April started with the screening of Sultan, a movie as rustic as they come. The lead protagonist Salman Khan, is a country bumpkin brought up on the dusty plains of Haryana. With a beefcake body, he fits in beautifully in the popular competitive wrestling circuit. He falls for the fey charms of a lissome damsel played by Anushka Sharma, a feisty wrestler in her own right vying to win the the world wrestling championship. She is a venom spouting, no nonsense feminist who ticks off the wooing Salman Khan. Salman realises that the only way to win her over is to win big on the wrestling circuit. With single minded resolve he toils day and night to win the Olympics and ends up marrying her. This is when patriarchal bias of the rural hinterland takes over and Anushka is consigned to the role of a housewife to bear a son. Tragedy strikes when Salman is out of the country to win the world championship, when his newborn son needs O- blood transfusion, an extremely rare blood group. Not being able to get the required blood, the baby dies and Anushka, grief stricken, abandons him. Being a Hindi movie it meanders eventually to a happy ending with the couple reuniting. The movie had a refreshing lack of artifice. Only a motley crowd gathered for the movie, perhaps thinking the announcement was an April fool prank.
The potluck dinner that followed was a foray into exotic dishes rustled by a few residents. I sampled and relished all. One of the dishes prepared by Falguni, which drew universal acclaim, ascended the scale of Scoville grandeur and left me sweating. Whereupon have we got this proclivity for heightened spice taste?
When it comes to Municipal Elections we did not expect pristine lines to dictate the narrative between parties and immaculate coherence within them. One had to choose a party that fitted one's instincts least badly. None of the parties in the fray had particularly shown any inclination to make Delhi a world class city although they all profess that they will make Delhi like London. London is a far cry. I would be quite happy if we become as clean and orderly as Third World Colombo. I do not hold out much hope. The parties are constantly bickering and trading charges and passing the buck and never owning up to their responsibilty. Frankly, I don't give a rat's ass as to who wins. I have dealt closely with every party and they are all the same, high on promise, low on delivery. For the record, BJP swept the polls.
Global warming is here to stay for the next few million years until the Ice Age takes over. It is the irrefutable cycle of nature. We are therefore more likely to get scorched than frozen to death. Would you rather have a choice? Kunal and family had gone to a hill station in March, 6,000 ft above sea level hoping for some cool mountain air. Instead, he claims it was flaming hot. If that's how hot it was in March in the hills, where does one head to when the summer vacations arrive in May? To the Arctic tundra, I suppose.
It was high time that the legendary three-pointed star car made its presence in the colony. With residents becoming upwardly mobile, the influx of luxury cars will only become more prevalent. The Mercedes, is a car that owes its name to the custom built car made in 1901 by Gottlieb Daimler for Emil Jellinek who named the vehicle Mercedes after his daughter. The car has a pedigree that only Rolls Royce precedes. Srikant's entry into the portals of the rich and famous leaves us lesser mortals pale in the shade. Compared to his new acquistion, my Accord looks like a wheel barrow. I am in queue for a ride. If I recall correctly, the only other Mercedes that made its occasional presence in the colony belonged to another C Block non-resident, Anand. The colony may have seen even pricier marquee models of brands like BMW, Audi, Landrover etc. but none has the history that graced the garages of Kings, Queens, Presidents and celebrities quite like the Mercedes Benz. Even the current holder of the Formula 1 Constructors Championship is Mercedes.
Talking of cars, in an unfortunate incident, all the tyres of a resident's two cars and some on another resident's car were punctured with sharp instruments. Some residents termed these acts as pranks. To call such vandals pranksters would be underestimating the import such a crime can have on the unfortunate victims. To be subjected to such a vicious act - 49 punctures over 6 tyres- over a period of 10 days - smacks of something more sinister. What the perpetrators achieved by this malicious act is very hard to fathom. It shatters the idyll that we call Yamuna. Behind the pretty edifice and ethos, a blot is emerging.The resident has since cracked the case after some painstaking investigation. That there was more than one perpetrator, several witnesses and many others in the know is very troubling. That none chose to own up or confess reeks of a thought process that nothing is wrong so long as you don't get caught. If there is remorse at the end of the day, there is room for redemption but if there is only regret they got caught,it may only embolden them to doing far worse things from which there could be no recourse. It should be very worrying for the parents. Good values are something that need to be inculcated in the kids so that they do not go down the path of anarchy. Although some names are being bandied about, I do not wish to know who did it. I do not want my mind to be prejudiced by the delinquent acts of juveniles.
