February 13, 2013

The Colour Of Candyfloss

Sharmaji and I take a leisurely walk across the bridge over Brahma Sarovar in Kurukshetra.

A bite of candy floss to sweeten the stroll would’ve added just the right touch to a listless morning, a far cry from when the Mahabharata eventually culminated in a ferocious finish about this very place in Haryana in the distant past.

I had noticed a speck of pink in the distance. In time the speck grew larger, revealing a youth selling candy floss by the side of the road.

If he thought no one would notice the pink candyfloss packs raised on his stick, he was probably right. It was easy to miss them in the distance, more so in the morning haze that had settled over the legendary lake.

There had to be a better way to help strollers notice them from a distance.

Clad in a shirt intensely, and most likely intentionally, pink, he probably hoped to draw pilgrim attention to the only thing pink and edible in those parts – candy floss. Wandering pilgrim eyes would see him in the distance, catch the pink of his shirt for candyfloss and be drawn to the neatly wrapped packs of pink once they neared him and made them out on the raised stick.

Except when I saw him first, drawn by the unusual colour of his shirt, I missed the candy floss packs for his shirt. It was the reverse of missing the forest for the trees.

I had missed the trees for the forest.

The nature of seeing was once again determined by the gaps it sought to fill, but didn't.

I wonder if the nature of perception is any different.

February 11, 2013

A Swing And A Miss

It’s nearing ten in the night. Everyone, well almost everyone, is out. It’s Durga Puja. It’s Kolkata.

The “Playing XI” consisted of just one bowler, a batsman, and a wicket keeper. The rest of the fielding was done by the two walls enclosing the narrow passage.

They had abandoned the red ball, never a good idea under lights to begin with. The white one was a better option. Yet, he took a wild swing, and missed it.

Some habits die hard even if you are not old enough to have acquired them. They’re acquired from seeing them, and “a swing and a miss” has been on show for a long time now.