What a binary date the 1st of October is!!
I had a wonderful trip to Bandipur with a great group of friends…but of course this post is not about that! On the cycling group I belong to, someone had said that someone on a cycle had yelled at him (while he was in a car) to stop wasting petrol, and added a rather delightful word to quality the statement. Someone added that many people use the car to go to the shop down the road. My response: “ I am not disputing that there ARE EAC (Evil Anti-Conservationists) of the type you have mentioned above…..I am just saying, you cannot assume that everyone is of the car-for-crossing-the-pavement category! Eg, I often take senior members of our apartment complex, or student of a blind school nearby, for medical checkups and so on. They need to be taken by car, they are often frail and in bad health. At these times I will certainly not use the cycle, or ask them to do so. I may have a large amount of shopping to do, which I may not be able to do on the cycle. I will definitely use the car at such times. “Actually the increasing jams are having a good effect on our worthy citizens. I find so many people now saying, “We take the bus because driving and parking are such a hassle”….so every cloud does have a silver lining! “A great source of entertainment for me is…. let me give you one scenario. The lady of the household said they had gone to attend a wedding. “The traffic was so bad!” she exclaimed. “First my husband went to the reception in his car, he had to park so far away. Then I went with my driver in my car, and he had to circle around four times after dropping me. Then my son also brought his car and he didn’t find parking at all!”…. They never see that they ARE part of the problem. I was once advised, when I wanted to walk about 3 km to Marina Beach in Chennai, “The traffic is terrible…you will be unsafe..take the car.” The person saying it had no clue of the irony in his words….he was genuinely concerned for my well-being.” When people realize that when they are complaining about the traffic, they can try and do something about it at least on a few occasions, our snarls may start improving!
I’m much entertained and educated at the various kolus that I visit. Little vignettes of life that I see in each drawing room seem as intriguing to me as the dolls decorated and arranged before us.
I sing…. I sing for all the worlds that I see Spread before me In weird sizes, small and large Plastic grass, papier maiche mountains, Men, women and children of wood and mud. I sing for the idols Of gods and goddesses…. I sing for the gods and goddesses themselves, Not just their figurines. I enunciate the Sanskrit words That describe their attributes…. …A funny thing happens. My eyes close, and I lose myself. Am I amongst the dolls in front of me? Am I at the feet of the god whom I praise? I do not know where I am…. I do know….I am in the music. In the notes, the voice, The melody that escapes from my lips. It is my soul, emanating with my breath. I am deep within myself, and everywhere outside me, too. I suddenly see the perfect, ineffable beauty That the composer of the song saw. I yearn for it…. But the song comes to a close. I open my eyes, the spell reluctantly broken. I see admiring looks, faces filled with friendliness, Happy at my singing, compliments flow from those around me. I’m glad I’ve given others this pleasure.. But it is I who have experienced the most joy. I sing….not for the world; I sing for myself. And that’s why the world likes my singing.
I decided to visit my friends Ganu and Hema, and their daughter, Janani, who’s recently come home for good, after having done her Masters’ degree at Pittsburgh. They always put up a lovely display for Navarathri: