Crop and Drop

I still remember the day when I asked my grandpa if there happened a WW3 after the 2nd one. While he was quenching my curiosity, my grandma came panting upstairs and said, “I reckon there will be one soon” indicating that she heard our conversation and hurried into the backyard to switch on the water motor. It was the big day of the week. It was the ‘water day’ and people in the community were gearing up with their buckets and containers to store water for a week.

People in Vidarbha have embraced this weekly routine. I’ve lived in Vidarbha for 10 years before shifting to Mumbai and I’m completely aware of how water scarcity can affect people’s lifestyles.

Grandma’s words have always stayed with me because War On Water is a huge deal to even imagine. Those words came back to me when I was reading the reports of Vidarbha’s neighbour Marathwada having hit the worst drought ever.

Drought

Marathwada is facing serious droughts of all time. Farmers are worst hit. Water-scarcity, almost ‘zero’ cultivation and unemployment have become a stubborn danger.  There is only 2% water left in Marathwada dams until today. People are dying while fetching water. Cattle is dying their natural death and farmers are chalking their own by committing suicides. 2015 itself witnessed around 3228 farmer suicides in Maharashtra. 3228 is definitely not a small number. Every life counts. 2016 has barely begun and have already witnessed 338 suicides in the Marathwada region itself.

Economy is badly hit as the crop production has fallen. The bread-winners are simply jobless as their jobs are water dependent and water scarcity have left them no choice but to herd themselves in cattle camps. Cattle camps claim no order in place. It’s still techno-spastic in 21st century. The relief and monitoring staff manually counts the cattle heads twice a day in the scorching sun, travelling from camp to camp. It’s grueling but the staff has to still put up with it despite charges of manual error by the seat-warming administration. It’s dubious if the relief is really reaching the needy. When it’s not, whom the needy should approach is a big question in itself.

Parched lands are compelling people to migrate to cities for food and employment. But where will they go in cities? Isn’t it tough to start from scratch with barely any capital?  And what about the cattle? How will they migrate? Even power-shedding is an issue, let alone no electricity at all.  Don’t you think these dire circumstances might make people take the wrong route? The riches have already started playing by bribing the tanker officials for hoarding and supplying water not meant for them. Things are certainly bitter.

So what/who is to blame except the administration? Maybe the choice of crops the farmers produce in this region. There should be something called as ‘smart cultivation’. Sugarcane is a water-thirsty crop and must be avoided in such areas and the cultivation must instead shift to pulses. Also, why the farmer produces a particular crop despite knowing its cons is a whole different subject of discussion. Simple explanation is that they find it safe for their business. Despite multiple warnings, sugar mills were set up in the region and this negligence has evidently proven expensive.

I can go on and on about the whats, hows and whys about this issue. The problem is grave and not just confined to Maharashtra. States across the country are facing a similar menace at various intensities. Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh are among the few states in India suffering due to consecutive bad monsoons.

So what do you think is our responsibility towards water conservation? Because that’s what a common man can still control. Unemployment and agriculture are left to the government to look after because we can’t draft and implement the required policies for the same.

Easy measures :

Avoid using showers although it is the most sought-after bathroom accessory during summers.

Close running taps. Please don’t ask ‘Why me?’

Order mineral water at restaurants. Because only when you pay for water will you understand its importance.

Rain water harvesting. The coolest water conservation technique. Some states even give subsidy of around 6% for implementing the same.

Repair leaking taps. It’s YOUR responsibility to bring it to the attention of care takers.

There is this one-man ngo called ‘Drop Dead Foundation’ run by a 80 year old Aabid Surti, a well-known artist with several achievements to his name, wherein he repairs the leaky taps in Mumbai households for free. His generous initiative has helped save millions of tonnes of water every year. Aabid has had a tough childhood and it’s his roots that remind him that every drop counts.

Most important : Stop cursing Monsoons. Please. Curse the concerned management for your first-world problems.

Water is a necessity. Pure drinking water is the most basic one of all. We need to do the needful and leave a better planet for the future generations. Nobody’s too old or too young to understand the need to conserve. Baby steps. People are reaching out for this issue and  it’s OUR responsibility to acknowledge the need and join hands for the same.

