It is not that, these were the only friends. They had bigger group of people in the gang and they called themselves Katte gang, for the fun of it. They went from primary to high school, to pre-university like normal people. Though, they studied and enjoyed the primary school together, the fate moved them apart to different schools and college. But Gani and Jimmy always studied together till they completed the pre-university.
These friends, were always in the front line of activities in there child hood days. Jimmy was not that smart in nature, and typically would be a follower of Gani in lot of activities. As they grew older and entered into college, Gani, slowly picked up the habit of smoking and alcohol. It is not that, he used to do a lot, but to the standards of a Brahmin society it was a huge sin. Parents would have stuttered and puttered if any of them would have learnt about the vices of their dear ones. Their traditional upbringing never allowed them to even guess, their sons would have these vices. Jimmy, who always wanted to be front line, started to emulate Gani in these activities.
All the friends, were pretty good in studies and entered Engineering in reputed institutions. There were growing apart as individuals, as each one of them saw life in a different way in engineering and off-course because of new friends. They always had a meeting point with other friends at Katte. But relationship was not what you call as "Close Friends". But still they were friends, they kidded, fought, made fun of one another always.
When they all completed engineering, all the friends decided to go for a party at a Dhabba. Dhabba's were the common party points of the Katte members, and they decided to go to Dhabba on mysore road. Like any other Engineering kids, who drank alcohol, they started ordering Beer, Gobi Manchuri and Chilli Chicken in the Dhabba.
This is when, Gani started with a big show of smartness. Gani, started telling people, how Beer is just a soft drink, and other Katte members had to graduate to Whiskey. Not to be left behind the other Katte members, promptly displayed there choice of drink, starting from Khodays rum to Raja whiskey. Gani, not to loose any such arguments, displayed his vigor by displaying how he dilutes whiskey with beer rather than soft drink. Most Katte members, with common sense, understood the impacts didn't take up the idea.
Jimmy had never done this before, and as any person would do, wanted to try. He didn't show his emotions to his friends, and exclaimed, I have always done this and is good fun. This was more than enough for Gani's josh, and he started mixing and serving Jimmy. All the other members, saw the fun in offering and motivated Jimmy. As most of the drinkers would know, at the end of the session, Jimmy will not be in a state to even walk. The day which started with fun, slowly started moving towards tragedy, with Jimmy loosing control of himself.
All the well meaning Katte boys, didn't understand the significance of the state of Jimmy and took him to Manchinebele dam. Some of the guys, had a good swim. Jimmy tried to swim, but ended up in a dangerous situation of drowning. He had to be physically pulled up by atleast 5 of the Katte boys. This situation made most of the Katte members realize the gravity of the situation and quickly packed up and came to Katte.
Katte, as ever was a place of refreshing calmness to the members. They had a wash of face and legs in the refreshing borewell water. Jimmy started to regain some of his senses, but was feeling tired. It was a standard at Katte, typically after a party they would have masala puri and pani puri with extra onions before going home. It was theory of the members that, bad smell of onion had the ability to kill the little remaining smell of alcohol. Unfortunately, Jimmy, ignored the standards. As he was tired, he decided to go home and have a good sleep to get back his senses.
What happened in Jimmy's house is never heard of before in any place under the sun. Jimmy's mother noticed, the bad smell which was coming out his mouth. Like any other mother of Brahmin family (any caste for that matter), got agitated and summoned Rama into their house. Rama, was a bit worried, as he was part of the party and knew whats going to come. He made up his mind, prayed to his loving God, and went to Jimmy's house.
"What is that bad smell coming out of Jimmy's mouth, have you guys started drinking and all?" asked Jimmy's mother with eyes wide open. Rama, is more or less stunned with the sudden question, and the tone of the voice. He stutters a bit and with all sincerity, answers, "No Aunty!, he might have eaten some Non-Veg at the party".
It took, 3-4 years for Jimmy to recover from the double impact.
-- Madhukar Hebbar