Tuesday, 26 May 2015

It's a frown. It's an itch. It's a slap from hell. It's Summertime!!!


The fashion magazines are all pasted with the latest summer trends; models clad in bikini with prints that scream about the wild flowers of Africa. The cover photo has a promising picture of a cellulite repellent lady sipping Pinacolada on a beach that looks pristine, bohemian curls flirting with the summer wind, her skin kissed by a gentle tan. You stare at the magazine until a sweat develops on your scalp and lands noisily on it. So much for a dreamy summer in India.
That drop of sweat brings you back to reality. A reality that consists of your head that seems to have been licked by the holy Indian cow, the patches of makeup that managed to hold on to your face, the collar of your shirt as dirty as your thoughts and sweat glands that are working overtime like Santa’s little elves on the last day of Christmas. There is nothing I enjoy about summer, except mangoes. Yes Mangoes!
I have hated summer with a conviction as fervent and strong as a mother’s love. The only nostalgia attached to summer was fighting for a spot in front of the air cooler and later escaping the responsibility to quench the exhausted machine’s thirst with buckets of water; the prospect of carving out biceps lost in that process. Summer never brought to me crop tops and hot pants, my family was orthodox like that; my body was obese like that. What it did bring to me was frequent bouts of diarrhea, credit to the dirty ice lollies that Mahesh Thelawala sold and I gulped down like vitamin pills. It also brought out this other version of my mother, the one who was always ready with a bowl of milk with salt in it to rub on my face, every time I returned from an episode under the blazing sun. It removed the tan she said; never did I vouch! A regular sight during summer was my topless, hibernating grandfather stretched out on the diwan and my grandmother sprinkling cold water on him.
While the other kids took up a summer hobby and went to camps, I spent my holidays being a human fan. It was my eternal duty to stand on the kitchen counter and help bring down the temperature by fanning my mother using that day’s Hindustan times. When I was tired, dad took up the spot, lest we wanted to end up sleeping hungry. Bathing never made things better, thanks to the black overhead tank that only supplied boiling water. I have always wondered why people decide to get married during summer. A far off relative who I was particularly fond of, hates me because I once told her “Aapko malum hai ki aap kal apni shaadi mein kitni gandi dikhogi?”. She had chosen the month of May to get married. The bride’s sindoor running down the forehead as she smiles at her new man shaped tote bag who seems to have lost a couple of kilos inside his safari suit, wasn’t exactly a grand way to kick start a lifetime of togetherness. Her wedding video could easily be mistaken as a clip from the movie Shutter Island. In a climate that makes cuddling the last thing in the mind, no wonder they choose Switzerland to initiate honeymoon consummation.
Henry James once said “Summer afternoon- Summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” This makes me want to cry while I attempt to wring myself dry.
P.S- Almost 2mths of not blogging. I am alive and there to stay! 
Image Courtesy- myindiapictures.com
 

100 comments:

  1. Finally, a much awaited blog post.
    Looks like the Bangalore weather is keeping you busy(?).

    Summer. I just remember it for the mangoes and the month long vacations (once upon a time) which these days is a dream while they tell us to come on weekends also. :(

    Welcome back. (Too soon ?). Hope to see more posts. :)
    Enjoy the Bangalore weather, still when you can. :P

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    Replies
    1. heyheyhey. How have you been? Bangalore work is keeping me busy thats all. And yes you can hope to see more posts :P

      Delete
  2. Summer is deadly here too; temperature during noon rises as high as 50 degree Celsius!
    And what you said to your relative who's getting married, I would have said the same. I have never romanticized the idea of getting married in summer. As you mentioned, dirty sweat would spoil all the charm. LOL
    Nice to read you after quite a long time. Keep being alive all the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hahah yes..marriages in summers r the worst...atleast for me as a guest. Thank you so much for reading!!!! I hope to keep being alive.

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  3. Such a funny and realistic tale. Apart from mangoes there is really nothing much that one looks forward to in summer at least the blazing hot Indian summer. I have often wondered about those silly fashion ads too. :-)

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    1. heh. Indeed. Mangoes are the only thing good during summers.
      Fashion ads r the worst

      Thank you for reading!

