The one with the struggle above the sea

Evening dawned, and with it a struggle.

High above the roaring waves of the Arabian Sea, a battle was ensuing. A mixture of bleak colours fought admirably. I was there, watching it all unfold. Somewhere deep down, I knew who would win.

The blue was missing. I loved the blue of the Sky. It brought serenity with it. Clear and crisp, the Sky was usually the best way to remind me that calmness was essential in life. Today, however, there was no Sky… At least not in its entirety. Here and there, the chaos below the Sky made way for its blue to streak through. In some places, where the rest was missing, the Sky could be seen clearly. It made me realize that even in the most chaotic of times, you can find peace… if you only know where to look.

The grey was a different story. I did not like the murky grey. The clouds that bore this colour were not simple wisps of heavenly cotton – instead, they were ugly and gargantuan, poised to strike. Not only were they huge and monstrous, they were also plenty in number. They were uninvited guests unlikely to take no for an answer. They wanted to conquer the Sky. They wanted to stow the blue away. They wanted grey. They wanted wetness. They wanted to pour. A moment ago, they were non-existent. Now, they were simply there… Appearing out of thin air (which was probably how they were formed). And as I watched it, another realization hit me: problems in life are just like these rain clouds – sudden and random. They can appear at any time in life and can cause chaos as they please. There might be one small grey cloud, or there can be a whole army.

Contrasting the grey was the shining light and my favourite: the yellow. The gift of the Sun and one last hope against the grey. The yellow battled with pride, being weak but also brave. With the help of the blue, it struggled to push the grey away. Using brilliant techniques, it searched for cracks, nooks and crannies in the rain clouds and tried its best to shine through. It was losing. I wanted the blue and the yellow. I wanted the streaks. I hoped it would win. But somewhere deep down, a well calculated decision had made me bring my umbrella along. This only meant one thing: grey was about to win. But the Sun would not back down. And herein lay another bout of revelation, seemingly tailored for me: even in the darkest of times, don’t give up. Be weak, be vulnerable, let the odds be against you but DO NOT GIVE UP. EVER.

I knew the yellow would lose. I knew that grey would shroud blue for months to come. And above all, I knew the outcome of this fruitless battle: monsoon. The first downpour. Rainfall.

And as I stood below my umbrella, an expected outcome becoming real right there in front of my very eyes, another revelation struck me. It shook me. It made my eyes twinkle. Perhaps in the same way the lightning, born from the union of two rain clouds, did.

I swam in this knowledge, in this key realization that would probably uplift my mood for the next few days as I saw the downpour, as I saw the yellow from the Sun overcome by the grey from the clouds, as I saw the blue from the Sky become one with the winner of this great battle of nature. And I smiled.

Because as I saw the rain tumble down in heavy droplets victoriously; as I saw it pelt the ground forcefully and in its full might, I saw something brilliant. It made me realize this: Monstrous and unyielding, the grey clouds may bring darkness, but at the same time, they gift us rain and in doing so bring about real beauty of nature. Similarly, life may bring problems, and along with it darkness, but why at all should this mean that the problems are our doom and forever?

After all, it wasn’t a battle. It was just another chapter of life. Another phase. Another cycle. And while the clouds had conquered, they too would pass. They too would go away. And one day, the yellow would shine again.


Heya Bleedsters!
Saying that it has been a long time since my last post would be a gross under-statement. Its been a busy year for me and I am not ashamed to admit that the frequency of the posts has been shaken up quite a bit because of that. But that does not stop me from writing another post for you guys. I hope it provides some sort of an inspiration to all. Better late than never, and even better than hardly ever, right?
Love,

Kunal.


As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow onTwitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images,  from my own personal collection or some other sources (which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise). Contact me if you want it removed.

