India is unique country as it has so many languages. Unity in diversity is India’s strength. Yet citizens always face some embarrassing moments when they travel from one state to another. I got a nostalgic memory when I came to Delhi 35 years ago without knowing its local lanugage ‘Hindi’.
When I joined my office, I was completely startled to see such a situation where everyone was talking in Hindi, cracking jokes in Hindi, exchanging greetings in Hindi. When they were talking about me I was not knowing whether they were appreciating me or abusing me. From that moment on wards I started working as a ‘Robot’ doing my work without communicating to anybody.
After having seen my trouble, my colleagues started speaking to me in English. Even office peons after having seen my agony tried their best to convey their feelings to me in a broken English. So in office I had managed somehow to pull on, but outside I still struggled a lot to manage without Hindi. As people of Delhi tend to reply to you only in Hindi no matter in what language the question is asked !
Once I told my friend that I am finding it difficult to board Delhi Transport Corporation(DTC) bus, as the conductor asks too many questions which I don’t understand. To reduce my problem little bit, my friend advised me that whenever you board a DTC bus ask the conductor a ticket by tendering the exact coins for the destination. So the conductor would give the ticket and would not ask any questions. According to his advice, when I boarded a DTC bus asked the conductor a ticket by tendering the exact fare. But to my shock, the conductor asked me in hindi ‘Kahan Jana Hai ?(Where you want to go?). Since I was not prepared for the question I started blinking. But fortunately one of my fellow passenger who happened to be a Tamilian came to my rescue and saved me from embarrassment.
Red Fort is a historic fort in the city of Delhi in India. It was the main residence of the emperors of the Mughal dynasty for nearly 200 years, until 1856. Every 15th August Delhi’s Red Fort comes to the lime light as the Prime Minister of India address the nation on Independence Day.
The tradition continues from the first Independence Day on 15th August 1947 by first Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru hoisted the national flag and made a historic speech ‘tryst with destiny’. India celebrated its 72nd Independence Day and the present Prime Minister Narendra Modi hoisted the national flag.
On this day the Red Fort turned into a high security zone and even birds will think twice to fly over this place. Red Fort unique structure and stands tall reminding Delhi’s rich history and very appropriate place for this great function. The whole area including Jamma Masjid and Chandini chowk gives a perfect ambiance to the function.
Soldiers from Army, Air Force and Navy, NCC cadets and school children in tricolour dress add glory to the whole atmosphere. It is high tradition that all the former Prime Ministers, Ministers, opposition leaders,top bureaucrats attend the function without fail. We can see the flourishing Indian democracy here.
When Prime Minister after his address mingled with the school children by breaking the protocol, I can see the excitement in the eyes of the young buds.
I am sure you all will agree that our life was far better when we had only a ‘Big Screen’ in our life. We go to movie theater occasionally may be once or twice in a month with our family.
It was just like a festival for us. We analyze, criticize and discuss in threadbare and also we wish to recreate our own version of the movie. The effect of the movie always lingering in our mind for a long time.
The day the small screen called TV attacked our home the enjoyment we derived from big screen came to an end.We become addicted to the small screen that killed all our out door activities and we have become couch potato.
We lost our creative ability, imagination and analytical mind as we are being fed with illogical, uninspiring content everyday. There are lot of movies being telecast but it never gives a thrilling enjoyment.
The attack of smart phones in our home further deteriorated the atmosphere. Smartphones reduced the human beings to ‘virtual beings’. The present generation of children never go out to play and the pity is that they don’t even know what is called the ‘outdoor games’.
The small screen completely stopped the interaction of the family members as they always interested in virtual relationship. They are too much addicted to the small screen and tempted to see the screen every two minutes.
It is not only affecting their eye sight but also their concentration. To rescue the human beings , I wish to kill the ‘small screen’ !
When I decided to visit North-East of India in Apr 2009, I had a lot of apprehensions in my mind due to our pre-conceived notion arising out of adverse media reports about North East. Yet I was so determined to visit as I felt that it was a god sent opportunity. To add fuel to my apprehensions, a bomb blast incident took place at Guwahati just one day prior to our departure. But it never deterred our enthusiasm and we boarded the Air India flight as per the schedule. It was a morning flight from Delhi. Air India served us a hot and delicious breakfast. While relishing the breakfast, we had an opportunity to see the aerial view of beautiful tea gardens of Bagdogra where our flight landed on our way to Guwahati. When we reached Guwahati airport, a cool breeze welcomed us. On the way to our Guest House, we were passing through beautiful buildings of the city. We were able to spot Guwahati University, High Court and other important landmarks of the city. Finally, we reached the famous Kamakhya temple. We were stunned to see the huge crowd standing on the queue to pay their obeisance to God. What we really surprised that the previous day bomb blast never had any impact on the life of Guwahati citizens as the whole city looked as usual as any other normal day.
Next day early morning we proceeded to Shillong. Our journey from Guwahati to Shillong was not only memorable but also a feast to the eyes. When we reached Shillong, we were completely awestruck over the beauty of Shillong. Its unique buildings, neat and clean roads, people with colourful attire added more beauty to the city. Initially we had difficulty in pronouncing the names of the roads of Shillong as it all resemble Chinese names. On our sight seeing trip, from Shillong peak we could able to see the whole city of Shillong. It was a breathtaking experience. Elephant falls not only enthralled us by its beauty but also its serene surroundings. We felt fresh and got rejuvenated after our boating at the most beautiful Wards Lake. Musical fountain at this place was simply superb. I was amazed to see 18 holes Golf Course the biggest Golf Course in Asia. I became spellbound over its lush green lawns. Our only disappointment in Shillong was that I could not able to see the famous Don Bosco Museum as it was closed due to Easter holidays. The climate of Shillong really soothed both my mind and body.
After my sight seeing trip to Shillong, I proceeded to our dream destination. Yes it was Cheerapunji, the wettest place on earth (this record has now been snatched away by a village called Mawsynram just 10 kms away from Cherrapunji). I joined with a conducted tour to Cheerapunji in a Meghalaya Transport Corporation Bus. The moment we boarded the bus, the guide welcomed us and started briefing us about the significance of Cheerapunji in tolerable English. After his briefing, we really got exited to see our dream destination. Cherrapunji is full of huge mountains, beautiful valleys and pleasing water falls. Certainly it is the most picturesque place we have ever visited. Noh-ka-Likai falls was an absolute beauty. We could not take our eyes away from it as long as we stand there. Gushing sound of water and reflection of rainbow at the end still lingering in our mind. It was really a scenic beauty and worth to watch. If you are bit adventurous you can visit Mawsmai caves. You may underestimate its deepness while entering the cave. Before coming out of the caves, you would miss few heart beats on the way. We were completely excited to see the seven sisters where seven water falls appeared in a row. We could not believe our eyes as we witnessed the Bangaldesh border from Cherrapunji. It was really a life time opportunity.
I enjoyed the whole trip. It is really a lovely place and it was one of my best holidays which I will remember for ever.