In one word. Incredible.All it took was 2 mins and my life was complete (well, almost).
At a very privately organised function by Achala's company, the Indian cricket team was in almost full attendance to see Don 2 at Hoyts Melbourne Central last Saturday night. Strangely enough, the Indian cricketers do not have any aura, contrary to popular belief and are very down to earth (when they want to be). I suppose being outside India, the pressure to appear glamorous all the time is a bit less than being in some private function in Mumbai or Delhi. Most of the group formed sub groups based on personal friendships, age or whatever it was that caught their eye, so while Sehwag hung around with the team physio (no doubt discussing his recent injuries), Ishant and Virat were chatting away like collegians gathering at a local hangout.
The new boys Vinay Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron sat at a different table to the rest of the group (I guess they must be as overwhelmed to be in the company of such other stalwarts as Sachin, Zaheer, Dravid, Dhoni etc).
The only person that actually went up to them, chatted and actually sat down with them was Rahul Dravid.
At a nearby table, Pragyan Ojha, Rohit Sharma and a few others from the team management enjoyed the snacks/nibbles, chatting away like old friends. Real nice and easy conversation. Dhoni moved amongst the group and chatted with everyone equally. Dressed in easy army fatigues, he rarely looked the part of captain cool who had won India the World Cup a few months back. Missing from the scene were Gautam Gambhir and VVS Laxman. To each his own, I suppose.
At a table near the corner was where the real deal was. Chatting amicably with Zaheer Khan and enjoying a glass of red, was the object of affection of billions across the world. Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. Also referred to by many Indians as "God".
Just as he was about to move towards the movie theatre, I mustered up some courage and went up to him with a photo of my little boy and said "Excuse me Mr Sachin, tumhi majhya mulachya photo var sahi karal ka?" In his trademark voice, he said "Ho. Kay naav aahe mulache?". Balancing his glass of red in his right hand, he put the photo on the table and said "Photo dharun thev, mhanje sararknaar nahi".
Don't believe this? The proof is in the pudding...
(maybe a platter of fruit in this case)