Monday, May 09, 2011

Off to Kerala for a Weeeeek! How Travelling Was Then!

Pardon the misdemeanor in the "Weeeek!" above, a bit carried away because today I am embarking on my annual holiday to "God's Own Country." One thing that promoting Kerala as a tourist destination by Amitabh Kant was that people in the north came to know there is a state known as "Kerala" in India. Otherwise the entire south was "Madras" and whoever came from this region was a "Madrassi." Hm. I hear that Amitabh Kant who first launched the "God's Own Country" campaign when he was secretary of tourism in Kerala has moved on to the CEO of Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation. Good for him. He is a good and dynamic public administrator and we need more people like him. 

Just finished packing and was checking the PNR number to see if the reservation has moved from Reservation Against Cancellation (RAC) to confirmed, when I thought about blogging this. No, it hasn't. But at least I can travel. Tickets are hard to get in the summer holiday season. Wifey has a slight fever and that's a worry. 

While packing I remembered the days when from our little flat in Chembur - after the final exams were done - we would pack and wait eagerly for the taxi to take us to Dadar station or Victoria Terminus from where we would entrain to Kerala. Our friends would gather around us as we would be missing each other for a month at least (Alas! these days holidays are only for a week!). There would be joy when the taxi arrived and we would take a ride in a taxi (a luxury then) to the station where the sound of the porters and the engines warming up, the clatter of rails, the anxious people on the platform, the announcements, would be so much different from our daily routines that we would be all agog at what was going to happen. Would we get a seat? Will the train leave without us? Would this metal snake really take us thousands of kilometres to our beautiful land, all that. There was a joy in returning home. The joy of the migrant which only he knows. 

Kerala held a different joy altogether. Summer was the time mangoes and jackfruit ripened. Also cashew fruit and pineapple, and our house was a cornucopia (at least, I imagine so) of these things. For us famished city children this was like a feast of summer. Then there was the endless playing of cricket and football with improvised balls made from palm fronds. Marble games too. Those were the daze!

Wifey is calling. So I have to go. No time for childhood reveries. Bye till the next post from Kerala!


Aragorn said...

Visiting your site for t first time Sir. Very curious to know you being a writer myself. Though iam yet to be publicly recognized as a writer, i spend my time writing articles in my blog.

Hope to catch up with you once you come back from your vacation. Until then, wishing you a wonderful fun filled vacation.

Warm regards,

Prashant Sree

ms said...

your post reminds me of an epic journey with my family when i was ten. from fatehgarh to hyderabad by train, two nights and a day. winter where we began the journey and summer where we reached. meals were homecooked, clay "surahi" with water my father filled at every stop, hot tea in clay "kulhad" tumblers which we gleefully smashed against the tracks, conversations with fellow travellers we never met again. completely isolated from family and friends till we completed the journey. these days, mobiles ring through the night, laptops cast blue glows from most berths and no one is interested in the people around! kerala sounds like fun, hope to see it someday. happy hols, john.