Sunday, January 15, 2012

Crowded Bus

“The bus is yet to start, it’s already full. I was just lucky to get a seat. Call it my luck, that I got a seat facing everybody in the bus. This meant total entertainment. I was scanning the bus for interesting faces.My eyes stopped when I noticed a pretty face. She wasn’t a beauty queen, but you could just feel some warmth in her face. Any guy would just fall for this girl. She had the window seat, hence was busy looking outside. Rishi, you should come in this bus often.”
"When will this bus start? I am lucky today, to get a window seat. The aisle seats are so boring. Now I can just forget all my worries, and just observe people on the roads. Or I can just keep the window open, close my eyes and feel the air, which would start hitting my face, in sometime. Aah!!! There comes the driver, I hope he starts the bus soon."
"Nice Tea. Now it’s time to get into the bus, and wage a war against traffic. Everybody thinks, we bus drivers have it easy. Nobody realizes how much stress we have to deal with, due to traffic. It’s the peak hour; it will take 2 hours to reach the last stop. I am already hungry, wonder what my wife has packed for lunch. If it’s not good enough, I’ll exchange it with Suma’s lunch. After all having a lady conductor in the bus has its advantages."
"I think we should start in 2 minutes. I will finish the first round of giving out tickets. It seems there is going to be ticket checking after 2 stops. Ticket… Ticket… Why don’t you people bring any change? Are we running a bank here, that you will give us a Rs.500 note for a Rs.7 ticket and I will have the change. Move back, move back. Uncle, why are you standing here? Couldn’t you ask one of the young boys to give you a seat? Hello Sir, We know you are staring at a pretty face, but do you mind doing that standing. Uncle can take a seat here."
"I gave up the seat for the old man. Not only did I lose the sight of the pretty girl, but I got pushed back and forth in the bus. What a crowded bus. Rishi, lesson to be learnt, never enter a crowded bus."

Friday, January 13, 2012

Eve-teasing and the likes

Eve Teasing, this topic is being discussed a lot these days. I am not even going to put forth my point of view on whether dressing of a girl is the cause or not etc etc. All I want to do is vent out, the incidents in my life.

I was in school, we had to go to Majestic for a movie. We dint have car those days, so if 4 of us were to travel, it was either bus or auto. Auto was usually taken during the return journey. We got down from the bus, were walking towards the theatre. I was walking holding my mom’s hands. I saw her walking with elbow stretched outwards, wondered why. I felt a pinch, when I turned to see, I saw a man grinning at me. I turned my face and continued to walk. A few more pinches here and there, I understood, I had to use my hand in defense. Next time we went to Majestic, I knew I had hit a few men with my elbow, and some pretty hard too.

Another incident happened when I was in II PUC/ 12th std. I used to go to early morning classes. It was usual that my dad drop me to the class, not because I couldn’t walk, but I used to wake up late and my dad had to literally go in full speed on his Bajaj scooter so that I reached on time. One day, dad had to go and pick my brother from the railway station at that time, who was coming back from the trip. I go up early enough to walk in a peaceful pace. It was 6 in the morning, and Bangalore was definetly hot at that time, I had worn a salwar kameez, a jacket with a hood (definetly not the attractive kinds). I was walking at a fast pace, lest I get late for the class. I heard some guy talking. I ignored it initially, thought he was talking to someone. I then heard him, calling out to me. I was scared now. I turned back, and he was alone and was definetly calling me. I increased my pace, I could hear him coming faster towards me. I literally started running. It was a panic situation, and I dint know what to do. I thought I will pick a nearby stone and throw at him, that’s what I used to do, if a dog chased me. Luckily, I came near a house, where some guy was taking out his bike, and an elderly, may be middle aged was watering the plants. I ran to that house, and told the aunty that this guy is following me. Aunty told, her son to get the guy, but seeing me go to that house, and a guy starting the bike, the guy who was following me, ran away super fast. The lady pacified me, and told me if I wanted a drop somewhere, her son could drop me. After this, I was very skeptical to take favours from any stranger, and politely refused, and left to my classes. I somehow did not find the courage to tell my mom, I thought she would then be scared to send me alone everytime. After that, I was a little skeptical, but found the courage.

