Thursday, September 2, 2010

The young and the restless



The youth. An introduction here is needed. What age group are they from? Are they Literate/ Non-literate? Are they students or young RSS leaders? Do they smoke, don’t they? It’s has been this ‘youths' responsibility to bring change and taste the feel of change since we fought our struggle to be one. What confuses these young sleuths is the understanding of nature and the environment we built around it. Why is the young called, “The young and the restless”, because, they are meant to be young and restless. What makes us infer that they will hold a huge responsibility of bringing change is beyond a lot of us.

This is an introduction that needs deeper justice to its determinants. How democratic, liberal, Left-ist will a teenager be? The figurative implications to these terms may stir some eyeballs but how well do the young understand their application? With minds so frivolous and agile to different things, it's highly unlikely to have a majority who think of bringing social reform in the country. But, yes, there maybe youth organizations going beyond politics. Environment is a very broadly touched topic that stirs the soul of the youth. Social media is full with how much they care, and how child trafficking is bad and joining groups that says, “If 10,000 people join this group, Facebook will remove the group called ‘F**k India’”. What does this imply though? Are we sitting at home and joining groups to not look heartless and let the rest take care of it?

Facebook for that matter is now the youth. It represents them. FB as it is very dearly called has groups for all their moods, likes, dislikes. Every possible gibber, insults, praises, profanity, (s)explicity, love problems, farm game problems is accepted here. Their lives revolve around FB where they make decisions, break-up relationships or get tagged. Although, social media psychology says, that it helps teenagers get talking. They are more open on the internet and that is how our youth will have a voice of its own.

A voice of its own? Are we playing “Let’s see where this goes”? Although some of us are planting trees, writing prolifically, holding discussions over tea stalls, carrying environment campaigns, some of us are also sitting back and wondering what lecture to bunk next morning. It’s a matter of choice to withhold responsibility entitled to the youth, or just maintain mankind. Why, we can’t all be rocket scientists now, can we?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Waiting for the waterfall

A little less time to live,
A little less hour to kill
the sweet victory of the dead,
No flower power, No gentle love
Austerity that pours down streams of rivers
With no direction or commonplace
only an ire to the alive
Flooding in the woods with moths and butterflies
Never given a chance to mend ways
Rafting with the troubled souls
and rock with boats of luck
bringing a new window for love
a new age to wait for a waterfall
that flows with the righteous and the diplomats

Clear steel opacity of gleam
to nurture the life of the very kind
awakening the lifeless for every dime
it isn't the shine of the diamond,
nor a glint of the pearl
There is only darkness for now
that boasts its prevalence in all
So what do we do?
Wait for a lake?
Or be happy in ponds,
Dive in rivers?
Or keep waiting for the waterfall?

This is what we have come to and the world knows it.

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It isn't something you see everyday. These kind of movies. Not midst main-ban-gayi-teri-zandu-baam songs or hello darling or for that matter teaching-blind-girls-fight-type movies. Peepli live is an excellent composition of brilliant cinematography, story, depth, music and its claim, satire. What I fail to understand is why is there a need to burn effigies of people who produce/make/distribute films that questions the society? Why do we become so emotional about issues that are meant to serve a different, meaningful purpose? The depth of what revolves in the movie is lost with the surrounding politics attached to it.

Peepli live highlights the stage artists Omkar Das Manikpuri and Raghubir Yadav, new wave Indian cinema with a commercial producer like Aamir Khan bringing social reform with his movies and a first time director Anusha Rizvi and a brilliant actor Malaika Shenoy playing a broadcast journalist in the film. The movie sets the sad reality of the nations farmer suicides to light and gets our mind thinking to what could be next?
Natha played by Omkar is a farmer who is going to commit suicide in order to receive compensation of a lakh to his family which would help them in dire times. The film picks up speed with the characters shaping up brilliantly, along with their ability, proficiency to act and their understanding of the script that convinces the audience. You could either despise them, like them or feel sorry for them.

