It was that time of the year when there was not much of work to work in office, as such it was one such boring day in office, when we all were lazying around, idlying around with computers, playing some games, intermitently checking mails, both official & personal. However, when, you have nothing worthwhile to do, time passes with snail pace. Everything just stood in its place that day.
At around 2.30 pm in the evening, when we were back from our lunch break. A call came on the Office intercom, one boss in hurried voice, inquired about another boss, whether he was in my room. I answered in negative, hearing his concerned tone, I inquired what had happened. The boss said that the person in question was nowhere to be seen, his cell was out of range and he heard that he fell down on the road with an heart attack while he went to the Bank during the lunch break. The boss added a note of disclaimer though, he said he was not sure whether what he heard was true and hence he was checking up with all the concerned divisions where he usually visited.
Suddenly, things electrified, I told my colleague, who was playing some brick games on the pc, the breaking news, shocked, he too, joined me and we went outside the room and saw colleagues searching for the boss on that floor. His room was empty, with the creepy fan revolving with disconcern as ever. One colleague even checked the toilets. Soon the crowd of around 10-15 staff members, after confirming the absence of the boss on the second floor assembled on the first floor, where the scene was of similar chaos. People were acting on their own instinct that day. Some peons rushed to the road to check up whether the boss had indeed collapsed. One of the peon further rushed to the bank to see whether the boss was in the bank.
Just everybody came back with no clues. Increasing the fear, the curiousity and the tension. In between just everybody devoutly tried calling the number of the boss, which was continously out of range.
Everybody assembled near the chamber of our Director, to give him the bad news. We all started guessing games, as to what exactly might have happened. However, even the hushed tone in unison was loud enough, for the Director inside to overhear.
All of a sudden, we heard a familiar voice “kya bhai, kya baat hai sab log ya ikattha kya kar rahe hai? “, which mean, what’s the matter friends, what are all of you doing together here. The voice was of the same boss whom we were told had collapsed on his way to the Office. We all were in a state of confusion. Now, who will tell him that he had collapsed on his way to office that lunch hour. Somehow, somebody assembled enough courage to tell the entire happening. The boss who heard the tale was equally shocked to hear. He went to the boss who broke the story. Nonchalantly the boss, welcomed him and said, ah, here you are, and I thought you fell down while coming from the bank. I was concerned about your health, now that your wife has entrusted me the responsibility of taking care of your health. And he erupted into wild laughter. The poor boss was red faced. He could not express his protest to this cruel joke. Nobody had any inkling how to react. The prank played was a notoreous one to say the least. The person on whom the prank was played was equally hurt. But, he did not register his protest, atleast verbally.
The good side of the story was that the entire office suddenly came together in that period of fabricated crisis. It had done so in the past, the camaraderie was displayed aplenty only during crisis, and all the times the response was unequivocal, of which I feel proud.