But, is it nothing to know when you are dying, when you are about to take leave of this world, of its joys and sorrows, when the past of your life is unfurled before you, when eternity opens wide its portals, is it nothing to know at that last awful,supreme moment of your lives, that you have not lived in vain, that you have lived for the benefit of others, that you have lived to help in the cause of your country's regeneration?

-Surendranath Banerjea

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Reality

It was around 19.15. And the bus was screeching to halt near the Mysore bank. My train was at 21.40,that was if IST meant Indian Standard Time and not Indian Stretchable Time.

Gone were the days when I could cover 50km in an hour. Gone were the days of 5th gear and 60kmph. And a safe margin of 2hrs had to be ensured if you were to be prompt somewhere. Vehicles in Bangalore were meant to be driven in 1st or 2nd gear,rest of them were all state of the art fantasies never to be used in real life. There would be a traffic signal in every furlong and if you are lucky enough,the signal turns red just as you approach the junction. You anticipate all that, and you start the journey well in advance only to find all the lucky stars shining in favor of you to turn everything green. Go Green,be that's to save earth or to see heaven! Hence you reach your destination well in advance only to find that you have the time to attend a 10km Marathon and still make it to your train.

This was one such day.And i looked at myself and told,"How lucky you are,now that you can sit and count the stars for the 2.5hrs".

If not for the Rava Dosa at Adigas,which I so ardently crave for the entire week,I may not get down at Mysore Bank and walk upto 2km to the railway station. But yes, the Dosa is worth the hassle.

The way upto the railway station is interesting. I should not perhaps call it interesting if i should be anything but a sadist,but you get the whiff of the real world.The real real world. The prostitutes,who line up near the posts en-route Majestic, under the bridge, in the subway, in the bus stand,wherever you turn to,in the kind of attire that imposes the fancy line,'one cleavage two tits', with their care-taker pimps taking care of which XY talks to them. The street vendors who sell anything ranging from cheap watches to local perfumes. The handicapped beggars who were forcibly handicapped to be marketed for sympathy. The porters who carry more than what they can only to trip every now and then. Kids who wipe the dirt off the hotel rooms at an age when they have to be dirtying their uniforms in the school.The local food stalls which remind you that 'it's the money that inculcates the sense of hygiene'.The people who sleep anywhere on the streets, the platforms,with the stray dogs.The Hijaras who come begging and robbing.

It all reminds me of the blessings i'm bestowed upon.The warm embrace of the family. The luxurious affection of friends. The cron job that refills my account every month end. The hot running water. The 3 meals a day. The books. What not. What more can i ask Him after seeing all these people,who go to any extent to make their ends meet? I may not be loving my job, but i love the fact that i have a job which keeps me away from begging or robbing or stripping to make a living.

Khuda Hafiz