Saturday, November 28, 2009

A story a minute…..

Since the day I arrived in India I had blogposts in my head (OK that sounds a tad bit crazy) but that’s what India does to me. At any given time there are minimum of 5 things vying for your attention.

Mom: “You want Chila for breakfast?” (No! I only eat cereals YUCK! for breakfast to keep my weight in check). Dad “What time do you need the driver?” MTV- Trailer of ‘Pa’ (Vidya and Abhi are looking fabulous together!). Bombay Times- Some Kareena-Kurban-backless controversy, generated by the Sena of course. And the phone ringing with my best friend asking about the plans for the evening (which in Bombay context means 8 pm). And yes, all this at the exact same time!

So naturally there is so much fodder for writing. Potential topics: “How it is impossible to maintain a diet when holidaying in India”. “The 10,000th controversy raised by Sena which involves women and clothes (or the lack thereof)”. “IST: Morning = 12 noon, Afternoon = 5 pm, Evening = 8 pm, Night = 11 pm; Late night = 2 am). There you go….

In India there is inspiration everywhere. In Singapore we lead very one-dimensional lives. You generally do one thing at a time- or maximum of 2 if you are Ms. Multitasking like me. In India, it’s a whole different ball game (actually in India it’s not a ball game at all, its cricket, and that too in the new 20-20 format).

Sounds (what non-Indians would refer to as “noise”) are also unique here. Door bells (every 10 minutes- no exaggeration). Phone rings (mobile and landline- really, how popular are my parents?! And why has no one in India discovered that you can have a “silent” ring tone. Yes! It’s actually an option! Your phone does not have to sing ‘Chiggy Wiggy’ in Kylie Minogue’s voice)”. Car honks (there should be a day a month where drivers should not be allowed to blare their card horns- it would be a Guinness record for self-restraint). Mom talking to the kaam waali bai, bargaining with the bhaji wala at the door step and giving her recipe for paneer makhni to her niece (yes at the same time). And finally, the TV at a volume level that NEEDS to be that high so it can be heard above the rest of the din. (or that’s what my dad tells my mom).

But life still happens amongst all this chaos. Things miraculously get done in this madness and people carry on with their everyday lives with remarkable ease. There is so much happening that every minute there is a new story unfolding. As I said there is inspiration 24x7 in India.

I think that’s the reason there is never dearth of movie scripts- India is the world's largest producer of films, producing close to a 1000 films annually.vs. Hollywood which release approximately 650). That’s why there is a thriving advertising industry here where TVCs are still a form of entertainment. India is also the 3rd largest country publishing English books after USA and UK.

There are stories everywhere you look. I am only trying to capture a handful of them in my short time here.

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