in the past few days, this city has seen floods, blackouts, fires, stampedes, landslides, cloudbursts—the loss of life was truly unprecedented
a little poem by mr. floss.
apparently a 17-km cloud burst.
apparently a 17-km cloud bursted.
apparently a 17-km cloud had burst.
it was a rather sullen evening, the 26th, a rather unlucky date: earthquake, tsunami, cloudburst
at around 4:30, i wanted to leave office, but v had some urgent work and couldn't. so i couldn't.
we set out under the burst cloud at 6:30...
twenty minutes into our walk, we meet some guys returning to office, guys who left around an hour before us; "turn back, turn back," they shouted frantically, "the water is so high," pointing to their waists (tall boys) and necks (short girls).
v, who we shall call the courageous one, said, "did you see it?"
"no, many men told us."
the courageous one calls sharad immediately: "don't shut down office..." (since we were among the last to leave) "there's a bunch of us headed back."
me was all ready to turn back, wading through knee-high (tall girl) water past broken down vehicles is really all i wanted to see; but no, not the courageous one, she wanted to see it all for herself—the so high water. she said everyone exaggerates.
so we proceeded. the three hour walk home was demanding, draining (ha ha), overcast (ha ha, no really, gloomy), terrifying, unexaggerated, and, finally, overwhelming. there were alternating stretches of waist-deep and shin-deep water, the former really strrrreeetttccchhhiiiinnnngggg. the water gushed at the crossroads; cars were floating, cars were sinking; garbage was floating; public loos were stinking; nala's were overflowing; children were gasping; trees were falling; buffaloes were dying; but the courageous one and j walked, waded, kissed in the cloudburst.
at some stretch, the courageous one spots these two characters from some balaji soap, and is very happy with the levelling (socioeconomic term) the flood has brought. an hour later, she starts speaking to some scriptwriter (unknowingly), who incidentally writes for a balaji soap—kavyanjali. and she says, “you know i just saw nandini and karan walking by.” ha ha, i died. amidst all this chaos, it really made me smile that the courageous one could be so starstruck (ha ha, another one).
we were ecstatic when we reached bangur nagar. i must admit i didn’t think we could do it and wanted to turn back several times. me: burly, as opposed to the courageous one: surly. once home, it was nice to wash all that gutter water away. really nice. the chai went down well too. the night was hot though, with mosquitoes, cats, and nanitali candles for company.
well, the next two days went by working, without electricity and phones, but somehow working.
They hurt you at home and they hit you at school,
They hate you if you're clever and they despise a fool,
Till you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules,
A working class hero is something to be.