Movies like Peepli live, sometimes get undeserved defamation with unions and communities getting offended by a sentence, clip, name in the movie that supports no ground rule of morality being disturbed. Are we that worried about who is turning in their graves, who is finding this personal? Or are we afraid of a false reality coming and biting us in the ass? Mailaka's persistent and annoying character of a broadcast journalist in the movie raises a few eyebrows of how the media has fallen down and what according to people journalists have become. My very worried mother asked me again, "Is this what you people do?"
And what do I answer emphatically? "Argh, I'm in print mom!"
But that's not the answer to that question is it? What are we doing today? Running around stories, stretching them till they bleed and die? We, as journalists, don't remind ourselves of what we do to the world. We write, we telecast and more than half the nation reads or sees it. Is it fair on our part to mislead them?

Journalism has reach its peak of reform. What we see and do is so evident that it changes people's perception. The reason why such a movie should be applauded is because it makes us understand the real message. So why not screen these movies? Maybe the fact that the movie ridicules the media and politicians isn't enough to make us understand the wake of it. The fact that Natha moves to commercialization means nothing to us, apparently.
The Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti members opposed the screening of the movie and showed disgust towards Aamir Khan to produce a movie which apparently "ridicules" the farmer suicides. When I met Mohan Jhadav, the secretary of the Samiti prior to the release of the movie he seemed sympathetic towards the people dying everyday but seemed at a loss for a cause that roasted and involved media somewhere to the issue. And now that the movie has released, a large effigy of Aamir Khan was burnt by his colleagues and him with a group of widowed women.

The question remains, Why?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I somehow cannot write about trips.

I somehow cannot write about trips. I cannot talk of how beautiful, irritating; mind numbingly stupid, awesome and jarringly annoying things can get in one short capsule of colors. Though, I am going to try. Staying in Nagpur, thanks to Aparna was extremely awesome. I bow down to her family’s hospitality and Prassana Aunty’s impeccable adrak chai when I was sick and Uncle’s last minute help. This trip would have been very pathetic if not for Aparna.

This was my first trip with the new people. And I was very sure, that there were things that might be awesome, things that might want to throw my arm around at people. But ‘sexy hair’ made things fun and Keralite accents made our way through the project. It was interesting, this, how the project became a field trip, a picnic somewhere. But then, we woke up early and did things right after hours of sleeping aimlessly. We searched on foot for the whereabouts of Non-vegetarian Hotels (traveling in Nagpur is a bitch), ironically ending up eating good chicken in Yavatmal in a hotel called “Hot n Spicy”. With four hour bus rides and Rs 150 in rickshaws for 8 kms, I think me and sexy hair have traveled Nagpur in all sorts of rickshaws. I even made a rickshaw driver friend, who drove us around in cheap rates to promising malls.

We traveled with cameras, with aimlessness, with important meetings that turned into much of fun, hunger and the presence of too many female scooty drivers. Believe you me; it’s like a marathon line during signal stops. Women with scarves waiting for it to turn green and they would speed away leaving us in awe.
The reason why we visited Nagpur was Vidharbah. Distress, suicides, politics, activists, journalists. It was somewhere enlightening to meet people with extreme feelings. Vivek Deshpande (Indian Express) turned out to be the last petal amongst others plucked out of a flower. The decision maker of the issue, who gave us insight and a sense of pure journalism, was the last petal. Strawberry milk wasn’t bad, no, but we needed a little more than that. Yavatmal gave me a sense of falsehood, ignorance, dying society and thoughts of staining white collars. Though the fields are still beautiful, the children still innocent and the wives still widowed.

But, what absorbed immense attention was blooming love, indiscreet dependency, terrible cold and diarrhea for a few, joy of laughing at Indian toilets, Mafia!, mosquitoes, sensuously sung Hindi songs, rickshaws, train woes, homesickness and annoying dog questions. It was indeed something that can be in retrospect, laughed about. Igatpuri Vada pav is awesome, by the way, and skinny legs help while sharing a sleeper birth with me. Randomness and thoughts go hand in hand, the mentioning of such things is in a way important because it's a reminder for all the times that would happen ever, next.
I clink my waterglass for a joy ride of trouble and awesomeness.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

It's a round brown world.

