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Different places to travel

Saturday, June 14, 2008

The pleasures of India Gate

Imagine a place where there is a kilometer long lane of cars parked on both sides of the road, where there is a large number of Delhi's families coming there with just family members, or with extended family to spend a fun filled evening. There is ice-cream, cold drinks, and many kinds of small snacks available over there. And the place is slightly colder than the heat of the city. And of course, there are the wide green lawns, and a beautifully lighted India Gate at one end, and the lighting of the North Block / South Block at the other end.
When we reached there, parking was an issue; there were so many people who had already reached there. Eventually we found parking closer to the Boat Club side, and then walked to the India Gate side. The sight that we saw brought a lot of smiles - there were kids playing football (with other kids or with an indulgent elder\parent), there were extended families playing either cards or antakshari (a songalathon) with sheets spread on the greenery.
And then there were the families with extended eating plans - bed sheets, tiffin carriers, casseroles, big jars full of either water or some sort of liquid, topped with ice cream from the large number of ice cream vendors selling their wares. In the partial darkness of the night, one could also see something lighted suddenly going up in the air and coming down again. Getting closer, one could clearly see that these were actually kids toys. We did not do most of these things, but just indulged in walking casually from one end to the other end (tip: I think that the lighting of the India Gate gets turned off at 10 PM, since that is what actually happened dot at 10 PM). Other than that, some chanas and some stale bhelpuris were consumed.
While watching all these families enjoying themselves, I also thought about the people who were all doing the selling, whether that be the ice cream sellers, the people selling the snacks, or the people selling the toys; and the policemen over there who were there to help others. These people, watching entire families enjoying themselves, must be feeling something - or maybe they have spent so much time that they no longer feel different (but I doubt that).

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