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Letters from me to my grandchildren- Story of our roads

November 25, 2010

I am going to start writing visionary stories to my grandchildren. Remember how our grandparents would say “In our age this was not so, we did not have electricity at all. We always had dinner by candle light” or “Today I would like to tell a story, of the beautiful cow whose milk your father drank” or “Have you heard of the story of the young girl who fathered a son without being married? From the Mahabharatha? Tell me what you learnt from that?” or. Ok I hear you, I am stopping.

Anyway, I am not sure when I will have grandkids, but here is the first one for them when they come to see me in Trivandrum.

Dear children, long long ago, when your grammy was a young, pretty and attractive female about town, the only thing that looked anything like you see now are our roads. Everything else was different. The men looked all crazy with short crew cut hair, the fashion sense of a dodo and the pompousness of erstwhile Aurangaseb Maharaj. My mom, your great grandmother wore a saree, the one you see immortalized in Ram Gopal Verma Jr ki Aag Part-XII, yes babies, the long piece of cloth clinging to her when she is dancing in the rain. No, your great grand mother did not wear it that way though. When it rained, Kerala was a beautiful shade of green, a green you are not so blessed to see now. How can you see green when the trees are all gone eh? The trains traveled through pretty suburbs with clumps of naked children waving at it. Sigh, my babies, it was so different.
The only thing that has not changed here in Trivandrum is our roads.

They were all the same. The pothole you see when you just cross Ulloor not so big, but still just like that. When grammy fell ill and you guys came with me to Cosmopolitan Hospital, remember how your grammy almost died because the roads were so uneven, un-tarred and un-road-like? They were just the same then. Oh and yesterday while we went to shop in Statue, and lost our way, since the policemen at every corner directed us to take a by road because the main road was under construction? Man, they haven’t changed at all.! And irrespective of the world going solar and our traffic signals not blinking inspite of that is because our kind government had it borrowed from some bank called the World bank and they came in and took the controls away since the debt was not paid for sometime now. This World Bank was so much in picture when grammy was growing up too, that every time, our government could be heard begging for money from them, and the lights weren’t blinking then too. And about the game we played, of counting the potholes from Ulloor to EastFort and my chubby little baby lost count because you have only learnt till 100? That game was so much on when grammy was a woman. Grammy counted it to a 142 if grammy remembers correctly.
And you kids ask me what is the purpose of the big blue monstorities called traffic dividers kept at every junction? Grammy had wondered about it when she traveled to Technopark everyday when the buses were obediently standing in line for hours in the Pongummodu-Kaaryavattom stretch because some highly intelligent man thought that these dividers were essential for traffic control. Grammy had some nice profanities to say about them every Tuesday since the buses would NEVER reach office on time and grammy would miss her meeting without a valid excuse. Volvo s, yes babies, they came around that time, shiny, red and driving right through technopark. But look at them now, since the roads were all the same, they have huge craters on their underside, poor them, they were built for low floor travel, not pot-hole travel.

And yes, grammy forgot to tell you that the roads were the same because crazy politicians in power built ungodly mansions, played some games from our common wealth and sent their mothers-in-law to study in Cambridge out of the money needed to tar them.

I am sorry if I am red, children. It is rage. Road rage.


Your grammy, Leya

5 Comments leave one →
  1. November 25, 2010 8:17 am

    good one… nice 🙂

  2. November 25, 2010 8:31 am

    Nice post!!

    “pretty and attractive female” !!! That was a good one.. LOL..


  3. Linju permalink
    January 7, 2011 2:23 pm

    I see that sarcasm is still your second language 🙂

    • January 7, 2011 6:06 pm

      Oh! Thanks! Let me take that as a compliment!!

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