Monday, January 24, 2011

Can we have some answers please?

It's a Saturday morning, a lovely Saturday morning at that. The sun is just right, the kind that's mild, not depressing-mild, but just-bright-enough-to-brighten-your-day mild. Yes, that's the kind of sun, we are talking about here. A day when your neighbor's 7 month old decides to let you have peace. Yet chooses to break the eeriness with her periodic giggles and attempted-chatter. Sweet. A day when the newspapers have features by your favorite writers. Favorites of Radia or not. And a day when Assam and Darjeeling forget their ego battles, and unite for the greater cause, of pleasing you that is. To give you that perfect cuppa. Yes, it's that kind of a day.

You get yourself out of bed, and get in to the treadmill. You run a mile. In eight minutes. You could run another. Right now. But you decide to shower. To get ready and seize the day. The bathroom looks goodhousekeeping-clean. You believe in angels. You get out of the shower, go to your closet. You can't decide what to wear. You like everything you see. Thanks to the ongoing SALE. You have quite a loot in here. But on a day like today, nostalgia is what the heart seeks. You reach out to the jeans you wore in college. And guess what? It fits. Beautifully. There's God. You step out of your home to walk into that quaint neighborhood bistro, where you and your friends are to meet for the weekend brunch. You reach the place, your friends are already waiting for you. You are looking as fresh as a daisy they say. So does the chef as he walks in to announce brunch is on the house. Why? Because you look so pretty. Could you ask for a more charming reason? The menu has been revised he says. It includes all that you love. He vanishes in to the open kitchen. You see him get to work. You see oranges being squeezed. You hear the sausages sizzle and smell the freshly baked croissants. The chef returns shortly. The table is laid. The spread is delightful. The chef comes to you and asks you to leave. Leave right now he says. You and your friends pick your belongings and prepare to leave. And as you close the glass door behind you, you watch the chef sit in your table, pounce on the food ravenously.

Yeah, and that's the feeling I was left with after watching Dhobi Ghat. Lovely. But not quite. Crafty. But very unfinished. Awesome. But abrupt.
Mrs. Aamir Khan, around here, we love nice stories. Nice stories with endings. It could be a happy ending or a sad one. You decide that. But not a random one please.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Commute Chronicles Part Deux – The Conversations

In my earlier post I had revealed my choice of vehicle, yeah the humble black and yellow autorickshaw, driven by the not so humble [mostly] auto driver. And I had also mentioned that I travel in autos of the second kind. The non-sharing ones. And when you travel 5 days a week, spending at least 120 minutes a day on the road, conversations are bound to happen. Conversations between me and the aforementioned auto driver(s).

I am not the chatty kind, wait, no I actually am the chatty kind; just not with strangers who try to fleece me [ oh yeah :-| you could say I am a tad cynical]. So more often than not, it's the driver who decides on the topic. Topics vary from – local politics, national politics, ugly politicians, the few good ones, inflation, 2012 and the end of the world, the new generation, the world a whole, the life in general, to that odd bitter-passenger-experience story [my least favorite].

If I were to separate those conversations, they would be something like this – hmm true; wow-I-didn't-know-that; scary; yawn-yawn-why-doesn't-he-shut-up; never-talk-to-an-auto guy; and finally the awww kinds, which leave me with thoughts like, maybe just maybe I shouldn't haggle after all].

Last week, I had a very meaningful conversation with this guy, on a current topic, the state split issue, and what the opposition's next move should be. He also spoke about how inflation will cost the ruling party at the center dear and how onions are going to make them cry [:D oh yeah he could write some badass ad lines alright!]

This morning, the elderly auto man, suggested that we [as in you and I and our friends] can make a difference, we can reduce corruption, and what we need to do is, to be more actively involved with the media. Hmm... wise words siree. Point taken.

And then there are the ones, that leave me bitter and make me want to jump out of the auto, out of the flyover and wish for a spiderman rescue. Hyper-boles. Aren't they l-o-v-e-l-y? Okay so a few weeks back, I was on this busy flyover on my way back, and then suddenly the auto man slows down a little and says, “madam do you see this flyover?” to which I reply 'yes', he goes on “well madam, in the year 2012, this will be gone, it will be in ruins, so will you and all of us. The world will be destroyed.” and after ten seconds of eerie silence, he says “completely destroyed.”many thanks mister Nostradamus, now can you please take me home.

And as the evening nears, I hope, today as I hop into an auto and head home, the only conversation we have is, he asking me 'where to ? ' and I giving him my address.