Hi! I’m Tina. I’m a programmer at one of the software giants. I commute to the office by a local train or an auto if I get late. Well, I usually get late. I have a truckload of excuses; Rains, bus/train running late, cab lost its way, Daddy made me late, so and so didn’t pick me up. I’m talented, so bearable at the office for my such idiosyncrasies.
One day my boss asked, “Tina, why don’t you come by car?”
“Sir, I don’t know how to drive.”
He was flabbergasted, “You’re an engineer.”
I thought, “O, hello! I know hard drives. I run programs. An engineer doesn’t mean a mechanic/driver.”
It hurt me.
In the evening, I announced, “Daddy, I must learn to drive. Enough of this pick and drop, hailing taxis all the time.”
Daddy was eager to train me in his shiny white ambassador car. Verve in the air, a spring in my foot, I was all set. On Sunday, we drove to the countryside. He, behind the wheels, explained to me all the nitty gritty.
Ah! It seemed so easy. After all, I’m an engineer, you see.
We reached an almost isolated ground. I sat behind the hot seat and proceeded as instructed. I turned the keys, and the car growled sweetly. I stepped on the accelerator. The white elephant jumped and gurgled and stopped with a thud. I repeated the action like a record stuck on a gramophone and tested my dad’s patience to the limits unknown. The clutch was the culprit. I pressed it either too long or left too fast. The car’s gearbox system was onerous for my delicate key-clicking fingers.
The ambassador finally moved a few inches on the road. I pressed the pedal with a full load. After a few rounds on open ground, my confidence grew by leaps and bounds.
Oh! The jubilation! The wind blew my hair. I was thrilled manoeuvring the steering wheel.
Then, I squealed, “Daddy, cycle, coming.”
I had spotted a cyclist and then a rider on a scooter coming head-on in speed.
My father teamed, “Get aside, don’t sway towards the right”.
Then he screamed, “Braaakes, you idiot, it’s not a free for all jungle ride.”
I panicked and pressed the accelerator with more might. My father turned the steering to the other side. We went off-road, leaping forth on the elephant ride, stampeding all the bushes in sight. Our royal ride was heading towards the pond.
I screamed, “HHHHelp!”
The buffaloes bellowed, the boys shouted, and the birds flew shrieking from the trees. It was a frenzied cacophony.
Finally, the tyres screeched to a halt. I, daddy and the shiny white car smoothly glided into the murky water of the countryside pool. The buffaloes and boys made way for the new cow.
I heard the thunderous roar from the lion’s mouth and still remember the meek lamb, sweating, shaking, and going south.
Hi! I’m Tina. I have learned to drive people mad.
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