But till today, I am extremely careful when I walk alone, esp if the road is deserted.

When I was in Engineering, a boy, who was probably in school, whistled at me. I was totally pissed off. I told him, once more I see you do this, you will see my sandal on your face.

In buses, I have hit so many guys with my elbow, who have tried to act smart, poked a safety pin at some guys who are trying to literally fall on you, when there is space to lie down and sleep in the bus. I have seen old men, waiting to hit their graves, do such indecent acts, it only makes you cringe at such people.

There are many such incidents which have happened, which kind of makes you feel a little insecure. At the same time, when you see your dad, uncles, brothers, friends, husband respecting women, it makes you realize, you are not an item, your body is not something to be ashamed of. God has given you something special.

You are SPECIAL...

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Unknown number

He was plannning to call her today, again. It was 4th day in a row, she had avoided his call. He had no choice but to call her. He had got her number 10days back and he had called her since. After a few calls, she started ignoring him. He couldnt let her go. He had to call her. Just when he was wondering how to reach her, an idea flashed in his mind.

Her phone rang. It was an unknown number. She was in a fix, but finally decided to pick the call. As soon as he heard her sweet voice, he said, "Hello Madam. This is a call from XXXX phone services. You are our valued customer....."

Monday, January 09, 2012

Street chase

Their eyes were red. Everybody could sense the anger. This was not a rare sight in the locality. Infact people were fed up with the gang wars. They wished somebody catch the two groups and punish them. A couple of them from the rival gang had entered the street and the whole group just chased them out. The loud noise had created such ruckuss. The children in the street were petrified to get out on the streets when the Street chase was on.

The groups did not believe in using any weapons. The physical strength was all they were proud of. The leaders of the 2 gangs were young and energetic. They weren’t too handsome, but powerful nevertheless, and the faces could make you cringe at times. One of them was as dark as the night, but had a white patch around his eye, making him noticeable among the group. He was made the leader. He made it clear, and marked the territory, nobody could dare enter their place.

The other leader wasn’t left behind. Though his skin dint show any difference from the rest, his eyes had a weird colour, and would make you shudder. It was as if, anybody could get hypnotized. He was very young when he became the self proclaimed leader of his gang. It was very difficult for anybody new to find a place in either of the gangs.

One early morning, the people were woken up by a big commotion. They peeped through the windows of their homes, there was bloodshed. Both the gangs were on top of each other, literally tearing each other apart. The corporator of the locality was informed, he called the right authorities. Finally 2 vans arrived on the street and somehow managed to get all of them in the vans.

As the vans departed, happy people were seen on the streets. “Finally, our Streets are free of the Dog menace”, somebody heard a man talking on phone.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Journey from Princess to a Queen

Anagha, was the eldest child of her parents. Her mom dreamt of her daughter’s wedding since the day she was born. Every time she visited the jewellery shop, she would buy something for her daughter. When Anagha would disapprove of the ornament, her mom would just say, you are not wearing it now, it’s for your wedding. Anytime, Anagha said, “Mom, it’s a lovely saree”, her mom would never wear it. It would go in the suitcase labeled – Anagha’s Sarees. All the old clothes would be given off to the steel vessel vendor, and a kitchen utensil would be bought. But the kitchen would never see any of these new vessels, instead they would find a place in a carton labeled – Anagha’s Kitchen set. Though her mom dreamt of her daughter’s wedding, she never forced it on her. She let her daughter dream about her future. She let her daughter fly, explore the world, understand what’s good or bad for her.

