Saturday evening, 11 PM, I am walking back to home from the school through the science drive exit of the building. It has suddenly got cold in past two days and I was not very well prepared for it. As I try to walk in hurry to my house, trying to protect myself from whatever cold I could, I saw a man walking towards me. Well inside university, usually there are not too many people on foot on weekend at 11 pm in night. I didn’t pay much attention until I saw the person trying to look around like searching for something.
Before I could ask him what he was looking for at that time, he approached me and asked if he could ask me a question. I thought maybe the guy needs some help, so I took off my face mask to help him. That was the starting of my experience !
Let me write it in the form on conversation ….
Stranger – Hey Hi ! Can I ask you a question
Varun – Ya sure, looking for something
Stranger – Yaa, people … why are there no people around
Varun – What people .. Are you looking for some party you were supposed to be (I am thinking … It is weekend evening, super cold, who the hell is partying right now here …. let’s see what is going on)
Stranger – People I mean, there are no people around in Duke Campus. I come from Boston and there are always people around in Campus.
Varun – ( still confused and trying to understand what does this man wants) It is quite cold, people usually go for Duke games on Saturday. Probably they are all studying or preparing for the recruitment season. Is there any specific group or place you are looking for …
Stranger – Naah.. I am generally looking around… btw I am a recruiter too. I have come here to hire at computing school. So where do people go to party here at Duke.
Varun – Interesting … so you are just out looking for people at this time.
Stranger – Yaah. Where do people usually party here at Duke.
Now I am loosing my patience . I want to tell him – See dude, I recognize and realize that in this part of world, people love small talk and casual chit chat, but this is really not the time. I am FREEZING and I am no mood to be travel guide at this hour.
Still retaining my composure, here is what I said …
Varun – There are lot of party places but I am not sure what is open now. Maybe you could search for word Shooters, Parizade on the internet ( These were actually only two places I have been to and I wanted to give some name and not sound dumb)
Desperate to save myself from catching cold and reaching home, I now decided to get out anyhow
Varun – Well have a great recruiting time at Duke and hope you can find some party places soon. Good Night
Stranger – You too. I am staying in this Duke Washington hotel (first time I heard that name ….)
Varun – Cool ! Good Night
I walked as fast as I could without turning my face back. Still wondering what part of conversation was truth and was I really talking to a stranger in middle of road at almost midnight. Hope the stranger found some people and some party