 

I would like to close with bits of Leonardo DiCaprio’s speech at Oscars 2016 on receiving one for ‘The Revnant’ – “Climate change is real. It’s happening right now. It is the most urgent threat facing our entire species. We need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating…let us not take this planet for granted…”

 

 

 

Of Wings and Heights…

 

Simple and mundane but still a dame 

she dreamt to fly and rise above her reign

Beyond the horizon touching the heights

To know how it works and how it could be right

She grew her wings and prepped for a flight

Little knowing it could be but a dive 

It wasn’t easy because the world needs might…

And that’s when,

She felt her first taste of fright

Fear of the world insensitive and prejudiced

Cold with the prevalence of the cruel

However, she vowed to never lose her fuel 

To look beyond and know there is more

Depths and heights of Love and Hate alike

She kept flying until she met with a sight 

Infatuated and naive 

She thought to give it a bite

sense of touch and a shiver in spine

juxtaposed her lips to the aligned

Euphoric and Sublime 

Exploring the world unexplored

In the galaxy of glee, she frolicked

Complementing intentions with actions

Found herself in a world of incantation

Friction and unison redefined

Love is the closest one could be to light

Conversations in mirth, she had it all

Until she was faced with green eyed corn

Drained with conjectures and possibilities

She stumbled upon her luxuries

Vulnerable and bare, her heart took a call

Anger she inferred, was just disappointed love for all

Discovering him as her Achilles heel 

she trembled to leave it all behind

Yet another test of maturity she sighed

Took a flight for a purpose magnanimous,

To a future so bright

Turning her wings against the wind

She flew…the queen invincible,

Mounting a crown of a kind

Set off to conquer the impossible…

 

fly 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Choice Or Chance?

Destiny.

Some create it and some just find it. In other words, it all comes down to choice or chance.

Chance plays a very tricky role in our lives. But we are human beings and we are born with conscience. We are always making a choice consciously or unconsciously. We make thousands of choices in our daily life itself.  Right from waking up at a certain time to choosing what to wear to eating a certain kind of food to catching a particular bus to picking up certain calls to sleeping at a certain time. Everything is a choice. Even when you don’t have a choice, you are making a choice. For eg, there are only eggs for dinner and nothing else, you are unconsciously making a choice to eat only eggs although it looks like you don’t have a choice. Phew!

We are nothing but the consequences of the choices we make or are compelled to make. So, living a life of choice or living a life of chance is actually the result of our choice.

You can blame me for alliteration after reading my entire post btw. 😛

So what is chance and what role does it play if it’s always about the choice only? Chance is nothing but a situation that life throws at us from time to time. Sometimes you can predict and most of the times you can’t. Our motive is to make the best of our chance. But are we all really made that way?

There are people who reject the to-be events in their lives just because those events won’t fit their choices. These are the people who know what they want. They are unsettling with anything less than desired.

Then there are people who live with whatever life offers them without really working for it. These are the people who embrace any amount of vicissitudes coming their way; Good, bad or ugly. Such people choose to live a life of chance.

Both have their own beauty of working. There is no way to ascertain which is better. But there is certainly a way to make them work according to our best interests.

Let’s say, Career. Ideally, it should be your true choice based on your interests and capabilities. But more often than not, people choose to settle with something less. It may or may not work out well. Deciding a career is a phase which is time relative. It comes sooner to some people and later to some. It’s never too late, however, it’s easier said than done.

Establishing a career can be a daunting task which should never be given up. Every failure teaches us something and makes us better and wiser than yesterday, unless we choose to learn from it.

I’ve conveniently come to terms with the fact that at some point, you do need a great fall to rise up great! And you can fall only if you try. So keep trying and keep craving. If you really crave something, you’ll always have it achieved. (The Secret philosophy. Works!)

Now let’s consider the fall people make in the name of love. ^Relationships!! (love/ lust inclined :P)

I believe that it’s a wonderful fall only if it makes you rise in love. This is more or less chance based. A tricky phenomenon. Relationships don’t come with a manual. It’s unique and different with/for everyone.

For me, relationships are simple or so I believe. It’s the people who are complicated.

Let’s consider cheating/infidelity. People often mask it as a mistake, knowing too well that it was their choice that made it happen at that moment. They could have avoided it. But they chose not to.

Loyalty. It’s a choice, too. A priceless one.

Relationships, along with love and care, also tend to offer some uninvited things like dissatisfaction, agitation or frustration. The universal remedy is to let go and give ample room for each other. Space, they call it. It is important to have some time off to know yourself better in order to know the other person well. It depends on what you choose to sign up for.

