Thursday, March 16, 2006

Admitting it is the first step

I’m waiting on an isolated road, next to a car that sputtered, spat, and broke down. My friend has gone somewhere to search for a spanner, a spare tyre, car oil, a mechanic, or whatever else is required to get the car moving.

There’s a plateau ahead that looks like it hasn’t seen human footprints since a couple of eons. It’s getting dark and chilly. Behind some shrubbery, I see something glinting. I hope whatever it is that pierces the darkness of the plains doesn’t belong to an animal.

I look around. I can’t make out which direction my friend headed. Shuffling around here and there does me no good. I settle down to listen to the breeze and watch sand shift silently around rocks.

A little later, I hear voices.

Ladki’, (Girl)

Kidhar?’, (Where?)

Arrey udhar…goggles nikaal re…raat ko kya pehenta hai!’ (There! And take off your goggles. Why are you wearing them at night?)

I’m a little annoyed. That’s how you point out bears in a zoo, not a girl on a road.

The guy with the goggles says, with a hint of admiration, ‘Itni raat ko ladki…akeli vo bhi..daring hai usme..’ (A girl..so late at night…she ‘has’ daring.)

In and around Mumbai, and I think only in and around Mumbai, ‘daring’ is what a person has, rather than what a person is. Grammatically incorrect but essentially true.

Kya daring…kaam to kuch rehtaa nahin…aa jaate hain…Ladka gaya hoga kidhar khaana peena laane. Kal ko office jaayega..yeh ladki ka kya. Ghar rahegi, T.V. dekhegi.’

(What ‘daring?’ Doesn’t have any work…The boy must have gone somewhere to get food and drinks. He will go to office tomorrow. This girl will just stay home and watch T.V.)

The voice seemed to have been hardened by experience.

I turn around to see a small makeshift place that probably pumps air in tyres, plays old Hindi songs, and serves endless cups of teas to woeful patrons. A cantankerous man dusts an old, faded sign. The sign says: ‘MCP Shop’.

It is indeed a rare man who knows himself.

13 comments:

Blythes Spyryt said...

That is really bizarre...the MCP sign I mean :))...its quite quite rare!

DewdropDream said...

Brilliant!!! btw... how would you react if you fell into conversation with a proclaimed MCP???

slew said...

i hate the word 'eon'.
i don't know why.

~Sen~ said...

eh.... MCP?? What's that? something specific to you bombaiyyah's kya? :(

okay, now don't go "arey yeh MCP nahiiii jaantaaa!!" like the one for Orient PSPO fans >:(

~Sen~ said...

and ohh... what I'm listening to? eh... abbhi bole to Pearl Jam's Do the Evolution
and haan....removed my main blog from profile listing... a prof visited my poetry blog, told me he liked... but c'mon, I dun want him to chance upon my personal blog for God's sake..ughhhh ! He'll come to know I have soooooo much time to waste ;D
he he... neways,now access thru url.. alwayslostseldomfound.blogspot
ciao

doubtinggaurav said...

MCP == Municipal Commissioner of Pune ??

sinusoidally said...

MCP = Male chauvinistic pig.

Time spent in DU, though years ago, has left me with at least one piece of valuable information!

~Sen~ said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
~Sen~ said...

awwww... so that's what is MCP.
I'm like, what, a decade behind the world it seems :/

New Dik On The Blog said...

How do you manage to get into such situations, so often?

doubtinggaurav said...

"How do you manage to get into such situations, so often? "

Exactly !

MCP == Most cerebral prodigy ??

Mukta said...

Hi all,

1. MCP stood for Manish..something Patkar...but it was pretty befitting, i thought.

2. To how I get myself in such situations - I try. hee hee!

3. Why hate 'eon'? What about 'neon'? or 'peon?' I don't like the word, 'cereal'.

4. Sen, your prof has a blog?

slew said...

for how much time do questions on past entries stay valid and answerable?

peon, neon, cereal are all strictly ok and not particulary great.

not super_sexy, like mandible or eclectic or ion.

so there.