Retrograde. Bamboozlement! More Bamboozlement!

Water Maharaja

Photograph: Roadside vendor selling water. June 5, 2009

I was around 16 years old when I first visited Delhi. I was a tourist, even took that guided tour bus ride that takes you to all the best spots (as listed on the brochure) in 5 hours flat, lunch excluded. It was during this trip that, for the first time, I saw a man working that mini-hand pump, drawing water from an invisible tank, and filling a glass. I learnt Delhi has roadside vendors who sell water for 50p/Rs.1 a glass. I was amused.


A couple of years ago, after moving to the Capital region, one late night, I injured my fingers, broke some nails, got a sore thumb, all while tying to open the air tight seal of my first ever can of bubble top 'Bisleri'. There is no looking back. I could have fared better at the finger numbing task, but I was distracted, I kept remembering the line ' Your maternal great grandmother was born in a house that had a small brook flowing right in the front yard.' If that wasn't enough, in the background, I kept hearing that gushing sound of water, like roar of an angry tiger - only this tiger took no pause to take breath. A constant roar. I had heard the sound many summers ago when one morning mother took me with her to the village school in which she taught, every subject. I noticed that white noise, approaching, just as we were approaching a small old crude footbridge built over a stream. I looked around alarmed, but the water of the steam, now underneath me, looked calm, it was in no hurry. Where is the sound coming from? 'It's just water,' mother assured me. 'Just open the can carefully!'


A couple of years ago, a journalist friend of mine asked me if I support privatization of a precious natural resource like water. You see, I had just told him about my traumatic bubble top 'Bisleri' can experience.

How does it feel to be just a spoke in a wheel? A proper metric question found in a useless job application form that they make you fill for a useless job that nobody else wants. Blacken 0 correctly (do not cross or tick mark) next to the right answer filling it with pencil (no pen please): Great. Good. Bad. I don't know. It is a such an ironic question, in fact the entire form is filled with so much iron that later no sad faced spoke dares to actually check those perfect answers and the wheel still rolls on. (The right answer is always: Great. A machine does read the answers.

"I just don't like heavy water." That's all I could manage.



  1. I had written a post about making masala soda last yr and talked about how you'd find a lot of these push cart vendors selling water and they'd have huge stacks of limes over glasses and make you instant nimbu paani too. I trying capturing a few pictures of these guys selling water in these big tanks on my last trip back to Delhi, but mine were nowhere as good as this one-sigh memories:)

  2. The guys in the photograph were having a good 'look at the idiot ****'kind of talk while I took this pic.


I always like to hear back :)
However, irrelevant comments and irrelevant links will not be published. Needless to say, same goes for abusive comment and spam. Leaving back links related to the topic is encouraged. I know it can be tempting but try not to leave your email ids, phone nos and CVs in the comment.

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License. If you choose to use this or any part of this post on your site please link back to this page.


100 years of Indian Cinema (36) 1857 (1) 1930s (1) 1947 (20) 1947 print Ads (2) 1950s (1) 1982 (1) 1983 (1) 30s print Ads (1) 40s print Ads (6) 60s print Ads (3) 70s print Ads (52) 80s print Ads (24) A Diary Stolen (9) Ads from 90s n Y2Ks (12) Agra (9) Aldous Huxley (5) Allama Iqbal (3) Anna Akhmatova (3) art (2) Articles (25) Bagpipes (2) Bat-Ball (6) Begam Para (1) Blogging (34) Bookmarks (56) C 4 Computer (7) cartoons (2) Censorship (17) chori (1) Classic Indian Studio (5) Collage (35) Comics (20) Dev Anand (2) Dilli (25) Doordarshan Days (29) Eye Candy (69) Frivolous lol (32) game development (1) Gandhi (13) German Advertising Art (2) gurgaon (5) Guru Dutt (7) Hindi Chini (6) History (68) Hoarding (168) Indian Cinema (125) Indian Retro Television Ads (8) Indira (9) indo-pak (5) it is the 50s (1) it is the 60s (6) it is the 70s (19) it is the 80s (18) it is the 90s (7) Jungle Book (12) Kochi (2) Madhubala (2) maps (3) mario miranda (4) Meena Kumari (8) Million Gods (33) Movies (22) Mumbai (6) mumtaz (1) Music (62) Musings (7) Mussoorie (1) Nargis (1) News That Was (8) Nostalgia (29) Outlinks (16) Pandit Nehru (15) parveen babi (4) phasion (3) Photos (98) Plain weird Query (3) Poems Verses Whatever (43) Projects (3) Quests (4) Radio Ga Ga (11) Raja Harischandra (1) rastay ka maal satay may (2) roos (1) Sari Ads (5) Selected Nonsense (53) snake fest (4) Tibet (5) tona totka (1) Trip to Kashmir (5) Tube You (63) Urdu Poets (8) Vintage Indian Print Ads (97) Walls (5) Who are these people? (14) who mashes up gods? (25) Word Talk (4) Zeenat Aman (13)