I guess one of the symptoms of Covid-19 is nostalgia. It can open those old, dusty, creaky doors to your memories that you thought were no more important. As I open these doors, I realise that these are the events that shape us and make us more complete and whole. So I’m taking you back to the wackiest time of my life, the 3 years at IHM Jaipur- 2002 Batch.
Growing up I remember hearing this phrase innumerable times, “Focus on your studies now, and then you can enjoy yourself in college”. So jumping over the big hurdle called the school, I was ready for the grown-up life.
First Impressions matter a lot in College, depending on how you present yourself, whom you know or what you drive. Now you’re young and expected to act foolishly, so after being given driving lessons a few times, your parents look for the oldest and the slowest vehicle available. In my case, it was a run down Hero Honda CD 100. My brother had been using it for about 4 years and the bike was barely holding itself together. After just a couple of days with this antique bike, I had a few simple questions for my brother and this is how the conversation went:
“The horn does not work, I’ve tried everything? ” I said
My brother said: “It has not been working for the past 8 months because I don’t like noise pollution, and even you should not get it fixed.” (…wow an activist for mother earth)
“Then how do I caution people on the road?”
He replied ” Shout, wave and most of all, drive slow.”
“The indicators look new but they do not work?
He replied “It’s best to use your arm to give direction, more people can see it.”(…unbelievable… slow clap)
“Last night when I was driving, the headlight was pointing towards the trees instead of the road, and the trees looked like those very bright ones that direct you towards marriage grounds. They also ruffled a few sleeping birds.
He said “Yeah! Had a small accident last month and you should be happy it still works.”
Sometimes the only way to live a moment from the past is to remember, touch or feel the object in that moment. In this case my Hero Honda CD 100 brings back a whole year of me finding myself as I rode it all over the town. That year like an obedient brother without getting anything fixed, I rode that bike for a year or so and from just being a bike it became a friend. As if the bike had its own mind, It would not start when I would be too hungover or if I needed to stay back longer at a party. The best would be when I did not want to give a lift to someone but said yes and then the bike would not start until they had left on a auto or a bus.
However, there was this one incident which convinced me and my family to have a change of heart about a new bike. One evening as I was coming back home after visiting a friend of mine. I halted at one of the traffic lights and the front number plate flew off on the road. I got off, picked it up and stuck it right back. For the last one month it had already been giving me troubles with the ignition. So that night after hearing what had happened, it was decided that it was time for the Old bike to be replaced upon my return after 6 months to pursue my internship.
TO BE CONTINUED…
One day Covid walked into our house like an unannounced guest from a faraway land with its bag and a big smile. The dialect and language were an issue. maybe we did not understand what it said. Though when I asked how many days are you here for he just smiled and I thought not…
When your loved ones start getting infected and you lose them suddenly the gravity of the situation starts to hit you hard. Before that, it is just a number and another notification or a forward on your phone. When I saw this picture of a man in a PPE suit watching the pyres it reminded me of the burning ghat of Varanasi.
If sleeping would be a crime I would be writing this in jail. You’ll know all about it by the end of the story. A lot has happened since things were seen flying down my balcony courtesy of my 2-year-old a few months ago during the lockdown. I’ve heard and experienced terrible twos with my…