Years passed by, and the time finally came when Anagha chose her life partner. The two of them were engaged and were to get married in 6 months time. While Anagha was excited and anxious about her new life, her mom was a similar state. Her dream was coming true. Her only daughter, her best friend would be married. The preparations had started 25 years back, now was the time to implement all the grand plans. There were only discussion at home was about the wedding. There were times when Anagha would get frustrated, as there was no other topic discussed at home. She understood, her mom wanted to make the wedding day a special day for Anagha. She dint want to leave out even a minute detail. Anagha even fought with her mom, that, she was stressing over this wedding, and health was taking a back seat. But there was nobody who could stop her mom’s excitement.

On the wedding day, Anagha’s mom looked at her, took her face in her palms, kissed her forehead, and quickly left the room, for her to get ready for the wedding. It was time, for the Kanyadaana. Both mother and daughter had decided, they wouldn’t cry. The priest asked Anagha to sit on her dad’s lap. For a few moments, she went back to her childhood, where she would run and sit on her dad’s lap, everytime mom came running behind her to punish her for the mischief. She would sleep in the bus, and dad would carry her on her shoulder and make her lie on the bed. She wouldn’t find place in the bus, dad would make her sit on her lap. A couple of days before the wedding, when her hands were full of henna, her dad made her drink the glass of water, and mom gave her the Kai Thuthu (feeding with her hands). She felt her life was running like a movie in front her. She realized, her parents life revolved around her. That day, would be the last she would sit on her dad’s lap, as his darling daughter.

As she sat, the priest, asked the groom to bring his hand forward with his palm open, then he asked her dad to hold her palm and keep it on the groom’s hand. Her mom was supposed to pour the water on the coconut, which these 3 hands held. The priest was residing the mantra. The gist of the whole thing was, the dad was giving away his daughter to the groom forever. She was no longer his daughter alone, but the groom’s partner for life. When Anagha heard this, her eyes filled up with tears, she dint want to shed any, as she had promised her mom. She just looked up to her mom, saw her in the same state, they both just smiled at each other. Then all of a sudden, she felt her dad’s hand was slipping away, and the only hand holding was her husband’s. Her dad had given her away.

She turned back, saw tears in her dad’s eyes for the first time in her life. But she sensed that he wasn’t really sad, he just held her cheeks in his palm and then kissed her on her forehead. All of a sudden, she saw her brother shaking hands with her and her husband. He was sad, but he was happy too, he too had tears in his eyes. She saw all her uncles, aunts, cousins come and wish her. She had controlled her tears, but could sense the mixed feelings everybody had.

The priest called the couple for more rituals to be followed. The emotional moment had passed. Everybody got back to work, taking care of guests, inviting people for lunch, giving gifts to the guests. The rituals continued and after the lunch, Anagha was to be sent to her husband’s house. Her parents now placed her hands in the hands of her in-laws and husband, stating, she would be their daughter now. Anagha was again fighting her tears. “How could they?” she thought. “How can they tell them, I am their daughter? I will never be anybody’s daughter except my parents” she was angry. But in a moment she realized, what it meant. The priest was telling Anagha, “From now, you have 2 sets of parents. One of your own, one of your husbands, treat them equally”.

After all the rituals, she was sent to her room to relax and change, and get ready for the reception in the evening. She went to the room, looked at the mirror, she could no longer hold her tears. She broke down. She cried to heart’s content. Her aunt came in the room. She was shocked to see her cry. After consoling a little bit, Anagha got a hold on herself. She hugged her aunt, her mom’s sister, just like her mom. “Take care of mom” she said. Her aunt could relate to the feelings, for she too had gone through the emotions, years back. She smiled and said “Don’t worry, all of us will”. Just then Anagha’s mom entered the room, she ran into her mom’s arms, and both hugged each other as if, the world was going to end.

Finally, when it was time for Anagha to go with her husband, her parents told her husband “She is our princess, but we are sure, you will treat her like a Queen”