Then there is family. Our last resort! Family is an important note of a relationships’ chord. Family must matter. There is no choice just how we don’t get to choose our blood either.

So yeah, you come in this world by chance, you meet some people by chance and you also happen to act things up by chance. This is involuntary. Although, you also get to choose to take a chance!! I took some good chances in knowing some people. Found some real gems! Lost some too. The trick is to know somehow where to take a chance.

Phew! As repetitive as this write-up may sound, I believe that I’ve made my views pretty clear. Let me know about yours. Until then, go make some kick-ass choices and make it worth your while 😀

I wish that let love come to you by chance and money by choice. Maybe vice-versa?

Deafening Silence

Silence. Sometimes golden and sometimes unnecessary.

But I’m here to express a superficially innocuous silence. The one which is hidden behind the mask of technology and believe me, it can get deafening. So deep down, it can be harmful.

I’m specifically talking about the silence during many of our virtual conversations with people. I often wonder if we are 100% ourselves while communicating virtually with our closed ones, let alone with known strangers. There are many things we tend to miss out on through such a medium; the body language, facial expressions, gestures or may be the very tone of talking. I’m narrowing my topic to personal communications and not business ones especially because the former doesn’t come with a rulebook.

In a world of Emails, SMSes, WhatsApp, Hike and the likes, we do have a range of smileys to append to convey our emotions/gestures. But how much do people really make an effort to use them? I’m totally at liberty to put forth this question since I myself belong to the lazy club. (Yes, don’t underestimate the scope of laziness.)

Anyway, the point is how well are things conveyed? And if conveyed, how well are they reciprocated? There are people who despite trying enough, are not able to reach out. Simply because they can’t. On the contrary, there are people who just can’t talk anywhere else but texts. May be it is a more comforting option or a shallow act of escapism from traditional calling or may be just laziness, you know. There is a very rare breed who can effortlessly carry out conversation over any medium possible.

We are actually living in a luxury of editing our straight-from-the-heart content before we hit the “SEND” button. As much as we live in this luxury, we never have the luxury to predict the span of any conversation. Sometimes it may go on lousily for hours or sometimes you wait for a reply forever. People often have reasons for not replying among which is pure ‘choice’. This makes for an amorphous virtual relationship. With closed ones, it’s sometimes a grave mistake. For the rest, it’s a sign of ‘not interested to talk right now’ which is sometimes a mutual and healthy understanding. So win. 😉

I can’t help but wonder if such mediums have made us manipulative in some way. There are a lot of my friends who do that. Healthy manipulation. And it’s absolutely fine if it works for them. There are also many people I know who tend to misunderstand the tone of the text if it isn’t appended with an emoticon. Yes, seriously. 🙂

Of course everyone has a texting/email writing pattern and people do put up with it with time. After all, all that matters is to striking a real conversation. It is an art which nearly every individual is capable of. But we never try enough. Our hearts are desperately trying to reach out, but our minds are holding us back.  We are hiding our true feelings by piling them up in this fast paced world, which gradually has them faded.

In a metropolitan city like Mumbai, the working hours are so draining that it seldom leaves any space for a quality conversation, let alone our very own space. Some people literally miss out on a social life in process to get a promotion, to make a partner at a firm or just to score on an appraisal.

So, for all those in need of real conversations, rise above from the world of texting and call up. Just do it. Or meet up, which is not always feasible. Call up and catch up and you’ll know what you have been missing out on. Let the luxury of texting be used only till it works for you. Change is important. An interval change. Do not let the silence of your feelings prevail and suffocate you. As much as I find it amazing to text, I can totally vouch on the wonders of calling up even if it’s just to know if the other person is in pink of his health.

Call up your family if you are away from them. Call up your bum chums you lost touch with after college. Call up the ones who matter, even if it’s just to say a goodnight.

PS : Do not harass people with incessant calling. It is more irritating than flooded texts of “hey wassup”  after every single hour 😛

Breaking the shell

Hellooo people!! I’m who I am – a happy-go-lucky, insouciant and a ridiculously indolent(evident, isn’t it?) person with huge dreams. I’m keeping it at that until you discover more bits of my personality from my future blog posts. Well, I’m overwhelmed to have finally started doing what I’ve been craving since a long time. Blogging! I’m glad […]