August 11, 2012

Good news, everyone!

Each year for the past ten years or so, I visit home a couple of times; each time 2-3 weeks. In these vacations, I get an opportunity to while away my time leisurely, and more importantly completely free myself of the daily drudgery at work. Playing with my little cousins, niece, nephew; spending time expressing my culinary skills; sleeping with a book flattened across my chest. And sometimes, sieving through heaps of guilt.

A background. Where I stay, electricity is a sham. Electricity (or lack of it) dictates daily activity. My mother stopped watching any TV series as she would miss the show every alternate day or so. She is reluctant to watch any movie as it cannot not go off for the length of the movie. She makes sure she uses the electric rice cooker while the electricity comes as it may go off any time. Our refrigerator is useless as it will be off more than it is switched on. At prime-time, the voltage is not high enough to run the refrigerator.

Water has to be bought regularly through tankers and stored in "Sintex" containers. This is in addition to the water that we harvest during rains. The government supplied water comes in the form of one tap which gives water for 2-3 hours in a day. This one tap caters to a neighbourhood of at least 15-20 households.

This situation prevails at a place hardly 10 km away from the capital. I can go on about other shortcomings but I fear the original intent of the post would be lost: each year, when I visit home, hardly anything changes. It is the same kacha road, the same thankless state of water and electricity, randomly sky-rocketing prices (think petrol and LPG prices at 4-5 times the national price, that too rationed.)

Equally disturbing is the resignation on people's faces. My mother calmly proceeds to the meifu when there is no more cooking gas available (to buy, that is). My dad starts running the motor and pulls water from the pool when water runs low.

One question that I end up continually keep asking myself is, "What am I going to do about this?" It is a question that has often haunted me, been asked many times, and caused rifts in a relationship. It was time I tried to provide an honest answer to the question. I see my potential future in my current organization and I am not too keen on pursuing it. My contribution pales in comparison to what I could potentially contribute back home.

I have not fully considered what happens if this does not work out. I know the risk is huge, a lot is at stake, the competition is tough and the pressure is enormous. But I will be happier and less guilty when I sit down to write my autobiography some day.

6 comments:

Prateek Singhal said...

Kya baat hai!! maza aa gaya.... And there is a chapter on A Kumar, right :) Aur Sardar Bobo khan ke liye kaisa competition

onkar said...

too much awesomeness Bobo!!! go go go...

Shivendra said...

bahut sahi bobo...all great things have their beginning in a good story like yours...phad do cmpetition ki

bala said...

all the best bob!
really admire what you're doing.

Dahun said...

It's so nice to see somebody dive into the murky waters with such clarity of purpose. All the best:)

hitchhiker said...

@Dahun: Thank you! And all the best to you too :)