Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hassan, Baleno, Revolver, A Cow, Rain & a Ayudh Puja.

Hassan, Baleno, Revolver, A Cow, Rain & a Ayudh Puja.

This was one of my (not so many) trips in my Baleno during Dusshera 2007. Found this writ-up I did then and thought I'd share it on T-Bhp.

I went off to Hassan driving on Saturday morning in my Baleno.
Met up with my parents and then was off to our small coffee farm near Sakleshpur.

It was pouring cats & dogs there on the way to our small coffee estate.
Went through lots of slush and got my Baleno looking the way I have wanted it
to after a looooongggg time. Well, we arrived and our boss of the
estate, a seriously tough and spirited lady called Nagu was organising
the Ayudh Puja.

Well, she had the car hosed down and smashing clean. Then ordered me
to park it properly in line with other vehicles for the ceremony. So
my car got a Puja done for it. The Baleno seemed happier after that!

Now as you all know, on Ayudh Puja everything is cleaned and blessed.
So was my Dad's revolver (yep, we have one ;-) and I was asked to fire
it after the pooja. So here was a revolver in my hand with a live
bullet in it! When I gave it to my mother to hold it so that I could
take something off me ... she was holding it pointed at me
(inadvertently of course!!!) and I was wondering what the hell she
was up to!! It just did not occur to her to NOT point a loaded
firearm at anyone!!!!

Oh well, that was that so now I took it back and was looking to take
aim at something a bit far. Finally i choose the electric pole about
200 feet away and pulled the trigger and damn ... they are hard to
pull - for a novice at least! Finally, it went off with a bang and so
did one of the main wires hanging from the electricity cables which
the bullet cleanly sliced through. Now, this is the wire that supplied
electricity to the house!!

It was dead on shot - didn't know I was sooooo good! But now my dad,
well, he had to call the KEB guys to get the thing fixed and getting
them on Ayudh Pooja day is no mean task! I am not sure what he told
them ;-)

Now when you do something like that in front of 30 people who work for
you - you don't know whether you appear just plain STUPID or an IDIOT
from Mars (guess both!). And while I was mighty proud of my achievement
(pompous aren't I ?? ;-) - I didn't know where to look and I had a lot of folks
laughing and amused. My mom is going to pull my leg on this one for the
rest of my life - I just know it!

In agricultural India, you see, the social structure is very very
different from what we are used to in a city. For Nagu (introduced
above) and others, I am the BIG BOSS (even though I do nothing) and
not my Dad (who does everything)! As the eldest son of my Dad I am
referred to as Dodda Soukar, my dad is Soukar and my younger brother
is Chinna Soukar! - BIG Boss, Boss, Small Boss ;-) Now don't ask me
why .... I have nooo idea but that's the way it is. You should really
experience it to know. (Wonder what they are all thinking about the
Dodda Soukar now :-?

Next day, Sunday, drove back to Hassan early morning and had my car
looking a little bit the way I like it (all muddy and used!).

This day was spent meeting lots of my relatives and dad's friends and
childhood friends at a weeding reception to which we were all invited.
My dad I must say is very proud of me (in spite of all the things I
have done which he is not so happy about - what say Pappa, true no ?
;-)) - and he all proud and sort of puffed up in a nice way :-)
introducing me to all his friends etc from 30-50 years past - and then
telling me stories about them ;-))

The wedding which was supposed to happen at 11am finally happened at
1.00 pm. That's how punctuality is in rural India ;-) - you just grin,
bear it and in the meantime get introduced to even more folks who
somehow know you but you don't know them !!! (And btw, they sacrificed
a goat and had its head as part of the "offering" to remove the Evil
Eye from the groom - how's that for civilisation :-))

Had a nice lunch and then off for a small rest and then off to meet
one of my aunt's who is grieving from the loss of her husband. She
gave me lots of warm hugs and kisses - I don't meet her often but I
guess she likes and loves me a lot!

After that, back home, a bit of rest and then drove my Dad back to the
estate. It was getting dark and raining heavily. Now you know how good
Indian roads are right - hey really, this was really good, the highway
between Hassan & Belur - its really really good! So I was clipping
along nicely. Now do you know Indian cows??? Well, they don't care
what the world is doing, they will do what they have to do!!!!

So here was thee cow lazily crossing the road at night, in pouring
rain, I am at 100+kmph and you see it just in time from the corner of
your eye and there is no time to brake!! Well, luckily the road had a
stretch of grass on both sides and I did the only thing I could,
swerved on the kerb. Guess I must be having some points in Heaven,
else I am not sure what the end of this story would have been - one
thing I am sure off, our cow would have survived!!! Thank you God -
thank you :-))

So finally we got to our farm again - making 3 wrong turns which my
dad pointed out and if was not there I would probably have ended up in

Next the drive back ... took a different route back (the one I was
doing 140 kmph on the day earlier) and breezed back to Hassan in
pouring rain at 110 kmph. There is something about driving in the
rain, splashing water, having the car slowed down severely in a puddle
and leaving a spray behind you. And this time around I had loud dhick
chik music playing - Mom enjoy's it too - but she's a little of the
anxious types, keep pushing her imaginary brakes and getting fits of
anxiety when i "overdo" things with the car!

So we are going back nicely and half way across to Bangalore we stop!
Why? A tree fell across the road and there is traffic pile up 2km long
both sides!! It took us an hour and a half to get across. One thing I
learn't in the pile up - India will only grow sooo much, not more. Our
civic sense is in the gutter!! No one respects rules and people form
4 lines of traffic on a one line road - all jostling to just overtake
each other and these are smart people (apparently!) in Innovas,
Taveras, Citys etc! Just overtake fully till you fill the next lane
(and more) and then no one can come this way or that!! Feels sad to
face this truth of our society and culture.

Well, finally, we arrived in Blr at 1.30 am on Monday- after a few
good pot holes at 100+ kmph, feel sorry for my car :(
and my mom now sleeping through the loud bang bang music :-)

So folks that was my weekend ... hope you had an interesting one too.
Just felt like sharing - it was an unusual weekend - away form my
overly electronic and numbers oriented life :-)) Really enjoyed it.

Do share if you have anything plain or interesting happening in your
life. With best wishes, riches & FUN :-)))


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