      Delete
  4. I thought you were talking about our Chennai which is a caldron for heat! May weddings is difficult for the bride and groom and the guests with heavy silk sarees and throat clutching jewelleries!

    Nobody stands with a fan in my kitchen when I cook:(

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    Replies
    1. hehe....chennai must be pure torture right now!!!! Force someone to become a human fan for u!! Thanks for reading!! means a lot.

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  5. Ah, the joys of summer :)
    Welcome back, Red. The weather will get better. Soon. Some day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. SOME DAY. It's raining right now. a relief!!!
      Thanks for reading.

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  6. I won't marry in summer. :O There's nothing good about summer except for Mangoes. That's true. I don't even think of getting a haircut in summer. No matter what I look messed up in summer. -_-

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    1. hahhaha I look like a street urchin the whole of summer. How have you been?

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  7. Hahahaha, such a thoroughly enjoyable read. I have been away from blogging for a while and your posts are always such a riot, makes me regret being away :D

    ReplyDelete
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    1. how supremely kind. Why are you away but?

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  8. Thankfully the summer is about to come to an end in Goa. It would soon start raining and monsoon would stay until about four months from then..... counting days backwards until it starts to rain....!!
    i remember dipping my bedsheet in ice cold water as a child and later sleeping UNDER it. now i wonder if i could have rather made my younger bro fan with the newspaper..:P :)
    How are you, Red?
    Love and Regards

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. heheh....I did use my younger brother as a fan too. I think my mother taught me ragging,
      I am good. just bbeen very busy because of the new job and the new place.
      Thanks for reading. How r u!!

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  9. I hate summers!!! It's so unpleasant and the thing you said about May Weddings, I wonder that too. Like why would anyone choose this time of the month to get married when dressing up is a task!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. exactly. melting in the wedding attire!!
      Thanks for reading!

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  10. Oooh, true post. I hate summer with such a vengeance. And you are right- there is nothing right about summer except Mangoes. And the temperature is ever increasing. I am a mean cranky bitch when I go out in Summer. To dream of the summer that was in Henry James's mind, yes we can only dream of it.

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    1. hahahah bangalore is a relief from summer. but my family back in Bhopal is being barbecued. How have you been?

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  11. That was one heck of a post, with humor blended with reality. Although, I always loved summer.. For its holidays.

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    Replies
    1. Holidays was nice...but I spent it being a fan or holidays further down south in Kerala....

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  12. Aaannnndddd you are back!!

    I hate summer too! The sweat, the stench, the stickiness. And that is not from me.

    I got married in March, just before the summer came out in full glory. And thanks to enough ACs and fans, the wedding was not a sweaty affair.

    I'm not a big fan of rains either, but I choose them over summer any day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hate rains too but not as much as summers. I love winters!! I will freeze but I love it!!
      Yes...finally I wrote something!!!!!
      Thanks for reading Leo!

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  13. Summer evenings... you need those...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yes...evenings r an escape! Except when thr r powercuts!

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    2. ah yes... power cuts, the thing that unites as all

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  14. And I read this on a day when Bangalore has bestowed upon us a very pleasant weather. :-) I hate it when it's sunny, I hate it when it's raining. I just want it to be cloudy, all the time. Sigh!!

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    Replies
    1. yes...cloudy!!!!!its just rained a while back no? My family is getting barbecued in bhopal!

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  15. In Bangalore, summer is not really summer, right?
    I am thankful for having lived here, all my life! :D

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    Replies
    1. Now I am here toooooooooooooooooo! Thank you for reading!

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  16. Hilarious post on summer :) I have been laughing all along and thinking.. exactly the same with me...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. heh thank you so much for reading!!!

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  17. This was missing in Blog World :D THE FUN - THE REAL FUN

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. how sweet. Let me take you out for coffee. :D

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  18. glad to see u after so long. I have blogged after 3months and I really dont know if I will stay. Hating summer just like u and good to know that ur humor is intact even if u r drying ur self :D
    Have fun

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    Replies
    1. dont u dare leave. I am trying to find time too. Its so hard writing after a long gap. :(
      Thanks for visiting!!!!

      Delete
  19. A fun post!! Summers - I agree..I never likeda them..I am happy freezing but no Sun!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. heh...glad that u could relate.!

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  20. Before we got married in the last month of May, my husband used to say only des oersted people get married in summer.