Rains on the Dadar Platform

 

Pudhil Station Dadar… Krupaya paydaan va falatavaril antara var lakshya dya…” *said the woman on the comms in an all-too-familiar voice. I wondered why the announcement was referring to the next station as Dadar, even when the train was nearly approaching the station already. We were already at Dadar, and yet the announcement was lacking behind. It made me smile.

God must have seen it and hatched a plan to make me frown. Realisation swept over me like the windy drizzle outside: I was approaching Dadar station! One of the busiest platforms in the fudging Universe!

As the train seemed to slow down, it still seemed to be too fast. I clutched the hanging arm-resting thingy with my dear life, trying not to be squished into a dosa by the surrounding crowd. Having lesser experience in train travelling, my heart pounded in my chest. This was it. I had to get down at Dadar, by hook or by crook.

I could see double the size of the crowd inside the train on the platform, ready to shoot themselves inside the train like bullets. I had seen that before. I wondered how on earth I would get out of the more-than-overcrowded train. I kept wondering. Meanwhile, people were shouting.

I don’t know what it is with the shouting. Will the shouting make the transition process any easier? NO! Will the pushing, yelling and mercilessly head-butting an innocent young-adult’s back make the train stop faster? NO! SO WHY THE FUDGE BE IN SUCH A HURRY?

Impatience swelled inside my compartment. The people who were shouting were pushing others who stood near the exit like bulls. They fell onto the platform, pouring out like an army of ants from a crack in the summer. And like ants, they were trained. All of them, the ones who were gushing out of the train, were ready and had landed themselves stably onto the platform. They were walking on calmly, as if nothing big had happened.

I heard a hypothetical sound of my underwear tearing into a million pieces. How the hell was I supposed to land myself perfectly onto the platform without falling out of a moving train? I sighed.

This was it, I told myself. This was my ‘pariksha’ for real. This was the test of my life.

I cursed in my mind. Who? I do not know. Perhaps the education system for not teaching me the basics of how to travel in train? Or perhaps my luck for having gotten admission into colleges and schools nearby so that buses were easier for me to travel in than trains? Heck, I didn’t even have time to think who. I just whispered something negligible to myself and took a deep breath.

The train halted. Even after 3o seconds of the shouting, there were still people inside the train who wanted to get out. I was one of them. A fleck of atomic glass particle in a sea of sand. Like others, I was being pushed out of the train like air in space. It was physics. The people at the very back of the exit, were pushing the people in the front.

As I was being pushed out, the millisecond was enough for my brain to overthink as per usual. That stupid comm-woman had said something along the lines of “Please take care of the distance between the platform and the train, you might fall in.” Or at least, she may as well have said that. Immediately, my grandmother’s voice filled my head: “Kunal, do you know what I just read? A small child fell through the crack between the train and the platform and was killed when the train started moving! Please take care!”

Yes, I remembered this fun piece of trivia from a year back (or maybe two) in that millisecond. Immediately, I also thought about the possibility that I might fall through the crack. Without even thinking about my size and the crack’s!

It was one of those things – one second, I was scared shitless for my life; the next, I was already on the platform, still being pushed towards the stairs.

I sighed in relief. But not for long.

The wave of people continued to push me around, so that I was carried from the train to the lower end of the stairs automatically. Somewhere behind me, a few people were screaming… An altercation! Someone was fighting!

The usual Indian inside me awoke. I turned on the spot, mimicking others around me. We all wanted to see what was going on. If there was something like a fight going on somewhere, I definitely did not want to miss it! I stopped in my spot, while others dodged me.

Of course, all I could see was a bunch of bobbing heads. I sighed once more, just as the crowd suddenly cleared away. Woah, Mumbaikars were quick! Wait, wasn’t I a Mumbaikar too?

I walked on, deciding to take the stairs at the other end of the platform, since that was more convenient. I saw a couple fight in a corner of the platform. Curiosity and interest shot high. I stopped once more in in my tracks once more. I watched the free entertainment. The girl was accusing the guy loudly. The guy looked ashamed and embarrassed. For the next five minutes, I thought of all the scenarios under which this was happening. Had he cheated on her? Was she breaking up with him? Had he been caught watching porn? Had she accused him of being “not fancy” like she was? Or was it just some other school drama?

