When I was back in my home state feeding on the homey and the rooted vibes, I happened to do something that I've never done before.
I danced to a band. Like, a proper shaadi band, In the middle of the road. In front of the entire village and my extended family. Without drinking. I was shocked myself that I could do it. Once I started, I couldn't stop.
Towards the end of all the dancing and celebrating , I witnessed something and the first thought that came to my mind was 'Please tell me this didn't happen'.
It was dark and bitterly cold, we were dancing on the side of the road. Occasionally, some vehicle would pass by. By this time, I am tired and frozen till my bones and I'm standing on the side. I see this Qualis that approaches our group, slows down but suddenly veers towards the dancing group and rams into them. I see four people flying in front of the car. I am 100% sure the car has mowed down these people. And I can only think: This didn't happen, please make it 'not happen'. Then, I see this car speeding away and some guys from our group chase the guy, climb on the speeding car, open his door and try to pull the guy out. But, he gets away.
The only saving grace was that the car didn't actually mow down anyone. It did hit those people and they were sent flying but he was careful not to run the car over them. He very carefully steered the car away and sped. My aunt had a fracture and she was the biggest casualty of this mishap. She was our official chai-maker and we lamented her future absence from the kitchen. Chai is very essential at 3 degrees celsius, isn't it?
A change of topic now and my favorite pics/moments/people from this trip:
1. The most beautiful girl EVER. She is related to me somehow. For the first half a day, she was so shy, she couldn't look up when she spoke.
2. Kaliya aka Satyajeet. My little cousin. (I say little but dude has grown.) Reminded me of someone and I couldn't stop smiling. He drove us and the groom to the wedding ceremony and back. The drive was so much fun and his one-liners had us in splits all the way. And he dances like a dream. He is good.
3. Shiela aka Arun. When my aunt got injured and fell on the road, he lifted her in his two arms and walked to the hospital. It was only three minutes away but my aunt is no zero size model. Just saying.
4. Kaliya trying to hand down some moves. To the music of the safari (mentioned below).
5. Me dancing to the band. I'm wearing two layers of leggings, two pairs of socks and sports shoes under the sari. It was around 3 degrees and the wedding would go on till wee hours.
6. The food. The makkhan. The lassi or like we call, the chhaay. The rotis. The bliss.
7. The visit to my nani's old house. It's in ruins now, abandoned. I don't know if I can call them fond but I have so many memories of this house. For me, village meant this house. I have very few memories of my dad's village or my dadi's house because basically I spent very little time there. One of those memories is when I went back and saw my mami's elder daughter carrying the cutest little baby who I thought was a girl. It turned out that the baby was a boy and that is my first memory of Kaliya. I can still picture what he was wearing.
8. My mom's school where she studied as a young girl. This statue is of the swamiji who started girls' education in the village. He was very strict and my mom was so scared of him. She would not paani-puri when she was 40 years old because when she was in school, swamiji used to forbid it saying that it is made with gutter water. The terror!
9. This plaque. It has my mum's name on it.
10. Our adventures on the safari. it has a kick ass music system that we made full use of. For dancing everywhere.
11. And the cherry on the cake, our adventures with this little friend. Enough said. It is licensed and totally legal. Just saying. I can use it for self defense. Again, just saying.
12. Little boys named 'filmy'. He wouldn't get pictures taken with us. He insisted on solos.
13. My pretty cousins.
14. The beautiful buffaloes near the pretty pond near the pretty temple. A post on my village is incomplete without a bow down to these gentle creatures who are the source of all that makkhan in the pic above.
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