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Tuesday, 25 October 2011

WHAT HAPPENED TO THE CHILD WITHIN?

Every year when some festival rings in I ask myself the same question: “What happened to the child within?” I have distinct memories of me looking forward to festivals as a kid. Now that it’s Diwali time, I wonder where the enthusiasm is gone!

As a kid I was somewhat sacred of crackers & even today that hasn’t changed much. I was never a dare-devil who would light crackers in hand & throw them in the air just a few moments before they would burst. Watching me light crackers was often a funny sight for my parents. First, my brother would remove the paper so that I would have ample time to run away to a safe distance :D. Using an incense stick I would light a cracker & run for my life with the incense stick tossed god-knows-where & my hands tightly pressed against my ears. After a while I would re-enter the scene like someone who had been a part of some robbery trying to avoid the policemen on patrol. Soon my father would inform me that the cracker went off & I would be the *proud-one* B).
Back then in school we were made to sign innumerable pledges to ‘say no to crackers’. Irrespective of my resolve while signing the pledges, I would burst crackers anyways (C’mon now! I was only a school going kid back then.) Gradually as age caught up with me (trust me I am not as old as I sound), I developed an aversion to the same crackers that made me smile & feel like a war hero(ine).  Now the noise & the pollution annoy me.
Right now when I compare these two different ‘ME’ I wonder what led to this difference?!?! Irrespective of our age, all of us ask ourselves this question at some point in our lives. Aging or growing up sounds all good courtesy the apparent (refer to article: Wise enough yet?) wisdom, financial freedom, the fact that your parents start trusting your choices. But seriously, all of this sounds worthless to me right now. The reasons are simple:
·         I am no longer interested in bursting crackers, suddenly it’s all too juvenile (you would like this only if you are the environment-activist kinds);
·         I don’t run around my place eager to place more diyas than my brother in various corners of the house;
·         I am content making a twisted face every once in a while when I have had enough of locals singing in the temples & out of the loudspeakers, because they are too loud & I can’t hear my TV properly.
Based on the above-mentioned reasons I officially declare today: I HATE GROWING-UP! {..& mind you wrinkles are placed way low on my list of reasons..for the time-being ;)} I hate it how I let the kid within me (not an actual kid O.o) succumb to the so-called responsibilities & maturity. Hold your horses..I am not shunning adulthood, I am simply going to allow myself to let loose a little. :D
NOTE OF HONESTY: When I sat down to write down this piece of my mind, I was quite sure that I will end up blaming the elders of the house a.k.a parents for making the festivities so boring, but now I say unleash the carefree kid in you & watch it infect others. We often complain “Nobody bothers”, however we never say “I should try.” J
HAPPY DIWALI PEOPLE..CELEBRATE IT LIKE IT’S YOUR LAST TIME & BE SAFE!!  :D

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

A HIDDEN HISTORICAL TREASURE




Central Delhi is synonymous with offices, eating joints, all in all an atmosphere bustling with activity. Daily a number of people come to their office, toil & head home. Not many of them are aware that this part of Delhi also hides some of the most exquisite pieces of history like Ugrasen Ki Baoli. This monument is hidden between the tall buildings.

Ugrasen ki Baoli is one of the many unexplored monuments in the capital. What adds to its lack of visibility is its location on the primarily placid Hailey Road. It is protected by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) under the Ancient Monuments & Remains Act, 1958. A small garden leads to the entrance into the baoli. The very first look at this beauty of stone overwhelms you with its grandeur. The main entrance welcomes you with the information about the monument inscribed on a rock, which reads:
The Step well (Baoli) is an underground structure for the storage of water, mainly constructed to cope with the seasonal fluctuations in water availability. The step well is said to be have been built by Raja Ugrasen, the forefather of the Agarwal community. The architectural features of this baoli resemble those of the late Tughlaq or Lodi period.
It measures 60m along North-South & is 15m wide at the ground level. Built with rubble & dressed stones, it is one of the finest baolis in Delhi. The main feature of the structure is the long flight of steps leading down to the step well situated in the North. The steps are flanked on both sides by thick walls with series of arched corridors.”


One of the arched corridors leads to a staircase which takes you to the terrace. The terrace gives a top view of the apparently bottomless well. Not many people know about this place or frequent it & hence it is not crowded. The stairs are something one can’t help but marvel at.
This place is at walking distance from the Barakhamba metro station & the entry is free. Once you have spent your time here, you can head to the Max Mueller Bhawan to stuff yourself with delectable food at an affordable price. So if you think you have seen the city & seen it well, think again!!