I pondered that for a while, feeling better about my own single-dom, turning back, when I bumped into someone.

The man wore a neat coat, and had extended his arm to block my way. In his hands were tickets. He shook his arm repeatedly, a grumpy expression accompanying this action. Stupidity has never been experienced in this form on this earth, but it did then and there: I grabbed the ticket from his hand. Why? Because I thought it was a flyer or poster or something. He shouted at me and snatched it back. He spoke so fast that words combined into one single word. My hopefully apologetic expression did nothing to calm him.

Now, I was the center of attraction. I felt like I was on a display in a museum while others ogled freely. The man continued to shout at me. He pointed to his chest which had a shiny badge. It read the most logical thing I should have considered: Ticket Collector. But I didn’t. Not until he said it multiple times.

The train was gone, by then. The platform was clearer. However the noise was still there. I put my hand in the pocket, searching furiously for my ticket. As I searched, and as the Ticket Collector man waited in fury, it started to rain harshly. Not like cats and dogs. More like furiously annoying tigers and wild rabid dogs. And I just happened to stand on that place where there was no roof.

I was drenched in minutes.

At first, I felt amused. I kept on searching for the ticket as the TC stepped a few paces back, to a place where there was a roof. However, he kept his arm up and his gaze transfixed on me. He did not bother with the other passengers at all. His eyes, although angry, were glowing. Was it his lucky day?  Was he going to finally get to fine someone?

Panic set in and (again, stupidly) extracted my belongings from my pockets. Wallet, cellphone, keys etc were in one hand while the other searched longingly for the darned ticket. I found the ticket and showed it to the TC. He finally let me reluctantly. I apologized as he started to turn, but he did not look back.

I fist-pumped the air in joy. I had survived. I had been nearly caught by a TC. I had been let go by him. I had seen a commotion. A typical Mumbai commotion at that. And I felt elated. A tiring day had come to an end, and I was ready to head home from the station, finally.

I was near the exit. The station was behind me, and the people too. Trains ran by, making their characteristic sounds. A smile on my face, after a tiring day, I walked out of the station, taking care of the puddles. I opened my umbrella, trying not to get wet. My mind was still rejoicing. What an interesting day, I thought.

The initial excitement was subsiding. But the elation was so much that it drove me to grin widely to myself and fist-pump the air once more. And guess what happened?

My belongings toppled over from my hand. Wallet which had money and important receipts. An extremely delicate and water-proof-less (I just made that word, yeah) cell phone. A few other receipts. And it all fell over.

Into the puddle of murky water around my feet.

Sigh. Fuck me.


Heya Bleedsters!
The monsoon chronicles continue. Today, I had an interesting situation while travelling in the fabled Central Railway. On Dadar Station. Thought I would share it with you. Although nothing ordinary, for me, it was quite an experience.
Tell me what you think about it. Comment down below with your experiences of monsoon railway travelling.
Love,
Kunal.


* Next Station Dadar, please take care of the gap between the platform and the compartment’s leg rest.


As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow on Twitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images or from my own personal collection or other sources which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise. Contact me if you want it removed.

Monsoon in Mumbai

Hey Bleedsters!
Not everything has to be about something. So, I decided to write this post about rains in Mumbai. It is an extremely unique experience. Tell me your views on this post!
Love,
Kunal.


Rain had attacked Mumbai like bullets for four days non-stop. Everything was wet. Nearly all the streets were clogged, the whole city at a standstill. While some parts of Mumbai were smart enough to not venture out of their houses, those zealous and brave citizens who had taken their chances were now stuck in traffic. Horns blared around impatiently; angry, fed-up drivers were peeking out of their cars carefully, trying not to douse themselves in water, trying to find out the reason behind the hold-up. Voices were being raised in the distance. The traffic lights were blinking orange in patterns, denoting that it was out. A poor old policeman stood amidst the chaos, trying to solve the complicated knot of cars around him. He stood no chance to resolve the issue anytime soon.

