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The Futility of Fighting Shadows

How often do we fight imaginary shadows without knowing the facts?

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She heard the key turn.  And she knew.

Whenever he chose to use the duplicate key, instead of ringing the doorbell, it was best to leave him alone for some time. 

Vinod opened the door, threw his brief case on the sofa next to the one on which she was seated, walked hurriedly towards their bedroom and banged the door shut.

The children stuck their heads out of their rooms, looked at Payal, rolled their eyes and disappeared back into their rooms.

Searching for the cause.

Later that night Payal decided it was the best time.

‘ So what happened today?’ she asked.

“If Ramesh does not want me around why does he not say so?” said Vinod.

“ What really happened?”

“  I was with my team in another building the whole afternoon, and when I returned to my cabin around 7 pm to collect my brief case, I could see that the other leadership members were with Ramesh in his room. No one even bothered to call me,” he said.

“ You could have checked with Ramesh whether he wanted you there,” she said.

“And get further humiliated?” he snapped back. 

“ Aren’t you fighting shadow’s again?” she asked.

“ What do you mean by ‘again’? I suggest you stay out of this. You have no clue how things work in the corporate world,” he said. 

Payal lay awake on her side of the bed. She was used to his usual bouts of shadow boxing, but the frequency had only increased over the past few months. Vinod kept tossing around and she sensed that deep within he was really scared. 

What if Ramesh was giving him a subtle message!

The next morning Vinod continued to sulk. 

“ I guess its time to move on. Been here for eight years now. I will speak with some friends at search firms today,” he said as he left for work.

The mist clears.

Ramesh’s secretary walked into Vinod’s office, “Where were you last evening?” she asked.

“I was with my team in the other building,” replied Vinod.

“Ramesh asked me to call his team for a meeting and the lights were switched off in your room. I called the others,” she replied.

“ What was the meeting about?”

“ No real agenda. I suspect it was more to do with the Yamazaki-18 single malt, that the Japanese delegation gifted him last week,” she replied with a twinkle in her eyes.

Happy ending.

Payal was tense as she picked up her mobile phone.

“Yes Vinod, all well I hope?”

Vinod kept laughing as he informed her about his conversation with Ramesh’s secretary. 

“ Thank God its nothing serious,” she said.

“ I am getting into a meeting soon. Get the kids to spend the night at their friends place. Let’s have a quiet candle light dinner at home.” he said.

Payal smiled. She knew how these candle light dinners usually ended.

The writer is a consultant and an Independent Board Director at Jindal Stainless Ltd. He is also author of the best selling book - Inside the C- Suite.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

Tags assigned to this article:
imaginary shadows Humanity magazine 4 June 2021

Jayaram Easwaran

Author, Consultant, and Independent Board Director at Jindal Stainless

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