by Sharil Taj
His eyes were constantly stealing glances at the sleek Diesel watch on his wrist, not that he was in a hurry, but he looked eager to leave office. At 1828 hrs, he shut his Macbook, stuffed it in his bag and walked straight to the elevator. 7, 6, 5, 4… on the 4th floor, a lady walked in and stood in front of him. He kept looking at her in the mirror on the sides of the elevator till they reached the basement parking. She left and he smiled to himself walking towards his car. The streets looked busy today but it had always been the same with the streets of Mumbai. He headed towards the mall and pulled his car in the parking lot.
Once inside the mall he began browsing the various labels and brands, but could not find what he was looking for. He took the escalator to reach the second floor and walked inside the ladies section of a particular shop where he spotted a pink floral dress that was long and flowing. Nah. Next up was a skating outfit but he wanted something more feminine. He spotted a red boat neck, knee length body con dress – precisely what he was after!
He picked up the right size proceeded to the lingerie section, ‘Fishnet stockings please?’
The staff guided him to the stockings section where an appropriate pair of stockings were added to his cart from where he moved towards the shoe section, which immediately yielded a pair of red stilettos. Admiring the length of the heels he found amusing the various ways using which women were able to add a few inches to their height.
‘If only men were born with such privileges!’, he thought. Browsing the many options netted quick results and after waiting a bit for a pair in size 9, he turned towards the cash counter to pay for his purchases.
At the cash counter, an idea struck him – a lipstick! He should buy a matching red lipstick too. Looking around for the cosmetics section, he spotted it at the far end of of the store, where a lipstick closest to the shade of the dress he was holding was selected in short order and the entire lot paid for soon after.
‘Take away please’, he said to the chap behind the coffee and sandwich counter. He took the nearest lift to the parking lot.
Constantly looking at himself in the mirror all the way home, and smiling through the mouthfuls of sandwich, he entered a fancy apartment complex, parked and made for the 4th floor via the elevator. Surreptitiously removing a key from under the doormat after ensuring he wasn’t being observed, he opened the lock and stepped into the sparsely furnished house, unlit save for a dim yellow light in a room towards the back.
Walking into the room, he turned towards the the smiling figure on the right, grinned and said, ‘I have a surprise for you. Let me see how you look in it!’ Several anxious minutes later, he thought the vision in front of him was well worth the wait and all the time spent shopping.
‘You look beautiful’, he whispered. ‘You look beautiful’, the reflection in the red dress whispered right back to him from the mirror.