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Tinged With Pure Joy

May 2, 2019 | By

Two adorable toddlers play near their roadside shack as their mother cooks lunch on a makeshift chulha – each life has its own way of finding joy.

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

It was only 5. 30 am, but waves of heat seemed to engulf me from all sides. Yesterday’s temperature was 43 degree Celsius, the newspapers said. It must be hotter today, I thought, as I took a few cautious steps on the road, which was covered with pieces of broken
tiles, wood shavings and tiny mounds of sand and concrete on which the mongrels lounged with the air of kings perched on their precious thrones.

Another high rise building was coming up right in front of our house, and small temporary shacks had also been built to house the labourers, most of them from Jharkhand. There was a new family today.

I was absolutely riveted by the couple of toddlers playing next to their mother who had already started preparing lunch. I stopped near them. In fact, one of the purposes of my morning walk has always been to pick these moments of pure joy,  tinged with the gold of the rising sun, ordinary moments which later insinuate themselves into my ramblings or mad meanderings.

“What are you making?” I stopped near the woman who had lit the fire and put the pan on the fire.
“Masoor ki daal.”
“Okay.”
“And aloo, baingan,” she added with a smile.
“Someday I am going to have lunch with you,” I said, finding the ginger-garlic smell tantalizing.
Zaroor, madam.”

Fascinated by the antics of the toddlers, I smiled at them, and they looked curiously at me.  The elder one was a girl, not more than two years old, and the younger one a boy, less than one. The boy tried to snatch the bowl from the girl, and in the process, the liquid in the bowl fell to the ground.
And the mother started yelling at them.
“They are kids, why are you shouting at them?”
“Yeh harami hai”.
Shocked, I whirled in the direction of this new voice, to find a man who had just emerged from the shack, sleepy-eyed, and now stood with a smile on his face, looking lovingly at his kids, his expression belying the expletive he had just uttered.
I walked on, my mind in turmoil, if only I could scoop them in my arms, put them under a shower, make them put on clean clothes, feed them good and proper – if only I could do that every day… If only…

Morning Meanderings by Dr Santosh Bakaya

Morning Meanderings by Dr Santosh Bakaya

There is a meadow a little further away, many a time I had noticed a trio of ‘neel gai’ grazing there. Today, the group was right on the middle of the road, looking around quizzically.

On seeing a funny sort of a character, they stopped in their tracks, craned their necks in my direction, did not like what they saw, and walked on towards greener pastures.  For who would like to give a second look to a  morning walker, who still had sleep kinks in her eyes, and was walking as though in a trance.

I have been told that if someone ignores you, you should also ignore them, so with a toss of my head, I banished them from my mind. But those two toddlers did not leave my mind. What fate awaited them in this wicked world?

The girl and the boy fighting over a bowl of milk-less tea, slurping it away as if it was a delicacy – I felt a lump in my throat and suddenly things appeared hazy around. Something was wrong with my eyes. Watery eye syndrome, I am sure.

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

Pic courtesy: Santosh Bakaya

Click to read all Morning Meanderings here.

More to read in Morning Meanderings

So Many Books!
Our Daily Bread
The Old Man and the Dog
Thunder, Lightning and Rain

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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

3 thoughts on “Tinged With Pure Joy

  • Roshan Kaul

    Providential! Getting freshened-up in the early dawn by watching the grind of the struggling labourers in the smoky-chulha. A fitting finale for the international workers’s day–celebrated as May Day! It’s no surprise that Dr. Bakaya wants to have a heart to heart talk with the underprivileged members of the society for whose upliftment she is eveready to stay in the vanguard.

  • U Atreya Sarma

    We should try to relate, in one positive way or the other, to everyone we come across in our daily lives and it makes the air and our hearts lighter… paving the way for a better humanity… of course, only when at least a part of our reflections can translate into a concrete gesture for the needy.

    And with the increased presence and action-oriented responsiveness of the altruistic minded in the society, and lesser greed… there really need be no ad-hoc or dubious political palliatives. Empathy and cooperative action are the moral of your musings, as I see it, dear Dr Santosh Bakaya. Thanks for tagging me on FB about this piece.

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