Saturday, 27 March 2010

blast from the past...

Do you know the feeling when you have a song stuck in your head & just cant get it out? Well, I've had my fair share of absolutely ridiculous numbers playing on and on for days together in my mind, so much that every time I open my mouth to hum a song, I subconsciously sing that same irritating tune!

The last few days, I've been humming this song we wrote in the 7th standard! I have no idea how it found its way back to my conscious mind. Here is how it goes (Yes! I actually remember the lyrics from a song written for a school play over 13 years ago - though I cant go grocery shopping without a list!):

Trees, the beautiful trees,
they give us all that we shall need,
wood for furniture,
fruit for our dessert,
leaves for medicine,
& yet we're hard to please,
we cut them down without mercy,
as pretty as we please,
oh! what a beautiful world,
ours would have been,
if only each of us,
plant a tree within!

Maybe it's because of the Earth Hour this evening...

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

the end of an era...

It’s quite amazing how people & places become so intricately involved that it’s hard to imagine one without the other. The adaptability of living beings is unquestionable. In no time people adapt to their surroundings & acquire characteristics specific to particular places. But have you ever thought that places may be influenced by the people that live in them? That it could be hard to imagine a place as you knew it, once the person attached to that place moves somewhere else?

There is a great void in one area for me, now that my friend who used to live there has moved. On my way back, after seeing him off, I found myself involuntarily humming Md Rafi's "chale the saath milke, chalenge saath milkar, tumhe rukna padega meri aawaaz sunkar...". He had moved many times within that area, but this is different. All those eat outs, chai joints, the places we tramped about together will no longer be the same, & no one may ever know. But to me, it will all be as alien as it was before he introduced me to it. How can I forget the first time I parked my new bike, fresh out of the showroom, at his doorstep, the first time I saw the sunset from the temple hill, the first time I had that soup on the road corner...

Though he would spend more hours per week in my room than his, he still leaves an unforgettable imprint on his area. Of course, he influenced the colours of my walls too, there may be no more enthusiasts left for terrace cricket anymore nor anyone to accompany me to dabba movies with an unparalleled zest in the run down theatres of my locality, but now there will be no one to call for directions, the next time I'm lost in that jungle of an area of his, no one to tell me about the new places open there or unbelievable offers!

I'm sure as kids we all had favourite spots in our homes. Places where we could be happy, where we could be sad, where we could laugh & everyone would know, where we could cry & no one would know, where we hid things, where we curled up when we were scared, places which smelt good, places which let us stretch our hands to catch the drops of the first rains... All these places too acquire a distinct character. Yours. Your parents would probably look at these places when you are away from home, & try to imagine how it felt when you were there...

There is a joy in knowing a place, its lanes, its shortcuts, to be able to warn your friends about the speed breakers & potholes on the road in the dark, which tea stall will be open till what time, when the baker bakes his bread, which barber gives you value for money... When a person moves from a place, you lose a source of so much information! We also lost the ration point, where we stored all our eatables before a trek. There will be no more stops in front of that house. But every time I pass in front of those places, I will remember. I will remember the stars shining brightly in a dark, cloudless night sky, when us friends would try to point out constellations to each other on the terrace, I will remember the aroma of the dosas as they came out fresh from the kitchen of our local food joint, I will remember the comfortable silence as we killed time sipping tea on the steps of the tea stalls, I will remember the empty roads as I returned to my place late at night after dropping my friend to his room, I will remember his eccentricities & his stubbornness & I will miss the love we had for laziness typified by our dishevelled looks & unkempt hair!

Change is good & change is necessary, I can understand his pursuit of happiness. Maybe I'm a little sorry that I'm still in this hole, sad that I have not managed to chase the dreams of change which I cherished. I am now reminded of a time, which seems so long ago, when someone said to me "There is nothing in Goa, make your life elsewhere" & me thinking "Everything is in Goa"...