Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Roots

I finally took the weekend off. Well I got the weekend off from college, took Friday off from work and headed north. The plan was to head to Kesroli. The route from Delhi to the hotel in Kesroli is littered with small villages. Remember that essay in school about your village? When you didn't know shit about fields and tube wells but you wrote 300 words about it? Yeah, those villages.

There has been an often repeated phrase of two Indias. I saw the other India first hand. It is weird when you can't relate to what is around you while you are convinced this still is your own country. I have been in Bangalore for most of my adult life and I love it here. I felt alienated staring at women in colorful clothes covering them from head to toe. Small kids running bare foot on concrete while you can't bear the heat in your air conditioned car. Camels pulling men in dhotis, the men holding on to laths like they held their pride and honor!!

A small feat of asking for directions will get you a whole gamut reactions when they hear you say Kesroli

Kesroli? Arre raja, Kesroli kahan hai yaahan? OHO! Kaaisroli jana hai aapko? agle bypass pe left le lena.
Well they couldn't understand my accent!! The bypass to your astonishment is barely big enough to fit 2 small cars!! You can imagine how alienated your grand parents or uncles feel watching surf the net...

"Beta, office ke liye practice kar raha hai?"

"Err, haanji..."


This was as bad for me.

The sad part is when foreigners come here they are here to experience a new culture. I wasn't ready to "experience" India. I grew up thinking I am Indian, now I am not sure where I belong.

8 comments:

austere said...

Exact disorientation, that.
Liked post.

And where exactly is Kesroli?

Epiphany said...

Kesroli is about 150 Km from Delhi...in Rajasthan

S said...

Sounds like a nice place...put up pics :)

Cynic in Wonderland said...

you know, you can get this sense of rootlessness while in Bombay itself - the cultural landscape is so different every few miles.

nice post :)

Epiphany said...

@S - No pics :)
@Cynic - Thanks :). Yeah I felt that in Bombay, but Bombay is like a sponge..you will get absorbed in the chaos...while here I felt like a martian! :D

Solilo said...

:) We get alienated in our own country mostly when we try not to fit in and expect others to change.

I have seen people don't bother to even learn basics of local language and expect everyone to understand English or Hindi in India. Well! that's not possible. One needs to at least try to know few basics of local language like we do when we visit abroad.

Saltwater Blues said...

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Cheers mate!

Epiphany said...

@ Solio - point taken, but this was completely instantaneous...I didn't get time to breath let alone put some effort to fit in

@SWB - Thanks buddy! Will start using it on the blog...