I was eager to reach home in Ahmedabad yesterday, at 26th July, 2008. Since the night before, the news of blasts in Bangalore had occupied all the broadcasting space there was in India. I couldn’t take it.
I some how did not care enough of what was happening in Bangalore. Though it was just like anywhere else in the world. I had not smiled at strangers on streets there. I didn’t have haunting yet sweet memories there. It was just a blast somewhere which is reported on News channels, day in and out. I decided to turn the TV off and do some creative work. Pack my bags for Germany.
Then came the time I was going to the city I considered ‘somewhere’ since I was born. Banks of Sabarmati are considerably littered and sad, but I love saying that I was born in that city and spent the most wonderful years of my life there. I had seen earthquakes and heartbreaks there. I had sang and cried and emptied 40,000 mugs of coffee. It was my comfort zone.
My latest hobby staying away from hubby was to drive through and fro Ahmedabad and Baroda, on the glorious National Express Highway, that has surprisingly remained green and gorgeous in spite of no rain in the region. It was perhaps my last drive for time being as I take off next week.
The Express Highway was over. We turned towards Narol. Little did I know I was turning to a road at 4:30 that will be all over the Television within two hours. Then I moved on towards Juhapura and passed Sarkhej, Sangam Cinema. And crossed that bridge that connected affluence and misery in Ahmedabad. We landed in the new city, towards Satellite that for a surprise, has not been shattered. I was tired. I needed a nap. In spite of the uneasy air. I just fell into one of those, ‘you-might-wake-up-to-a-catastrophe’ sleep.
My mamu called up right at 7 and informed me about 4 or 5 blasts across the city. Okie. It can not get worse. But the familiar areas had already started flashing in front of my eyes. In front of million other eyes with the scenes that had closed very many eyes. The number of blasts and death toll was to keep increasing in the next few hours and days.
I really don’t know if the News channels are there to keep us informed or scarred. Ahmedabad Blasts are everywhere. There is a Barkha Dutt show going on right now. I know almost 75% words that will be used in it. I had to expel Aaj Tak after my life for some time. At least they are not so graphic. Somebody please tell someone at Sandesh, the local news paper to worry about the effects that will have on already shaken people when they see graphically bloody body parts of suicide bombers.
I read a very funny book called ‘Secret’, to rip apart the self-help funda and somebody said there once that instead of worrying about what is happening around you, how about thinking of making it better. I’ve no idea how can I make it better at a time when I’m taking an inevitable flight to Mumbai tomorrow, the forbidden or forbidding city. I guess just like everyday, I am going to be positive.
I wonder if I’ll ever be able to see ‘my’ city the way I used to.
Perhaps it will all be better tomorrow.
No amount of blasts can kill the effect that time has on people. Perhaps, terrorism is soon on its way to become like rains flooding the city. We’ve to get out and get our things done. Just that a rain-coat can not guarantee shirt wetting with blood someday.