Sunday 1 July 2012


Congratulate me friends. I took to the wheels after more than a year. And reached home unscathed. That calls for a double pat. Of course what I don't intend to tell anybody is that my throat went dry, my hands went clammy, I almost forgot the order of the ABC- the accelerator, the brake, the clutch, and it did not help my cause that the papers had published a research that most accidents are caused by women mistaking the accelerator for the brake. You don't want such thoughts to flood your mind when you are in the driver's seat. 
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hardcore feminists will cry hoarse to debunk the infamous notion that women make  pathetic drivers. And I'd whole-heartedly agree. On the face. Just that peeping honestly into my own past will make me a little uncomfortable going on a morcha with the bravehearts. Preeti is witness to my biking skills. Once, as we were riding back from school on our bicycles, I rode into an uncle expecting him to change sides. It did not matter to me that he was on the right side & no traffic rule lays down that the driver taking a right turn shouldn't do just that. The gentleman was on a scooter and when I opened my eyes, I found myself on his back seat & he trying hard to keep his scooter from falling. The front tyre of my cycle was distorted to a hitherto unknown geometric shape and Preeti wore a look on her face that said wait-till-our-gang-hears-about-this-tomorrow. I was fully conscious, the sporadic amnesia that makes you forget your cycle has a bell & a brake had left me and I felt an intense urge of laughing out loud. Uncle paid ten rupees for my bike repair & we gratefully rode home.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       That was atleast better than riding to the edge of the Beldih lake to save myself from an oncoming truck. The cycle fell taking my school bag with it, I fell with it, the kind auto-walas rushed to my aid with the older ones admonishing me for my lack of sense & the younger ones wondering why they don't have driving licences for cycle riders as well. With memorable instances like these that light up my canvas, it was in everybody's benefit that my drive today happened at 4pm. No sensible soul is out on the streets in this scorching heat, the cows behave themselves & the odd pedestrian sees a bewildered face behind the steering and quickly changes direction. For a ten minutes distance on an deserted road, I honked 6 times(why take chances with safety), refused to change gears twice(why do they have to have gears at all? Just give me an automatic car & see me vrooming around) and, much to my credit, remembered my ABC. 
                                                                                                                                         Gala sookh gaya with all the gyan that followed. Or whether with the real experience, who is to ever tell! Make me a cool drink please, somebody. A variation of the traditional thandai I could do with now. Need all the dry-fruit energy that the drink offers. Just for today let me have my dose of sugar & fat. And from tomorrow I promise to go back to my healthy ways. Huff puff, phluueeze. Do you have: 
                                                                                                                                                1. 1/2 ltr cold milk[serves 2]
2. Sugar to taste (I used the batasha sediments that were left)
3. Handful of cashew & raisins
                                                                                                                                         Thank God you do. 
                                                                                                                                                    1. Grind the sugar & dry fruit first.

                                                                          2. Add the cold milk (boiled & cooled in India; straight from the bottle in the West) & vanilla essence and blend.

                                                                 Serve cold. 

                                                           As Dalia says, it is important to keep the Self satisfied first. Keep yourself cool this summer, people. And in all summers to come.
                                                                                                                                       Just one friendly request before I sign off. If you see anyone resembling me driving towards you, please change tracks. Believe me, I've never been this serious with a request before.

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