Have you ever travelled in any public Indian mode of transportation. Most of them would be an abundant source of gush of air coming from all the directions. In such an environment you fear of being blown away, let alone the fear of witnessing your belongings flying away.
Imagine travelling in a train standing on the very edge of the gate, your hair blowing with the wind, your skin exposed to mild chilled breeze, your eyes captivated by the mystic of the mountains, your mind engrossed in understanding the patterns made by the flora and you suddenly hear a “chai-chai”. Very peculiar situation if ever you have travelled via train in any mountainous or hilly region in India.
Titillated by the cacophony of “chai-chai”, you wish to surrender yourself to a sip of the warm joy. Your eyes meet with that of the character who plays this surreal music and he understands what you want with your one nod. As he starts to pour you the drink and as you take out your purse to award him, your notes fly away.
Such a heart wrenching misery as you see your hard earned currency taking flight of freedom from your own prisoned purse.
Coming back to reality.
Have you ever seen something like that ? Flying currency ?
In the several amazing jelled up with uncanny, bizzare and fun experiences that I often witness, I need to add this here.
Travelling to Golcondo from this land of Bahamani Sultanates called “Hyderabad” named after Caliph Ali Ibn Abi Talib, who was also known as Haydar because of his lion-like valour in battles, I came across this epic moment.
I always prefer to travel in the local public transportations, thats how you understand the place which gets its identity from the people living there and from the rural or perhaps the poor and lower middle class families who are preserving every bit of culture and traditions in their usual life, without advancing to any stage of adaption to the “modernisation”.
This state owned bus, which bade a farewell to the Secundrabad bus depot to say hello to Mehdipatnam was the place of action. A big man with a beautiful smile, was counting his notes, after collecting the money reaching every seat and inch of the bus which was inundated with humans.
Now, with the analogy in the beginning of this post, can be little related in a way that he was also feeling the touch of air, standing at the gate of the bus, but this time only, It actually happened. On a regular Saturday in Hyderabad, which generally falls victimised to the brunt of vehicles, this person loses a note which took its first flight of liberty perhaps dancing and singing in the wind.
And the entire bus looks at the bus conductor, as he shouts, “Arey Roko , Paisa ud gaya” (stop the bus, the money blew away) With a choreographed move the entire audience in the bus rotates their head to their left with various expressions. Few of them made a concerning voice, few of them sitting on the left side tried to take their heads out to chase the movement of the currency and navigate the directions and very few of them (including me)laughed at the sudden commotion and the whole idea of flying money which took no time to evolve.
The conductor closed his eyes, took out his one hand out of the gate and chanted a mantra, which stopped the movement of air for a while which froze the note in the air. As he slowly opened his eyes, the note traced back its way to the bus bouncing up at the heads of the vehicles which took the space between the bus conductor and his beloved money. Making eye contact with his master, the note surrendered and took its position where it should have been prisoned before committing the crime of declaring freedom for itself. Well, that could have been a possibility, but that did not happen. On the contrary the conductor kept shouting and the driver stopped the bus when he could, considering the traffic. The conductor ran back and forth to show all the passengers the flying culprit. Everyone took a sigh and I laughed a little more.
Neither did I, nor did he knew anyone who lost their money to wind this way ever before and we got busy in a little random laugh filled conversation. Here is a bit of that conversation, which is purely for relaxing you. A transcript has been attached underneath.
E-Indian : Hello sir, How did you feel when your money took a flight from the moving bus ?
Indian : Very bad. I was hurt. I was running behind it.
E-Indian : What was the worth of the note sir ?
Indian : Rs. 100
E-Indian : and how did you feel, when you found it back ?
Indian : Great, Very great.
E-Indian : Have you lost money like this ever before ?
Indian : Not till now.
E-Indian : Have you heard from anyone else, if they have lost money like this ?
Indian : No, No. I have never heard, It happened with me for the first time.