Sunday, July 5, 2009

Her Rain.








(I wanted to pen this one in Marathi; however few attempts at the software which types in Marathi discouraged me.)

After teasing the eager minds of Mumbaikars, finally the darkness delivered. He drizzled, he dazzled then he showered and showered with glory; Kissing the tender leaves, splashing through the dusty streets, washing the window panes and wetting a million minds. Rivulets formed on streets and flowed highlighting the veins of the city. Gutters had their share of ecology which would last till his stay in the city

The Monsoon wind, handsome king of nomads travels with his hoard of dark clouds, gracefully towards the north. On his way he casts a look at an impoverished young girl.
Her green top torn at places and blue jeans acid washed and laden with metallic paraphernalia, an engineering wonder, first of its kind in her motherland, added recently. She, immersed in her work oblivious to the travelers of his Nature, unknowingly attracts him. She is beautiful, her mannerisms, her pace, her agility, and valor attracts him. She is less polite than some of her sisters and little lesser feminine too,not arrogant though. But has a raw beauty to her. He orders his troops, stops his dark soldiers, they halt and display their power. Their war cries are much louder though before leaving, their light infantry blowing from every corner. She takes his notice; he moistens and wets her with his love. Just like a young saint moistens a parched mind of a punk girl, and she giving in her inhibitions to inculcate his thoughts.
They will have to part…

The bus takes a right at Santacruz; it will take the link road now. This road unlike the S.V road doesn’t give you a feel of the old suburbs. It doesn’t have a single spiritual monument on either side visible on the main road. It is embraced by shops, restaurants, shops and even more shops and a college. The road like its people is very conscious about looks. The shops are all brand crazy from the expensive showrooms to the flee market. The link road takes a detour from the main Swami Vivekanananda road, like the detour the nation has taken from its cultural heritage to rub shoulders with its western counterparts.

She gets into the bus at this turn. It’s pouring outside. Dexterously she handles her bag, closes the umbrella and saves her dupatta from tasting the dirt on the footboard. She is dressed in a khadi kurta and white salwar. She takes the first seat vacant unlike other women who go all the way to the front to occupy the seats meant only for women. Placing the umbrella besides her, adjusting her dupatta and hair she removes money from her bag, purchases the ticket and plugs the earphones into her mobile and starts listening to music. Soon she is detached from the surroundings. After a few peppy numbers, a song from her play list travels all the way through the wires of the earphones from her purse to her ears, spills into her and unlike other songs, consumes her. It dissolves in her blood and finds a way to her heart, triggers a relay of memories. She puts the player on repeat mode.

6 years ago, she had just finished her graduation. Every guy in her locality eyed her. Aunts never got tired of telling her parents how beautiful she looked and how well behaved she was. Some of her elder cousins called her ‘didi’ as she was their friend guide and philosopher. Younger to her brother; she was pampered by three, her parents and her brother. She had a younger sister who idolized her. She shone in her academics as well as led the students from the front. She was the general secretary of her college and not a dormant one. She was polite and traditional then, unlike the jeans-t beauties that had an air around them; she always preferred traditional attire to her college. She wanted to work for some time before doing her Masters. BPO- call centers had taken the nation by a storm. Western accents and way of living promised a better lifestyle. Low waist jeans and T-shirts along with their gadgets spoke openly, thought logically and were suddenly more helpful and polite especially after the hospitality trainings at their MNCs. Amused with the new ecosystem and her first pay-cheque which was a little less than her father’s she was ‘@ cloud 9 and hd bght nw cell’. She gracefully migrated to her new attire, and there wasn’t an iota of awkwardness. She was the most sought after girl in her call center. The low waist and spikes over there weren’t used to seeing a jeans-t with a genuine attitude. She ignored them all just like she did in her college.

He was not there because he didn’t find another job. He was a BE-MBA after all. But no one promised him 75000 a month and a position which said Head-Operations after just 6 months of probation. He always dressed in formals to work and had a pleasant smile and read economic times. One couldn’t find him staring at the scantily clad girls too often. He was their Bosses’ Boss, the only one with a cabin the size of their conference room and one with a chauffer driven car and not a bike. He didn’t speak with a fake accent and spoke in pure Hindi addressing everyone as “Ap” and not “Tu”. Their eyes met often, soon they started meeting outside the office, and the intelligent ignorance that she sported for years soon adorned itself with dumbness. She fell in love and he fell for her. The world around them halted and the universe started operating in rhymes.

