Mar 29, 2006

A test for my cynicism

Last weekend we went to Punjab for a long weekend. There were seven and half of us - me, my parents, uncle, aunt, vikas, meetu and sanika. Left here on friday afternoon, stayed the night at Vikas's didi's house in Jalandhar, went to Amritsar and Wagah border the next day, stayed again in Jalandhar on Saturday night and then started for delhi on Sunday afternoon, reaching at 12 in the night.

It was a good trip and I was really impressed with Punjab. One cant help but admire their capacity for hard work and their enterpreneurship as well as for their verve in life. Punjabi philosophy is 'earn 10, spend 100, then plan on earning 1000, spend 10000' and so on. Yes..they are flashy, showy, shallow and sometimes overtly aggressive and interfering. But they are also genuinely friendly, straightforward and helpful.

My feelings of appreciation and hope were further enhanced on visiting the Golden Temple. It was wonderfully maintained, spotlessly clean, devoid of any religious 'middle men', devotees looked as if they had come because of some inner urge, not at the orders of some dictatorial relative or to wheedle a favor before a business deal or medical operation. I started wondering..'will this be my first positive post on my blog'? When all of a sudden...

People started running in huge numbers to a particular corner of the temple compound. Kids were brushed aside, old ladies shoved and the granth sahib was left to the dogs. IT WAS SALMAN KHAN!! With his brother and other family, come to match the collective strenghts of the 10 gurus against the Rajasthan High Court. Girls were screaming, jumping up and down, guys were surging towards the front to catch a glimpse of their God and it was chaos. I was relieved. Ultimately, my cynicism triumphed.

But wait!! There's still Didi (vikas's elder sister). She is the Principal of Cambridge School in Jalandhar. The school has to be seen to be believed. And Didi says she has been able to implement only 50% of her ideas. I beleive that when she has her own school it will be the best in India. That apart, she is a fantastic person. My parents and uncles were blown away by her hospitality and friendliness. I have known her about 9 years now, and I can never remember a time when she wasn't positive, optimistic and full of laughter.

My cynicism takes a beating when it comes to people like didi. But i will make it up somewhere else.


munia said...

nice change.......from all the cynicism......u remember the the last time u and i were at the golden temple???? u were jus a kid, so maybe u have forgotten.

Shuv said...

nope..i think i was about 3 yrs old then? all i remember of that trip was that the bus had to be stopped because i had shat in my pants or something like that..

vikas said...

It was indeed a wonderful trip,got a bit tiring for elders though.
lets plan to make a school and all inputs regarding arranging finances is welcome from fellow bloggers and readers,rest we can take care.

Shuv said...

all my fellow bloggers and readers are on the same bloody boat..sub ke sub kangaal hope in the world..

Vivek said...

I really missed something...Anyways, Thank You for bestowing a privilege of sharing something non-cynical.

Jhimli said...

You forgot mention what you ate at your friend's place! Did you eat their homemade chapatis? Boy...I don't know what technique the Punjabis use to make those, but may God bless them for it.Also their Chholey....delicious is too inadequate a definition!!
Talking about Punjabis and food also reminds me of the time when I was traveling to Chennai to visit Muniadi.Her parents had packed this big basket of mangoes for them which I was supposed to deliver. On board the train, there was this strapping Punjabi guy who was sitting nearby and was deep in conversation with a co-passenger. They were talking about almost everything from marriage to mangoes....but especially about the latter and the heavenly smell that was filling the train. All I could do at that point was to look as innocuous as possible because I did not want to bet on who would win if I had to enter into a tussle for mangoes with a Punjabi Munda. Luckily, my strategy was a good one and he never suspected that the mangoes were sitting not a couple of feet away from him. So,when the train entered Chennai a day and a half later, he even politely offered a hand with my suitcase. Imagine his surprize when I told him that I also needed help with the basket of mangoes that I was carrying for my cousin!!

Deep said...

About their food:
A very loud version of Tandoori chicken oozing more garlic than aromatic spices....Ok!
Chicken butter masala....a winner!
Sarso da sag / Makai da roti- eh moti moti.....bahut badiya!
Emerald green palak paneer & dal makhni....too good!
And so many other veg & chicken fares you could really vouch for. BURP!!

But dear friends. Here's a piece of honest warning:
Never ever make the mistake of trying their mutton provided you have tastebuds you love & respect. Don't know why but somethihg goes pathetically wrong with this race when it comes to cooking their goat.

Such is the poverty of taste & lack of imagination when they decide to fix their lamb that, at times, it makes me wonder whether this half heartedness has got something to do with a deep rooted guilt of cannibalism somewhere down their 'one of its kind' subconcious.

Shuv said...

hmmm..good point deep. but we missed eating veg food in was definitely on the agenda, but got delayed by that SOB salman.

Shuv said...

vivek tu saala gaand mara..bola tha lucknow kalti karke saath chal pad.

Shuv said...

jhimli u shld see how these rediwalas make the naans here? no belna or anything, a handful of dough, stuff alu and masala, a couple of slaps, in the tandoor and out comes a perfect, yummylicious, steaming naan..the entire process is 20 seconds. its magic!