Friday, May 28, 2004

Dust Rules

Dust Rules. Dust is king; at least it is, here. Not the oily soot of Kolkata, but a fine dust which silently creeps in and covers everything and everyone. Look into the deepest corner of your wardrobe farthest from a door or a window…sure enough…you will find some. Where does it all come from? Neighbouring Rajasthan? Or perhaps from the endless construction work all around. There are plenty of trees and plants all around, lining the roads, in gardens, but all dulled by dust.

Dust the furniture and it will be back not by evening, but within couple of hours! So the only recourse is to keep the windows and doors shut and boil inside. Atleast you are dust free. Somwhat that is. That helps to keep the bulk of the mosquitoes out too. Only a few 100 make their way in. So mosquito nets are de rigueur! Thankgod for air conditioners.

But no, wait. Once, and only once you are neatly tucked in your beds under the mosquito nets and the room has cooled down and the drone of the air con is lulling you to sleep, off goes the power. Creep out of the bed (stealthily so that the mosquitoes don’t get in) and switch off the air con, switch on the overhead ceiling fan and creep back in (hopefully the inverter is working otherwise the fan won't work) and try to sleep while the room gets progressively stuffy, hot and clammy. Somedays, the powers goes off and comes back 2 or 3 times and so the whole process is repeated as many times…till one finds it time to get up! Luckily, I can catch up on my sleep in the afternoons!

On some days, the skies darken and I feel so thrilled that I am going to experience a good and proper Indian thunderstorm. Not really. Its more likely to be a dust storm. Two days back, there was this really big dust storm all night long which played havoc with the buckets, brooms and other paraphernalia in the backyard creating quite a racket, while we sweated sleeplessly inside and did I mention the power went off!

The premonsoons are here (I hope I haven’t spoken too soon)…things are much cooler now.

Our maid has gone on leave and mother in law (mil) and I have tackled the cleaning, dusting, wiping, sweeping of our large bungalow and were congratulating ourselves on a job well done and before we could even put our brooms and buckets and dusters aside, WHOOOOSH there arose another dust storm and covered up everyone and everything in sight.

Did I mention? Dust rules?

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