Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Two vadas and a chai

I went to the Watches and Jewellery exhibition this time. This was one event I had never covered and was never comfortable attending!
There is no space for the lesser mortals here, the photographers and the journalists were like guests on a spree, looking at the luxury, gaping and gasping...
I felt that the air we breathed would be charged, it was so reeking of expensive perfumes that I was choking...and I even felt that the floor would open up and a model rise out and ask me, "Do you belong here?"
I passed through the pavilions and was horrified with what I saw...
Huge jewels hung precariously to flashy chains and was this art? It could only be called monstrous...
Well, there were good designs too but well, it was all well beyond what I could afford and so I hated everything there instantly...
But then the exhibition was all about being flashy and presumptuous, be it the jewels that were on display, the models who were romping about with a decidedly bored expression, or even visitors who came with their accomplices...
Finally the ordeal was over and on the way back I got talking to a person, someone who is here in the Gulf to make a living while his family is back at his hometown...
He told me matter-of-factly that people were exhibiting millions of riyals worth of jewellery and there seems to be buyers for that when back at work people talked about layoffs and a bonus-less, increment-less year ahead.
He said that what he earned was just enough to send home as education was getting costlier even at his hometown.
To me, this was not complaints of a depressed person, but it was just a happy positive expat hoping that life would be simple and not as complicated as it seemed to him now...
Here was someone who was not at all impressed with the glitter and shine but who was grounded and knew that he could never be part of what he saw just then...
As we neared his office, I asked him," So what will do for dinner?"
He answered ," I have just 3 riyals but it is enough for two vadas and a chai."
Sad...but that is the irony of life...

8 comments:

ummon said...

yeah! and the richie-richs grudge him his drop and pick up. such an unfair, sad world.
i feel terribly uncomfortable at dwje too... the thought of going there morrow is giving me nightmares. the worst thing is that if we don't feel comfortable there, our jobs may well be at stake!

Swaram said...

Sigh! What contrast :(
This person is the more satisfied one though with the vadas and the chai while the counter ones go on hunting for more :)

Smita said...

As you said Irony of life!!! Or rather extremes of life! Reminds me of my days in Ahmedabad. The PG I used to say in was facing a main road. My room's window was twrds the main road and me & my roomie used to crib there is so much noice in the light that we can not sleep.

On the opposite side of our building was a pavement & a bunch of people used to live there. The best part about them was by 9 o' clock they wud be fast asleep traffic not with standing!!! I guess it is all about adjusting with what you have! All one need is a positive frame of mind!

Preeti Shenoy said...

Truly Irony at its best!

Wonder what made him visit such an exhibition in the first place. A sadistic streak which wanted a slice of life he could never have?

Cheers
Preeti

sindhu said...

Truly an unfair world...but I wonder if this in part is becaus these very people don't want to change too.
Thank u Preethi for visiting, my honour!
He was a photographer, hence he had to go to that place on job.

Reflections said...

Sounds like a well-grounded guy...happy with his lot.

"Well, there were good designs too but well, it was all well beyond what I could afford and so I hated everything there instantly..."
I sooo know what u mean here, tho hate will be too strong a word to use in my case coz I'm too lazy to invest so much emotion instantly but yeah wd have been soo uncomfortable;-D

Reflections said...

Was it Al Futteim....they were having something like it here too???

Haddock said...

touching