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  • Akhila Sriram

Rain- Different perspectives

Rains- Euphoria

A soft breeze brushed my face, making a slight smile creep onto my lips. The weather outside pleased me and made me forget the terrible day I had in school. I focused on the moving landscape, taking in every moment.

The surrounding silence, except for the pitter-patter of rain, was soothing to my senses. The soft rain hit the windows and the water made its way to my face, making me squint my eyes but never did I put an effort to wipe it off my face, or rather, in my current state, I couldn’t care less.

Sitting and listening to the rumble of the vehicle, I noticed that the beautiful shower had come to an end. I was astounded by the effect it had left the surroundings. The roads were stained with wonderful, sparkling water and the sky had turned into a pretty shade of grey. The dogs that had disappeared in search of protection from the rain started resuming their daily lives. The trees that possessed a brown bark now owned them black; their lush green leaves were now more noticeable with raindrops cascading down from them.

Coming out of the trance, I realized that I had arrived at my destination. Casting a last look at the scenery, I hopped off the bus towards my house; excited to tell my mother the ravishing sight my mind and my eyes had the pleasure of holding and witnessing. Even though the incident was impermanent, I came to realize that even the smallest of things can be wonderful at the most unexpected of times.

Rains- My nightmare

Rains are welcomed, enchanting and a perfect way to enjoy an evening, provided you watch them trickle down your window pane safely cooped up in your house. But my setting was slightly different. I rested my forehead against the windowpane of our car, The rain lashed down the glass, making the vision blur.

My ears grew numb to the music that was repeatedly playing on the stereo. The songs once so alluring were now grating. But my mother, who was driving the car beside me, had a different mindset. She was listening to the music in silence, but from the way her body swayed, I could guess she was enjoying every minute of it. I couldn’t fathom how that was possible, since we had been stuck in the same spot on the road for the past hour. Still, I couldn’t take the initiative to switch off the audio system, as I could not bear the silence that would ultimately reign over us.

I gazed outside and sighed as the heavy rain turned into a light drizzle. The droplets on the window, which once looked beautiful, now made me angry and resentful. The endless line of cars stretched ahead of us and the situation was dire.

We were hungry, tired and bored. All my mother and I could do was complain about the scenario with each other. I was green with envy towards the citizens who were driving two-wheelers and moving freely between the traffic. Just then, our car moved about an inch, but it moved. Who cared if it was a centimetre or an inch? All that mattered was that it moved. However, I wasn’t satisfied with that. I wanted to go home and sleep. A feeling of helplessness engulfed me and paved its way to irritation as the cars refused to budge from their places.

The rain stopped but, unfortunately, the traffic remained frozen. I was fighting the urge to get out of the vehicle and stretch my body. My eyes burned and time flowed like water, eroding my pleasant emotions. Rage took control of me, urging me to rip the seat off that I was sitting on. The only thing that was stopping my tirade was the person who’d given birth to me sitting in the driver’s seat. Well, who would have faced her music when she witnessed my not-so-honourable deed?

I glanced at my mother in exasperation, but she was singing along the upbeat song and bobbing her head to the beats. It seemed as though she had completely lost her marbles.

Finally, the traffic moved, but the rain started. Again! I was sure the quote “life is a cycle” would have been appropriate for that day.

The car was low on fuel. Great! It only needed that! Today was just a disaster. But in afterthought, if the petrol was dry, walking to our house was better than sitting static.

A few torturous minutes later, the traffic miraculously cleared and my mother, a cautious and steady driver, sped down the suddenly empty road. We passed a roadside concert that was in the wraps. The musicians were idling around the temporary stage. Realisation dawned on me that these bunch of uneducated brats who had obstructed the road had been the reason for the traffic and not the downpour, and I had wrongfully cursed my stars and the rain.

Rains- A cursed night.

The cars behind us honked for the nth time. I gave a sharp glance to the drivers behind the vehicle. Not that they could see it anyway, although it gave me a dire sense of satisfaction in the situation we were forcefully put in.

Once again, my mother and I found ourselves stranded in the streets of Chennai. I had my coaching classes and unfortunately for us, God decided to be a little giving and quenched the thirst of the thirsty city with a wonderful cloudburst. Our luck was such that we chose that exact time to drive home, from Egmore to Guindy and we were surrounded by a foot of water to start with in Greams road.

The car moved inch by inch and by the time we reached Tnagar; it was 9 pm. The metro station lights gleamed mischievously at me in the night, taunting and frustrating my desire for a change of atmosphere and a dose of optimism, while the surrounding water sloshed and made with not-so-cute little waves. I played the bhangra to lift our mood. After at least 9 songs (not that I was counting.) we travelled smoothly with no traffic and no flooding.  But The creator of the universe chose to prove me wrong as we once again faced our favourite obstacle- water, lots of it.

The car wadded its way through the roads, like ducks, and fortunately, Pondy Bazaar was not so bad. There wasn’t much water on the road. I thanked the heavens above and believed that we would reach home in a matter of half an hour. I could eat and sleep. Oh, what a simple thought! I was naïve to think that way. How could I? My mother turned right onto another road and we made our way right into the jaws of hell. She struggled to drive the car on the road, which resembled a river. The muddy liquid flapped against the tires and a whiff of smoke emitted from the surrounding cars. After covering a few feet, the car rattled and shook as it toiled on the flooded roads.

That was it. That was the last straw. I switched off the music and scrambled to recollect my wits as I watched the scenario around me ruefully. We made it to the subway, but it was shut down because of excessive water logging. Not having the strength or the guts to drive the car further into water-logged streets, my mother parked the car in one of the shop’s parking lots. We walked to another road and tried catching an auto. With fervent prayers on our lips and frantic calls for alternative modes of transport, we stood stranded in the middle of the road with no way to reach home.

Chennai became Venice, but we had no pleasure in its transformation. With each passing tick of the clock, an auto eventually stopped and agreed to give us a ride to Ashok Nagar. A feeling of relief engulfed me, but it was short-lived as the auto navigated through water-logged roads and subways. The torrential downpour led to the closure of certain roads because they were impassable. People waded through knee-deep water.

Some roads were closed due to excess water, and people waded through knee-deep water. We reached Ashok Nagar and my dad came to pick us up. Seeing him filled me with an overwhelming sense of happiness and relief. Thanking the Almighty and swearing never to step out of the house during November and December in Chennai, I reached home, my sweet and safe home.



Nakshatra Sriram

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