Posts Tagged ‘Memories’

Monsoon memoirs!

July 19, 2013

Yes, it’s messy, muddy and often plays spoilsport but there’s another side to the season. A side that we reminisce on; the romance of the rains that brings out the philosopher in each one of us. This evening, as it pours, we will etch you a fantastic tapestry of the Indian monsoon, woven with threads of nostalgia. So you can enjoy the weather and culinary experience it brings to us with the onset of the season, sitting a thousand miles away!

You wake up at 7. Snooze the alarm and fall asleep again. Everything else in the world falls back before your comfort and the love of your comforter. You want to sleep like a baby while the rains sing a lullaby for you. For us, Indians, monsoon means comfort, fun, colors and happiness. Walk out on any typical rainy day and the streets are a riot of colors. Somewhere within, it instills hope. Why else would someone buy an umbrella with the color of a rainbow if not to battle a grey day!

As you walk through the same lane, fulfilling your responsibilities- the usual of an everyday mendicant- you pass through a familiar smell. Smell that spells rain. Fried food from the ubiquitous vendors that seem to pop up in every office lane. Mouthwatering. Ignoring it as you walk pass, in a very old wall maybe, you look carefully and see moss. You awaken the child within and run your hand along for that velvety feel. Smiling in the rains for no reason is absolutely justified.

While at work you keep looking at that big window and feast your eyes on the torrential downpour, a sudden splash drench you as you step out after a busy day. Quite surprisingly it brings a smile across your face. You hail a tuktuk and sit in it refreshed. The driver draws the plastic curtains in order to save you but you push it away instead- loving the feeling of the cool wind full of water droplets. Maybe stop somewhere for a bowl of hot soup!

You reach home and take little pleasures in all the rain related culinary delights, pull a shawl over you and read a book and fall asleep with the heavenly lullaby. Thank God for the rains.

New Year’s Celebrations

December 31, 2012

When I was a young child of about seven-eight years; New Year’s Eve was a concept I did not quite understand. I could not see what all the fuss was about in celebrating the end of a year, and the beginning of a new one. But the fact that I did not understand it in no way lessened the amount of fun I had. My father worked for the Indian army thus, I religiously accompanied my parents to the Army Club in whichever posting my father held at the time. And there was lots of food, unlimited beverages, dancing, and fireworks.

In my teens, I began to understand the concept a bit better. And my definition of a fun new year’s eve also changed, evolved. I would still be at the Army Club, but this time, having fun without my parents’ strict supervision. You see, the opposite sex had got involved in my life by now! As a young, spirited teen, new year’s eve became about the prospect of a magical romance, a flirtation, a fling with one of many sweet girls at these new year’s eve parties.

Time went on and in my college years I moved to Mumbai to study. New year’s eve was now about wild parties with lots of music, drinking, and merry making; all in the company of a girlfriend-at-the-time. It was awesome fun. Our big gang would seek out the cheapest (preferably free) parties and dance the night away, without a care in the world. Ah! Those carefree college days, never to return, but always so much fun!

Then the biggest shift, literally and figuratively, of my life. I moved to the UK, and have been living and working here ever since. And though by my own confession and voluntary doing, I am now a happily in love, married, settled family man with children; New Year’s eve each year brings back all those memories from home in India. Be it Chandigarh, Patiala, Fort William in Kolkata, or the Ghetto, as my vintage people in Bombay would remember – each phase was delightful and memorable.

When I accompany my wife and kids today to a New year’s eve party in Wimbledon all my memories come rushing back. I feel pride, nostalgia, everything combined. And this year will be no different. Only I have matured in age & experience and my enjoyment has changed, as I chaperon my own kids as my parents did with me once!

 


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