Monday, July 07, 2008

Hot Monsoon Nights

You know, what I hate about the monsoon is that it just can't make up its bloody mind.

Consider. When the rains first began, it rained almost continuously for seven whole days, if you'll be kind enough to count them. Nothing tragic or even mildly distressing, thank you very much. Just the irritating kind of rain, and often drizzle, that will dirty salwar bottoms and discourage you from wanting anything else but for it to rain harder. Because then commuting is not possible, and without any guilt, one can then curl up in bed, everything but that wonderful Peter Ackroyd or E.B White forgotten. While one might seek a warm, warm cup of elachi chai, they might also venture a little while at the laptop, brightening photographs or jumping links lazily, only to come back to bed.

Then for a week and some more, it was as dry as a bone, if you'll forgive the trite comparison. And sultry and miserable and hot to boot. Since I don't sit in the perfectly air-conditioned but maddening environs of the shop floor anymore, every bit of the misery was magnified in my little room off the floor. Since this room has no manner of ventilation whatsoever, all that it really needed was a few more people stuffed inside (ranging between 4-9) to get the human humidifier going. Sigh... But the nights — dear God, the nights. Like the miserable October heat but worse — suffocating and stultifying.

But those hot monsoon nights have now disappeared, don't you know. Only to be replaced by hot, searing days interspersed too briefly with temperamental, fickle, flighty spells of rain. I tell you, the monsoon just can't make up it's bloody mind! I must admit that this does have its advantages. It is an indescribable thing to feel the humid air change character and depth, turning free and cold with the sweeping whispers of the rain through the trees. Suddenly, you wish you were out on the road, in a car of course, watching the rain envelop you... watching the city slow down...

But fanciful notions aside, I do not understand why it can't simply rain neatly in the night and let the days be overcast, dry, and gloomily beautiful. How can perfect photography weather possibly be so difficult — non-hot, non-sticky, and non-mucky? Please do me the service of not reminding me that I live in a tropical country with a full blown monsoon. I know — and apart from its indecision and heat, I quite enjoy the rains. Notice that it isn't the traffic, the congestion, or all the maddening things that make Bombay so charming in the rains that I am complaining about.

And I assure you, I am not the only one who thinks the heat is too much to take. Take, for example, our two friends below. It was two a.m and the ex-reviewer and I were on our way back from town when we passed them. Inebriated as we were, we went back to ensure that we weren't too drunk. And sure enough, there they were, licking and chomping away like it was nothing out of the ordinary. The neighborhood "icewala", as you can see in the top-right hand corner of the photograph, saw it fit or even kind to abandon this large chunk of ice on the pavement.

We watched them awhile and tried unobtrusively to take some photographs because dogs are fidgety-est creatures in creation. And the dog magnet that the ex-reviewer is, I had just a few minutes to get at least this slightly decent one. We left ten minutes later but the ex-reviewer says that he saw the female on right sitting at the block on his way home, while the male had disappeared with some of the other dogs around.

Hot Monsoon Nights II


I keep wanting to post without a photo but despite the photoblog, which I try update everyday, I might remind you dear reader, there are just too many photos to share. Perhaps I should stop carrying my camera everywhere...


{illyria} said...

oh no, don't stop carrying the camera. you take such wonderful pictures. and the insight they give to your posts is priceless.

Anil P said...

As if on que the rains are back now.

This is a first for me, seeing dogs chomp ice.