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Time Travel… June 8, 2005

Posted by espritnoir in Uncategorized.

Well, me am back. As I begin to write this, “Tere dar par sanam chale aye…” plays in the background. Its been ages since I’v heard that number. Remember the movie it featured in…“Phir Teri Kahani Yaad Ayi”? God, how long ago was that? School? College? Definitely my school days, somewhere about 1992 or 93 maybe. God alone knows. Looking back, a lot of that time just seem to be faded memories of another me. Even, an alternate life maybe.

1993. Nineteen ninety-three. Spell it out, and it feels even further back. Life seemed so different back then. So real. Music was still an art, not a studio setup in the basement of a rich, untalented kid. Knowing how to sing and how to play at least one musical instrument were the bare qualifications, rather than “an added advantage”. Thankfully, the likes of Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and were yet to be discovered.

MacDonalds had yet to hit the Indian shores. American style pizza was just about catching on. When you walked into a restaurant, and asked for a coffee, nobody asked you, “Cappucino, Americano, or Decaf?” Nescafe or filter. Take it or leave it. And yes, those were the good old days before inflation set in, when a 100 rupees in your pocket could buy you a really fancy dinner. And breakfast the next day!

If you had “Cable Television”, you walked with pride. People were still switching over from “Chayageet” to MTV. The Indian audience had newly discovered style icons, Nonie and Danny McGill, who had become coolest people on television. And does anyone remember the Wu-Man. Caught him doing some celebrity lifestyle chat show on CNBC a few years back. That’s the last I saw of him. Wonder whatever happened to him after that. Women and young girls were still gushing over that “Greek God” of the small screen, Ridge from The Bold and the Beautiful. And nobody in their wildest dreams had ever imagined that ten years down the line, Hindi soaps would become the opiate of the masses. And no, Hum Log and Buniyaad were NOT soaps, but social dramas! So, they didn’t start the trend!!!

Bombay was still Bombay and not yet Mumbai. Chennai was still Madras. Kolkata was still Calcutta. The cities, in spite of their old names, seemed cleaner, quieter and better places back then. Dance bars, I’m sure existed, but only in shadows. No self-respecting gentleman would be caught in once of those places, although I’m pretty sure nothing stopped them from visiting them. They still weren’t visibly upmarket, you see. And you almost definitely never heard of cops raping young girls. Well, maybe they did, but you just never got to hear about it. You could still hear lines like “…the Bombay Police Force – Second only to Scotland Yard…”

Life didn’t seem as hectic as today. People still found time for unscheduled breaks, quick trips to Lonavala and Matheran. Life wasn’t ruled by personality development classes, weight-loss programmes, tuition classes for seventh graders, to better prepare them for their tenth grade exams. Life was slightly drab, but filled with some simple joys. On any given Sunday, all one had to do was pick up a cricket bat in his hand, step out into the galli with his friends, and, at least for a short while, even a boring accountant was transformed into a Sunny Gavaskar. Come to think of it, young boys all over the country saw Sunny and Kapil-paaji, and thought, “One day, I’ll be like them and make my country proud”. Nobody thought, “If Pepsi doesn’t pay up enough, maybe I’ll endorse Coke instead. Should I go with Adidas, or Reebok? Airtel or Reliance? Who should I make my bookie???”

On a personal level, back then, life ahead was like a gift sitting under a brightly-lit Christmas tree…just waiting to be unwrapped! On many levels it still is, although the Christmas lights have now been put out and the shiny wrapping paper and ribbons have long since given way to the coarse cardboard packing inside. Back then, I was just another fat kid, who thought “Hey, ten years down the line, I’ll be successful, and rich and I’ll have a woman who loves me by my side”. Ten years down, and I am still obese, still single, and I still haven’t found what I’m looking for. At least some things in life haven’t changed over the years. Well, there’s always the hope of what the next ten years will bring. Ups and downs, exciting chicanes at times and sometimes narrow straights whizzing past, it’s been one helluva ride so far.

All these thoughts, because of a song that started playing on my Winamp playlist hours ago. Maybe I’ll play it again. Time travel felt so good for a while.

Nostalgia can be a dangerous disease. Can strike at any age and is almost impossible to cure. So, close your eyes for a bit, and think fifteen years back. Get in touch with the You that you left behind so many years ago. Get something back from that time? Memories of your first crush maybe? That favourite tune you had almost forgotten? Your old hangout that’s now given way for a shopping mall? Feels great doesn’t it? Feel like sharing???



1. Anonymous - August 5, 2005

read your blog, think you’d be really interested in this website

2. EspritNoir - August 7, 2005

Hey anon, hope u visit again…but i was unable to open the link u mentioned…–>

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