It’s a routine day at work and over the past year I have acclimated to the copious amounts of chivalry men shower towards women in this country.
Be it waiting for you to enter the elevator even though they are ahead of you in the queue (er, yes folks here queue up afore the elevator) or holding the door till you enter inside, they are all high on gentleman display of chivalry scale.
So I am in a meeting which was supposed to end 30 minutes ago, tapping my feet like a squirrel wanting this one to end. The clock is way past 12 and my hunger alarm tips off like an annoying child screaming into his mother’s ears craving for food.
A polite glance from the male colleague sitting next to me, whom I managed to distract while he was completely focussed on the presenter made me realise I need to stop being so explicitly impatient.
By the time I gather my feet back to the perfect perpendicular position I am hit with a polite question from the presentor, “U okay?”
The hungry me wanted to climb atop my chair and scream, ‘WHY do meeting invites have an end time when they NEVER really do end ON time?! I am definitely far from being OKAY!’
I gulp my hu(/an)ger and bring up a weak smile “Yeah!”.
Timely wisdom dawned inside the room and we were allowed to leave.
I galloped back to my desk, located my lunchbox and sprinted to the microwave placed in the pantry on office floor. Setting the clock to 2 minutes, I began the most difficult task of my day : fetching a spoon/fork to eat my lunch.
Darn! All the pantry drawers were filled with forks! A bunch of colleagues were staring at a hungry me trying to locate something in every possible drawer and then the dishwasher.
“Looking for a spoon or a folk?”, an unknown male colleague queried curiously.
“Spoon”, I sttutered!
“I have one at my desk” another unknown male colleague declared and stormed out of the pantry. The happy me looked longingly at my lunchbox, I could have eaten the food like cat would sip on its milk from a bowl at that very moment had there been no sign of a spoon for a few more seconds. You can imagine my hunger scale!
A third unknown colleague smiled at me and smirked, “This happened to me once, I did not even get empathy, let alone a spoon!”
It was return of the fake smile day. Before I could utter a word, the second unknown face returned with a spoon and a tissue all wrapped neatly inside a plastic.
Profusely thanking him, I head to a table to finally eat my lunch.
As I sat there unwrapping the spoon from the tissue, I recall the advantages we women have over our dear male counterparts.
Early 2000’s: Our Physical Trainer Teacher made the boys run a few extra rounds compared to the girls cause of course we asked him to do so!
Late 2000’s: Me and my best fried would scoot around the roads on our 2-wheeler while in college and get away each time we broke a traffic rule by our fellow travellers. All we had to do was put up the cutest smile from our expression bag and say Sorry. Even the most annoyed male would respond with a smile and a nod of course.
Let’s not forget how boys would give up their assignment printouts after standing in the queue for hours and then very cheekily saying
“Yaar tere liye kuch bhi!(Anything for you)”
So times and a country change later, I continue to enjoy the perks of being a woman! Pretty kickass han!