Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Deja Vu

She had to pack her bags and move to a tourist spot called "preetanchal",  the latest heartthrob of north India, developed in the last 10 years. She had to cover the latest architectures in the region for her cover story. While packing her bags she thought to herself - strange name for a relatively modern and upcoming tourist vacation. It meant - the mountain of love, that's all she knew.
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" Preetanchal k liye yahan utar jaayen, .... O madam, appko preetanachal jaana tha na....", Simi opened her eyes to two gruesome looking eyes and moustache. The moustache blended into the beard and struck terribly odd on his small face as if a tomb on a slender, tall highrise building. Another "O madam" and she was fully awake, cognizant of the fact the the entire set of onlookers were almost questioning her with her eyes, including the driver who had turned sideways and was honking even though the bus was stand still. Simi quickly resurrected her off shite long t-shirt and grabbed her bag and water bottle resting on her legs for a long while now and inquisitively walked to the front exit while she heard the moustached conductor say - "yeh tho le jaiye", she turned back to take her black file, she had carried everywhere she travelled. "Pahle hi aapke karan bus 15 min late ho gayi, ab yeh choot jata tho dene aana padta" and she smiled and said "Thank you, nahi main aa jaati!", pressed the file to her bosom with one hand, tagged her bad on her shoulder and stepped down from the bus. She had always been carrying that file whenever she travelled, reminded her of her lost love - reminded her of Him, through his sketches.  She would never take his name - it made her shiver to her core, glad and teary at the same time.

As she stepped down from the bus, she breathed heavily the gush of fresh air, the smell of soil with cold morning air, very familiar, very fresh. Simi didnt remember when was the last time she had slept so peacefully and had such deep sleep, no wonder, the peace around was contagious and freshness of the country side of course is always sleep friendly. Wait a moment, though, there was something more in this place. "It looks so ....... whats the word, familiar, have i been here before" and simi just smiled at understanding the true meaning of deja vu when her thoughts were interrupted by the three wheeler riskshaw puller's honking, although this one from a simple rubber instrument fixed to his handle, which made a dampening sound as the air through the small rubber orifice came gushing out due to the applied pressure of his hand.

"Kahan chalna hai madam !", Simi was blank for a moment ..."Prem anchal"....."Haan..." Simi was so lost today, didnt know why, may be something to do with the air or may be she slept a lot. Simi boarded the rick and instructed the rickshaw puller to go to 'yatri nivas', the official guest house of Shivam architectures, the guys majorly responsible for the development of the tourist site premanchal. As the rickshaw took speed, Simi noticed that this was not it wasn't a purely mechanical one, it was a blended model - battery and mechanical, something she had seen in newspaper recently. However, never expected it to ride on it and that too in an offbeat tourist location.

She got down and asked for the charge and was indicated to see the meter. She was little surprised and paid up. The inquisitive guard standing at the gate said - "madam u can take your tour card from the office and you can swipe it anywhere even on my rickshaw, proudly pointing at the a small card reader on the handle bar. you dont need to carry cash anywhere, not even at fruit stall".

"Where am I ? Did I sleep little too much, is this really an indian location, people do look indian, but the cleanliness, the ambience is way too different from other tourist destination - not that they are bad or so"  simi said to herself balancing here thoughts in a debating manner as she has always done ever since she knew herself and looked around to see "Welcome to yatri nivas, Premanchal". She was indeed in India, just at the foothills of love.....


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