    Welcome back, Red :-)

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    1. Thanks a ton for reading Purba!!

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  21. Hope the weather cools down a bit!! Till then let mangoes take your mind off from it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yes. hopefully !!!!
      Thanks for reading and commenting!!!!!!

      Delete
  22. Interesting Read! :)
    I dislike summer too, but not with the fervor you do. Something about the intense heat ;)

    P.s Drop by my blog sometime and follow back if you like it. :)

    Stay blessed

    Toobs.
    www.alwaysandforevertk.blogspot.com

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  23. Bathing doesn't help in my apartment too. I can make a cup of tea with the tap water right now at ten in the morning. And I look forward to cherries.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hahaha...thank God I escaped to Bangalore at the right time.

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  24. RED!!
    How do you do it, girl?? :D

    One hell of a 'hot' summer post. It helped people like me cool down, who are otherwise pondering over whether it is actually worth it, taking baths in summers. The sweat anyway maintains its constant supply :P

    P.S. Hieeee! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE...HOW ART THOU?!!!!!
      I am fine and dandy !!

      Delete
  25. Glad you are back.. safe and alive.. with your style of blogging.. I completely enjoyed reading it.. and for Summers.. disasters they are.. and I guess, every person on the planet hate them..

    Cheers

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    1. Thank you soooooooooooooooo much for reading!!!! :D

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  26. Rofl.. You can write so well on something you detest so much! :D :D I loved this one particularly because I could relate to everything you wrote! :D The summer in my home town is a crazy time too! :D

    and this is epic, for an analogy: "I have hated summer with a conviction as fervent and strong as a mother’s love".. lmao! :D :D

    Good to see your post.. you should write more to help us get through this cruel cruel summer..

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I shall try to write more regularly. I so wish sites werent blocked at work :P

      Delete
  27. A sheer delight to read about your summer sufferings, Red! I am not being rude but am just able to relate with every line you wrote:) Mangoes, juicy watermelons, and some coolers are the only relief in blistering heat!

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    Replies
    1. hahaha...oh how could I forget watermelons....They r a delight too! Thank you so much!

      Delete
  28. Ha ha.... yes that was (and is) one thing I too keep asking - why people decide to get married during summer.
    The reason they all give is "children's holidays" And that is the the second question, why do we have to have all the jing bang when two people get married......
    Summer was never my favourite except that it was the time when we went to our "native place"

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    1. oh....yes summer vacations meant going to our native place which was even more hot!!! and blooody humid!

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  29. Refreshing to read your post after so long, REd! :)
    Yes, I hate the heat too!!!! Especially when I my sweating glands are more efficient than they are supposed to be :@

    Mangoooooooooooesss!!! Oh yeaaaaaa!!! Summer means mango to me as well! hi fi on that, girl! :)

    And that picture .... ROFL!!!! :D:D:D

    ReplyDelete
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    1. HiFi Fellow mango lover!!!!
      I have missed blogosphere!!!

      Delete
  30. Well, I hate to disagree but give me eternal summer any day, just hate those layers upon layers of clothes in winters, plus no mangoes;)

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  31. I hate summers too. Infact, I even hate monsoons. Springs and winters are quite pleasant. God, why was I born in Delhi? Mujhe siwtzerland mei paida karna tha na:p

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  32. Even on a subject like oppressive summer from the first line till the end of your post ,you are irrepressibly humorous and I am convulsed in laughter.

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    1. Thank you so much for reading Sir!

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  33. We spent 6 months in Chennai. I was on an assignment. Enjoyed all 3 seasons there. Hot. Hottest. Murder.
    Visit us in the San Francisco Bay Area. Mark Twain said my coldest day was a summer in San Francisco. It is not cold here. But it is always chilly.

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    Replies
    1. hehehe...I belong to that place then. :(
      Switch places?

      Delete
  34. you're correct about our not-so-glorious summers.

    I wish we could do something about it.

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  35. Amazing post my dear <3 !
    http://kasjaa.blogspot.com

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  36. I am imagining your grandfather on a diwan and your granny religiously sprinkling water on him. :P

    I hated those water-cooler-filing routine. My happiness knew no bounds when my mom installed a tap and attached a water hose to it, such bliss I tell ya!

