Monday, November 10, 2008

Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy....

Hey was it not very hot just yesterday? Were we not fanning ourselves desperately while sipping iced tea only the other day ? And today morning suddenly I sighted the first shawls and sweaters on co-commuters. All at once, it is not comfortable to get up from bed in the mornings or to go swimming in the pool . It seems winter has approached and its time to sip ginger tea at every possible opportunity. Time to take out the woollen sweaters from the closet. Time for huddling together. For warmth. For comfort. Visible breath, which amused me endlessly as a child . Even the topics of conversation have changed. Winter time is as much a festival time as it is a time for shopping. You want to be out in the sun for every big or small task. Seasonal sweets of jaggary and til are appearing on the confectionery shops . I am again feeling envious of people enjoying the sunshine while I concentrate on the files and figures of Income Tax in this close office room .Evenings are foggy and sunshine is pleasant . I think of Eliza of My fair Lady asking for only "a room somewhere,far away from the cold night air,with one enormous chair."to brave the winter . But then she also dreams of "Lots of chocolate for me to eat.Lots of coal makin' lots of 'eat.Warm face, warm 'ands, warm feet. so loverly sittin' absobloominlutely still.I would never budge 'till spring Crept over the windowsill." Yeah that is really something to ask for the winters !

Its strange that my visualisation of winter is different for different places . When I think of winter in Lucknow, I always remember sitting in my lawns with winter flowers all around, but for Shimla it is biting chill of snow melting and a of ice-cream cone at the Mall. And whenever I think of winters in Calcutta I think of Christmas celebrations and the amazing range of sweets available only in these months. Of course in plains the winter months are very uncomfortable , specially if one has to go out for work and if there is so sun for days . While I prepare myself for the notorious 'dilli ki sardi ' I can't help feeling good about it too. After all I missed this kind of northern winters for last 4 years in Calcutta . I cherish all the memories of winters in various cities I have lived so far but interestingly,my most favourite winter imagination is of what I found in BBC adaptations of Victorian novels. I long to see the harsh winters in the English countryside and the joy of sunshine after that. But on second thoughts I feel that I may find it very romatic but that must have been a difficult time for people who actually lived in that period.Speically for the poor and the workers . Here is poem describing winter time and the winter-y concerns. It is by Robert Louis Stevenson.
Late lies the wintry sun a-bed,
A frosty, fiery sleepy-head;
Blinks but an hour or two; and then,
A blood-red orange, sets again.
Before the stars have left the skies,
At morning in the dark I rise;
And shivering in my nakedness,
By the cold candle, bathe and dress.
Close by the jolly fire I sit
To warm my frozen bones a bit;
Or with a reindeer-sled, explore
The colder countries round the door.
When to go out, my nurse doth wrap
Me in my comforter and cap;
The cold wind burns my face, and blows
Its frosty pepper up my nose.
Black are my steps on silver sod;
Thick blows my frosty breath abroad;
And tree and house, and hill and lake,
Are frosted like a wedding-cake.


Shirazi said...

Your blurb (Who are YOU?' said the Caterpillar. `I--I hardly know, sir, just at present-- at least. I know who I WAS when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.') is good. How are you Atu?/

navrajgoyal said...


Well done! You actually make the winter came alive ..i will re-read it in summers..