Better late than never

I have known Meenakshi from the time I stopped using nappies. The friendship which prevailed between our parents was the reason for our homes to be in the same apartment. We were inseparable like the Siamese twins and were as close to an extent that we never missed the other one’s company. She was part and parcel of my life and there was no childhood memory where she wasn’t a part of.

We were fortunate to be in the same class from Kindergarten till the secondary stage. We went to school together, played together, fought together and most of the times our thoughts coincided too. Togetherness seemed to be a word found just to describe how we were. We also went to the extent of asking an extra gift for the other person when someone gifted us something in singular.

Let it be a dream, let it be a reality, I have had my life completely with a girl whom I fondly called “Meenu”.
Every story has a turning point and my life also had one.

This happened when Meenu joined another school for pursuing a different stream of studies and I was completely left alone. I had never been without her and every time I looked around to share something, she wasn’t there. I used to wait for the bell to run back home so that I could spend some time with her and to my disappointment, she used to be late every day. I made it a point to spend the few minutes which we used to get in the night to share what we had to. The life without her by my side became tougher as days progressed.

One fine day, I saw her with a guy who she introduced to be her friend from the new school and I couldn’t bear the feeling of her with someone else. I realized that day, that it was difficult to imagine a life without her and assured myself that I had fallen in love with her.

Time passed like a whirlwind and we had enjoyed the time which we got every day, during those years in which we were engaged in graduating ourselves.

Everything ran so fast and my love for Meenu was known to none except me. I had refrained from expressing my love for years and I felt I might even lose her if I delayed further. I decided to express my love on her 24th birthday. Her first birthday wish had always been from my side and this time, some other guy had already wished her before I could. This was one of the dreadful moments of life and before I could say a word after wishing her, she told me to come home the next day, as she held some surprise for me.

I was early to her house the next day and was talking to her parents with a smile on my face concealing the tension I had. She came down like an angel, got us all together in the dining table and said that she was in love with a guy named Fabien Pinto. I was shocked and her parents hugged on to her in agreement despite her lover being an Anglo Indian. I had a smile on my face and my heart was pushing me to tell her that I loved her. I controlled my emotions and the inner pressure of expressing my love to her.

A few days Later…

A role of a family friend was too tough to play during the days leading to the engagement helping them with the arrangements. It required a lot of heart to do such a thing with a smile on your face. I did it for my love, for our parents and to say the least I did it for “Meenu”. She even forced me to design a dress for the function and Meenu was moving all along the lawn in the costume which I had designed enjoying the engagement with no traces of regret.

Still, I was amazed that she never understood that I loved her so much and for so long. It was disappointing and I felt I was too late in expressing myself. When she could understand every movement of mine, why couldn’t she understand the love I had for her????? Life went with a lot of questions in mind.
A few days after engagement, she came home with a wedding card and wanted me to accompany her in inviting all our friends for the wedding at the Cathedral, the following month. She forced me to be by her side while she did all the shopping for the marriage and I was constantly telling myself that I did it for the love I had, I have and will have.
Fabien Weds Meenakshi

(The day of reckoning)

It was the first time I visited a Cathedral and I had to do it for Meenakshi. I saw her dressed in a white bridal costume and getting ready for the prayers before the wedding. I was just looking at the clock for all the customary rituals to get over and that’s when the Priest announced to the gathering that Meenakshi and Fabien would exchange their rings.

I couldn’t wait anymore and I just did what my heart said. I went close to Meenu, brushed my lips against hers and said “It would be unfair on my part to conceal my love anymore. I love you Meenu”.

She gave me a tight hug and replied “Me too Fabien.”

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum
Maya

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Yamaaya Namaha (Part 2/2)

“Thanniya Saetthaa thirusangu

Thalli Vittaa un sangu”

The poet Water Vetrivel has critically expressed the importance of conservation of water(Thanniya Saetthaa) in making our place, a paradise(Thirusangu) or a grave (un Sangu).

Let’s move on to Kuppamedukuppam to have a feel of what is called the Wednesday.

Water has become very precious and common over the years in the names of people of this area and not in its true form. Most of them take it as a pride to name their kids with precious items in the like of Vayiramuthu(Diamond Pearl), Rathna Manickam(Gem Gem), Thangaraj( golden King), Thanni Kai Arasu (Water king) and so on.

