Sunday, August 20, 2006

Paintball Diary

How did Alistair D'souza (nicknamed Alice), a talented, middle-class Indian geek, end up in the jungle pursued by the CBI, the FBI, the Mossad, the Karnataka Rangers and the dogs of geek town ? Woof! Woof! How did he finish up there shot in the head, lying on the mud behind a barracade, in a remote village just on the outskirts of Bangalore ? Alice's current exploits was very much of a piece with the rest of his career. He lay there for the beliefs to which he had devoted his life, so to put the Paintball Diary in context, it is illuminating to go back to the very beginning to see how he got there. He was born Alistair Remedios Santan D'souza in the city of oranges.... errr... this is gonna take long... besides doesn't the intro seem like a plagiarised version from Che's 'Bolivian diary'. Plagiarist!!!!

Ok... Ok... I lied, but I did it for a reason. You see I'm an undercover war journalist. Errr... undercover from the scraps of metal that sometimes fly past my personal space. It was 9ish on an otherwise promising bloodless morning as we gathered our bearings, and were briefed about our mission by Sreejesh. The war room in the erstwhile Impulsesoft office resonated with words that resembled the likes of courage, strategy, plans, teammates. As our consciences began to take their responsibilities seriously, we arrived at the rendezvous point and began to strap up behind our masks and chest gear, which gave us a sense of false protection. As fear engulfed us we grasped our guns and fired shots in the air to lift our spirits. Each one of us loaded our ammunition which amounted to 20 balls of paint. However when they emanated from the guns they had an accuracy of about 40-50 feet and a projectile path that was way beyond the battleground. I took shots of the brave men in uniform, fear on their faces, trying to move the protective equipment to cover maximum surface area. In the process I managed to catch, on candid camera, one particular soldier in a catch-22 situation :-)

The first mission went without troubles nor glory as we vapourised the enemy before they could reach their bunker with our flag. I shot mercenaries in action, fallen heroes and a few imaginary ones, protected behind the sand sacks that served as barracades. We reloaded as our second mission seemed more out of a scene from a video game, as we disarmed the bomb set by the terrorists to go off in a few minutes. An air of invincibility surrounded us as we decided to take the fight to the adjoining jungle. I then commited a grave mistake of asking the fighters to pose for a few 'City of God' shots, as they pumped bullets into my back at a point blank range of about 2-3 feet. I let out a cry of impunity to spare my life but the scars will remain for longer. Two of us then decided to take a detour across a few streams, trees and moos to attack the enemy from behind. We took them by surprise but realised that our comarades had already been annihilated as we breached the terms of engagement. As I looked through my foggy, moist, poignant eyes I felt the sting of bullets hit me from all sides.

It was the first time that we were on the backfoot but time permitted us to salvage some of our lost pride and dignity. This one is for you, my imaginary hero. I managed to put myself in a compromising but important position as I shot down 3 enemy troops in 3 shots. We then had just two of us in the end with a gap of 30 feet that separated us. I summoned all the ammunition left with me as I shot four bullets in quick succession at a time. Only to see 3-4 similar ones fly past my head, emanating from the barrel of another gun at the other end, waxing its presence, cutting its path through space, my radar detecting them in quick succession, as I tried to find the enemy's position and deliver that one final blow.

Then the unthinkable happened!!! From the side of the battlefield a shot came and hit me straight in the head. I saw stars as the day seemed to be dawning on me. I turned around and looked at my teammate who had just shot me. We had been betrayed by a mole. In those brief moments my life flashed before my eyes and I looked up to the heavens to grant my assassin forgiveness for his exploits, some peace of mind and a conscience that might one day bring him back to the path of righteousness. I had to lead by example in life and in a fake death, as I set out on a journey to look deep within, as a veil of peaceful warmth engulfed me. But as I was looking deep down within myself to forgive him, I realised that I had run out of ammunition. It was now time for some hand to hand combat.... AAAAAAAGGGGRRRRRHHHHH!!!!!!!!

Website: Paintball Arena
Map: Its in the centre of the screen, about 8-10 kms from IIMB on banerghatta road. The road to the left of paintball arena on the map is banerghatta road. Follow the road going upwards on the map to find IIMB.


1 comment:

Ankit said...

You must mention that shot of mine in the last game to kill the guy who had captured the flag. That was the turning point :)