A flash of pour 
amuses her attention to the door
dictating a life of stories..
in the flow of  temporary rains,
everything follows the drains
Nothing left to bury
Only left with
Small windows and faith
leaves falling in death
bringing new life, more depth
to eyelashes and curls
fancying all that swirls
Its a round brown world
with moving perceptions in a herd.


Sunday, June 20, 2010

To gouge or not to?


        It’s more like a horror story, this. Except horror stories don’t make you laugh. Really. People laugh at funerals, I laugh when I’m buried alive. I do not know how long it has been since my burial. I don’t have sense of time here you see. But it’s been quite some time, for sure. I’ve been quite patient as of now. But now, I’m losing interest in this hideous joke of burying people alive. I mean come on, a man’s gotta breathe! This started off as a practical joke I’m guessing. I was asked to turn around and stand with my hands on my sides. I was blindfolded immediately and thrown into something with walls. Teenagers can be very convincing you know. I’m the new kid, so I had to do it. Not so much of a kid. I’m doing my grad late. Wait that is not the important part, this is. This burial thing. So yeah, mathematically and physically I have 7 more minutes to breathe till I run out of oxygen. 

    I suppose being new is very traumatic to a lot of people. I do not hyperventilate much on my first days because I’m a foster child, so I was used to this ragging and bullying. My friends say I’m very submissive. I give credit to their perception through imagination. Who says physicality is important? They don’t. So I did was I was asked to do. Being fascist is one thing, but submission is just a mere form of conformity. They said I had two options. I hope I chose the easier one. My bed has a four poster wall above it that says, “Be optimistic, and be alive”. I am now in a good home of a young woman with jurisdiction problems. Her charges will be dropped if she showed community service of taking care of another human being. I think she’s doing a very good job at that. Very efficient in love making and cooking, or so I’ve heard.

She once said to me,
“Poinson, I’d better not see you sneaking in the kitchen, the food is for the special guests, for special actions.” ( I omit a few unnecessary words she said to make her point ) I said,
“Yes, ma’am, whatever suits your pleasure.”
She had been very furious with me since. I do not know what I’d said wrong. It was just a passing comment. Things you say to end conversations. “Yes, ma’am”. “Whatever you say man”. There’s no room for contradiction or argument when someone asks you to do something. She says I’m the son of evil. I cannot be brazenly honest, it still affects my integrity. How, I fail to understand. I’m laughing at my own burial. You call that dishonest? I don’t think so. But who am I to contradict? Being evil is far too overrated I feel though.
I managed to move a little, but things seem immobile around here. Very suffocating for a large person like me. They’ll come get me, I’m sure they aren’t “evil”. I still haven’t managed to use quotations in the right places! I smell a lot of dirt, manure I think. Very thankfully I wasn’t dumped bare. 2 minutes. They should really come get me now. I have yoga class starting in 7 minutes. And it takes me five minutes to run to it every day. I think I’ll count sheep backwards. One sheep per second. That makes it 120 sheep in two minutes. I lost 30 sheep writing this down in my head. 
1..2…4…7…9…15..22…25….39…44…50……..88..89…..9- *sigh*

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Yes, it was all about the dogs.


