Disasters in Making

Sunday, September 24, 2017

I don't recall who, but I was having this conversation with someone recently, on what Delhi does to people.

Delhi makes people angry. It boils their blood. It leaves them with a curse up their sleeve, in Punjabi, in Hindi. Whether or not they can speak those languages is immaterial, it's quite amusing to see everyone roll a word, phrase or even a paragraph out everytime you accompany people who drive you around. High beam is the peak asshole behaviour that every Delhi resident must exhibit. Without which, you don't qualify to be a Delhiite.

Delhi is humid. It's uncomfortable to live here, to be normal and to be happy. I haven't met a single Delhiite who is not stressed, agitated or unhappy, purely because of how things are. The government, the state (or the inability of comprehending the Capital and Union Territory status) do not understand Delhi, neither do the people. What we understand is that this city is the rape capital of the country. It stinks of immigrants from almost all cities, the NCR folks are cool-ish and that all Delhiites are scums of the world who abuse everyone. Believe me, the weather doesn't help.

Diwali, for a whole lot of Delhiites translates to smog, smoke, haze. For the rest of the world it's dancing to Bole Chudiyan at the community event. Indian expat community knows Karan Johar better than Hiroo aunty does. For us here, Diwali is when we pre-order a combo pack on Amazon for 3M masks to breathe clean (or attempt to) and curse every moron who hands his child an Anaar to light outside. And Karan Johar, he remains a nepotistic pig for all the girls envisioning a future in Bombay cinema.

Delhi stands for difficult. If you can survive Delhi, you can survive everything. That Delhi is as much mine as it is yours. Ever thine, ever mine, ever ours. 

All of the above is true-ish. Except, I don't feel it anymore. Staying away from Delhi makes you forget the war tactics that you need to survive this place. Atleast for now. Survival of the fittest is not true for Thailand. Survival of the chillest, on the other hand, is something I could do with.

I've been back for a few days now and god, I'm everything but Delhi. I don't get the Mughal-e-azam play reference (what is it, please tell me),  I am missing the Swan Lake and I have no idea what was the last topic on which Modi and Kejriwal fought. I have zero idea of what happened at the Dera and who did Kangana accuse of last.

To be honest, not all of the above is Delhi but this is the only place that seems to care about all of it.

Instead, I am feeling the Fall on my skin. This evening, I smelt Pujo in the air. I took an auto from my evening coffee run and it was beautiful outside. To make things beautiful, Starbucks has brought my Salted Caramel Mocha back. Remember the Winter from 2013 when I was a mess and spent close to 10k buying Salted Caramel Mocha? Well, it's back and so is my zeal to live. This time, all together. My head's all fuzzy with the first kiss of Winter in the form of the air conditioner taking a hiatus in my room. Imagine, this is me and this is in Delhi. I'm in fucking love, with the world. In this world, I'm in Thailand.

I smile uncontrollably when a ridiculously cute man tells me that he's called dibbs on my arse (if and when we are in the same city- tragic). I am floating in a haze of noodle soup for every meal, and sausages for 10 baht with cheese stuffed in them. In my head, I'm kicking my feet in the sand when I squish the dead jelly fish (okay, that's not that cool). I'm walking inside the 7 Eleven store and looking for Korean masks at 2 am, along with buying a bottle of water and a slice of buttered bread. Ooh, look at that lipstick. Is that matte? I'm everything that has no care in the world. I'm full of glitter, coconut filled donuts and I'm ready to buy sunglasses at 11 pm at the Walking Street because why the fuck not.

The day after I returned, I met Man Friday. What was supposed to be a handing his presents from my trip sesh, qualified into a long walk where he kept cursing Delhi weather. None of that affected me since in my head, I was walking the streets of Pattaya.

"Can you not be fucking distracted and do something with your life instead?"

That hit me for 12 hours until the ridiculously cute gentleman texted some cute shit at my face. I was back in my vacation haze again.

Oh, to be young and feel the butterflies.

You remember the feeling when your crush looked in your direction as a 15 year old? Or when that man you liked tapped on your shoulder to ask for a spare pen?

The equivalent of that is seeing a text from someone you're crushing on. Thailand makes everything better, even men. I haven't felt like 15 in a long, long time so naturally, I haven't crushed on anyone like that. This vacation brought back the feels, of what it's like when you hear from someone you like.

In 2012, a friend who was dating her then boyfriend would burst into a smile each time we called his name out loud around her. It was a nerve reaction, "@*#l" and she would giggle like the world's down to her feet. I remember this so vividly because this tactic helped us in an outdoor photo-shoot. I wouldn't get into the details because the split was hard on the said friend (and the guy is a cunt). But, man, everytime I think about the vacation, I am giggling at the thought of the place, of being transported to the streets where the shopkeepers had become my friends and the Raw Papaya salad cost less than a plate of momos. As I write, I have a smile as wide as my friend's, just at the thought of all this.

In the relatively small window of the time that Mia K and I have left with each other, on one of the days when she was driving me home she told me to get back to reality. While reversing the car, she said,"As my grandmother would say, if you laugh today you will cry tomorrow. Almost as if they prevent you from being too happy too soon."

Despite being stuck in a jam on a 2 km distance home from the coffee run, I was smiling all throughout. Later, ofcourse, reminded of this conversation with Mia K.

"What?", Divyanshu answered in his imaptient, mechanic I-am-at-work-bitch-voice

"I need your help. There's this phrase in Bangla which loosely translates to if you laugh a lot, you will cry a lot. What is it?"

"It's not that. It's actually translated to 'if you laugh today, then you will cry tomorrow.' Slightly different meaning too.", he answered while tapping his keyboard.

"Right, yeah! That!"

"I'll message you."

Waiting to complete my cycle of Joto Hashi, Toto Kanna everybody. Hopefully, the next time I write, it would be to sulk about the weather, the internet speed to send horrible emails and the cobwebs on my vagina in the absence of anyone calling dibbs on my arse.

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