(02.30 am, January 1st XX06,Chakrapani’s(Wheel water) Residence,F-12, Sunnambu Kalva)

It’s been six long years; people of Kuppamedukuppam have waited to experience this feeling and everyone here hopes that they would get to feel something which has become a rarity in their life.

Alarm Struck once and all the members of the family freshened up in a few minutes using a mug of water and retained half the mug for the next day. The whole house was in a state of rush and was looking as if they were going for a battle. Each one in their family had an item in the shape of an hemisphere with an open cone on top and referred it as a ‘Kodam’. They all hurried to the battleground, the area in front of the unclean Sintex tank. To their surprise, they were greeted with 50 kodams in front of them in the queue and 10 of it were accompanied by their owners who were lying down from the previous night. One among those had even gone to the extent of getting his rope cot to have an undisturbed sleep on the road till the morning. Some had kept their kodam and gone back home to sleep thinking their presence in the form of initials on the kodam was sufficient. Most of the shop owners being the residents of Sunnambu Kalva were among the people in the queue and none open their shops during Wednesdays as water displaces all other motives to the back seat.

People lose respect, dignity and the goodwill they have earned over the weak by fighting for an earlier spot in the queue saying that he was present personally and the others have just kept the kodams and gone to rest. Swearing at each other starts early. Gender bias was completely alien and everyone had the right to hit out at anyone in the area. Some kids even had a training session on how to tackle different age groups and some practiced with their peers. Something which people assure is that they don’t create a parliamentary set up as they maintain some decorum even in nasty dealings.

(The battle goes on till the morning and people have a ride swearing at each other with all words found in the local dictionary.)

6.30am,Battleground Sunnambu Kalva,

People stopped fighting and witnessed something strange on the market road. The motorists paused their ride, auto drivers controlled their urgency, shops on the road shifted back, Pedestrians on the pavement stuck on to the wall as if their life was at stake. None of them on the road had the guarantee for life until he passed them as he has the capability to kill anyone in anyway.

Kuppamedukuppam

I am not talking about the Share Autos having cycle brakes, nor the Delhi Blue liner which travels on the footpath than on expressways but it’s the metro water lorry which does all atrocities one can and cannot imagine. Metro water Lorries have 694 cases registered in the last decade for killing many motorists, hookers, pedestrians and some people on the pavement too. Nothing has changed and they continue to rule the roads and the people at Kuppamedukuppam. These lorries let out half the tank cleaning the roads and bathing the motorists during their travel and give the remaining to the people of Kuppamedukuppam at double rate. He supplies what the people yearn for, and these poor souls have nothing to lose and all to gain if they salute these drivers, so as to get an extra pot. The people here have justified my title.

Even people who visit Tirupathi get satisfied faster than the people here, as they want more and more of it, not considering the people waiting behind .There was a huge commotion while filling the pots and some of them even tried filling their second pot before others could see. The 192nd person in the queue named Hamsavalli was the unluckiest of the lot as she did not get water. She said with grief that; she taking bath on a new year would be like Kumbha Mela, which happens once in 12 years. The last new year which fell on a Wednesday was 6 years back and she had to wait another 6 years to get a chance to bathe on a new year as Wednesday is the only day of the week they get water.

It was humorous to think about Hamsavalli but there is lot more we need to think about seriously. New Year should be celebrated every year and not once in six years like many other periodic festivals. Bathing can’t be an event to wait for and Hamsavalli is not a person to be duplicated again in the future.

This place Kuppamedukuppam is a part of my imagination and every event mentioned about the place is a myth but the issues and the data about lorries are true. Their atrocities are rising and we people are surrendering ourselves to them. We should conserve water and treat it precious when it’s available so that these Yamas calm their heads. This place would become a reality if we go ahead like selfish ass***es not caring about the life ahead.

I pray that this imagination doesn’t come true.

Save Water and save mankind.

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum

Maya

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Yamaaya Namaha (Part 1/2)

Doesn’t this title sound strange???? It will continue to be so, until you complete the post.

Yama, the lord of death most the Hindus claim to be is not the one I am talking about. He is neither Voldermort of Harry Potter fame, who goes on a killing spree to live an immortal life nor is he Koundmani who plays the character of Yama in the movie lucky man.

