Thursday, August 26, 2010

Past Continuous…the after effect still remains…

I have seen rivers rising because of heavy rains in the rainy days. When the warning bell rang, people flowed in huge numbers to the riverside to see the fury of the river, all for the flood.

Now Delhi, India’s capital city has flooded streets. So you need not go to the Yamuna banks to see the rising water.

It may seem like a Once Upon a Time Storyin my childhood days, we managed to tear out pages from our used note books…those which were of no use…make paper boats and let them flow in the drains. Happy to have lived in independent houses where there was a courtyard, washed every morning with lots of water splashed across and the broom swept off the water to the side drain that flowed out into the main drain. A separate block housed the kitchen, the store room and the sacred Puja area…a room very special where idols of different Gods were housed and a space very much dedicated to the gods of the house. The main living area, with long running verandah, where the morning sun bathed the floor with its first rays…inviting to rise early and enjoy the birds chirping and enjoy the cool fresh air around. In winter quits, pillows, blankets, were put out in the sun on the verandah…bathe in the heat and give comfort from the cold at night.

There was so much work in the garden. Roses…small and big of different colours…attracted the honey bees who flirted with them, fussing with the sweet small and then fly away.

…cabbage, tomatoes, ladyfingers, green chillies, cauliflower, brinjal (egg plant), fresh green coriander, fresh mint leaves…and more in one’s own garden.

The guava trees, we climbed…physical fit activity with childhood fun and frolic…, mangoes on the trees in summer, bananas green and ripe, lemon, amrah (sour fruit), jamrool (a fruit), papaya…cook it raw and eat when ripe and sweet… That was life not out of a story book not very long ago. The flowers like togor and joba, grew in abundance, plucked early in the morning and placed in the flower basket…washed and ready to offer to the gods.

We breathed fresh air, rode cycles, and cycle rickshaws for convenience. Cars were not so common…each family did not have 2/3/4 cars as of now. Cars were indeed a luxury. Buses and trains …summer vacation travel was so much enjoyable. And going by air…simply a dream. But boat rides in the local river sometimes…what an experience!

The chullah…coal was used to light the fire…was kept burning for a long time…Baba would ask for tea anytime, some special dishes cooked for guests who arrived without notice. And Ma was never unhappy to entertain untimely guests…Atithi Devo Bhabha…helping hands to assist her.

…and pets were looked after with so much care and love. Parrots, dogs, cats, common pets. Build a pen and then house the hens and enjoy the fresh eggs…wrap the fresh egg in the palm and feel the heat… Pigeons pecked the mustard seeds from the palms and flew round and round in the evenings to come back to their home built from wooden plans with a wire mesh to keep away the cats.

No washing machines but clothes soaked in soap water for an hour or half and then rubbed and scrubbed and washed under the tap to dry out in the sun.

Achar jars lined out in the sun when the sunshine was strong to avoid fungus from layering the top. The puja room stacked the pickle bottles and only one person allowed to serve this stuff which would last for the whole year.

Today, as I looked out of my second floor window, thoughts of the life I have lived came knocking at my minds door. Home…limited space, movement restricted…have to think thrice to go down the steps to the road. Life has gone through a change and I have the computer to write down my thoughts.

Adjustment is the right word but the Missing Effect remains...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Common Wealth Games (CWG) 2010 of India and of Delhi

In the name of the Games (CWG) there are so many Hullabaloos at present. The noise is all about the common wealth that’s being squandered in the name of this Sporting Event.

Even before the track and field and the indoor events have started, it seems a special Relay race is going on. Allegations are running down from one to another. The first shot is fired with cases of bribery, and then it runs into faulty contracts with some contracts being made without written documents. The relay moves on next into unfinished stadiums where the leaky roofs give evidence of the type of finish the places are going to get. Then it heads towards those fitness equipments meant to be there on hire for India does not want to produce athletes in future as fitness equipments are going to go once the games are over.

Delhi looks more like a dug-up city with roads caving in here and there and no respite from traffic congestion. In giving a makeover to this city it has created more mess than anything worth looking at. Most believe Delhi was much better before, and, the changes have not brought about anything worth a word of praise. Money has been simply squandered in the name of the Games.

With the date of the Games coming closer the locals are not at all interested in going to watch the different events. Instead with the closure of the schools during that time many will prefer to stay away from this city for there will be lot of traffic problem.

With the work coming to an end very soon so many labourers will be left without any work. Where will they go and what will they do. The state government will try to evict the shanties of these labourers put up on the roadside. This is going to a huge problem soon after the Games are over. And then the government at the Centre and the State will play a blame game and leave the people to suffer silently.

But the rich and powerful will have a sound sleep in their luxurious rooms having power and some having made lots of money in the name of the Games.

If this topic starts burning, political heads will divulge into another topic to let this die a silent death and see no digging is done to find what lies deep down.

A new burning topic will come up and politics will play its own game but life of the AAM AADMI will move on.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Not That Simple as Words

Saturday and Sunday soaked Delhi with heavy shower. It did bring much relief from the heat but trouble doesn’t like to leave the people of this city. With the rains, some of the roads were filled with water. For a child to see water all around is no doubt fun...making paper boats from pages torn from old note books and see them move down. But for the daily commuters’, life came to a standstill in many areas...traffic jam building up and waiting time to reach the destination taking hours...all for the water-logging.

There is every reason for the people to ask the authorities for explanation. Then, who cares for the common man now???...the system keeps mum and life moves on with all the trouble mesh.

The CWG (Common Wealth Games) is just round the corner with so much said and heard about (the coming CW Games) it. No doubt after all the revelations, trickling out one by one, surely and truly it’s the COMMON Man’s WEALTH that’s being squandered away in the name of the Games. No time to think –- that’s for every common man -- as life has to move on.

But where does the Price Rise in this country take us. Price Rise has become the POCKET MAAR (robbing one’s pocket) of the AAM AADMI (Common man) clear words this can be related to stealing the purse of the people of India who toil hard to survive. The salaried households have cut down on many items from their regular monthly budgets to meet the everyday needs of the family.

The country is running through a difficult time...unrest on our borders and disturbances within the country in many states...reasons are countless.

Life is so unsafe in the capital city Delhi where happenings like murder, rape, suicide, dacoity, burglary, accidents have become regular happenings, and, all leading to loss of life. When everything other than a precious life is getting expensive, Life appears to be getting cheaper and cheaper...which direction are we moving towards, remains unjustified. When said in words all this looks so simple but Reality is tough to bear.

At this juncture we stand on such a threshold where it is necessary to find ways to make life run easily and this has to be concerted effort for one and all.

Life is Beautiful. Isn’t it?