Friday, July 20, 2012

Going home in rain!

After a couple of false alarms, the monsoon is finally here! For me, rain and clouds are a throwback to our Portland days where it was and still is perpetually raining! But after having ‘suffered’ through Portland’s rainy weather (Sorry, if I appeared to have turned Brutus on Portland’s weather, I admit  there were times when I truly enjoyed it!) , I thought I was prepared for the Indian rainy season this time ….but how wrong I was! Though the 2012 Monsoon is a “watered down” version of the previous monsoons, one heavy downpour in a city like Bangalore disrupts everything, resulting in water logged roads, or slushy puddles on half paved roads, traffic jams, power cuts, private hires like autos refusing to take in customers, etc. God help you if you have walk on the roads soon after a heavy shower...or if you think you are better off in your vehicle ....think again. Some roads get so inundated that you car might need an oar instead of a wheel!  I’m not sure if it was no different before or it has turned from bad to worse now or maybe that I have been out of touch with getting around on a rainy day in a quintessential Indian metropolis lately, but rain is certainly no fun in Bangalore, particularly, when you are stuck outdoors! At the same time, there is nothing like watching the rain from your upper floor balcony, or cuddling up with a book when it’s pouring hard outside or coming home to the smell of freshly fried pakoras on a rainy day!

Anyway, last night I read a book titled “Going Home in the Rain” by Nancy Strickland and illustrated by Jigma Lodey which might as well as have been my story everyday as I return home from work on a rainy evening, as Abhay always rides home comfortably in a school bus. This is a story of an eight year old girl named Tshering Yangzom who lives in the mountainous region of Bhutan and has to cross three rivers to get to her school every day, which they enjoy on except when it rains, when the water level rises. Tshering crosses the river along with her three close friends, Pema, Sonam and Tashi. One day it began raining heavily and Tshering was worried that rivers may swell making it impossible for Tshering and her friends to cross them. She confides in her teacher who lets the entire gang leave early and not only that, she asks the school cook Maymay to help them cross the river. What follows is a wild white water adventure across three rivers with Maymay carrying the girls across the first, all of them riding a horse across the second and building a makeshift bridge to cross the third river and not to forget Tshering quick thinking that finally gets them home safely. The next day is a clear day and as Tshering reaches school, the whole school is abuzz with her act of bravery that had save the “rainy” day! Here’s hoping your experience of going home in the rain will not be as “extreme” as Tshering’s ….enjoy the monsoon everyone!