Skip to main content

Don't you remember?

Memories need no invitation. They're already inside the house of your mind, unobtrusively living in various nooks, crannies and forgotten attics. You'll run into them every now and then; depending on their personality, you'll feel sad, happy or just wistful. Today seems the kind of day that I'm going to run into songs from my past.

Making some space for myself in a crowded train compartment this morning, I suddenly thought about Nirvana's 'Come as you are', a song that took me back to college, a spring day in Pune, lunch at a friend's place in Lohegaon and Ketan's gutsy attempt to sound like Cobain. We stood around, listening to him give it his all, and none of us had the heart to say out loud that he was woefully off key. Maybe he knew it and didn't care. Who knows? Isn't the spirit of college the freedom to try? And isn't it funny that we only realise how much more we could have done after we've left?

Rushing through various nondescript assignments at work, I was feeling increasingly ragged. Outside, it was, and as I type this, still is a lovely, balmy day in Mumbai. The summer heat will be upon us in no time and its best to try and enjoy days like these. Ruminating on this, I thought back to a few days ago, when a friend had shared a link to some lovely old photos of Mumbai life. As I went through them, I saw fragments of a childhood home in Goregaon. The home is gone and Goregaon itself has changed into something else altogether from the cozy, friendly place it was 30 years ago. And just like that, a long-forgotten memory came floating in the wind.

A small living room, two sofas making an L on one side of the room, various people seated or lying on the floor, which is a lovely pink marble speckled with various other stones. It is mid-afternoon and the smell of boiling water (yes it has a smell) and filter coffee powder is wafting slowly from the kitchen. There is a child, sitting close to its mother, who is in conversation with her two brothers. The television is on and the kid, all of 3 years & a bit, is watching the song playing on the screen. I guess, if you are of a certain vintage, you'll recognise the nostalgia the boy associates with the song today, on another spring afternoon, many years later. Maybe you'll even smile and shake a leg...

Song for the moment: Yaar bina chain kaha re - OST Saaheb (1985)


Gobri said…
There is nothing better than you being able to float back to the thoughts you present so beautifully in the last paragraph.
G said…
:) I sat listening to the song for the moment on loop for hours yesterday.
bhumika said…
some memories are are so intricately woven with songs. it doesnt matter what song it was, jus the fact that it stays fresh in our mind and plays the scene from the past, serving as the perfect background music, makes it what it is.
G said…
@ bhumika - Exactly. You hear the song & in an instant, you're IN the scene from your past. Its that vivid.

Popular posts from this blog

Night Boat

I usually don't write honest pieces. They're true to facts but I tend to lather my emotions and thoughts with a heavy dose of attempted humour or misdirection. This post deserves some raw emotional honesty, though.

Yesterday, 29th August, a Tuesday (or should I say, another Tuesday) was about me making choices. It was raining quite heavily when I left for office, sheeted down the windows of the train throughout the 1-hour journey to Churchgate and kept going with renewed intensity by the time I made it to the entrance, looking verily like something that had drowned in a gutter and lain there a while before being discovered by a cat and dragged in. I made the choice to go to work as I suspected my boss would be there and not because I wanted to go.

I was right about my boss but that cardiac fizz of being right flattened out rather rapidly once I realised, around 11:30 am, that no one else from my team of 20 had bothered to make a similar effort. And, some of these guys live 5 …

Last of my kind

(This post hasn't come out as well as I wanted. But I'm still pissed off, so.)

Why do we have heroes? What is it about someone that triggers a decision to nail our colours to their mast? I don't have a neat answer so what you read from here on is both an explanation and an exploration. In a post-modern world driven by counter-points, certainty is a luxury.

I missed the boat when it came to India's ODI cricket madness. We moved abroad in the late 80s. When I left, my friends and I wanted to be Kapil, Kris or Sunil. When I returned, god was getting comfortable on his heavenly couch and all was right with a world I did not recognise. I had missed Sachin's opening batsman debut against New Zealand, the hullabaloo of the Hero Cup and other notable moments. So, I was interested in cricket, not any particular sportsman. Not even during the '96 World Cup. When India muffed it against Sri Lanka, I hurt for the team, not for a player.

Then came Dravid. And, personally, …

Let her go

Have you noticed how we throw things out a lot more than before? Of course, city-dwellers like us have more, now that disposable incomes are the norm. Does it also allow us to dispose of things so easily? I was the object of much mirth/ridicule at work today because I wanted to get a golf umbrella repaired. One colleague wondered if it was worth the effort, another asked why I did not just buy a different one while others chuckled when they realised neither of these thoughts had occurred to me. I trudged off, wondering if they were right. What exactly was driving me to take the trouble?

I think back to to the 80s and living in my Thatha's (grandpa) house. Today's 'use-and-throw' culture would have shocked him to the core. The man was the epitome of prudence. Since we weren't exactly floating in doubloons, the family followed suit. Thatha wore the same watch for over 50 years. A small umbrella, bought by my mother with her first salary, was well on its way to becom…