    Even I married in summer :P Welcome back, Red! :)

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  37. In my head, I skip ahead to the monsoons. Few months are always missing from my year because I block them out :P My love for summer is that deep...

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  38. Yes. Its almost 2 months since your last post and you are back with a bang!
    I was laughing like a mad woman while reading it and nodding every now and then.
    I equally hate summers and I hate it even more when it sweats all the time.
    As you said, marriage or any occasion/outing for that matter is a curse during this season. I am glad that monsoon is approaching. Thankful that both Kerala and Karnataka was not that bad this summer!

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  39. Summer is crazy in Delhi, too. So, I completely understand! I found the anecdote about the marriage really funny!

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  40. I love summers Red! but haven't been in India for last 6 summers. Looks like I have escaped the wrath!

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  41. And you are back with a bang :D I too love mangoes, but praying for the summer to get over soon :-/

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  42. Lovely post Red! :)
    Really Long Time! You were missed :)

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  43. I guess this is the dreadful reality of summer heat in India! I guess I'm lucky in that case, summer has always been that dreamy holiday time! Nice to see you back :)

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  44. This Summer was horrible in Chennai. Thankfully the summers after school weren't that bad. I never had this interest in summer classes and would happily eat, sleep and keep doing that again and again :-)

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  45. hahahhaah.. LOVED the description of Indian summer. My parents got married in June, I was born in June and I have never dared to step out of my house to celebrate either of the two. It's such a horrible weather. And in my house, the usual sight is of my shirtless father drying his sweaty shirt right on the bed.

    The other day while I was telling my brother about the weather in Delhi and how it feels like walking through a hot tandoor everyday, he shushed me and said "Hum Suraj devta ke baare mein kuch bura nahi sunenge" hahahah..apparently he's been thoroughly enjoying summers in US.

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  46. I love how your mum was treated like a queen in the kitchen!!
    Yes, Indian summers are terrible. Mr. James was probably closer to the Arctic!

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  47. The hair spends every summer up in a bun :) Delhi summer is already frustrating me.
    I have nominated you to 'Share Love' at Points To Ponder

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  48. Summers are cool thanks to Mangoes, ice-lollies etc!
    Ice-creams too!
    Enjoy Red :)

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  49. Keep Posting Nice Post .. 2 Months is a Long time .

    Amit lamba

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  50. Commenting late, Red Handed. A super interesting post on what it takes to beat the summer and sweating it out in the sun. The room always gave respite and of course, sleeping during the day, after walking in the scorching sun. Love this post:)

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  51. I hope you get through this tough summer. I feel the same way about winter, perhaps because it is so intense here.

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  52. Hi, I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. Read all about it here: http://shilpaview-ideas2.blogspot.in/2015/06/the-versatile-blogger-award.html

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  53. Aww, it seems like summers have been quite brutal for you. I feel the same way about winters because they tend to be pretty bad over here. I am hoping it would rain and cool down some for you. Hang in there, just two more months to go. :-)

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  54. Hey Red..
    Nominated you for the Versatile Blogger award. Love your blogs.
    Check this link
    http://geetika-gupta.blogspot.in/2015/07/my-first-award-versatile-blogger-award.html

    Cheers

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  55. Oh my gosh! I kept saying "Same Here...!!" to so many of those things, yet i could have never written them like that! Amazing. Where are you now by the way...long time no post!

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  56. I am kind of late in reading the post... Summers are finally coming to an end with monsoons... :-)
    But somehow, I like summers.. :)

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  57. it's extremely dangerous to read your blog at office... I burst out laughing so hard ... absolutely loved this one. India Summers are traumatizing ... forget cuddling... if anyone comes near me.. I might throw a cow at them :P
    {seriously people are staring at me... I gotta leave this space}
    btw where are you... come back.

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  58. It's a great idea. In hot days, I want to stay in the refrigerator to prevent from the heat.

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  59. You always bring smile to my face whenever I read your post. Your ability to write posts humorously is appreciable. I have always hated summer and "human fan" stuffs even for myself but now I am wanting for some sunshine being in a cold and far away country. This is what they say in tamil " Ikkaraiku Akkarai Pachai"

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  60. Hey no posts for a long time......
    All is well ?

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Spit It Out I Say !!!