Maybe if I stood near Sri Sri Ravi Shankar for too long with a bat in my hand, I would be accused of murder.
At the dusk of May 30th 2010, an unidentified man tried to shoot Sri Sri Ravi Shankar after five minutes of his departure from the satsang in a car. So who was hit by the bullet? Vinay someone.
After all the speculation, no newspaper wants to sympathize with the man who actually got hit in this incident. No one knows who he is, what is his last name. Whether he invited trouble? Or whether there are gunmen who practice shooting out in the open spaces of his ashram?
You never know…but, then we do know. The attack did not directly make Sri Sri Ravi Shankar the victim of the attack in the matter of logical time and space.
The roar that it created in the media, the devotees, believers, followers was a spectacle. Imagine what would have happened if Ramdev baba’s medicines were stolen.
The facts stated that the guru was attacked because it was written in his horoscope, because his driver had a vision, because he is public, because he is famous, because he is such a nice man. What happened to the guy who got hit? Minor injury, returned home to his family. We deviated from the “attack” and made Naxalites wanting to kill the guru, what could have been their motto? We don’t know, we just assumed.
P Chidambaram argued with the Art of living that the attack was because of an internal dispute between the devotees and that they called it upon themselves. Why Chidambaram has to have a say and publicly create a spectacle with no basis of solid proof is again, we don’t know why.
Why is it that we do know?
All the media channels telecasted what his devotees thought of, what other gurus thought of, what should be done to release hatred from our systems? Why Sri Sri Ravi Shankar? The guru even invited the attacker to his ashram for advice. That’s how open he is. See? Don’t you see it? He is such a good man.
The media did not bother to get the facts right, investigate of why there was an armed person roaming about at the dusk of the evening wanting to kill anybody.
Wait, we did find out. It was a bullet fired to scare away dogs! Yes, from a nearby farm house. It’s like dying in shame.
Why did it take a week for the shooter to say it was him? Why did it take so long for us to find out that Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was not fired at because his driver had a vision and that he was not situated in the 7th house astrologically to indicate, failure of attack?
We don’t know, maybe we don’t want to know.
What happened to Vinay something?
Sigh, again, we don’t know.
What I do know is, I got five to six calls in a matter of five days with persuasive talks of joining art of living to purify myself. Yes.
But do we know the truth? No.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Within the sound of silence.


        The drums grew louder in its beats, now befriending the guitar in a note that could now possibly enchant a dimly lit castle. The music allowed the mind to wonder and float in a cloud of figment imagination with characters and love and betrayal. Though trees bloom more often in thoughts and the eyes look more extraordinary, exquisitely beautiful in perfectly crafted sentiments, the violin stops everytime she turns and a strand of soft hair falls strategically covering her eyes.
      And then the music changes to sudden tension; the violinist is having a wonderful time with his agile hands lifting the music to fantastic level. He sheds a tear while he comes back to the situation. Something horrible was going to happen. Something that makes the music stop for a few seconds before the black woman tunes her pitch very high along with the drums. And everything happens in fast motion. Love is lost, friends deceive, mothers die, sisters cry at funerals, the bus hits you in the face, the bus hits the dog for its life, and you find yourself having a Popsicle on a lonely bench near a lonely riverside in a lonely world where you find no one but you.
      The saxophone drives its air into your lungs and you’re sitting by the table, having a glass of fine wine and the pianist winks at you with affection for having asked him to play his favorite song for once. So what if he is late? He will be here anytime.
Someone starts singing a cover of ‘the fix is in and the odds I got, were delicious’ and you wonder if the chandelier will drop in the tension of the song. He arrives and the chandelier drops in his wait, crushing its crystals into lovely sharp delicateness. There is silence, there is love happening. There are acoustic guitars with no strings attached. It plays with saxophones and pianos and horse carriages by the sea.

If the songs of the sea had anything to do with an orchestra, a bass drum...
If there were songs of strolling and a large cello waiting for its musician, the castle would now have a predator or a soul. It's form isn’t clear. 
The castle now resembles summer, with a sun and its rays. Trees growing in a veranda where once there laid moss clinging to the cold cemented floor. The top of the castle surrounded with delicate carvings of captivating and sultry figures. The top floor of the large hall now arranges itself into an opera balcony and you listen to the melody holding a book, ironically helping you understand its emotion. 
And you flow with the emotion meeting a song with thunderstorms and a rush of instruments you don’t recognize rings in your ears like a change of the altitude humming loudly with the waves of the sea… 
'tum kya jano tum kya ho?’
A white sari and the flute bellow your attention in the rain. What if you don’t make it?
What if the world ends like yesterday? 
With perspiration and anxiety, there still remains love. Love and a whole lotta love.
What if a thousand years passes, maybe an eternity?
Will there be love, like the whole lotta love?
Everything swirls into a whirlpool, a pool of love.
And darkness comes to talk with you again, with the sound of silence.


