Waking up in
is one of the most beautiful experiences. I have always tried to be an early riser with varying success results. Now that I am in India and heavily jet lagged, I can’t help but be up in these "unearthly" hours and notice what I never bothered to see before. I look out of my balcony (it is not called patio in this part of the world), I see so many things waking up and getting alive at about the same time, ready to see another day. India
It is 5-15 am and the first sounds I notice are those of Salah from a nearby mosque. And as if Gods are trying to prove their unity in diversity, I hear the temple close by starting the morning bhajans as well. Which makes me wonder how many families around me must already be up and ready for their first prayers of the day? I see at least 5-6 houses having at least one light on. Yeah, you get those sorts of views from the balcony. I am pretty sure there must be a few where a young man/woman is trying to study for an Engineering or Medical entrance exam. I remember how my mom used to make me a fresh cup of ginger tea every morning without fail just so that she could see me become an Engineer one day. The result of her efforts – I became an Engineer and a long time caffeine addict. She has of course now stopped debating the utility and futility of it all.
The other active lots are paper wale bhaiyya, newspaper delivery men. Our newspaper is delivered sharp at 5-30 AM. In about an hour, my dad will be skimming through it with utmost concentration with mom made ginger tea in one hand. It is still pretty dark outside, but the street lights have been shut off. And I wonder how hard these delivery men work just so that people like me and my kind stay educated. I also wonder, if they really know what they are delivering. Sometimes it is a sad world out there that they bring to my dad’s hands every morning.
And then there are some smells which you can never smell in any other part of the world, me thinks. It is the smell of morning dew. It immediately takes me back to my school days. I used to get up at sharp 5-45 AM to catch the 6-30 bus to school. Of course we did not have mobile phone alarms in those days. My dad would wake me up. And the way he used to do it, every other child in every other home in our community would be up! Because I am sure he must have been in military some lifetime and he has still retained his voice! But now my dad has gone quite. He does not have to wake up anyone. The voice is still there, but all the kids have now grown up. No one needs to catch the 6-30 bus anymore.
Soon enough the honking of milkman and auto rickshaws becomes louder. You know, honking is not a bad thing in
. It is just a means of making your presence felt in this vast ocean of humanity. And sometimes it works as an alarm too! India
It is time for me to make a fresh brew of tea. Dad and I will have it – he will read the main newspaper and I will skim through the supplements. The world is normal again, if only for another 15 days!