Thursday, December 20, 2007

Here we come a carolling....

A year ago I had posted this:

Today I write about another miracle that happened on similar lines. Those of you living in TN or in the capital Chennai will know the effects of the depression off the coast the last two days. It was pouring cats, dogs, monkeys, donkeys, partridges… er I think you got the general idea. It was pouring so much that it looked like we would have a wet Christmas.

Yesterday was the day when my gang planned to go Carol singing, despite the fact that a minority of us had to report to work today. Anyway the showers were so heavy that the roads were flooded and many houses had the electricity supply suspended to avoid electrocution mishaps. Things looked very bleak with a few parents pulling their kids out of the carol rounds citing the inclement weather.

Gamely we went ahead with faith in God and the experiences of the years past. We were sufficiently shielded from the elements with raincoats and umbrellas but after a short while we realized that we would not have any need for it. The rain stopped and we went caroling without any problems. At 2 Am when we wound up the rounds and as I parked my car in the shed I was drenched by the rains that chose to start up again!!!! Thank you

PS: Some carol cartoons that I found very funny, enjoy!!!!!

Merry Christmas everybody!!!!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Wedding wonderings

Had been to a wedding last Friday. It was a mixed Hindu wedding with a Bengali groom and a Tamil bride. So with high expectations of good food, D and I went for the wedding. The auspicious time or muhurat was between 5PM and 7 PM a novelty by itself as it is customary that people get married in the early hours of the day after having a reception the previous evening.

I have always found this puzzling, why have a reception when the couple are yet unwed? Whatever be the reason weddings here are so boring it ends up becoming a chore unless you are actually getting wedded when you have no escape. Here it is a simple meet, greet, eat, beat (it) process where the anxious guests sit on tenterhooks waiting for the usually delayed arrival of the couple. People growing up on a diet of weddings from the Rajshri stable or from the many never- ending “saas bahu” soaps may have different ideas of weddings. But the reality here is harsh. Weddings seem have a big disconnect and very often there is no bonding between the guests and the family. It is often a chore of reciprocity since one would have invited the other earlier. Often gifts are recycled and great care is taken to ensure that the gift will equal in price to what has been gifted earlier by the person inviting. Often loud unsavoury music the kind you would normally see played on the final journeys find place in such weddings.

Coming back to my story this wedding did not deviate from the usual, though the groom looked very interesting in a curious white pointed headgear and the bride looking resplendent in her red sari and with so ornament that kept her face well hidden. The priest fully clothed (a first for me) was having a private discussion with the bridal couple and the crowd having lost track of the proceedings engaged in private gossips. D asked an observer nearby if the actual wedding was over, he replied with a shrug that he was absolutely clueless and it seemed ages since the three got on stage and he was also trying to interpret the goings on. The soft notes of a shenai from a music player added to the mystery. Our Catholic weddings of late (if the wedding rites are in English) tend to dispel the mysteries by printing booklets with the entire script in black and white so that at least people know what is going on. Maybe others can try something like that or at least have a volunteer with cue cards telling us when to smile, clap, bless etc..

Finally we were woken out of our reverie by a sudden noise that sounded like a tribal war cry, we looked up to see the mother of the bride wagging her tongue viciously and making the above mentioned. That was the sign that the wedding was officially over. Then we sat down to await the bridal couple to get onstage after the customary change of clothes. The wait seemed endless and many of the guests ended up handing over the gifts to the mother of the groom and rushed to eat. Many of these guests never returned. Eventually the couple returned to a nearly empty hall. We greeted and made our hasty exit as it was already late. The food was a disappointment as it was neither here nor there (Bengali not Tamil) and tasted equally confusing. The only remote Bengali connection was a dry rosogolla or a look alike.

Weddings are getting more and more ostentatious and more
extravagant but somewhere down the line I believe that
people tend to forget that we meet not to just greet or eat
but to bless the newly weds for the journey ahead.

The situation tends to worsen when there are parties involved where the couple is completely forgotten while the guest have a gala time often drinking and dancing the night away.

They are calling it the people dance

After reading this post you may wonder what I am trying to tell you, if at your next wedding you pause a moment and offer a simple prayer for the newly weds, I am not telling you anything more.

PS: Our evening turned horrific when we realized that 3 out of 4 tyres of my car were deflated by some residents of the street who did not like any visitors parking outside their homes!!!! After a harrowing experience we finally reached home near midnight thanks to TVS service which dispatched mechanics to our aid promptly.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Random thoughts

It’s been awhile since I last posted. Lately it’s been those days when life has been standardized to a robotic routine. Wake up late, hit the washroom, gobble your food and dash to work, run around town hopelessly looking for business, routine boss blasting and boss bashing, meals in between and back home rather late after squeezing in a few choir practices or some extracurricular activity before a late crash into bed. Days pass by with such monotony that weekends and weekdays have blurred into insignificance as on my last sat off my boss hauled me out of home and sent me to office simply because he was bored and had nothing else to do.

With Christmas around the corner add more activities to the list a night mass and carol concert to be prepared for, (one big concert in Fort St. George was successfully completed last night to a tumultuous applause) carol rounds looming ahead (scary since we end our rounds late and work beckons the next day), shopping, more shopping, decoration etc etc.

With this blur of activity I suddenly look back and see that time has just flown by. So much has happened and so much happens every day. I long for those days in school and college when Christmas holidays were longed for after the half yearly or semester exams. Those were the days!!!!

Anyway a few things happened in this blur of activities that kept nagging at the corner of my mind and so I write this post.

Came upon this article when I was reading the news online:

And when I went to Anna University to pick up D
I happened to see many such simian friends
exploring the university grounds. Made me wonder if they would be better served inside the classrooms than outside?

In a related vein my car is often a cozy siesta spot for many dogs that sleep under it every time I park it near office. But each time I open the door they scamper away knowing that I need to take my car. I never have to wake them up, worse as some morons do search for a stone or stick. The animals understand that if they do not move they are likely to get injured. Cut to a scene outside a bakery in Annanagar. I was about to back my car out when I found an Esteem double parked so I asked the driver to move his car, despite it being so glaringly obvious. Then after checking that the path was clear I was reversing my car when suddenly I heard a thump. I looked back where my previously clear path was blocked by a large woman. She was waiting for her car parked nearby to be backed out and just happens to backpedal into an already reversing car. The other car was driven by an outrageously ugly woman who looked straight out of a horror movie and when she opened her mouth to spew abuses my theory was corrected to being straight out of some corporation sewer.

I wanted to apologize to the victim, though I was not obliged to considering she fell on my car but when this vamp spewed poison I just drove away contemplating a new reason why dogs are considered man’s best friend.

The next time people use brains its not they are smart its because its just an animal instinct.