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Saala Dramaqueen!

The plastic sheet flew in valor making undulating waves. It's pastel gray shade shining in golden sunlight almost made it look life-like. It floated in such innocence that it radiated energy to everyone who walked by its side. It was settled on an old Maruti Esteem Vxi around the corner of the street where they hadn't put the blocks of the road yet.


" Aaj Seema ko dekha kya? kya lag rahi thi, by god! itna acha lagna toh paap hona chaihiye paap!"
" Abbey raju, tujhe toh louu ho gaya re baba!"
"Chup be halkat! yeh louu voou kya? bas garmi -
Raju has stopped in his tracks. The car had moved. Just then to add an extra dramatic effect the gray plastic sheet flew like a roar.
"Dekha na tune? bol saale! yaa mujhe chasma laga hai!"
" Dekha maine! abbey! kya tha yeh! chal nikal chotte warna lafda ho jayega!"

They both scurried their way out of the lane and almost broke into a run when another strong wind hit them in the face. It wasn't a week until the town new something was wrong with the car. It moved suddenly without reason, without warning sometimes blowing the horn really loud in the middle of the night.
Everybody was hassled and wanted to know what was the story.

Sopariwala Uncle was heard animatedly talking to Shetty Sahib in hushed tones.
" Maine toh suna bhoot hai! Bhoot I'm telling you shetty ji!"
His voice was icy now.
" Aapki patni ke liye bhi saras hoga, hawan kara lo bas! just do it!"
" Sopariwala you know any pandit ji thoda saste mein?"
" Arre. why you worry when sopariwala is here? mera Bhatija hai! reasonable rate hai bhai!"

 "Abbey chichundar! Paisa dikha nahi ki icecream chahiye.. saala dramaqueen. Ab shanti se, woh ladkiyan kya kehti hai? Toilet...nahi....looo...nahi...pee! pee karne de chal!"
 "Kya boss? One icecream? Pliz?"
The car screamt loudly. A few flowers fell on the tree. A crow spat on chichundar. all at the same time!
"Bola tha idhar mat kar! Chal bhaag!"
"Arree!"
"Abbey chaddi chod! bhaag! Warna ho jayega visarjan! bhaaaag!"


It wasnt until three weeks that the local media knew what was going on.

" Tell us, Mr. gonsalves, you have been living here for so long, who does this car belong to?"
" I don't know what to tell you! I've been secretary for 5 years and no one listens! I told them 92 days ago "throw it away!" but these idiots!"
" So sir, you knew about this car having signs of unnatural forces upon it since 92 days?!"
" I knew it since I saw it I tell you!"
" Do you think its an act of some unholy creature living here?!"
" Could be possible, Sharma acts crazy sometimes. Maybe from them. Who knows -"

"Sharma bola?! Sharma ka baccha! Gonnsaalves! Idhar aaa angrez!"
Sharma breaks through the piling crowd shaking the camera and making Rashika the correspondent, fall.
"Did you see that?Yes, this is the chaos that has been caused here because of the unholiness of this building! The reports are true. This is Rashika reporting live, for - aaaaaaaaaaaaa!"
 Camera goes haywire. Sharma has taken over.
 "Papa papa! photo khichu? please papa! papa paaaapaa! camera do na! sharma ki vaat lag gayi paapa!"
"Kya? sharma ki vaat?! kaha?!"


T.V news flashes. " Kya yeh anhoonee hai? Ya ek shrap? kya bataye? Aap bataye. SMS kijiye Haan ya Naa 5455 par! Jald hi!"

