July 2008


Whenever I visit my village Munshi Premchand’s famous story comes vivid in my mind. The immortal novelist had lost his ‘paradise’, when he revisited the holiest of holy cities, Varanashi. To relive the olden days, the hero of his short story had a wee hour jaunt in the city, believed to be resting on the trident of Lord Shiva. There were few early hour bathers in the Ganga. Nor was the sky renting with devotional chorus sung by hordes of Ganga bathers, ‘hamare prabhu awagun jeet na dharo’ (O Lord! don’t take my follies into your heart). Click to continue reading …

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    My two grand sons, six and three years of age, are in giggles. They are floating paper boats in their bed room. They are happy. They wade in water inside the house. The elder one splashes some water on the younger one. He cries. Soon a fight ensues. Both fall down in the water, some 12 inches deep and are drenched. Her mother comes rushing and chides-cajoles them. Clothes are changed. The clock ticks by. An hour later the scene is repeated. The paper boats float, water splash flies and the duel begins ending in drenching. The angry-looking mom laughs in her sleeves. Her utensils too are floating in the mod kitchen. She up-rolls her ‘sari’ and cooks the meal. This has been her routine for the last four days (on June 16, 2008). Click to continue reading …