Sadhana's quarterly cultural pot pourri of music and dance called Milaap is a welcome treat in an otherwise dry season. A minor drizzle an hour before the programme tempered the heat enough to make the evening reasonably comfortable.The programme started with three pretty damsels in very attractive attire, namely, Radhika, Kiaana, and Dakshina doing an engaging Odissi dance. This was followed by a violin and tabla recital by guest artistes comprising Danish Ali Khan and Hafeez Ahmed Alvi. There was pin drop silence as everybody soaked in the absolutely spellbiinding recital. The programme rounded off with a Kathak recital by Sadhana faculty member, Sumana Sen. Radhika and Ramanan, please continue to entertain us every now and then by holding such performances.
Mahesh Eswaran has worked hard to make the parking allotment and shifting procedure more transparent to allay fears of any partiality in the allotment of parking slots.The waiting lists will then be put up on the portal for increased transparency.Mercifully, now there is not a single person waiting for a parking slot!
The seepage issue is affecting many residents of the colony. Corroded pipes and thoughtless renovation have made many flats vulnerable. The plumbers are content taking stop gap measures to ensure a periodic and steady flow of income. Kunal Savarkar, an architect by profession, has now stepped in to address the problem holistically and in a manner that would be lasting. However, these problems cannot be overcome in a hurry as there are far too many complaints. He can devote only part of the weekends to this activity. I would request residents to exercise patience and follow his advice diligently.
V. Rangarajan (Rangu) C-005 got hitched to Janaki in Chennai on 2nd April, 2017. At the reception held in Yamuna lawns on 8th April, 2017, the pandal was bedecked with white flowers. Rangu in a blue suit with saffron coloured tie and hanky sticking out of the pocket, looked dashing. Janaki was also draped in a similar colour sari and looked quite pretty. I was left wondering if they were flaunting their political leanings. They are headed off to the sandy beaches of Bali for their honeymoon. Balaji and Ramanan had pulled out all the stops with the decor. The pandal looked very festive. They also went hi-tech. A drone camera filmed the entire event. A first for Yamuna. I expected Ramanan to have music of a more classical bent rather than the Bollywood and Tollywood kitsch that was dished out. I can never tire of talking about the bejewelled Yamuna women. They outshone each other with their attire and accoutrements. Anand Mahadevan had lavished his extended family with designer jewellery and they were all on display. We all basked in reflected glory.The spread was generous and it was another occasion for Yamuna residents to socialize in salubrious weather conditions.
Aishwarya Nair of H-001 got betrothed to Prathyush at Habitat Centre on 9th April, 2017. She wore a designer orange sari which mirrored the marigold floral decorations lining the hall and the alleyway. She looked stunning with her glowing face and sparkling eyes. Eleven maidens with flowers and lamps on brass plates ushered Prathyush to the Hall. Several able-bodied friends of Aishwarya hoisted her on their shoulders to take her to the sanctum to exchange vows. With everybody conveying their approval to the union, rings were exchanged. Prathyush gave a flying kiss to Aishwarya. Mindful of the presence of family elders, he did not venture further and curbed his amorous instincts. Asha had help at hand and was pretty pleased with the heavy turnout of Yamuna friends. A three-tiered cake was cut with photo-ops galore. Barely had the cholesterol settled in my arteries after partaking in the rich and creamy buffet lunch, I spotted the four dessert treat and plunged right into it. What a day!
Medha Nair of A-003 is no ordinary mortal. After completing her post-graduation in Economics from Johns Hopkins University in Washington, she has been hired by International Monetary Fund, also in Washington, as a Research Analyst. She will be working under Larry Summers, the famous economist. Larry Summers was the former director of President Obama's National Economic Council. Apart from her parents Deepa and Madhu, she has made the entire Yamuna proud.
With the arrival of the summer vacation, the movement of people in and out of the colony gains currency. It is the ideal time to shift to ensure that the children get admission in schools for the next academic session.
Mr. P. K. Prakasan of B-204 has moved with his family consisting of Shyni, Abhirami and Shreeram to Mysore to pursue his entrepreneurial zeal in a non-banking financial venture. The move of two more children from the colony is really sad. The colony will be a tad duller as a consequence.
The entrepreneurial bug has also caught Shyam Satish who has moved to Pune with his wife Meenakshi and sons barely a year after they moved into C-108. He is planning his own venture after chucking his job with Goodyear Tyres.
Ramesh and Revathy Iyer of A-004 have decided to move back to Mumbai after a brief sojourn of twenty months in Yamuna.