Skip to main content

Day 195: Rising above the tide - Chennai

This past couple of weeks has been rough on the beautiful capital city of Tamil Nadu-Chennai. The city was devastated with endless rains and flood. It was such a disastrous few weeks that it changed the way of life for the many who lived there. Chennai has always had water problems. But never has it been with so much water. It is usually the other way around. Water has been a scarce issue in the past. I have lived about 6 1/2 - 7 years there and during those times thankfully have had enough rains to help our water issues and never had much issue with 'lack of water.' However, this year, the climate change (which a lot of us are ignoring signs) issues have had an impact all around the world and Chennai was 'blessed' slightly more than it could take with rain. More than the rain flooding the city, it was the overflowing dams that caused more damage. The sad part was that the national media paid no attention to the issue here and instead had discussions on 'intolerance'. Well, at times I think it is probably the consequence of having too many media houses and news channels than what is required.

Anyways, the water and flood marooned the city but did not dampen the spirit. Every single individual contributed in their own way to help the troubled folks get through this calamity. I could not pay attention to social media initially but once I did, I was amazed to see how everyone was making the best of tweets and wall posts to spread the message. Of course, on the other side this did cause a lot of confusion with the same message and information misused. However, on a larger scale it did more good than bad. Chennai's younger population did show grit and generous heart to wade through the dirty and scary water logged roads and help the stranded with food, shelter, and warm clothes.

Image Caption: Social Media 
 Today, the businesses are getting back and people are slowly getting back to normal routine life. It made me question a lot of things in life. We, as people value various things on the hierarchy scale. However, when an issue as large as this bothered people, there was no difference in who helped whom or who cheated whom. It was like every one was every other person. No difference in class, place, language, or even gender. All that mattered was if they could eat, find a place to sleep, and stick together with their family. It also made me think about how we as human beings so hate the usual routine life but once that is disrupted we find it hard to get back to 'normal' again. Ironical but true.

I had my family and friends there in Chennai but thanks to the good god, they did not really get into much trouble. Yes, the occasional power issues and satellite issues haunted them during the past two weeks but being in places that were not as bad as the few water logged locations helped them at least stay intact indoors. Chennai has come back and the thanks is only to the collective power of 'common-man'. It was the tireless and selfless efforts of various simple government officials, administrative folks, the young and vibrant people, those who shared and organized the logistics from across places like Kerala and Karnataka, those who did their best by contributing monetarily from around the world. Yes, the scars will haunt for a while and the people who lost a lot more than a few material possessions will take time to walk their path. However, this beautiful city has taught us once again that a city is a not just the man made buildings and offices, it is the people who form the city and its personality as much as they are altered by it. Thank you to this beautiful city which has stood the test of time and have fought back the dirty waters by standing tall.

Note: I usually don't like when media starts focusing on celebrities especially from the cinema industry for all their good help. However, this time, I liked actor Siddharth's attention in media as that helped at least the so called 'National' (or should I call, North Indian) media to focus on the real issue. 
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Day 307: Happy Chingam !

Today is Chingam 1 (to be read as onnu). It is the new month according to the lunisolar calendar. This month is also called as Avani and Shravana. So, why is this month special?  This month marks the beginning of the festival season back home and the it is fun to have small celebrations through the months until  mid- December. It is also the month of Onam (Harvest festival in Kerala).

The first festival we have this month is the 'sacred thread' changing ceremony for men/boys who wear that. This is followed by usually the birthday of little Krishna and then the elephant-head god, Ganesha. Then comes Onam followed by the beautiful month of Navaratri or Durga Pooja. So, the big set of festival season is here and here is a wish to all of you on Chingam 1. Wishing you all blessed and excellent months ahead. Have fun!

Day 315 : What's on your bucket list?

Bucket List. A term that has become popular much after the famous movie with the same title in 2007. The term would have probably taken after the euphemism 'kick the bucket', which was again popularized in the movie, 'It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world'. The 2007 movie was a massive hit and how would it be not? It had Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in the lead. The term was meant to have a list of things you wish you can do before you leave this world.

It is like a goal list that can evolve as you grow and change perspectives in life. I used to have a wish list that worked as a to-do list mostly like a work list for short-term goals. However, off late, I have decided to make one and keep it as an ever evolving list.

The first one on my list as of now (that was from the past too) is to get my biggest degree in life. Hopefully I will tick that one off my list soon.

Do share your thoughts on your list and how do you plan on getting it all checked out.

Love,
M

Day 306: Most beautiful things in this world

"What are the most beautiful things in this world?", asked a little child.
"Ah! well, the list is long, really very long." , said I,  Do you have the patience to listen and hold on? "Yes, I do", said she.  I smiled,  "I will first tell you all that I have been told,  and then will narrate all that I uphold."

Listen, oh, little girl,  I was told it was in places to go by a long way,  Like the light blue shores in the Caribbean isles,  and the beautiful Icelandic summer nights.  It was also in the streets of Tokyo,  and the serene charm of Canadian winter snow.  Some said it was the street food in Bangkok,  and yet others claimed that it was the chaat masalas of India.  The haute couture in Milan fashion show,  or for a few, the royal palaces of big Europe.  I was confused just like you, for,
all these are places afar very distant from my present home .
But what if I wanted to enjoy a few beautiful things,
should I go this far or are they just wi…