The monsoons of 2003, the whole team was on a trip to Lonavala. He had voluntarily accompanied the team. The greenery and wetness everywhere intoxicated them. The kid in her and the man in him surfaced. At night after the campfire, she was absent from the group and so was he. In the chaos of boozed euphoria only a couple of their close associates took notice, but they knew what was going on. Their love for the first time received the warmth of their bodies in his chalet. She enjoyed every bit of the sweet pain like she used to in heavy rains sometimes sitting pillion on her brother’s bike when he took her out on long rides along the highway. The water droplets touched her skin like needles of acupuncture giving pain and pleasure at the same time. The bumps on the road seemed rhythmic on a bike at that speed . She held on tight to her brother and both laughed. Then they stopped at a corner shop before returning home where he smoked and she was bribed with a chocolate for not telling dad about her brother's cigarette. The next morning both got up, there was an awkward silence. She was too immature to know that a silence meant dark waters and a smile a sunshine future. She hurried to her room where other girls from her team were sleeping after the late night bash.

A couple of weeks later he was selected by his superiors in the US for a position with the parent company. He left with just a good bye ,a hug and a pleasant smile. She had shared too much with him, told him her mind inside out when they used to meet. At times she had behaved like a kid, like she used to with her dad when she was young. There wasn’t anything about her which she could claim as only her own now. She failed to find a pivot to leverage her mind back to normal. Slowly she drew her distance from her mind. Her periodic sobbing in the restrooms died with the rains.

Around October, with deafening thunders, finally monsoon left and she had come out of the emotional mess on her own. That Diwali, her cousins found her different. She had retained every aspect of her thinking self but her mind had let her down and now she had distanced herself from it.

She sees outside the window, the city is wet again. The yellow street lights are turned on and through the film of water on the window of the bus, the colors of the city,mixed with each other give a blurred image to her eyes. The greens and the grays mixed with yellow, and sometimes at signals with reds and greens . She takes a look from the driver’s window, where the swaying wipers keep blur at bay. She finds a young girl sitting pillion with a guy on a bike, arms spread and enjoying rains as they wait for the signal to turn green again, both of them laughing and giggling, drenched in the rain and emotions. Her phone rings; it is her mother in law to be. Recently one of her aunt had fixed this alliance and everyone back home was happy. Today she was visiting her in-laws to be as they had invited her for lunch. They speak for another 10 minutes. Her fiancée speaks to her before disconnecting. “I Love you” he whispers. She forces a chuckle, disconnects her phone, the music starts playing again.

It is no longer raining. The bus takes a right again and is back on Swami Vivekananda road. Link road is left behind. The bus halts at the Bandra Bus stop. Water accumulated in the vents spills and slithers over the window pane. The droplets on the pane join each other and form rivulets which join the slithering water from the top and form a single stream somewhere at the center of the window. She looks out. From the billboard above the bus stop a beautiful girl is staring at her, with a smile on her face and tears flowing from one of her eyes. They flow steadily for some time and stop, leaving behind a contour of water on the bus's window pane amongst many droplets. The conductor rings the bell, gear box clinks, the machine roars, and the bus moves ahead. The smile is left at the crossroads..............

(She turns up the volume of the song playing into her earphones)

“Bhijlelya Kshananna athvanichi fodani,
Haldisathi asusalele halve man an kanti,
Ayusha he chulivarlya kadhaitale kande pohe...
Natyanchya ya bajaratun vikretyanchi daati,
Aani mhane to varcha tharvi shatjanmanchya gathi ,
Roz natave roz sajave dharun asha poti,
Ale mituni lajalun tari punha ughadnyasathi,
Ayusha he chulivarlya kadhaitle kande pohe...
Dur deshichya rajkumarachi swapne pahtana,
Koni tari yave haluch magun dhyani mani nastana,
Nakalat apan haravun jave swatas mag japtana,
An mag dole ughdave he diva swapna pahatana,
Ayusha he chulivarlya kadhaitle kandepohe...
Bhut-kalchya dhuvun akshata tandul kele jyanni,
Ani sajavla khota rukhvat bhadyachya fandyani,
Bhavishya atta rangavnyacha attahas hi tyancha,
Hatavarlya mehendivar otun limbache pani,
Ayusha he chulivarlya kadhaitle kande pohe...”


(Title, courtesy Salil Mirashi; Pic edited,courtesy Vrushali Patil)

3 comments:

Rahul Parab said...

super buddy super....this the super post..super story..i loved her chuckle when he to be husband calls ....super sanki..man keep writing ....wanting to know what happened in US ..it rains in US too man :)

Vrushali said...

Beautifully written! You handled the girl's emotional part too well. I was also lost for a moment after reading it. "Ne plus ultra".

keerti said...

khup chhan lihil ahes.....keep it up