After playing for long with friends and making lots of splashes in the tidal waves, I signaled my retirement to my friends. Fully drenched I returned back to the rocky dry patch of the beach. The lazy week end afternoon, serene sea side and few revelers made for a great escape, I thought. Perching myself at the earshot of a one minute photographer, I mean one of those who will be after you to click the shots with the waves kind; I decided to relax.
Wrong choice of place, I reckoned in a short while. Every other five minutes the beach goers and the photographer made ruckus. The haggling over the price saw no one winning. The photographer seemed in no hurry to make money. He appeared to be a man of strong built and surprisingly polished tone. ‘You never know’, I reminded myself, as these days, even the guides at the tourist locations speak in impeccable language.
What got me curious however was the fact that he was sitting with his back to the crowd. When I searched in the direction of his vision, all I could see was the green patch of bushes dwarfed by the coconut trees swaying to the breeze. Maybe he was trying to kill the time and capture nature in his lens, I reasoned. Before I could fetch my attention towards my friends at distance, a customer lingered around the photographer.
‘Photo in one minute’, said the man in panting voice.
‘Hmm”, replied the photographer.
‘In one minute, are you sure? What you have is a top brand DSLR. Its not the regular one-minute photo camera.’
‘Sir, I am in this business since long. Its not my first day today’, replied the photographer sounding little curt this time.
‘But then I can’t see your printing machine.’
‘It’s right under this table’, replied the photographer, pointing to the table. ‘But do you really want a click?’
‘Oh yes. But not for 50 bucks. Its exorbitant. You are charging too much because of your monopolistic presence. I will pay 20’, bargained the customer.
‘Not worth my efforts. See the picture quality. I use special pearl and luster photo paper and not the ordinary satin or mat one’, advocated the photographer.
‘Whatever. Still the price is high. Make it 25 and I will give you good business.’, replied the customer sounding generous.
‘How many and where?’ checked the photographer.
Pointing straight to the sea-side and looking at the distance, the customer asked, ‘Can you see that large group of men, women and children?’
As the customer turned around, he realized that the photographer was not checking out in the direction he pointed. Little annoyed, he quizzed the photographer, ‘Don’t you want to earn few bucks today?’, this time with a much sarcasm. The photographer, smiled at him and did not say anything, maintaining his gaze towards the green patch. With hands on his waist and a puzzled look, the customer was about to utter something.
The photographer, at once got up, as if with a bolt while taking out a revolver from underneath the table. The customer was startled. Before he could scream, the photographer sealed his mouth with his robust palm. In a wink he darted towards the green patch. I got startled too. Getting up on my feet and I leaned a bit to witness the drama unfolding.
With a sprint, the photographer nabbed a half-clad youth. Few more well built men from the revelers also joined the photographer. They caught hold of two more young boys. The life at the beach came to a standstill. I could only hear my heart beats, forget the waves crashing on the beach. An eerie silence enveloped atmosphere, barring the commotion, shouting and yelling coming from near the green patch.
Soon the photographer, his gang along with three nabbed youth with their hands cuffed, walked towards the place where I was seated. I froze to death as the photographer approached us. He wore a smile. ‘Inspector Sabale’, he said as he extended his hands towards the customer for a handshake. He flashed his Id card. ‘We had the tip about these miscreants and so had laid this trap. These are notorious drug peddlers and history sheeters. They were here to handover a consignment to the local customers and beach goers’. With great efforts I closed my dropped jaw to see the captures off the beach!
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This is my contribution towards #FridayReflections
, a blog hop, jointly held by Corinne
I have tried to put two prompts together, in my story; Namely the picture prompt and ‘an interesting conversation you overheard recently‘