Thursday, January 31, 2008

Nostalgia

For all my friends who’ve had more than many silent excruciating moments in the face of my continuous ranting about missing Maharashtra………….another ranting!
This time though, it’s about how much I missed my home while I wa
s there. This is a side of the story hardly any of you would have heard...


Nostalgia- Missing my land


- Bisleri started promoting its mineral water with the advertisement-“I’m going back home to the mountains and lakes”. But I wasn’t going back home to the Shiwaliks and the Sukhna Lake of Chandigarh. I was stuck with the crooked edge of the Western Ghats and the Bhigwan Lake. Even the migratory birds at the lake were fortunate enough to go to their homeland every season.
- I had to forego my dear habit of leaving my second button unfastened after entering the plant, my work required me to be held up with queer people on queerer locations and in the queerest of positions; so to not add to the queer tale implied that I keep myself well-buttoned up. As a boyfriend of mine phrased it-“The undone second button on your shirt was mercilessly pushed into extinction”.
- Every time I came back to Bhigwan from a vacation at home, I’d enter my room and the room would smell different from what it did when I left it, so I’d tell myself that the room’s forgotten my smell, and so will Bhigwan, it’s time to go. And I’d live the following few days essentially construing the change of smell as an omen for me to be leaving for home.
- Friday lunches at my mess used to be punctuated with a sweet dish. Unfortunately, the cook would never remember to spare a share for me before adding cardamom to it. It took a lot of Friday lunches with sweetened curd as a substitute for sweet dish and a lot of “sweet-talking” with the kitchen staff before this feat was achieved. I missed home where not just my parents but all my relatives had registered my dislike for cardamom and always saved me a share of “cardamom-free” sweets.
- The season of mangoes arrived and I thought that the season would pass without my Mom’s mango shakes!
- In the loud drone of Temples, I missed the peace and quiet of Gurudwaras.
- So used to I had been to calling out to my brother whenever I felt technologically impaired, I knew my “helpdesk” was just a holler away. In Bhigwan, technical help implied using up a hard-worked- Compensatory Off leave for a trip to Pune’s interiors to find an HP service center. I missed my “whiz-kid” lil bros and his free services.
- Every time I had to fish into my pocket for buying a book, I missed my State Library, Chandigarh that offered me so much without any “bills” attached to the transactions of literature.
- I had two Punjabi songs in my laptop and I would listen to them over and over again in an attempt to stay in touch with my language,I’d read my holy text in Punjabi in an attempt to not forget how to read and write Punjabi. I craved for the slightest excerpts of Punjabi, writings on Trucks, some words in the language of some Haryanvis I knew there or in the Dogri of one of our cooks there…
- In the year that I spent there I must have changed my phone number times enough to be labeled-“promiscuous even with numbers”, all because I did not have a Maharashtrian ID proof. I had phone numbers in the names of my colleagues, friends, relatives of friends, friends of relatives, colleagues of relatives, colleagues of friends,,,well, you get the picture. And every time the service provider found out the same, my connection would go kaput in minute’s time. Punjab was so friendly and convenient, I could have had n number of connections in n people’s names, but all that I wanted in Bhigwan was ONE phone line that wouldn’t betray me anytime I wanted to connect to my land, but Maharashtra wouldn’t allow that.
- Every visit to Bhigwan was marked with an unnerving “transportation” issue. Relying on the company’s transport implied either rushing up activities to an uncomfortable pace in the hope of catching the college bus or wiling away time at some uncomfortable spot in Bhigwan waiting for the market bus. I missed the convenience of my PB 02 0822 apart from the car itself.
- On the eve of Gurupurab, I rejoiced alone with a singular “deepak” in my balcony.


This shall of course, much to my friends disappointment be followed up with a write-up about how much I miss Maharashtra (It’s only but fair!). :)

12 comments:

Somsubhro Chaudhuri said...

I truly understand your craving for your 'homeland'. So many problems, all at once are difficult to handle.. But sometimes, if the food is good, all the other problems seem to disappear.. Seeing that you had trouble in that field also, I couldn't sympathize more.. Good non-vegetarian food always lifts the spirit up..
Looking forward to your post on you missing 'Bhigwan' (I hope I spelled it correctly).

Anchita said...

Makes me nostalgic too...nt just about the land...but more about those times....where I saw you coping up with a difficult life n nt just coping up.....loving it too !!!

Stay that way always.... :-)

Dhaval said...

when we meet i always found you full of energy and confidence .your co. is around 25/30 km from baramati
the office and company main gate distance is about 11/2 KM or so.
the co. is around 5/6 KM from from bhigwan on a lonely highway. it is very difficult for anybody living in company campus to
to have freedom to travel at will . but you didn't show any sign of it. i offen quotes you when someone complains about
travelling mess and other hardship they face living far from home.
all said one's home is always sweethome.
i will quote a famous marathi poem by veer savarkar written in england.
(He asks Sea to take him to india as he was longing for motherland)

"ne majasi ne parat matrubhomi la,
sagara pran talamala sagara"

i suppose you would have picked few marathi words

Bonny said...

In case you are struggling with Gurgaon's chaotic traffic on under-construction roads.. here's a TIP: If you are visiting malls, Never park your car in their basement parking.. infact dunn even drive till that road.. simply park your car in any of those adjoining residential colonies and walk down wherever your want to. This made my life a little simpler!! :P

S said...

Do you miss the Cheesecakes at Bandra? :)

Jasmine said...

@S,
I most terribly do...

@Bonny,
The best help for Gurgaon is getting outa that city to a place untouched by even whiffs of it!

@ Dhaval,
I'm deeply touched...

@Anchita,
Yes,and so much more,there could be post about missing you,hmmm...

@Somsubhro,
Yes you spelt it right.:)

i spoke to you last night.... said...

Nostalgia in and of itself is a hollow thing. We all have childhoods, and look back upon them with a particular sharp feeling in our guts. Time can be cruel and plays cruel tricks on the memory, making often the good better and the bad vanish altogether. I desired the ‘flashest’, ‘bestest’, ‘goodest’, ‘wonderfullest’ toys available, and solidly expected it to be bought for me by my folks; and some of my relatives I dreaded to spend five minutes with, let alone a week or two.
Which is not to say that my nostalgia is disingenuous or vain or merely silly; my longing springs from many wells, some from merely missing those dead and gone, some from wanting to be a boy again(fuck yeah!), some from a sense of powerlessness…..

For I have never experienced nostalgia for my homeland, I found this really moving.

Knowing you, and your love for bhigwan, I have something for you.

There is a Portuguese word, “Saudade”, for a feeling of longing for something that one is fond of, who is gone, but might return in a distant future. It often carries a fatalist tone and a repressed knowledge that the object of longing might really never return.

Lets see how you interpret and use this.

Jasmine said...

@I spoke to you last night,

Do I speak to you every night?:)
"Thank you"

@All,
this posted has generated the most heart warming response yet...
"Nostalgia"...

xt@$y-13 said...

hey can truely get what ur ranting about...i have a reverse syndrome going on for me... i miss bombay .. the smell of fisheries in the morning, the cool breeze in the evenin, the pint on my ledge girls going "thats so down market" i miss it all... now all my actions are directed tryin to go back to that sweet place people call city of god

Prashant S said...

I gone through your blog ...i accept some issues
but i found some are baseless.

When we are not our hometown we cant expect everything as expected in our hometown or house.

Only thing we need to understand is that we should get acquainted with envirnment and move on life.

Finally we should compare apple with apple not apple with tomato.

Anonymous said...

zasmine-circa-me.blogspot.com; You saved my day again.

Jasmine said...

@ Anonymous,I'm glad...