Saturday, September 12, 2015

The Bridges of West Kochi

I’d first heard about The Bridges of Madison County from Barry Norman who used to review movies for BBC TV. Those days I’d just begun self-education about Hollywood films so I hardly knew who Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep were, but, I remembered the title as I felt it was important by the way Barry spoke about it and time and again mentioned the lead players (though I don’t remember what his opinion of this film was). Robert James Waller novel (from which the film is adapted) is one of the first e-books I read after getting a PC at home in early 2000s and saw the movie after learning to use the torrents and downloading films.

The film has stayed with me ever since. But, the real significance of it came to the fore when I got a camera and started thinking of projects to do with the new gadget. That was the time I started thinking about the bridges on this side of the town (obviously not the oft clicked and filmed Thoppumpady bridge). I talked about the project with my dad, auto wallah and cabbie friends, but it didn’t materialise and they all seemed to say unison “these places have filth flowing under them and the stench will be unbearable.”

Yet my dream of being like Robert Kincaid (the nomadic National Geographic photographer played by Eastwood in the film) did not go away. At last I told about the project to my ‘ever ready to help’ friend Raju, he too warned me about the stench factor, still he was game for the adventure. It was decided that we will cover the Kalvathy area in the first leg. “And, no need for an auto, we’ll reach there in 15-20 minutes walking and you can start clicking pictures on the way itself”, Raju’s wise words.

The fun part happened when we thought we’d covered 90% of the distance, we realised that we were heading towards Cherlai Kadavu instead of Kalvathy. “I’ve seen a bridge ahead and thought it was the same,” Raju said.

“I meant the one near the State Bank.”

“I think that is the other end and I don’t think that we can reach there walking.”

This in a way proved to blessing for us as we discovered an unexplored and virgin part of the town and it proved to be exotic in every sense of the term with bridges to be found at every few steps and life lulling around on a lazy Sunday afternoon.

A petty shop as we approach the bridge

From the centre

This is where the friends bond
Those friends put me on the footpath
A mansion across the bridge
They aren't amused
A place to worship across the bridge
Ranjith etta bless me
The sight on my Right side
What would the world be without The Mother?
And, of course Raju - My Friend. A 1000 Danks.

Wannabe Robert Kincaid telling bye until he visits another Bridge.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Vanishing Vocations

This is Mahesh doing something that is rarely seen these days. What is surprising is that I found him very close to my home and that too on a Sunday. I don't remember noticing him before and he said that he has been there for the last 18 years. And, when I asked him why he was working on a holiday he answered with a counter question to my friend Raju "Do you take him out like this regularly or is this a special occasion?" then realised very soon that it wasn't a good question to ask and sheepishly replied "I've promised to deliver this chair soon so I'm working today."

I feel I was lucky as  a child to see this equipment operated, kids loved the sound this machine made and used to love seeing the sparks fly when it worked. So, everything worth sharpening was brought out when the call Kathi murcha aakaan undo? was heard. This fellow refused to pause when I called chetta from behind gestured him to stop. So, no frontal pose. :(

Monday, September 07, 2015

I don’t know why I wrote this

Existing in a vacuum

devoid of love

wrenching the heart

desire at least a touch

that can sooth the soul.

Don’t know why or how I wrote this. I feared that such things have stopped coming to me. So, when the first line struck me in the early hours a couple of days back, I tried to keep it in focus until rest of the lines came up. Without thinking about mistakes, rhyming and such things I typed it directly in FB with forward slash between the lines and posted it. I even copy pasted it in twitter (surprisingly it is much less than 144 characters).

Hope it is all was worthwhile.