To Be or Not To Be

A little kingdom I possess,
Where thoughts and feelings dwell;
And very hard the task I find
Of governing it well.
-- Louisa May Alcott.
...........hmmm....that more or less describes my situation !!

~A Wise Man Said~

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
-- Aristotle

Friday, December 17, 2010

Where have I been? "here only"!

Nothing much happening to speak about, except that last month I went on my first ever visit to the north of the country. Delhi, to be precise. I had been hearing a lot of tidbits about Delhi from my very close colleague (more of a friend...actually, more of a mother figure; she is an original Delhiite), and was waiting to explore the city in all its chandni-chowkiish glory! I was pleasantly surprised by the city, considering my expectations were pretty low what with being a proud Mumbaiite who thinks all other metros are a little less equal.

The weather was magnificent. I realize there is something called the weather that changes with the time of year only when I land up in a different city. For the most part, I think of the weather as either hot or rainy or both.

Next, I loved the opportunities to shop till you drop and all the gorgeous traditional work on display (especially in Delhi Haat). The bazaars themselves seem to be far more organized, as if a lot more care had gone into their making. A body could actually walk around in a bazaar without being in danger of getting run over. The street side shopping in Mumbai is literally a street side affair. You have a road where vehicles pass as they usually or unusually do in Mumbai, and on the sides you have the shops. Contrarily, here you had a vast area called a market where vehicles couldn’t even enter. The markets themselves were huge, going on and on with no particular end in sight, just like a woman’s shopping appetite.

Then there was the famous "chaat". I had heard and seen (on TV) so much about Delhi’s chaat, that come lunch time, I was all for having some "chaat". "Dahi Bhalla" seemed like an interesting choice to me and that’s what I had. Yummy, yes. The bhalla was nothing other than what we call "wada" here and down south in my native Mangalore they call it "ambade". What concoctions went into making this Dahi Bhalla, I don’t know, but it was tasty, though probably not something I would die for. Some time later I tried a different variety of Bhalla but it tasted pretty much the same. Maybe I didn’t go to the proper joints for this stuff, but there was just so much time and so much to do.

What I really, really enjoyed was the cycle rickshaw ride! In the mildly chilly weather, sitting atop the rickshaw, gazing at the lights and sounds of the Lajpat Nagar market close by, chugging along the street full of animated faces below and a smiling moon above, it was an experience I can't say I have often in Mumbai...

With Christmas in the offing, and for a change, the weather in Mumbai getting pleasanter and pleasanter, I am filled with an impending sense of joy (I know, usually one says impending sense of gloom!). I guess it's something to do with this time, this season, this whole atmosphere of waiting for the big day or "advent" as they call it, the technical term for preparing in anticipation of Christ's birthday. I wish I could capture this sense of joy forever because He is there among us, all the time, and this preparation is just a reminder, a reminder of His coming and being with us… with these thoughts, I would love to wish everyone a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS...may this Christmas fill your life with good cheer, joy, love, health …and all those gifts that make life really worth living!