It was finally here! After so many weeks of planning-the day had finally come!
I’m lucky that all my friends were good sports and they were now just as eager as I was for this 8 day trip to Cape Town. Everyone had been amazing and had helped in some way or the other towards organizing activities to do, places to see and it made it so much better because all of them were involved in it!
Our RV was due to be delivered at Arshad’s house and we were all meeting up there at 5 this morning. Zainab,Maariah and Nemo would come together and Zoheb was fetching Laeeka,Aara and myself.
Zoheb and I have been catching up a lot lately, and its just so great to have him back. The way he has just blended right into our group is truly heartwarming.
Zoheb: *yawning* I am
Me: not a morning person are you?
Zoheb: nah man its not that, the last two days have been more than hectic. Three new projects coming up..so I might be travelling soon
Me: atleast you’re busy…lots of people have been complaining that business is so quiet
Zoheb: I know hey shukr
Me: you never answered my question the other day boet
Zoheb: *smile* I don’t have an answer yet
Me: are you serious about her though?
Zoheb: I’ve never been more serious about anyone else in my entire life bro
Me: she’s a great girl honestly…but just take it one step at a time, Aara has commitment issues
Zoheb: how so?
Me: she doesn’t trust very easily and if she does then you know its for keeps…she has this fear of being left alone eventually..getting hurt you know
Zoheb: appreciate you telling me Reez…she’s just…she’s just beyond amazing I simply cannot get over her…but please hey don’t tell anyone
Me: (I couldn’t help but laugh) obviously!
Zoheb: what’s the deal with Nemo though? I can see that they aren’t “together” but I can also see that there’s definitely something there from his side atleast
How do I answer that? Do I tell him that Nemo is in love with Aara?? If I tell him what if Zoheb starts putting pressure and Aara gets sandwiched between both of them…
At the same time, Nemo didn’t tell me directly about the way he feels about Aara. He told Laeeka and Maariah but it simply wasn’t my place to tell Zoheb.
Me: I guess you know..they’re childhood friends and there will always be that posessiveness from Nemo’s side. Aara has always been there and she isn’t the kind of girl who’s behind guys so Nemo never had to feel threatened. Now with you in the picture it sort of changes the equation you know what I mean?
Zoheb: I get you
And we pulled up outside Aara’s flat and as I was about to jump out
Zoheb: do you mind if I go upstairs instead?
Me: (laughing) you’ve got it that bad!
Zoheb just smiled and made his way up Aara’s stairs…
I knocked on the door twice before she answered
“It’s unlocked Reez”
So I went in.
“I’m in the kitchen, last minute padkos…sorry…I’m just so tired I think I’m going to sleep all the way to Ct”
I smiled. And she babbled on…
“Reez leave my bags I’ll get those you just carry these containers down for me please”
So I walked into her kitchen without saying a word. Her back was turned towards me and there was a stack of containers on the table filled with food. Aara never seized to amaze me! I stood right behind her hoping to surprise her when she suddenly turned around with a bowl in her hand and banged into me spilling the contents of the bowl straight onto my shirt!
Here I was hoping to impress and instead I had milk and rice crispies all over my shirt!
Aara:O MY GOD I’m so sorry I’m so sorry (and she quickly took some paper towel and started wiping my shirt)
ℓ☺ℓ “now you can pour the entire bowl on me I don’t mind”…I said in my head ofcourse
Me: Aara its fine I’ll just go down to the car and get another t shirt don’t worry
But she carried on with the papertowels..
Me: (holding her hands to stop her from her wiping frenzy) relax…its fine…
She didn’t say a word…she didn’t lift her eyes to meet mine..and for a few seconds time just seemed to stand still.
“What’s wrong?”…I asked her..in my head
Me: you know…I’m going to go just like this so everytime you look at me for the next good few hours you’re gonna think about your breakfast*winking*
And she smiled. Mission accomplished!
Okay so Aara insisted that I change my shirt..which I did and apologised about a hundred times after that also. From her house to Laeeka’s and from Laeeka’s to Arshad’s all I could think of was her hands in mine:)))))
Soon we were all gathered outside Arshad’s house sitting on the lawn and chatting away when this yellow bus pulls up outside and a thin Pakistani man dressed in a safari style shorts and t shirt jumped out.
“Riza Ahmed?, he said in a really heavy indian accent
“That’s me” Riza said as he woke up and walked towards him.
“Your RV bhai “he said as he opened his mouth to reveal his paan stained teeth
Nemo: please don’t tell me that we’re going to Cape Town in this banana!
Riza: there must be some misunderstanding Sir I ordered a black RV not this one over here
And Riza made a call to the company he had hired it from and after a few “aha’s” and “not on’s” he cut the call.
Riza: we’ve got to go in this…they mixed up with another client who’s already half way to Durban..the other available one will only be after two days
Driver: (in a classic indian accent) wery wery good Sir, you see dis Yellow is best..you vil never ever get lost!
Nemo: you don’t say
Driver: myself Zia I vil be your driver
Riza: wait we didn’t ask for a driver
Driver: its a package deal Bhai..me and the bus or no me and no bus
Nemo: no you and no bus its okay (turning to us) we’ll take our cars
Mari: o come on man how bad can it be…think of it as an adventure
Nemo: Maariah adventure in this?
Driver: Madhuri is right! And I am very much at your service you lot of youngy peoples
Maariah: Madhuri maybe your granny uncle!
Zai: Reez they can’t just do this to us..phone them up again and let Aara speak to them she’s a journalist she can threaten them..can’t you Aara?
By now Aara would have been jumping up and down I’m sure, but Aara was…ℓ☺ℓ …Aara was fast asleep on the lawn, behind all our bags, with a little bag under her head and her jacket almost covering her face.
Riza was on the phone with the RV company again.
Riza: okay guys unfortunately Zia has to come with us until P.E. He gets off there and will drive one of their vehicles back to Jhb. That’s the best they can do!
Zia: very good…come on boys and girls let us pack all your luggage inside we make this a jolly good journey
And then he did the most horrifying thing I have ever seen! He gurgled and gasped and gurgled again and SPAT!!! This disgusting red paan juice over all the bags…clearly not expecting anyone to be on the other side of it….
The sound and splatter of it was loud and gross enough to wake Aara up with a fright only to see her black nike jacket with ewwww patches of red! And she threw it off her faster than lightening!
The roadtrip began alright…and with a bang! ( Or spit rather) the bang was actually the klap Zia got on his head from Nemo!
“He likes paan…I’ll give him paan alright” Nemo mumbled under his breath as we boarded the RV.
And knowing Nemo, this was going to be deadly!