He is the one who has the license to kill and gets away without being penalized by the court or pays a fine of Rs.1000 per kill. He always reserves a column in all the newspapers for his killings. One trip a day, keeps at least one man away. He simply kills anyone who crosses his path unnecessarily as he feels killing is much easier than other ways in which the kill could have been avoided.

Who is he? Is he so important that we are ignoring his killings by just giving him slight penalties? He is an integral part of the water distribution community and he is the one who carries water to most of the places where water has become a rare commodity. My set of arguments above might have been a long drawn exaggeration but I feel; only such exaggeration can make us think better.

How long can we go on like this?

Drought in one part of the country and floods in the other, Industrialization in one part and none in the other, but population pressure is something our people try to compete and balance with all other parts of the country.

We go on a rampage by clearing forests and drilling the earth to suck the maximum out of it and leave nothing to others. We disturb the water table and enjoy water whereas our brothers in other parts suffer because of us. So many lives have been lost improper distribution of water. We will reach a day when water would become more expensive than petrol and will become a part of ration shop’s distribution list along with rice and sugar.

Once we start giving respect to quality of our life and the life to come, we will start changing ourselves and our surroundings to keep the world green. If we take care of Mother Nature, we needn’t depend upon such carriers and give them undue importance as nature would give us back double of what we give her.

Am I wrong in calling the carrier as Yama? I don’t think so. These carriers have killed many and this may not be news to people in Chennai.

Why should people salute him by saying Yamaaya Namaha?

Let’s shift our focus to Kuppamedukuppam to know why they salute him.

Kuppamedukuppam is an historical place surrounded by leather industries that have bore wells dug up to 300 feet, plastic dumping yards, barren lands, and the most important feature of this place is the river Paavam, which stands second to Cooum for the stink it generates and waste it carries. Trees have been replaced with all industries and people of this place treat trees next to dinosaurs in the extinction list.

Sunnambu Kalva

Sunnambu Kalva stands tall at the heart of Kuppamedukuppam. Sunnambu Kalva is a monument built in memory of Mr.Karisanai Sedhuraman (also known as K.Sedhu by crazy Mohan). Mr. Sedhu claimed himself to be the leader of madras wing of the Sepoy Mutiny led by Mangal Pandey in Meirut in 1857. He was a bit different in his claim as he felt that most of the senior citizens claim that they are a part of freedom struggle.

Everything said and done, Mr.sedhu was born in 1935 and Sepoy Mutiny was never known in Madras. So everything about Sunnambu Kalva was just a piece of imagination, as nothing better can this place represent other than the housing board apartments built when there was peace in Afghanistan. They are two storey buildings painted with white Sunnambu a few decades earlier and stands now sans Sunnambu like a tawa which has been kept on fire for a long time in high flame covered with carbon soot.

Gaja Gajaa Bajaar formerly known as Gilma market in Kuppamedukuppam stands next to Sunnambu Kalva and is always overflowing with people and that might have been the reason for the change in name too. The word overflow has always been related with people and never with water. Flow of water was last seen in 1882 which was long before India witnessed the complete solar eclipse just prior to one witnessed in 2009. This market gives you everything at the right price from fresh fishes from the river bed to Jim bajak Gilmas (call girls) to the lodging beds but water cans are sold in black. When summer was at its peak, black market rate of water even exceeded the rate for one night with a kuppamedu’s Chameli(unacceptable, but need to). This place was like Grant road for Mumbai, but police have done a great job in giving this market a saintly look by camouflaging most of the Chamelis with their professional brains.

The wide roads laid as per the city development plan have been used to set up bigger shops on the road for a rent of Rs.15 per day which was Rs.5 more than what the police collected when the roads were small. The market was also controlled by two goons Udaya and Surya (not Teja or Gemini) on the illegal side and they were also paid as per their fee structure. Sometimes water cans have also been a part of the fee structure of both the groups, legal and illegal.

Sunnambu Kalva is the only residential complex among all commercial enterprises in the locality and the people in that area are very hospitable, descent, calm and united in all respects, including unhygienic practices which are forced due to lack of water.

People here; lose all the attributes I have mentioned above, all commercial enterprises take a back seat and the whole population looks for only one thing on every Wednesday.

