Two Days of Winter : Day 1 #the monkey God

A long walk up the hill…💕

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With laboured breaths, I dragged myself on this never ending slope, secretly working on the probability of reaching the peak on my own legs. They said if you mumbled Hanuman’s hymns, the ascent became smooth. But stubborn as I was, I chose to do it without any supernatural help. Plus, I believed Hanuman has better jobs to do than push people’s ass up the hill. I mean I could picture him having his brunch, sweet red berries on his plates, and suddenly the doorbell rings and millions of SOS calls trying to get through. If I were God, I’d probably resign soon and get myself a nice planet where I could fix my chair with supernatural cement and watch torrential rains over dense forests.

This junior behind me swore he could feel a heart attack creeping up his chest. I told him it was just gas and asked him to keep moving.

“I’d collapse. I had an operation a few months ago. “He pleaded. I chose not to believe him.

“Don’t lose heart, boy. Once you reach there, you’ll be reborn. ”

Let’s rewind to the moment we went to the temple, from where we watched the hills and the houses, planning honeymoons.

“If there were no condoms in this world and a couple lived in Shimla, at what rate do you think the population would escalate? “I quizzed.

Acting thoughtful….

“I just want to have a machine gun and shoot down those tiny people walking on the road. “Said the Military man, thus spoiling my erotic thought.

We took photos and then branched off into two groups, one behind healthy male teachers, the other behind diabetic female teachers. We went to Mall road, and Mr. Gabbar asked us to get over with the shopping quickly. We went in an elegant clothes store, where women with rosy cheeks sold swanky shawls.

“How much for this? “I picked one from the counter that had Pashmina written on a plate above. I could buy it for maa.

“Twenty Six thousand rupees only sir! “She said coolly, as if she were selling Kismi bars. The shawl dropped from my hand. People’s stare oscillated dramatically from my face to her face. I could hear Ekta Kapoor background music. Dhoom tana na na na….

“Ermmm…what’s the lowest price? ”

“Thirteen thousand for this one. “She showed me the dullest piece of clothing ever manufactured.

‘Does it come with superpowers? ‘I wanted to ask. But I just said hmm, and turned away, as if I was a ghost and nobody could see me. If I had twenty thousand rupees, I’d start a business in clothes rather than purchase a shawl.

We then moved on to the main street, and the guide told us that we could get to Jakhoo and watch the sunset. One of the teachers revolted against going on foot, so we left him and walked ahead. It was agoddamn race against time.

None of the girls came with us. They got a cab and Mr. Gabbar cited security reasons and sat with them while we the bravehearts walked on the slope, fighting gravity.

Saying that the walk was a backbreaking exercise would be a severe understatement. The muscles in my legs stiffened like cement. My heart pounded like those cheap DJ speakers they put on small scale marriages. I was gasping for breath. I was kind of convinced I’d not make it to the temple.

But I did it. I was the last guy to reach there. It baffled them. I mean I’m a fat guy, nobody expects me to climb mountains and stuffs. Mr Gabbar patted my back.
The girls were already there, without a hint of sweat on their brows, clicking selfies at the base of the sky-high statue of the monkey God. As we sat for a group selfie, one of the monkeys stole a girl’s specs. We had to give him a whole pack of roasted grams to get the soecs back. Monkeys are shrewd, I tell you.

Clicked on the way….

We had missed the sunset, but the last smear of red was still there. We clicked photos and left the temple. Since gravity was now working downwards, girls and Mr. Gabbar joined us this time. Somebody dropped the idea of a bonfire, so we started collecting dead branches with some vigour.

I’d never felt so excited before, I must tell you. I mean who dreams of picking twigs in a foreign land. We got the flashlights and searched in the bushes. It was scary but exhilarating.

As I left Jakhoo, I made a secret vow to some day, get here with my…..alright, maybe I am too desperate. But when you have a beautiful experience, you add it to your bucket list.

to be contd….

Snippet #1 fish fry

vegetarianism in human beings. Is it natural or man made?

Neighbours frying fishes is a recipe for disaster. In some of the small town high caste hindu families, you eat non-vegetarian food, but you still view this as an act of self-pollution. Some people abstain from meat or fish on particular days, because on those days, God himself inspects the earth through the telescope perched on his balcony. In some families, non-veg dishes are cooked outside the house.

So one of my neighbours – a hardcore non-vegetarian – was in the mood of a feast. He was frying fishes in the parking area, and the spicy aroma – of a fish wrapped in oil – invaded our house like a flank of Mongol cavalry.

“What’s this rot? Is someone dead? “Asked my mother.

“Cooking fishes. “My father, fixing the electric wire, pointed at their parking. My mother gave a sign of disgust one reserves for a hypothetical carcass. It was a delicious smell, let me make it clear.