 "Tarun, ball! It will go under the car! Taaaarun! Shit. You jackass! I told you! Don't let it go there. What do we play with now? Jerk. Cant you field once properly?"
" Pantar saala. You should've dived and saved the ball na!"
" Now go get it. Nothing will happen. Hell has accepted you with your precious credit cards already. Just go. What more will happen to you? I have a girlfriend!"
" Chu-"
The ball came rolling out in front of their eyes. " What the -!"
Tarun turned around in shock. Vishal was already screaming and running.



It was the D-day. The crew was there, Sharma Uncle stood fuming in one corner with his wife in an expensive sari. Vishal was yet having problems with his thing after the whole ball-rolling-on-its-own thing. Chichundar was having a mango dolly. Raju was here with Seema, hand in hand. Baba Achdev was calling out to his inner self with two three disciples rubbing his feet. The bomb squad was on its way.

That's when the doors opened. It was easy. There was a tear in the plastic sheet around the corner, so the car door could opened with a little difficulty. A hairy man came out of the car.
" Yaha... sone ko kyaaa... milegaaa?" he was clearly drunk. A cat came hurrying from below the car while kicking a ball around it.
The camera started rolling. the mike was shoved in his throat.

"GONSAAAALVESSSS!" Sharma Uncle broke loose.

" Bol raha hai yeha sone ke liye kya karna padega...", Raju shyly informed seema who blushed uncontrollably.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Caricatures.







Saturday, January 16, 2010

Now that steel glows.

Shiny floors I see, to the depth of nothing
Believe me when I say that it doesn’t mean anything.
It’s just neon lights and polka dotted women 
Someone is lost, someone is just a lost soul driven
It doesn’t have to be the other way around
It’s just confined spaces that placates the crowd
What if there was wine and cheese like never
Or that meeting someone on a shiny floor is twice as better
If only there were questions that fit the right answers
We might not feel pain to even satisfy these cheek painters.
Of bald men and shiny toasters behind the bench
Our needs depend on everything that bounces light in the end.


Friday, January 8, 2010

Bare naked rears.

This isn't just another flower in the sky
Or a tradition that we ought to swear by
There is more to freedom and fright
It's called freewill and the respect to write,
Haven't we all tasted chilly news?
If only we made love to everything,
ignoring the few
We can embrace the mighty pen with dignity
But somewhere our selfish swords kill our basic integrity
Its time that we clothe our naked bottoms
with some inspiration
And maybe then,
we shall not wash our dirty linen in condescension.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Kazgi chunri.

 All she could see was the outline of the undulating clay in front of her eyes, shaping into something so beautiful that she couldn't help but get aroused. Everything else was bleary and all she could do was concentrate her energy in her hands that molds such beauty. Alwar was a distinctive town located in the thirst of Rajasthan where tourists seem to wander in awe of the valleys and perspire in the search of decent hotels. It was a charming town with a past for architectural love and kazgi pottery. Her hands never stopped, her eyes never stopped following.

     Wanderers would interest Geeta a lot. With their backpacks and long hair, she often wondered if at all these people had a family, whether they cared, whether they cherish these sands? She had seen the type of people, her own color trying very hard to talk to her in an accent, pink looking men smiling everywhere they go, red haired women wanting to have a look at her belly button as what they thought they were looking at was a 'tattoo' and things like that which turned her pride as she wasn't a person that her family particularly liked.

It was hard to miss her face, her face with those beautifully carved eyes, her full mouth and a sharp nose where her jaw moved with beautiful grace when she spoke, leaving her with a captivating grin whenever she would draw a smile. It was even hard to look at such a wonder of unnatural sophistication in a  lehenga that reached her ankles and wrapped in a chunri covering her body. She was aboveboard in her nature of speaking that ironically some found very deceptive as one doesn't find people speaking in lines of honesty and actuality and having to be the most frequent person to be asked questions to or bought things from was a matter of disgust to the community.

