Sunday, October 31, 2010

Header - November

Go as far as you can see, and when you get there you will see farther. 

Saturday, October 16, 2010

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Awards and Nominations: Italy’s Chianciano Award, France’s Prix de Meilleur Livre Etranger, Venezuela’s RĂ³mulo Gallegos Prize, and the Books Abroad/Neustadt International Prize for Literature. Probably this book set the stage for the Nobel Prize in Literature in the year 1982.

Rating : 3.9/5

This was my second book by the author, the first one being, “Love at the time of Cholera.”I would suggest you to read this book only if you have read a considerable amount of Literature otherwise you may quit reading the book halfway.

The story revolves around the lives of seven generations of Buendia family who live in an imaginary town called Mocando which is cut out from the rest of the world. Solitude is the most common thing through out the book. Every generation of the Buendia family has solitude in common apart from sharing the same titles of Aureliano’s and Jose Arcadio’s. The town suffers the perils of a war , deluge and other tenacious acts of destruction.Inspite of such a gloomy topic the book is lively because each generation has its own story which being the same in essence is very much different in content and thinking.Apart from the Buendias there is one interesting character named  Melquiades. He is a gypsy and spends the fag end of his life in the Buendia family. In his last years he writes a manuscript . To know more about the manuscript and the fate of the family do read this book.
Last but not the least I would like to quote one interesting paragraph from the book which will give you a glimpse of the Author’s style of writing.

"He dreamed that he was going into an empty house with white walls and that he was upset by the burden of being the first human being to enter it. In the dream he remembered that he had dreamed the same thing the night before and on many nights over the past few years and he knew that the image would be erased from his memory when he awakened because that recurrent dream had the quality of not being remembered except within the dream itself."

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Music to ears

Like everything in the world, there is no good or bad music. Anything which makes you feel good is music for you. The good thing is that there is music for all moods and  it makes lives of people much peaceful. Thanks to mobile phones, today your choice of music is just a download away and added to that almost all the mobile phones come with good speakers.

So this is what is lately happening to me, there is narrow road just close to the window of my room and I have been a silent listener to the music of the people passing by. It’s amazing to see such a varied variety of music in such road which is scarcely used, probably another thing which makes India unique. I will be writing about few people who represent the users of this road. I know all of them personally and may be because of this I know about their choice of music and stuff.

Dhandhan , the cow boy cum entrepreneur :

Well, the name may make you laugh but believe me this is the name given to him by his parents, a irony because they had decided his fate right from his birth. But they may have never predicted that their son will be an entrepreneur some day. Dhandhan is an ordinary boy from the big cattle ground close to my house. Life for these boys is simple , they take care of the cows in the daytime and deliver milk to houses in the mornings and evenings. But this guy does is somewhat intelligently. On his way to the customer’s houses he has made many customers of his own and sells milk to them and compensates by adding water. One evening he finds me at ease and asks me the cost of a mobile phone. I show him my handset which is the cheapest Nokia set available in the market. However   he wanted the one with the music apps and I promise him to tell the rates the next day.
You can hear these boys with their cows in the daytime. The music is bits and pieces of some latest Hindi number which they happen to hear in someone’s mobile or in their customer’s houses. Their music may not make any sense but only this is something which keeps them going.

The Grass cutter:

“Munni ke maye” (Mother of Munni) , this is the name I have known of her since childhood and everyone calls her by this name. She categorizes the class which is the most desolate. Most of the times she used to come to our house to cut grass and later sell it as fodder for cows while her daughter worked at our place. But the love for alcohol has ruined their lives. So on many evenings you can hear ladies drunk and singing [A community still oblivious to the invention of mobile phones] their local numbers. Somewhere in their music you can feel the despair and just pray.

Satender the Mason:

Met him for the first time when he came to repair a leaking portion of our house. He turned out to be from a village closer to mine and so ended up having a cup of tea. However when all of a sudden when he turned up some days ago , I was totally amazed at the strong bond one cup of tea makes. He said,”Bhaiya idhar paas mein hi kaam par aya tha socha mil loon.”I remember that rainy evening when he was working and enjoying the 90’s music by Kumar Sanu. In the evenings when the laborers pass on the road playing the music from 90’s it always reminds me of him.[On this type of music : I have heard people play this type of  music in Chennai on Vishwakarma puja’s , in local trains , in buses and many places where it was the least expected.]

Rai jee , the prosperous milkman:

 I have known him since childhood. I have seen him work hard and set up a large flock of cattles.He has built a house and keeps his cattle at a place far from his house. He likes to get drunk on Bhojpuri music and on the nights he stays in the cattle farm is just an excuse to live life. Late in the night, you can here many gwalas returning back from their evening indulgence , with Bhojpuri music breaking the silence of the quite nights.
 “ On a summer evening in Delhi , you borad a crowded bus from Safdargunj to Munirka. The road is busy and you are stuck in a traffic jam. Someone just pushes you to get out of the bus and you have had a bad day. You are about to lose your cool when you hear a song(Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas ) being played in the local radio channel. You forget everything and just move on.”
I have many other stories to share on music and my life but may be some other time.
Some lines from one of my favorite songs called Age of Innocence by Iron Maiden.

So we only get one chance can we take it
And we only get one life can't exchange it
Can we hold on to what we have don't replace it
The age of innocence is fading..... Like an old dream