What are they looking for?

(Meet You at Kuppamedukuppam on Wednesday………………)

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum

Maya

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God knows who “God is”

prayer

God knows who “God is”

Padayappa is a ‘man of words’, Alagesh is a ‘man of beauty’ but Kartik has always been termed as a ‘man of excuses’. Excuses had ruled my life and an outing to the beach with friends was also a rescheduled plan to accommodate me and my pathetic excuses.

It was a very fine weekend and we had reached the beach in the evening by 4pm.I could see couples more than what a pair of eyes could take and they were busy enjoying each other not bothered about others, covering their faces as that was the easiest identification tool. We with our faces open were almost a minority in that long beach which stands next to Rio de Janeiro for its length.

As we moved forward in the hot sand, we started searching for good places to pose and the cameras started clicking. It was awkward standing and posing on the beach as thousands were looking at us with a unanimous thought that it was a waste of camera memory. We were determined to use the complete memory card by just posing in all permutations available and were not aspiring for a spot in the Pirelli Calendar as the basic criterion for that is ration in the form of fashion (Hand Kerchief – maximum dress allowed to pose). We didn’t own the style of Rajnikanth, the fame of Kamal Hassan, elegance of Aishwarya Rai nor the assets of Pamela for the world to look at our portraits but we simple guys just wanted to have the thrill of uploading our pictures in Facebook for all to have a laugh looking during depressing moments. Even the beggars weren’t left out of the posing act as they were also among us in the photographs making us look like genuine philanthropists.

The camera time was over and it was time to unleash ourselves into the water world. My return to the shore was not an easy task as I was a few kilos heavier as I had smuggled sand in all my pockets as a token of memory. While returning I felt that I should sit and spend some time thinking about myself. I sat on the shore alone looking at the beautiful waves and was just pondering who this “God” was. I believed in him till 17, forgot about him after that and had a miserable life questioning him, losing my humility, self confidence and all other good traits. I was considered to be one of the guys who could balance things in the best possible manner and could dedicate good amount of time with everyone and everything without affecting the course of anything. I could run so many parallel lines of activities without any intersections. All the systems failed and when my mind was in a ventilator kind of a situation fighting for life, a pacemaker kind of a thought flashed suggesting me to believe in the one whose existence was questioned by me as I had not seen or felt him. I chose to believe him as I was a failure believing myself and that was the only justification available for an atheist to turn into a so called theist.

We have always felt that bi-party politics are outdated and each party squanders when they get a chance. That’s when the third party, gets a chance to prove its worth as people are fed up with the other two and have not received anything from them till then. The third party behaving like their predecessors would not affect the people as they are used to such a feeling but if they do something good, it’s a bonus for the people. I was no different in choosing to go with a stranger, who most of them addressed as “God”.

I have always asked for a cause and effect for whatever I do and god was also such a concept for me. It was always “Feel to believe” and during the 2 minutes I spent introspecting I altered my policy to “Believe to feel”.

What was that for me? An Aahaa factor or a paradigm shift or was it a kind of metamorphosis. I shall leave it to “God” to decide what it is but I consider the shift for the good.

I began praying and talking to the unknown citizen of this very fine world and enjoyed feeling the positive changes in me. Who was I talking to? Am I a person with acute schizophrenia talking to a person whom I have never seen before? I call it god at the moment and I termed it pep up talk when I was an atheist. Which one is true? I shall leave it to “God” to decide it whether mine is a repeat of the story of the “beautiful mind”.

I started tasting success, felt confident, developed humility and started regaining most of my lost traits. Was this because I transferred all my responsibilities to a porter called god to carry it or was that an external confidence booster whom I termed as God? I shall leave it to “God” to decide what it was and anyways, I enjoy being successful and being my natural self to others and myself.

I never attributed my success to god till 17, after that gave credits for the ups and downs to myself and now I feel it’s not me but “God” who is responsible for most of the successes which have become a major portion of my life. Was my success coinciding with my prayers and the credit for the success which was bound to come due to my efforts was given to the so called powerful verses. I definitely have no answer for this question but I feel really relieved when I pray and talk to the one I call “God”. A minute of prayer silences my mind, clears the clutter in the thought process and lets me perform to the fullest.