 

The fifth day, skies cleared. The ugly, gloomy grey dissolved into a shining, sunny blue. A depressed Mumbai turned jolly. Droplets sparkled in the sunshine. It was blissful for those, who wanted it to stop. Finally, the rains had halted.

 

Nothing is permanent. Knowing this, many citizens had finally stepped out of their homes to meet other people, or to restock their houses knowing that the rain could resume anytime soon. They rushed in every possible directions, umbrella or raincoats folded in one hand while shopping bags or purses in the other.

 

Elsewhere, vendors were removing the protective plastic sheets from their products: clothes, spices, jewellery etc. They were checking the skies frequently to determine whether they needed the protective sheets again. After a deep coma, Mumbai was living again.

 

It felt great. Those who had lots of free time dared to go to the beach area, where the waves slapped the rocks and sand on the shore sadistically. The sand itself was wet from the showers, the day before. Many of the beach-goers, who had mindlessly taken a seat in the sand, had problems because the wet sand had lodged into places. Dry sand is easy to shake off, but wet sand? That is a whole different story.

 

While the market vendors restarted their businesses for the day, food vendors on the beach were also not so far behind. The fastest type of food vendor was the roasted corn stall. He pulled his cart energetically, setting up the coal and the stove. Pulling the sack on top of the cart was not an easy task, yet he seemed to do it with relative ease. One after the other, he pulled the husk of the corn, neatly piling the raw corn in a stack, ready to cook until the coal was ignited.


Within minutes, the aroma of hot, cooked corn (which was rubbed with spices) seemed to emanate from the cart. The beach, wet and almost about to dry from the weak sunshine, was alive with hunger. Like moths to a flame, the beach-goers were flitting towards the corn stall.

 

Meanwhile, the Shawarma Guy was also readying himself. It took a bit longer for the Shawarma stall to be set-up than the Corn stall. The smell of spicy, cooked meat wafted through the atmosphere, mingling with the aroma of cooked corn. Heaven for hungry tourists.

 

In other parts of the city, children were dancing and playing. Heavy rains had assured that their school would be shut down for the day. All the lectures had been cancelled because of the heavy downpour. The children had not been allowed to rejoice because of the worried mothers, who didn’t want them to catch a cold or fever. But now? The rain was gone. The skies were clear. The clouds had disappeared. It was the perfect time to rejoice.

 

Their happiness was short-lived, however. It was raining – again! In no time, people were scurrying inside their homes or hunting for cover once more. The vendors were rushing like crazy to hiding spots. Protective sheets lined their carts and stalls once more. The rain showed beach-goers no mercy. In the matter of seconds, every person on the beach was totally drenched. The pitter-patter from the rain could be heard forever and ever … or so it seemed.

 

Everyone wondered how the rain had begun once more. A moment before, the skies had been clear. Now, however, the gloominess had returned. The clouds had ganged up together, so that the thick grey hid the bright blue of the sky. Droplets of water attacked every inch of the city heavily.

 

Those, lucky enough to be indoors, sighed in relief at their better judgement of not venturing out.

 

An old woman sat near the window, in just another apartment in Mumbai, quoting musingly, “Life is like rain. One must always be prepared,” while her grandchildren pondered in interest.

 

It was time for the Monsoon in Mumbai once more.


As always, if any of it made you smile, laugh, frown or giggle like a little baby, comment share and like! To be up-to-date with my other posts, give a like to my Facebook page and follow on Twitter if you use it! Any images used are either taken from Google Images or from my own personal collection or other sources which will be mentioned if and when, unless stated otherwise. Contact me if you want it removed.