It was one such weekend, i was longing for, had thought of a perfect saturday plan, planned not to do anything, just lie on the bed till atleast eleven in the morning and lazy around. Afterall, was working continously even on weekends from first of January this year. Not all the work was Official, but, engaged still i was since the beginning of this year. I said to myself, i really deserved this weekend’s break.
Nothing unusual happened to put spokes in my plans the day before, i.e. friday, atleast till four o’clock in the afternoon. A fax arrived from just nowhere from our headquarters that afternoon intimating that our top boss, the topmost bureaucrat was visiting the city and would visit the Office. No Sooner did the fax arrived, the office geared itself up in near war mode. “Efficient” employees like myself are the ones to suffer these attacks as they are the ones who are utilized the most. I sometimes envy the not so “efficient” ones, who may or not may be efficient, but have surely mastered the art of dodging responsibilities. What is more annoying is that this lot of people, not only dodge their responsibilities on the shoulders of not so smarter souls like me, but they enjoy watching us toil with almost devilish grin, a grin that underlines how smarter they were.
So, after the review meeting, it was decided that a presentation be prepared, it was almost 4.34 by now and the process of collection of data from various departments, compiling the same into a presentable presentation was not smaller a task. Given the fact that this presentation will go through atleast three bosses from juniors to senior ones who would suggest modifications & re-modifications.
By the time the first raw presentation was submitted a peon came with circular intimating that the Saturday Weekly Off was cancelled and that everybody would have to remain present in the office by 8.30 am. Almost in tandem, the boss sitting next to me checking the presentation told that i would have to sit late today. I laughed myself. It was a case where man proposed and god disposed.
So the task of preparing the presentation continued, till late in the evening, till around 7.45 pm, to be precise. Tired and totally drained i returned home at around 10.30 pm that night. Just gobbled some food and went to bed, not forgetting to set the alarm clock on to ring at 6.30 in the morning the next day. I went to bed that night in no time.
The next morning the alarm ringed and i almost unwillingly and cursing the arriving guest work up and reached the office at around 8.30 am. The work was in full swing, the cleaning work, every department were giving final touches to their figures, preparing reports, giving final look to what they had prepared. A scurry of activities were going on in the otherwise slow and steady paced government office.
Our bosses went to the guest house to receive the top boss, this boss was infamous for his temperamental and aggressive nature and everybody were aware of his nature, hence, each one of them were getting themselves as prepared as they can to answer any query.
It was around 11.00 am, one of the boss once again came to give a final look at the presentation and suggested few more additions in the presentation, those were aptly incorporated. By that time a phone call came that the Bureaucrat had changed his mind and would be visiting our office first, actually visit to our office was second on the itinerary. We all rushed to the conference room to make arrangement for the Projection of the presentation and it was said that the Bureaucrat would be here within next half an hour. With heart losing its pace, we all waited for this gentlemen. All last minute preparations were in place, the bouquet, the photographer everybody were in place, for this elusive guest.
Half an hour passed but the guest was nowhere in the sight. Periodic updates were being received from the bosses who were with the top boss. In all this one thing was notable, one boss was at his cool, coolly carrying out this routine work, he said, that the top boss would not visit the office. One phone call came informing that the boss has now sticked to his earlier itinerary and is visiting the other office. Soon news came that this boss was checking almost everything, he did not spared even the toilets, telephonic instructions from the bosses came to be careful. Sweepers rushed to the toilets to ensure it was also sparkling clean.
By now it was afternoon, and we all broke down for much deserved lunch break.
We were now as prepared as we were, like young school going kid fully confident to face exam, each one of us were ready to face the top boss. So we were awaiting with our guest.
Since there was no signs of the arrival of the much sought after guest, i thought of leaving the conference room and went back to my cabin to check my mails. I was feeling lazy and bit of tired and sleepy. At 3.40, i called up the inquiry counter downstairs to get update of the guest, the reply was that he cancelled his visit to our office. I was feeling like being ditched. For two long days, i worked untiringly, i sacrificed my much needed break for just nothing. However, the news of drubbing that the other office received sent a sight of relief. For sometimes these bureaucrats are whimsical and prejudiced, some come with the only objective to fire, to show who is the real boss, and unnecessarily one gets dressing down for no reason, i’ve seen many a bureaucrats in last sixteen years of my job.
Sometimes, i really feel that because of such whimsical bureaucrats, the progress, in our country had to wait, just as i was made to wait for my elusive break.