Too many questions are still dwelling and I shall delve to justify my stand. I presently feel, something is above me, I call him “God” as I don’t feel like giving him a new name, some call him hope, my former self calls him a false identity, some call him their friend, others call him love and the battle of thoughts is still on.

Search for him will continue as the feel of him is due.

who-is-god

Who is God? God knows who “God is” and I shall know him soon.

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum
Maya

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Open Air Bedroom (Part 2/2)

Don't you think its dark enough to frighten you

Don’t you think its dark enough to frighten you

How long can I expect you all to stay awake and I am sorry for delaying the sequel due to health issues.(Evvalavu neram thaan thoongaama irukkardhu. Thirupiyum Kashtam thaan. Ella vaatiyum naan thaan maatikkren.Enna Panna.)
All the male members of the family were on the terrace including my cousins from Bangalore, Ajay and Narayanan. We all had our beds on one hand and a pillow on the other. Lungi was the best suited attire during power cuts as it’s breezy within and the breeze on the terrace was strong enough to push us away and Ajay’s Lungi wasn’t an exception to it. Ajay was crying out to have a third hand to hold on to his lungi which was loosening from his hip. Avoiding the embarrassment was the most important thing at that time. He had already removed his shirt to combat the heat inside the house and if the lungi hadn’t been fastened to his hip, we would have witnessed a complete striptease and none among us were a supporter for removal of article 377 of the Indian Constitution.
We got the bed ready with sheets spread and went to bed as it was almost 12.00 am .Appa and Ajay had a very long day shopping and were asleep immediately. Both Narayanan and myself tried not to entertain the thought of ghosts and spirits roaming around at that time but the thought was trying to glue on to our minds and slightly disturb us. The dogs on the road started howling and every time it howled, the bed sheet was tucked in tighter and tighter covering each one’s head. The howl was accompanied by a RRRRRRRRRR………… sound like that of a tractor but the movement of the vehicle on the road was not felt. An uneasy feeling was getting hold of us and weren’t in a position to sleep. I just put my hand on my father and it was surprising that the RRRRRRRRRR……………… sound was gone. That’s when I could understand that it was not a tractor but it was my father who was snoring. The snoring stopped temporarily and the clever use this time to doze off to sleep but we weren’t of that kind. Finally, Narayanan and myself decide that we have to go through with this the whole night. Other two weren’t a bit bothered about our plight as they were sleeping tight.
I slowly dropped the bed sheet covering my eye to look whether anyone was around. I was surprised to look at a shadow moving every time I spoke to Narayanan. We both were not cowards but were a lot short of bravery. We took 2 pipes which were lying near us and went in 2 directions to look at the moving shadow. We converged to a point where we could see each other on either side of the door with none in between but there were 3 shadows. The Owner of the 3rd shadow was missing and the uneasy feeling started dredging my stomach. Was it a spirit which was roaming around our house or was it anything else. Nothing could stop our lips from praying and sanity returned only when we could surmise that it was the tree in the next house which was the owner of the 3rd blackie on the floor.
Finally, everything uneasy was buried and we were getting ready to go to sleep. Someone was getting irritated as due importance was not given to her after we came to the terrace. The queen summoned a few battalions to patrol the ear area with a buzz and attack the idle parts of the body. The trouble we both faced was ridiculous and we battled the mosquitoes with all our might to find a peaceful sleep (Narayana Indha kosu thollai thaanga mudiyala da).
Every obstacle to sleep was external and nothing internal had disturbed us till then. Anyways the call of nature was something which could have been avoided if Narayanan had not drunk a litre of water before coming up. Anyways the fear of going down alone and the policy of not using the neem tree by the side as an open toilet (as most Indian men do during emergency) forced him to control everything till my mom came up with a good news at 2.00 am that power has come and we could come down.
Appa and Ajay were sleeping and we preferred moving into the house leaving them back on the terrace. It was the end of an horrifying experience at the Open air bedroom. The feel of a sound sleep in an Air conditioned room with no unnecessary shadows and a powerful mosquito repellant aroused a great sense of excitement but Narayanan was in great tension and could feel the same way like me only when he attended the nature’s call.
We got our beds ready in front of the Air conditioner, adjusted the vent towards us and when we finally closed our eyes to experience something which we have been yearning for the past 4 hours, we heard a loud thunder-like sound and we ran to the balcony to have a look at what it was. Once we saw the event, both Narayanan and myself looked at each other as if we had lost everything in life. We were completely dejected and shattered. We forced ourselves down on the chairs in the balcony till the next morning when appa came down from the terrace after a lovely sleep and asked us “ Enna Pasangala Seekiram Endhiritchuteenga pola irukku? (Hey kids, why did u wake up so early)? And a chorus answer came out from both of us “Transformer Burst and power cut”.

