I was detected Covid positive with mild symptoms a day after Christmas. The entire family 👪 that is, my two children, my husband and myself were all positive and we did our mandatory isolation in all seriousness. We worked around the house, did our share of laundry, utensils, cooking, cleaning and recovered well. I will admit it was a lot more work than I had imagined, but we managed to have fun. It was almost a welcome break from the daily rigorous routine of going to work.
But yesterday, our isolation got over and we wanted to treat our taste buds to enjoy hot steaming momos after this break. So admist rising number of cases, we headed out for a drive in our car, 🚗 to catch street side steaming momos and to order some pizza 🍕 on the go for the boys. Masks on, drive mode on, fun mode starts!
We parked in a nook of the parking and hubby got our orders. From where we were parked, I could see people young and old, all dressed up, enjoying and celebrating Bihu. Some stereos were playing local traditional Bihu songs. Now this is a foreign language to us, the lyrics were indistinguishable. But the melody and mood was celebratory! Despite not being able to understand a word, I was able to somehow understand the spirit. It was a song of joy, a song of beauty, a song of exultation that can be shared across cultures and languages.
I was reminded of similar delightful songs and customs of North India. Across India, cultures are different and yet so similar. During my childhood days, all the children in the colony would gather and sings songs and collect Lohri money 💰 and then buy peanuts, gajak etc and build a big fire 🔥 for the evening. All neighbors would gather together, pray and dance. After this festival, the harsh winter weather would recede, slowly giving way to the bloom of spring.
Coming back to sounds and their impact on our lives. We are all conditioned to enjoy certain sounds. And even though it is nice to get a break sometimes. But we long to come back to the same experience. It could be bells in the temple, or Pooja dhak, shankha sounds or even the sounds of your favorite machine mixing your coffee well.
Sounds of singing carols together. Sounds of school assembly. Sounds of singing mehndi songs together. Sounds of antakshri. Sounds of melodius music as opposed to technology created artificial cacophony.
Sounds of laughter, sounds of greetings, sounds of humming and whizzing and gossips at hairdresser’s! Sounds of shouting for passing on, when the local dhaba takes your order. Sounds of a vegetable vendor announcing his arrival, sounds of a local fish seller enticing you to buy his fresh catch!
Sounds of repair man, sounds of ber man, sounds of crackers and sounds of excitement when the barratis are dancing. Sounds of parade, sounds of glory when the nation stands tall together. The sounds of commentators excited pitch and the stadiums erupting in joy.
Sounds of hearing that exhausting frequency setting in the radio and waiting patiently for your favorite song to come on air. Or sounds of the furious type writter of yesteryears. Sounds of the Nokia handset. The ringing bell of the landline. Sounds of akashvani.
With the e-commerce industry gaining virtual space, you can slowly find these sounds perishing. The world is ruled by click of our thumbs and every experience is changing in our life times.
But some sounds will always remain the same just like the sounds of pitter patter rain, booming thunder, gushing river and the deep ocean waves and chirping birds. Sounds of your mother singing her melody to lift your spirits, banging utensils to purposefully wake you up from your slumber, clapping hands in applause to cheer you up. Sound of your baby cooing, saying their first words, speaking ridiculous tongue twisters and cracking you up.
What are the sounds that you miss the most? Please share.
Aum Shanti! Shanti! Shanti!
Aum peace! Peace! Peace!!!!!