Monthly Archives: August 2013

Song of the Blind Beggar

On the bus today from Nimtouri to Bonbhera was a blind beggar with a two-stringed musical instrument. Double-stringed mini-lutes are common in rural Bengal, but this one had the peculiarity that it used as its resonating chamber a small drum, … Continue reading

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Hotel Konark, Nimtouri

The bathroom attached to my room in Nimtouri, East Midnapore, West Bengal. I paid Rs. 300 for this room, which is technically US$5, but another way of looking at it is as 37 Metro rides.

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Collected Poems of Rabindranath Tagore

A friend’s wedding present for my parents.

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Cop Notes

Growing up, if one of us spotted a traffic-cop writing, he would nudge the next guy: “Look! he’s taking a plate number,” with the hushed glee of a witness to a secret condemnation. After many years, I had the courage … Continue reading

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The Fi$h I Ate

I’m fond of the Metro Price Index. Growing up, a roll of color film (bulk Fuji rolled and packaged in India) cost 100 rupees, when my bus ride (no subway back then) to school was around 2 rupees. At 50 … Continue reading

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Three Photographs Not Taken

Malleswaram I had assumed to be an old Tamil Brahmin enclave. I just found out it abuts a very different neighborhood. An old Muslim with a white beard sat at a doorway tearing up cauliflower leaves for two sheep symmetrically … Continue reading

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Twenty-six Hours Door to Door

I never thought I would like Air India. I didn’t in the first few minutes when I was welcomed by a smell whose constituents were uncomfortably hard to analyze – unventilated garam masala with a hint of the toilet perhaps? … Continue reading

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