When I opted for Dr Nagesh to perform my eye surgery in his state-of-the-art hospital in Bangalore, it sent ripples of excitement along with genuine concern among my siblings, nieces and nephews. My sister was the first to congratulate me on my choice.
"Nageshs uncle Ramaswamy was a very dear friend of ours. He and my husband were colleagues in the AGs office, and he would often speak about his nephew who had graduated from medical college with distinctions."
" I have heard that he is a very good surgeon. He would have seen me in Ramaswamys house. Tell him about us and he will be more than happy." I made a note of this useful information.
When my nephew heard this, he exclaimed: "What a small world ! Nagesh and I were in the same school and we were very good friends. He took up medicine and did very well. I hear he has established a hospital of his own now. Tell him you are my uncle and he will be thrilled." I promised him I would.
I, next, mentioned Dr Nagesh to my other sibling. "Nagesh!" she exclaimed, "why, his parents lived on the same floor as ours in an apartment in Malleswaram. I have seen him playing there as a kid. So, he has become a well known surgeon now? Just remind him about that family which lived in the same floor in Flat 62. What a small world indeed!"
I made a note of this too. Lucky that Dr Nagesh was closely associated with my family. I was convinced that it is a small world, after all. What more, his aunt presently lived across the corridor of my nieces apartment. I was proud that I now belonged to the inner circle of my surgeon.
When I mentioned these coincidences to my friend Ranjan, he exclaimed: "Why, Nagesh and I are good friends and we meet in the club regularly. Tell me the date of your operation and I will speak to him. Not that it makes any difference, but you will feel nice and comfortable with someone who is not a total stranger."
I decided to speak to Dr Nagesh before the surgery about my sisters, nephew, niece and friend. But, unfortunately, I could not do that since I was given an anesthetic before being wheeled into the operation theatre. Dr Nagesh visited my ward in the evening and was quite happy with my progress. I then told him that it was really a small world since my sisters, nephew and friend knew him so well. He looked surprised and apologetic.
"My parents never lived in Malleswaram. And I dont have an uncle called Ramaswamy, and nobody in my family worked in the AGs office. I dont think I know your nephew either, because I never studied in Bangalore. Of course, Ranjan and I are good friends and he did speak to me about you."
Now, I know the world is not that small!