April 20th, 2011


Words in a huddle, sorry, puddle, sorry, muddle....

On the cycling mailng list I belong to, we are having a discussion about how "peddle" is often being used instead of "pedal"...so here's my usual erudite, serious contribution:

When on your cycle, your wares you pedal,
Make sure you get around fast.... step on the peddle.
If you find two cyclists fighting, don't medal;
You don't want to win a posthumous bravery meddle.
While cycling, be careful to avoid deep poodles;
Avoid, too, each nasty biting pet puddle.
...I hope I've got all your words in a muddle!

Unexpected Scrap from the Distant Past....

This morning, KM suddenly took out a disintegrating scrap of paper from his wallet and said, "Write this down for me on a stronger piece of paper."

I looked at it...and was surprised to see my mother's handwriting, in Hindi, with the Tamizh translation of the song (dukhiyArE nainA), on the tattered scrap. "Why do you want this written down, I don't even know the song!" I told him. "Song?" he said. "I gave you a paper on which you had written Hanuman Chalisa."

"This is NOT my handwriting, it's my mother's." "No, it's yours." "No, it's NOT."

It took me a while before he would actually look at the scrap of paper and realize that words such as "rAtEin" and "bArAtEin" (meaning "nights", and "wedding processions") would not occur in Hanuman Chalisa, and that it was, indeed, my mother's handwriting.

Here it is:

dukhiya re naina 200411

How did this scrap come to be in KM's wallet (a recent acquisition) ? I have no clue. But I do remember my mother, in my childhood, sending by post to many relatives, the lyrics of hit Hindi movie songs, with their translations...she was indefatigable in this effort. Took me back to the days in Lansdowne Road (or 200, Sarat Bose Road, as it is called now)...the large building, owned by a lawyer called Burman then.... still stands...I saw it in December 2009.

So...I photographed it, as the best way to preserve it....here it is... a sudden quirky event that brought back the past to me!

You can hear the song here:

Wonderful that this scrap of paper came into my hands when I have the technology to instantly bring up the song for both myself and for others....

The video shows various film heroines in sad scenes... Madhubala, Nargis, Vyjanthimala, Nargis again, and the last one is Sadhana (thanks Shalini!)