Wednesday, August 10, 2011

En iniya pon nilave

A morning song. More than where you heard it first, it’s about where it takes you every time you hear it. You can feel yourself going up a hill station you are so familiar with. You know the place. You know at which hairpin bend the mountain air gently buffets your nostrils with its eucalyptus scent. The winding road with its steep hill on one side, and a proportionally deep valley on the other. The hill with its wild flowers and trees growing at unnatural angles from between the crevices of rocks. The lumbering buses with the drivers acknowledging each other with a gentle beep of the horn. Fellow passengers are either too wrapped up in the beauty of Nature or just deep in thought. No one talks, even the babies are quiet. The monkeys that look on the scene with what seems like curiosity. The air gets cooler as the town comes into view.


It’s Sunday, which means you can wake up later than the rest of the family members, it’s a right you’ve earned by going to work the rest of the week. You are awake all right, you just don’t want to get up. You lie around, relishing the lazy beginning of the day off. The neighbour guy walks in asking you to get up, while he reads the paper. Your friend pops in on his way to the market. You like that people drop in without any formalities. The door is always open. It’s 8 am, and someone puts on the radio for the Sunday morning special, hey usually play the latest songs at this time. The majestic notes from this song fill the lazy morning air, the soaring violins carry you to a mountainous place. You can even feel the crisp morning air of the hills. You wake up. It’s going to be a lovely day as you see the sun break through the clouds.


It’s a bus stand song. Probably on a work trip to one of the neighbouring towns. You don’t go often, maybe once a month or twice at the most. You get off the bus after an hour or so of travelling, and notice that even the short journey has lulled you into a groggy, sleepy mode. You look around trying to orientate yourself, thinking how all these bus stands are alike, with the diagonally parked buses, little kids selling hot tea and snacks, women selling flowers to uninterested ladies in the bus, the ubiquitous dog, the piled up dirt near the end of the bus stop, past the buses that won’t begin their trip for a while. There are a few ladies selling flowers arranged in heaps near the entrance, after which is a tea shop with the customary ‘petty shop’ right next to it, selling magazines, chocolates, cigarettes, and bananas. You stop to buy a Gold Flake and light it at the tiny machine that looks like a fan regulator without the white paint, its wire glows when you press the button next to it to light up. It’s a bit hot, hopefully you can beat the heat and return early, you think as this song comes on from the tea shop radio set.