June 04, 2009

...and when it rains...

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 It rained here today, a roguish rain that didn't want to pour but didn't want to merely drizzle and die!

It guffawed and gleamed and set in the wind to come swooshing behind my ears and sing in dulcet tones of every rain I'd lived through before and remembered.

Trivandrum. Around 1995
A trip to Veli beach. Gray sandy beach, a gray sky to match with. And an endless Arabian sea. Rain. In little soft drops, like the ending notes of music...a trace of zari at the skirt ends of pretty little running girls! Green and brown coconut trees swaying to the music of the wind...

Lonavala 1997. Train.
A long winding train. Playing hide and seek with caves. 'Taal' playing in my old green Walkman. Rain. Mountains that touched the sky providing a backdrop. Strangers-all of us in the bay- but sharing a common few seconds, staring out of the window at those gray clouds and mighty mountains and the lush green. Somewhere near Lonavala, when the chikkis came to haunt, there was a picture perfect moment. The image- still fresh in my mind.

Bombay. 1997.
Shopping for shoes near Matunga with an aunt. Braving the crowds, battling the slush. Drenched from head to toe. The howling winds freezing us to the marrow. And the first-and self-imposed last- of a high-heeled sandal!

July 2007. Delhi
India Gate. Long sticks with swirls of shocking-pink cotton candy stuck on them. Two sticks for me-one for each hand- to feed my greedy mouth. Eating in turns. Steaming biriyani, sitting on the lawns.
Rain...
One plastic ball. Football in the rain. Seniors. Juniors. Friends. Foes. In unison. My sandal comes off my feet- a new football for them. Funny scuffles to get them back on to my feet.
Photographs from beneath umbrellas- as if taking something from the rain in stealth. Happy faces.

Marudamalai, Coimbatore. 2007.
Hill top. Swirling skirts of women's sarees. Dupattas wanting to fly off in the wind. Family. Importantly, cousins!
Cloudy skies. Wrathful winds. A divine presence hovering about- that which I can't see or feel inside the sanctum sanctorum. I look up at the sky. Power. Might. Bhakthi.
A wind strong enough to lift us up and throw us into nothingness. A quick urge to let go of the little childish hand that grasps my hand to leave everything and dare the wind to whisk me away.
A cave. A sanctuary for a sage. A strange story. Visions of voodoo. Mysticism. Vermillion, ash and turmeric. Big round beady-black eyes. Fat red beads. Tongues red. Eerie.
Mild rain. Soothing. Calming. making me believe once again...
And a taxi ride home...

Okkiyam. 2007-08
A rickety green Madras local bus. Half past seven in the morning. Window seat. Endless Old Mahabalipuram road. Trees with airy needle-like leaves. People waking up from slumber. Gray blue skies. A sheet of rain. Skies that look like they hold within a deep secret.
Somewhere, humanity must have had a whisker of a chance at unraveling the deep mysteries of the universe that day. A beautiful house...and suddenly... the Okkiyam Lake. A faeryland. Druids and pixies and brownies morphing themselves into tall trees and forming a circlet of vigil around the lake...like a crown on the crest of the head. Such perfect beauty. Tears in my eyes.

My Balcony. 2008
Inky blue night. Some unworldly guests to the heavens above earth. The skies were decked up with a gloss unsurpassed by anything before. And suddenly, it rains. Feet propped up on the balcony sill. A plastic chair puffed up with pillows. Music in the ears. Loud singing-along session, tossing off all worldly cares and societal stares. Bliss. Freedom. Expression. Relief.

Yercaud. 2008
Nine in the night. Wild bison on the prowl. A brave taxi driver and a brave guide to escort one suddenly brave and reckless family of four. Mother.Father.Sister. Me.
Pitch darkness. Pagoda Point. Stones placed on one another like an Indian Stonehenge of sorts. Drizzle. Lightening. Thunder. Glimpses of a faraway temple. Light shimmering like jewels from the valley below. Scary. Humbling. Brave. Brilliant. A moment worth dying for.

My Balcony. Today.
A bowl of mango-banana fruit salad soaked in creamy milk and served chilled. Wondrous music played to suit the mood, by a kindred spirited sister. Rain falling...pattering...pelting...and pouring!!!
On my eyes... on my cheek...on the bridge of my beaky nose...caressing...teasing...taunting...playing...
Wind howling around. Reminding me of every rainy day I've lived through...

9 comments

uma said...

it was too good sandy..some of the lines were really beautiful..i felt every moment of yours through your words!!!!

legspace said...

I LUBBIT LUBBIT!!!one of ur bestest!

Dhruv said...

I have 4 blogs of my own, that I am repeatedly reassured, by you-know-who, are more than just worth a watch! :-X Not one finds room on that %^***&%&^$#@# blog roll! :-X

Ramya said...

Somehow, magically my ipod belts out all mazhai related songs when it rains outside!

Aprilslady said...

Such days get themselves etched in a special place in our memories. I am sure they will continue to haunt you when you are intently listening to a lecture at NID :)

Pavithra Varadharajan said...

Hey sandy!,......girl u inspire me !...
just loved this one.....hope u are working on that book u want to write..... trust me it'll be a "bestseller"........
Have been following your blog for a while now....pls add me to your fan's list ....
all the best at nID.... am soooooo happy for u
am proud of u sis :)

Pavithra Varadharajan said...

Hey sandy! girl u inspire me......
have been following your blog for a while now.....I loved this one in particular......
hope you are working on that book you want to write......trust me it'll make the bestsellers list :)
all the very best at nid:)
am very happy for u.....
love u sis

ani_aset said...

aah u missed mumbai rains in 2005,06 :P...nice snap

Bala said...

Hey Sandhya,

Gud post!

BTW, ur post has brough back my memories of Maruthamalai.. so should say thans for u...

And hope u would have enjoyed the sight of the city from the hill top... It's a beautiful scenery indeed..

Just landed in ur blog by chance.. but feel glad for it..

keep writing!

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Maira Gall