normal. I woke up by ‘oye-bubbly’, my mobile ring tone. I hate this sound in morning and the most at 6:30. I rubbed my eyes in a drowsy manner to see the caller’s number. My cell was displaying +303. It was a call from the US. Drowsiness ran away. I cleared my throat and picked the call.
“Hello Yash, were you sleeping?” I heard a male voice. He must be in his early 50’s.
What else a normal guy would do at this early hour. “Not really.” I lied. My mind was struggling fast to guess him.
“Alright, so want to eat Dosa (a famous south Indian dish)?” he enquired.
Struggle ended. Mind guessed him. He was Mr. Naresh Jain. An Indian businessman who owns a software company in US and had recently started outsourcing some work in Chennai (city in southern part of India). Three months ago, he’d offered me to work for his Indian projects. But I’d refused. Actually I never wanted to go Chennai for its climate and food problems. This call was again for the same. I wished him Good Morning. My mind was busy thinking the answer.
“Ok, but I’m still not very sure. I need some time.” I answered in hurry.
Then he asked some further details regarding my current job profile. I too asked him about his company, work and of course that job offer.
“Take your time. Think well. Talk to your dad. I’ll call after some hours to know your answer.” He said gently.
“Sure and have a good day sir.” I assured him and hanged up the call.
Dad asked me to come at Bua’s (Father’s sister) place after my office. He and mom were coming there that evening to see off my younger brother. He was leaving for Bangalore for his computer engineering studies.
I went to my office. It was a busy day. I found no time to think over that job proposal.
At around 9 in night, I was on my way to my Bua’s place. Mr. Jain again called me up. He had scheduled my interview. It was after an hour. It was really strange but I agreed.
One hour passed. In meanwhile, I looked for a place for that late night strange telephonic interview. Lawn was perfect. It was grassy, dark, wet but silent. It was not my first time I was in that lawn. Vishakha, Nikunj and I used to come there a lot after our supper. Many things have changed in one year, even that lawn but that bench we loved to sit after our long walks with our never-ending talks.
But that night was different. I was all alone there sitting and looking at the sky. It had become so very clear and fresh after some drizzling. Grass was wet and was shining with the moonlit but dim. Air was flowing, slowly, smoothly, carrying the scent smell of mud. It was so beautiful and silent. Mind was silent too. Suddenly ‘oye-bubbly’ broke that silence. It was my interview call from the US.
I came in after my interview. It’d screwed me for 30 minutes but was good. My mind was shooting so many questions to me regarding this new job offer without knowing that it knows all the answers. I don’t want to answer them. I was sleepy. I asked dad to discuss it only after the interview result. I didn’t know, I was about to hear ‘oye-bubbly’ again after few minutes.
And those few minutes passed. First time I’d received so many ISD calls in a day.
“So, how was your interview? Was that tough?”
“No, it was good.”
“Yeah, it really was. When is it possible for you to join?”
“Within 15 days.”
“Alright, if you have any questions to ask, don’t hesitate.”
I really had some problems. First was Chennai, second was salary. I was not financially satisfied with my current employer. Mr. Jain had offered me a handsome salary but for first 3 months it was the same salary package. Long 3 months. It was his company recruitment policy.
I questioned, he answered, and he answered well.
He was in a hurry to recruit me. Project was waiting to start. But still there was something in mind troubling me. He guessed that and right. I was asked to fly Chennai. Not to work but to have a look. Look of the new place, of that new company, and of new people.
“Check out the availability of flights. Look for the Red-I, international late nights flights. They are cheap.” He said giving emphasis on the last word.
“Ok, I’ll check them out.” I assured him.
“Or look for some train. They could also solve the purpose.”
“Yeah, sure.” I said thinking I was not going to go by train. That was my first chance to fly, after all.
“And do mail me the status tomorrow morning.”
“Yeah I’ll. Thank you.”
It was then I realized that without my prior knowledge, Mr. Jain had really convinced me to eat Dosa. Dad was fine with that. I slept. I’d my office tomorrow.