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The Mango Fixation

May 25, 2019 | By

Summer signals the advent of mangoes. And the fixation to have as many as you can accommodate – some eat, some drink, some suck on an unpeeled mango with much ado and noise.

Morning Meanderings is a musings column by Dr Santosh Bakaya. Enjoy her jottings with a hot cup of tea. 🙂

mango fixation morning meanderings

During my morning walks in the park, I come across many joggers, belonging to different clubs, recognizable by their differently colored jogging paraphernalia. Today the members of one club dressed in maroon, were talking to members of another club, who were dressed in yellow.

“Yesterday, I bought three kilos of mangoes, I could not resist the temptation, they were so cheap,” said the one wearing yellow.

“What will you do with three kilos? Your children are studying abroad,” asked another, lovingly patting his paunch, which I had noticed, seemed to be growing every day despite his regular visits to the park.

“Don’t tell me, the old lovebirds are going to gorge on these mangoes?”   This remark came from the one with the bald pate.

“Yeh to khud hi mango bana hua hai. In logon ka to jogging suit hi yellow hai.” (He himself looks like a mango, even the jogging suits of his club are yellow.) Saying this, the paunchy one laughed in self-congratulatory mirth, while the others also guffawed.

“Yes, exactly,” the man, a good sport, smiled a sheepish smile. “Actually, I bought it in a spurt of impulsive buying, because lately I had read an article on the benefits of mango-eating. It bust all myths about mangoes. It said, it reduces cholesterol, and even diabetics can have it, so I could not resist the temptation.”

“I don’t believe all this! Yoga is the best,” opined another, dashing towards a group a little further away, involved in trying out different yogic postures under the strict supervision of a robust-looking yoga instructor.

“Vegetables have become so costly, and there is a glut in mangoes. Dassehri and langda, safeda, Hafoos are flooding the markets.”
“In the wholesale market, they are selling pretty cheap.”
“Dirt cheap.”
“Yes. Every day, 80-100 trucks of mangoes are arriving in Muhana Mandi from Uttar Pradesh.”
“Oh really?”
“No wonder!”
“The very mention of the word mango sent Ghalib into raptures.”
“Yes, indeed. He was a mango lover extraordinaire. I am a mere mortal.”
“In one of his letters to his friend he lamented that now that he was sixty, he could not eat more than ten or twelve mangoes in one sitting.
mujhsey pooch, tumhey khabar kya hai,
aam key aagey neyshakar kya hai
….”
(Ask me, for what do you know. A mango is far sweeter than sugarcane….)

As the group continued talking about the fact and fixation about mangoes, a handful of green flashed past me, flew to a neem tree, and was camouflaged there.
I had caught sight of its long, pointed tail and heard its twittering calls.
“Tree-tree-tree,” it greeted me from behind the tree.
The fact of the matter was that a beautiful Green Bee-eater had me fixated.
Now, mangoes and obsessive mango-eaters held no interest for me.
The green Bee-eater had made my day.

Morning Meanderings by Dr Santosh Bakaya

But wait, there was more!
As I headed home, a particular scene brought a smile to my lips. The reclusive woman, who had burst into a spurt of giggles a couple of days back, at the prankster monkey’s pranks, was sitting in her small garden, comfortably ensconced in a chair, eating a juicy mango. As her eyes fell on me, she smiled apologetically, but continued eating unapologetically, the mango juice dribbling down her lips.

The glint in her eyes, the look of pure ecstasy on her face, the single-minded concentration with she was gorging on the yellow delicacy, was a special scene that had made my day.

Yeh sirf ‘aam’ baat nahin, kuch khaas thhi. 🙂 (Aam also means common in Hindi and this wasn’t ordinary, it was special)

(Illustration: Antara)

Watch this space for more Morning Meanderings every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. 🙂

Click to read all Morning Meanderings here.

Dr Santosh Bakaya is the author of three mystery novels for young adults, and a book of essays titled Flights From My Terrace, which was recently published as an e-book on Smashwords. Her poetic biography of Mahatma Gandhi, Ballad Of Bapu has been published by Vitasta Publishers, Delhi, India in May 2015 and has been receiving rave reviews from everywhere. Although a Political theorist, with a doctorate in political theory, it is literature which has been her first love. She was awarded the Reuel international award for language and literature 2014 for her long poem Oh Hark!, which forms part of the Significant Anthology. Many of her poems have figured in the highly commended category in Destiny Poets, a UK based website and many are part of international anthologies. Right now, she is giving the final touches to her satirical novel, tentatively titled Sanakpur Shenanigans.
All Posts of Santosh Bakaya

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3 thoughts on “The Mango Fixation

  • Taiyeb Shaikh

    Superb Morning treat for Mango lovers like me.

    From March to June we must eat Mangoes & that too only Alphonso which is popularly known as Hapus in Maharashtra. My mother used to make aamras & serve it with fresh pooris when we used to have too many mango boxes at home.

    Growing up in Bombay or Mumbai has its fun.
    Waise Aam (common) is عام in Urdu & Aam (Mango) is آم in Urdu. It’s easy to write in Urdu.

    1. Antara

      Thanks so much Taiyeb Shaikh ji for your little story… its making me feel very hungry for mangoes now. In Delhi we enjoy a variety – chausa, dassehri and langra mostly. My ancestral home is in Benaras – so the summer vacations went into gorging heavenly langras. No one can beat Banarasi langras in sweetness. They are khaas aam 😁

      And my mom-in-law used to make out of this world mango shake spiked with kaju, kishmish and a small dash of ice-cream at times.

      But I think the name “hapus” fits the aam perfectly – its the sound you make when eating the aam with its skin on….😁 I didn’t know aam (mango) is Urdu. Aamrapali got her name from one born under the mango tree.

      Aam (common in Urdu) is well known to all of us here with Diwan-e-Aam and Diwan-e-Khaas of Red Fort 😀 Thank you for sharing the Urdu words.

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