“Goddam these people! “She said, loud enough to be recognised by aliens floating in the neighbouring galaxies. They did not react, just kept on flipping the fishes in the pan.

A few years ago, our neighbour had around 80 goats slaughtered for an exotic chevon dish for his daughter’s reception. My mother didn’t go out for half a dozen days.

For the past two days, I have been feeding a cow and her calf bread loaves. It’s a noble job, plus cows are kind souls. They just stop at the gate and wait for me. If they spot me, they stare with those big expectant eyes. You know you just melt in these situations.

Having said that, I don’t participate in lynching beef eaters. I think you can eat animals. If you read human history, vegetarianism in the form of crop-consumption has a tiny existence of 7000 years ( less than 5% of entire homo sapien sapien history ). The first tools were developed so that we could hunt and tear animals for consumption. So I’d never consider vegetarianism to be inherent to human nature.

Humans have eaten terrible things. In that list, cows would be probably floating at the bottom.

Anyway, the fish smelled like heaven. I might give it a try in the near future.

Weird Dreams

thoughts with eyes closed, thoughts with eyes open….

I had a weird dream last night. My granny turned out to be a psychopath and she murdered somebody with a chef’s knife. So all of us went to Saryu – 1279 kms away – to dispose of the body. Don’t ask me why, because that’s the least of my concerns. Sometimes, I wonder if my parents have double lives. Like, my father is a quiet, homely guy but someday I might just discover his face on a vintage adult movie poster. My vagan mother could be working for some secret cult, slaughtering infants in ritual sacrifices. That would be really weird.

The other day, I was watching Michio Kaku’s show where he was talking about alternate realities and Schrödinger’s cat. Schrödinger once locked a cat in a box, and through a nozzle, let a poisonous gas inside it. After some time, he wondered if the cat was really dead. He was damn sure it was dead, but he did not really know. So he concluded that until he opens the box, the cat is both dead and alive. The moment he opens the box, all other alternate realities would collapse and he would be left with just one of them. That hints that it is possible for alternate realities to exist. Maybe there’s a parallel universe where I am something else.

I would like to be in a universe where I am just the atmosphere, nothing else. That little blanket of air all around the world. If you ever manage to make it speak, you would discover the greatest artist of all time. It has heard and seen all our stories. It has seen us grow and die, it has seen civilizations bloom and decay, it has seen species spread and vanish. I want to be that thing. That would be some hyper level voyeurism. No I am not dirty, I am just creative. I believe that the more imaginative one gets, the more sinister one becomes.

Rain and Photography

few pictures and few stories…

The much-awaited Monsoon finally reached my city. As I woke up to a cold morning, the earth smelled like rain. The rhythmic beats of the drops, the icy breeze that blew the curtains halfway, and the absence of a blaring sun – it was so dreamlike.

I got my phone and clicked random photos. Though they are not of high artistic value, they do look good.

The rawness…

The shacks serve as lodging for students. These late-teens come from the aphotic zones of the country, where life unfolds slow and harsh, in search of this glimmering city, which is an aphotic zone for us. My sunlight is Delhi, which is dark and dingy for the people who’ve flown away to a brighter place. Light, I think, is a subjective reality.

The companions of my parents…

The parking lot of my little bungalow. Standing elegantly on its exquisite brickwork flooring is Dhanno – my mother’s scooty – who receives more love than all other members of the house combined together. Dhanno has been with us for years now, and has an equal say in every decision of the house. She’s covered in a lavish shawl with fine threadwork, and her butts are wrapped in transparent plastic, which, I assume, is the latest fashion in the bike world. In the background, that dying thing is my father’s bicycle, which is older than me (3 years). It does not have a name. It still works, though if you add the repairing costs over the years, you would understand why we could never buy a Pajero Sport.

Glide…glide….glide…and fall…

The coconut fronds lashing in the air. The dense trees jiggle in the wind and the sheets fall on the sheet, and the nature’s instruments play in sync, and my heart sings and sings and sings.

The baked earth over the unbaked one…

The insides of my under-construction house. Yeah, we are building a new home. A better one which can accommodate more of my mother’s dreams. But I like it this way – unfinished and raw. That’s more like me.

A half-baked story….

My proposed study. Right now, the workers have occupied this place, so all the stuff you see here belongs to them. The rack with the water camphor is actually for keeping our suits when we get rich. With this level of planning, my mother could run finance ministries of two countries and still have enough time to watch the Maha episode of Ye Hai Mohabbatein.

Down the memory lane….

My old house staring at me. No my love, I haven’t forgotten you, for love is not so simple, and I am not that heartless.