Monday, September 7, 2020

The Worst Boss


Story from My Vizag Navy Days





Do you remember the worst boss you ever had in your career…?

I do. 

It was Commodore “P” – the most “sadistic”, callous and coldblooded boss I ever had in the Navy – a terrible fellow. 

This was in Vizag (Visakhapatnam) – around 30 years ago – in the end 1980’s/early 1990’s – during my appointment in the prestigious Naval Dockyard at Vizag. 

Dear Reader – let me tell you a bit about Commodore “P” – the worst boss I ever had… 


Vizag (Visakhapatnam) – Circa 1989 


I was woken up from my deep sleep by the shrill ring of the telephone. 

Actually – it was my wife who heard the phone ring. 

My wife poked me hard in the ribs – and she said to me: “Are you dead…? Can’t you hear the phone…?” 

Well – I was good as dead – I had gone to sleep “dead drunk” – after a heavy working day – a brisk jog up Dolphin’s Nose and back – a vigorous swim in the Navy Pool – a hot water bath at home – followed by half a bottle of Rum – a heavy dinner – a bout of frenzied lovemaking – all this had exhausted me totally – and – put me into an unconscious state of deep deadened sleep. 

I lay down in my “comatose” stupor – listening with irritation to the shrill ring of the phone. 

My wife poked me in my ribs once more – and said: “Go and pick up the phone…” 

I woke up from my cataleptic stupor. 

I felt disoriented – but – I managed to stagger to the phone – which was kept on a table in the passageway. 

I picked up the phone and identified myself. 

“Come Over…” the voice at the other end said – and then – the person at the other end disconnected the phone. 

I recognized the voice – it was my boss – Commodore “P”. 

As was his style – he had uttered just two words: “Come Over…”

 Commodore “P” believed in brevity. 

“Come Over…” that’s all he said – no “why” – no details.

“What’s the matter…?” my wife asked. 

“It’s Commodore “P” – my boss…” I said, “He wants me to come over…” 

“Now…?” my wife exclaimed, “It is past 11 o’clock at night – almost midnight…” 

“Must be something urgent…” I said, “I’ll walk down to his house and meet him…” 

“You better wash up…” my wife said, “You are totally drunk – I’ll make some coffee too – just to sober you up a bit…” 


Dear Reader – while I wash up and have some coffee to sober up – here is a small digression: 

If you are a Navy Veteran – and have served in Vizag in the 1970s/1980s – you may have lived in Naval Park. 

(Sometime in the 1980s – Naval Park “Annexe” was built – comprising multi-storey buildings – but – I was lucky to get a house in the original Naval Park) 

The Naval Park comprised lovely old style houses. 

Each building had 3 Storeys – a total of 6 houses – two houses on each floor – with spacious terraces in between. 

I was lucky to get a ground floor house – with a lawn in front – garage on the side – and – garden in the rear. 

We were a mix of occupants in the 6 houses in our building – and in the similar block of 6 houses opposite – 12 of us with varying ranks from Lieutenant Commander to Commodore – from diverse ships and shore establishments – and the spacious common area in between the two buildings was called “Nukkad” – and we would have frequent impromptu “pot luck” get-togethers there – especially during “load shedding” (power cuts) – which happened quite frequently in the evenings. 

Those days – it took 11 years of commissioned service to become a Lieutenant Commander – and – the type of married accommodation was the same from Major to Brigadier (Lieutenant Commander to Commodore) – so all of us lived together in common housing in Naval Park – while there were 4 separate Bungalows for Rear Admirals – and the “CinC” – a Vice Admiral – he lived in his appointment house in Vizag City. 

My boss – a Commodore – lived on a ground floor house similar to mine – in an identical building near our house. 

Digression over – story continues…


Actually – Commodore “P” was not my direct boss – he was the boss of my boss – Captain “K” – a senior Captain (IN) – who had “switched off” and got out of the “rat race”. 

Captain “K” had accepted the fact that he had reached his level of incompetence – and he had decided to enjoy his remaining years in the Navy till superannuation in peace and tranquility. 

So – Captain “K” astutely remained out of the “firing line” – and he let me have it nice and proper from Commodore “P”. 

And now – Commodore “P” had called me at this unearthly hour – it was well past 11 PM – almost midnight. 

I changed into trousers and bush shirt – wore my sandals – and – to sober up – I gulped down the coffee my wife had hurriedly prepared. 

Then – I walked towards the house of Commodore “P” – which was nearby. 

As I reached the ground floor house – I noticed that the light in the drawing room was on. 

Commodore “P” must be waiting for me in his drawing room – I thought. 

I rang the doorbell. 

The door opened. 

I had expected Commodore “P” to open the door. 

But – it was his wife – Mrs. “P” – who opened the door. 

Mrs. “P” was a most refined, gracious and elegant lady. 

“Good Evening, Ma’am…” I said to her, “Your husband had called me on the phone – he wanted to see me…” 

“He hasn’t come home…” she said. 

“Is he still in his office…?” I asked. 

“Yes…” she said, “I had called his PA half an hour ago. The PA said that my husband was busy working…” 

“I am sorry for the inconvenience, Ma’am…” I said, “I’ll go to his office and meet him…” 

“Yes – I think you do that…” Mrs. “P” said. 

“Good Night, Ma’am…” I said. 

“Good Night…” Mrs. “P” said. 

She smiled at me – and – as I began to leave – she closed the door. 


To Be Continued...


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1. This article is a spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

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