" Kidhar ke ho?", the man with the colorful turban, kakaji, asked him in curiosity.
" Jaha ka bhi hoon, filhaal toh yahi ka hoon", he answered in a chuckle and held the mans hand in greeting.
" angrezi aati hai tumko?
" Seekh raha hu, mere masterji ki mehnat hai. "
" Chalo, tum jhoot toh nahi bolte bakiyo ki tarah, aajao andar."
 He entered the hut with the sweet smell of lime pickle and sat down when the mother of the house, ammaji, came with a glass of buttermilk and a side smile on her covered face.
He saw a few statues of goddesses standing in the yard behind the window. He immediately got up with a song in his head. He touched one of those statues, felt its ripples and closed his eyes.

" aaye ho to kuch shuru bhi karlo", kakaji said in a manner of announcing his presence in the background.
He didn't look behind him. He started what he had come here to do. There were piles of sandstones and marbles lying around, he selected one and started sculpting and didn't stop till he heard the faint sound of the payal that was approaching him.He turned to see that ammaji had come to announce dinner and he obeyed immediately and got up. There was an added person in the hut. He hadn't seen her before. She looked up at him from where she was sitting and then continued making chappatis.

" Aaj chaar logon ka khana hai bataya kyu nahi maa?", she said not looking at him.
" chup kar, beech mein kitni baar kaha hai bolte nahi, upwaas hai mera aaj", ammaji said, flushed at her daughter speaking in the presence of a bare chested man.
" aap ko koi takleef toh nahi?", he asked looking at ammaji.
" nahi nahi beta...aap.. aayo na...baitho, kakaji bas aa rahe hai", ammaji said and shot her daughter an angry look.
Ammaji couldn't decide what to do, her son was out of town, so she couldn't breathe easily with a stranger eating and working with them. She couldn't understand if she could leave them alone and fetch her husband.
She decided to take a chance and left.


"naam kya hai tumhara?"
"Geeta, aur tumhara?"
He was shocked that she used the word tumhara instead of aap but didn't show his face changing and answered,
" Utsav."
Ammaji was hustling back in her sari and gave Utsav a sheepish look as she sat down with her husband following her.
That was all that they had spoken to each other till the week that he worked for them.
They looked at each other sometimes, for a few seconds more than intended and would get back to working again without a dash of emotion on their face. He would look at her when she spoke with firangis and would cringe when they bargained with her for her pottery. She would often come and slip in chai and farsan by his side and leave with her payal singing in the background.

It was nearing darkness when he saw her approach him. The evening was orange and purple. It was getting chilly and there weren't much people around because of the local puja.

" Isn't it chilly?", she asked, her voice very soft and her hands folded. He wasn't surprised with the language she chose, he wasn't shocked.
"Yes, it is. I just came up here to see the sunset. One of the things I love. I assume you came here for the same?"
She didn't answer and kept looking ahead and came and stood very close to him. It was the perfect setting. the sky was turning a violent crimson, the breeze was chilly and pleasant at the same time and she was so close.

"I've seen you work, very passionately. since when have you been sculpting?"
" last couple of years. and you?"
"Since I was a kid and knew how to play the top and the string!"
"Of course...Geeta... I'm a traveler."
"I know that."
"Alright. When do they come back?"
" There's another hour."
"Okay."


"tu puja men toh nahi aayi, kaha thi?"
"maa, main bas yahi, chaute pe kapde see rahi thi"
 She couldn't sleep that night. She played the flute in her head and read some stories. At the break of dawn, she got up and got to work.
She was concentrating on her fingers, when she saw his chappals in front of her and she gracefully stopped. She looked up and smiled. There were people looking.
Utsav was standing with his backpack and looking at her in awe.

" yeh sabse chota kitne ka?"
" 15 rupees sir."
He removed 15 rupees and looked at the pot and her.

" I'm a traveler, who might get lost here someday."
" I know, sir."

He turned away and left. All could she could think of was the talk for an hour last evening while the sun set to light another world. His voice was blending in the melody of the flute in her head. Now all she could see was the undulating clay in front of her eyes.