Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Smoke on the Water,Fire in the Sky
I have been singing that song since my 6th std. now,but only tonight did I find a perfect place to sing it.Watch the Diwali fireworks by Marine Drive someday,and you would sing along with me,with the guitar riffs and all.The brilliant fireworks blaze the sky while the smoky remains graze the sea.Anyway while walking,the playlist in my mind shuffled to 'I'm still alive',and again it was a perfect moment to sing that song.Crazy,sick,amazing,picturesque,unbelieveable-these are the keywords if you ever want to search for the experience in my mind's search engine.The processing speed will be slow,but if you're reading this,you can spare that much time.
Seriously,there is no limit what enthusiasm can do.Ours and theirs.I was so,so bored and blue on this Diwali day that I had to go out somewhere,somewhere far.And it's not hard to find at least one like minded person as company,in this case my long time school and now institute mate Rohit.Clueless as to what to do,we took a bus and headed off to Bandra,hoping to catch Diwali,filmi ishtyle.What we got was a few eerie moments of silent staring into the sea at Bandstand and then the Guard pointing out that the place (I couldn't see what place and why) closes at 9.Off to Charni Road then,which has established itself as my favorite local train station.I have a habit of listing every favorite thing lest I be given a pink colored slam book which inevitably asks for a favorite stuff I've never though about.So better to be prepared.Anyway Charni Road is right next to the beach at the terminus of Marine Drive (I could have said Chowpatty,but I just don't know).And our journey,an exciting one began then and there.
The view from the beach was good,infact it felt like New Year at Sydney which they show on TV.There were people crowding on a flyover nearby,which made the analogy complete with the Sydney Harbor Bridge.Poor man's Sydney I thought,and felt happy.
We started the walk to get into the action arena and boy,it was frightening.People go essentially mad in Diwali.There were cars parked all along the road,with mean looking kids and beaming parents coming out of almost each one of them.Each of the vehicles had a supply of firecrackers that would make a terrorist outfit blush with embarrassment.And the most important thing is that they didn't care that they were just about 2 feet from another scene of action.We on the other hand were scared like hell.We took to the farthest line,moments when I thought I would fall onto the stones (are they?) separating the sea from the boundary walls.
I have been through two crazy,crazy diwalis last two years in hostel.Imagine one entire hostel with about a room full of firecrackers on a terrace just about 100 square metres.And every corner occupied by insane people who wanted to get the most share and burst it.Imagine and shudder.That was just my first year.Second year the space was more,say 200 square metres area in front of mess entrance,but there were 2 hostels this time.And hostel 12 had an even more enthusiastic army of people armed with a larger supply of crackers.What happened next was utter chaos.Rockets whizzed past our ears,big crackers burst near our feet and there was almost a warfare scene out there.I took part and survived both of them.
Marine Drive on the other hand was utter mayhem.All 3 kms that we walked.It looked like and extended version of all the Diwalis I have mentioned earlier.Only this time we weren't taking part,we were trying to save our souls.I remember my seniors telling me during our first year itself not go near Marine Drive during Diwali because rockets may get inserted into all the wrong parts of the anatomy.Now I could see how prophetic that statement was.
Leaving aside our dangerously exciting walk,the rest was beautiful.There is something about firerackers,not the crashing sounds one,the one that go high into the sky and then spread out in beautiful colors,that take your breath away.We constantly gazed at the brilliant display,spread across the breathtaking backdrop of the mumbai skyline and sealine.The crackers constantly woke us up from the trance,but if there is ever a day to fall in love with Mumbai,today was one.
Not a bad Diwali afterall.