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum
Maya

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Open Air Bedroom (Part 1/2)

We were eating when those candles were around

We were eating when those candles were around

Chennai has been treated with a lot of power cuts due to load shedding and I believe it wholly because I definitely don’t doubt that the Indian politicians have used those units for their campaign (yen naa namma oru arasiyalvaadhinga romba nallavanga). So, the only consolation for the power cuts is the inverter which helps in enjoying at least the hot air from the fan which would have been denied if it had not been installed. I was a part of the denied group as inverter was not a part of the agenda after the pay commission was announced. The exclusion was solely due to the reason that the summer had passed its prime then, and power cuts may not feature as frequent as before. Most of them failed to understand that Chennai had 3 seasons namely hot, hotter and hottest compared to the 2 in other parts of the country.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

8.30 pm

It was one of the finest days at Chennai during that summer as there was no power cut the whole day and the people who were right in claiming, the purchase of inverter was not right, did not stay right for long.

It was completely unusual to have a power cut during the night and everyone in the house was fuming which was completely a common consequence of every household. The first thing the electricity board does before repairing the fault would be to keep the receiver of the phone away so that they could save themselves from the fuming public. This move might not only save them from some rotten words but even the ancestors of the employees as people admonish even those poor souls who are resting in peace. Reaching Pepsi Uma from Pepsi Ungal Choice in Sun TV (a live music programme) was also done with considerable ease as compared to the phone lines of the Electricity board. Anyways I tried to reach them with all hope and I could hear something which none in Chennai had ever heard or even heard from somebody about such news. It was definitely a treat to listen and was really enthralling. It definitely brought in more joy and happiness than Ilayaraja’s melody or a Rahmanian Harmony. I felt I was one among the chosen ones of god to get such an experience. cloud nine was not too far when I could hear the phone ring and it was ringing for a minute and nobody picked my call. I could console myself saying that I was fortunate enough to listen to the phone ring.

The house was dark and the search for emergency lamps was on. I never knew such small lamps could command such a lot of importance. The astonishing fact is that none of the lamps lived up to the importance given as one had no battery whereas other had low battery and finally the last one had everything right but there wasn’t a place for good tubes. We were forced to adjust with the lamp which promised light for some time before it started flickering and the effect was no short of a discotheque, if we had been presented with a fast beat and a scantily dressed girl (dressla fashion irukkura ponnu illa ration irukkura ponnu) to rap around. It was past dinner time and the wait for power was finally over and a candle light dinner with more number of people than the number of items on the plate was really enjoyable (the company was enjoyable not the food). Antakshari has been the game introduced to spend a quality time during power cuts and we weren’t indifferent to the game even in the slightest manner. We  enjoyed playing the game and had passed 2 hours singing like nightingales. Our voice was too loud that even neighbours expressed their interest to join the game along with us and one or two songs were also contributed by them.

Power supply was a treasure to us as it could dispossess many people of their routines .The inquisitiveness to find out about the possibility of power supply forced my brother and myself to go all the way to the office and find out the time that our house could be brightened. To our surprise, there was a person stationed at the entrance for customer grievances and he informed us that we would get the supply in 30 minutes. We came out of the office happily and our happiness was snapped when we found out that the officer in charge has been saying 30 minutes for the past 2 hours. He was misleading people by his consistent attitude (Inniki oru petchu naalaikki oru petchu kadayadhu, eppodhume ore petchu than).

We understood that we would not receive the power supply that night and I was happy not because I enjoyed dripping myself wet all through but I could prove my point on inverters. Most of them felt what I said was right and spoke as if that was an extraordinary situation and such things could not be provided for. They proved providing for uncertainties were just a part of accounting and not a part of daily life.

