Pie in the sky

Was your Diwali lovely? Mine was.

Had a great holiday in Mcleodganj. The weather was great. Ate too much, slept, learn to beat the pants off certain people who should not have taught me to play rummy, walked around and shopped.

I also figured that my Monty skills are still around. Monty skills involve telling the most preposterously, primitively flattering thing to a man and waiting to see if he believes you.
In Mcleodganj it was for the mild purpose of getting a didgeridoo-seller to point me to the nearest peddler. But on a mean Saturday out of sheer boredom I have said to an arty man-child, "You ride horses? But you are so big! Are the horses big enough for you?"

While the didgeridoo-seller just wanted to heal me with his musical instrument, the arty man-child cleared his throat and said in all seriousness that in fact, he rode horses only when in England, never in India. To my follow-up question about whether I could come to watch show-jumping, he replied, "I had to give it up. I got married." And it's called a Monty skill in honour of the football-playing IIT boy who created a life-and-death situation that required the birth of my hitherto-unsuspected inner cheesy vamp. He was going to beat up a more slender IIT boy that I had decided I was in love with at 19.

Enough with detours. My legs are still a little wobbly from the short trek to Sharmaji's Family Pizzeria in Dharamkot. (Pizza was lovely, chocolate cake was brilliant and three women in ghungats were the ones making pizza).

Bhagsu seems to be on the the special package tour for aggressive saffron-tourists (like the mother-son duo from Agra whom I saw at the Umananda temple in Guwahati yelling at the locals for not speaking Hindi.) Hence Bhagsu was the only place in the vicinity of Mcleodganj where I saw creepy, rude men and women. Also hence Bhagsu has five, count'em five, Sher-e-Punjab dhabas.

Punjab, reminds me that on our way to Dharamsala, somewhere near Anandpur Sahib, our cab driver woke us at 4.30 am saying that he wanted to drink tea at his aunt's house. We trooped sleepily behind him and were greeted by his super-nice aunt. We followed her silently and with our brains on half-speed until the soft warm darkness separated into two enormous black buffaloes tied outside her living room. I am happy to say I did not fall down laughing. Besides by then we were dangerously at the doorstep of other social solecisms.

The aunt had led us into her living room/temporary bedrooom. Her husband and daughter who were still asleep jumped awake. The husband was a very nice, intelligent man who apologised for the general confusion, as if it is normal to be prepared to greet strangers who turn up in your house at 4.30 am. He sat up in bed and chatted, explaining that the house was in the middle of renovation and that he was recovering from a car accident. He and his wife made it almost possible for us not to die of embarrassment.

Almost but not quite. Because there was also the daughter. An absolutely stunning, queen-like creature who should be in the movies went off promptly to milk the buffaloes, make the tea and serve us impossible rock like sweets. She was hugely embarrassed at the situation of having two strange men and a woman walk into her house when she was sleeping. Our cab driver, her cousin, was a nice boy but not super bright. He kept exclaiming to her, "Why are you feeling shy?" I nearly brained him with the milk sweet, half of which I was trying to slide up my sleeve.

Other incongruous images and then I will shut about trip.

Two monks carrying a huge, flat screen TV down the corridors of the monastery.

A tiny kid called Tenzing Norgay, almost impossibly cute in denim overalls, running round the courtyard of the monastery pretending his five foot balloon was a gun and striking soldier poses, while every adult in the vicinity clutched their beads harder.

3 comments:

so did you let the IIT guys have a go at each other then ?

should have. make the world a better place and all that.

though, I guess I am just being the green eyed monster, about this.

October 30, 2008 at 1:02 AM  

absolutely charming. reading this felt like putting my eye to one of those thingies that you look into and see a string of rushing images (the name of this contraption will come to me... eventually; can you tell i'm a writer?).

October 30, 2008 at 10:22 PM  

Anon:And you my friend, with each post I begin to see why you need to be anon and with each post I wish you were not. Somebody needs to be saying the things you are saying.

Arfi: what dude? What are you green-eyed about?

October 30, 2008 at 11:29 PM  

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