Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Dear Friend Ronald

In early eighties, I was in my twenties, and an eligible bachelor – as the term goes for a young man of marriageable age . However, at that time, I had no intentions of getting tethered to a peg , though this did not prevent me at times from fantasizing about marriage and whatever it meant . Apart from my ten- to -five Bank job, reading, listening to music and ‘malling’ on the mall were my favourite pastime.

On a bright sunny winter Sunday, as I was having a stroll on the mall , in my hometown Shimla, suddenly, my eyes caught sight of a visage with shoulder length golden tresses . At once I was reminded of Della, the heroine of O Henry’s famous story “ The Gift of the Magi ” , who sells her Golden tresses to buy a wristwatch chain for her beloved and loving husband Jim , as a Christmas present.

Out of curiosity , to know who the owner of the golden tresses was, I headed towards the bench where the person was sitting under a rain shelter only to find that that it was ‘ he’ and not ‘she ‘ as I had guessed. I sat beside him and in no time we were engaged in a conversation exchanging bits of information about the lifestyle and culture of our respective countries. As it turned out, he was Ron - short for Ronald - from Netherlands, touring India like most other Europeans. He accepted my offer of tea and snacks in a nearby restaurant , where we spent quite some time. We parted for the day but only after he had had a promise from me that we would be together for afternoon refreshments the next day and that he would play the host.

The next day, true to his word, he was at my Bank at 2 P. M. on dot and we had some refreshments. He was to leave for Delhi the next day and complimented me on two things, one that I knew much more about his country than an average Indian and secondly, I was not after any of his personal things like Jacket, Glasses etc. etc. I had the satisfaction of acquitting myself well as the self- appointed ambassador of my country before a foreigner . Unfortunately, those were not the days of computer, internet or e-mail otherwise we would have been in contact even to this day !

May he be happy wherever he is !

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Beauty in your own eyes

In these times , no body has time to peep in to the psyche of a person to know his or her real worth and outward appearance whether physical , behavioural or attitudinal , however illusory or deceptive it may be, is all that seems to matter . So far as the physical appearance is concerned, apart from good health and a good physique , it is the beautiful symmetrical lines of clean white teeth that matter the most..If one is not endowed with this feature, other aspects are simply pushed to the back ground. Mind you this applies to both men and women. Similarly, in respect of men, as they say apparel oft proclaim the man . In formally dressed men, I think, well polished, shining shoes matter the most, otherwise even the costly, lounge suit or, band-gala suit will not amount to much. Whether one is clean shaved, or chooses to have a beard – a goatee or french cut – much will depend on the shape of the face.

These are my personal views- as I consider myself a deprived soul , devoid of this attribute- and no offence is meant please !

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

जन-सेवा बनाम जन-सेवक

न तन सेवा न मन सेवा

न जीवन और धन सेवा

मुझे है ईष्ट जन सेवा

यही सच्ची भुवन सेवा

( अज्ञात )

सुनते हैं लीडरी की अजब आन बान है

जन सेवक आप किन्तु नवाबों सी शान है

नौकर हैं , चाकर हैं, बंगला है , लान है

देखें कि टोंड मिल्क में कैसा उफान है

घूमते हैं अब तो आपके कुत्ते भी कार में

लगता नहीं है जी मेरा उजड़े दयार में

( अज्ञात )

Sunday, May 15, 2011

स्कूल की किताब से

" इक इलम दी ऊण है, मुंडे पढने पाइ
दूजा झस्स शराब दा, इस तों जान छुड़ाइ
तीजा ऐब कुमत दा खहि खहि मरो भराइ
फेर मुकद्दमा लड़देयां झुग्गा उज्जड जाइ
जे इनां दे पंजिओं पा जावें छुटकार
फेर वी पूरी न पवे तां 'चात्रिक ' जुम्मेवार "

-धनी राम चात्रिक

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Shiv Batalvi

 This great poet of romance and pathos ,can be easily called the John Keats of Punjabi poetry , for celebrating beauty , love , and separation and also for the reason that both died young. Shiv Batalvi died this day in 1973, aged about 37. The lyrics of a song - Assan taan joban ruttey marnaa….. point to his premonitions of death at a young age. Again , famous song penned by him and beautifully sung by Asa Singh Mastana , without which the list of my favouites will be incomplete is – Mainu tera shabaab ley baitha , which sums up the poet’s life .
This is my homage and humble tribute to the Legend and the genius !

Sunday, May 1, 2011

मई दिवस

" मज़दूर का वेतन उसका पसीना सूखने से पहले उसे मिल जाना चाहिए " , एक साधारण वाक्य जिसे हमें स्कूल के दिनों में अनुवाद के लिए दिया जाता था. बाद में 'श्रम की महिमा ' जैसे शब्दों से भी परिचय हुआ.
एक गीत जो कभी कभी कानों में गूंजता है - खून पसीने की जो मिलेगी तो खाएंगे- आत्मनिर्भर होने और आत्मसम्मान से जीने की प्रेरणा देता है. क्या यह हम सभी का दायित्व नहीं कि मज़दूर सम्मान के साथ अपना जीवन व्यतीत करे और हम मज़दूर को 'मजबूर ' न बनने दें !
आज मई दिवस पर मज़दूर व मज़दूर एकता को सलाम !