It was almost 11pm in the night most of them in the house were moving around like sleeping zombies. Sleep wasn’t distancing itself from us like the power supply and the place of sleep was a million dollar question. One of my cousins who had come from Bangalore to spend the kaanja summer of Chennai suggested that we could go to the terrace and sleep. Only a handful in the world hated to sleep and none of us were a part of such a group. Everyone acknowledged unanimously and were really quick in packing their beds and moving up, to lie in the lap of nature.

Thoongardhu eppidi……… Idhuvum kashtam thaan.

(To be continued……)

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum
Maya

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A Shop – 30 meters away

I was no diffrent than the one in the picture

I was no different than the one in the picture

Saturday, May 16, 2009

12.30 pm

It was a pleasant afternoon and the mercury was soaring close to 40. Celsius and I was enjoying the weather in the hottest room of my house. I had no choice of rooms as the computer which I am addicted to, was placed in that room. The electricity bills and the heat in the city were directly correlated and in the attempt to reduce the power bills, it was decided not to use air conditioners during the day.

As I was trying to gun down the targets in the game I was playing on my computer, I heard a sound from nowhere like Maya. I pushed out the chair and hurried to look out from where the mysterious voice was reaching out to me and the search for it raised goose bumps as if I were on an Adventure Island. Finally, I could trace the direction and it came surprisingly from the kitchen where my mom stood calling me to go to the shop to purchase groceries for making nice hot Bajjis.

12.32 pm

Mission – Senthil Stores

I set my foot out of my house intending to go to the shop. I climbed down the stairs and reached the gate to see my mother in the first floor signaling me to bring the letters from the post box. She was not comfortable in me getting the letters, on my return from the shop as she was a bit too practical and inquisitive to read the credit card bills. The dry tee-shirt gets watered for the first time. Thanks to my mom.

12.33 pm

As I went down to the streets again, the heat was terrible to the extent that I could feel the rays passing through me and the roads were like molten iron with the tar easing. I wasn’t the only one feeling the heat that day, the dogs on the road also felt the same way. Some of them were lying under the cars, some under the trees and the king of all lying under the corporation tap, which sends down a drop of water coolant every half a minute. These dogs don’t even care for my presence as they just lift their brows to push down the beads of sweat and just give me a glance as if I were too less for them.

The shades on the road were prohibited for men as these dogs welcome all into the shade with growl and I was not treated any differently when I tried to encroach on the shade which was owned by the Fidel army of dogs. The fidelity they have for their owners was missing and they played their part in irritating me. Stones were good enough tools to drive them but I preferred moving on instead of pelting those poor ones which have no alternatives.

12.34 pm

After the struggle out of the maze of dogs, I ended up meeting a person who I dreaded to meet.  This person was always a part of my nightmare and I had never wanted to fall in his sight as a conversation with him for a sparing 2 minutes would let u bleed. Even a deaf person would prefer going away from him as he has the ability to blow even his already damaged drums, so just think about my plight. He came along with me till the shop talking about everyone in every family he knows for more than 3 minutes. He played his role to the best possible extent in adding insult to injury.

It was really tough going past the road guarded with dogs and such irritating men to finally reach the shop.

12.37 pm

As I started giving the shopkeeper the list of items, he tempted me to have a chocolate bar while he picked up the items. He did it with a business motive but it was definitely the most encouraging factor in going to the shop. I love chocolates and I did relish it to the fullest extent. I had forgotten all unpleasantness while having the bar but those unpleasant sticky and a burning sensation started erupting as the bar was falling shorter.

12.39 pm

I finished my purchase and got back home struggling the same way with the dogs but I managed to escape from the irritating man. When I got back home and sat down, I could feel myself watered like a garden. The walk to the shop which was just 30 meters away had caused such an irritation and the excitement to have lovely Bajjis was lost.

12.40 pm

I couldn’t stop myself from switching on the AC and finally sat down to continue the game which I had paused 10 minutes back. I could hear footsteps approaching me and found it to be my dad. He made me comfortable, put his hands on my shoulders, dust my tee-shirt, empathized with me saying that the heat was too bad outside and finally told me softly “Can u get me 2 packets of cigarettes from the shop?”

Idhuvum Kadandhupogum
Maya

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