Mood Eye!

IIT - Powai, and IIT per-se has the reputation for holding the big motherload of all college fests, Mood I, one that went international recently. Today evening saw more than two thousand rockheads gather at the amphitheatre to rock in unison to the beats of the Big Daddies of Modern Indian Rock, and personally one of my favourite bands, Parikrama:

These guys are freaking insane! And not just in the heavy rock/metal influences, but they have this brilliant blend of violins, synthesizers and guitars. It was rock bliss! Five hundred heads at the frontlines, hands raised in tribute and heads banging to the rhythm of the heart-thumping drums savoured every chord and every note that emerged from the vocals and guitars.

And then the band, THE band, took over. Porcupine Tree.

Now, I've never been this HUGE rock/metalhead. Sure, I love rock and love music. All genres. But there's something to rock that draws me to it. Still, I won't call myself an afficianado. However today was a different experience altogether. First Parikrama, then Porcupine Tree. For the entire duration of the concert, around four hours, I was pushing, shoving my way in the crowd up front, with the lead vocals screeching into the microphone and the crowd going wilder and wilder with each successive scream. As you wade through the sea of bodies, all you can see are raised hands, swinging heads and the distinct smell of burning weed, the three most distinctive features of any rock concert worth it's rep.

On my way back, I took an autorickshaw. The rickshaw driver was a really intersting fellow. Now allow me to just divert from all this for just a moment. We all feel that there's poverty all round. Beggars at traffic signals, slums all over the city and I've heard so many people complain that either the government is not doing anything, or the slum dwellers themselves are so used to begging that they do not want to improve their own lifestyle by working hard.

But what about the ones that do want to work?

This chap, my autorickshaw driver, has a Diploma in Computer Science. His father has a rickshaw business and whenever one of their rickshaw drivers are not available, he drives that rickshaw. He's been doing this since he finished his high school when he saw that his father's financial condition was not that good. Today, he has a stable job at a company in Panvel, which, for you non-Mumbaikars, is around an hour and half's travel from anywhere in Mumbai. One that pays him Rs. 16,000 a month. Kind of like what my first salary was too. What he does is he gives 15,000 to his parents and keeps 1,000 to himself. Imagine the dedication.

How many of you even think of sharing the spoils of your labour with others, let alone give it to them, be it your parents or siblings? Very few. I'm sure of it. It's in our nature.

But it doesn't end there. This guy works a regular 9-5 job, comes back home in a packed train. Then takes the autorickshaw for night duty and finally returns home at around 11 p.m. and that too only after he's earned a minimum of Rs.200. And trust me, travelling in trains is a mess, especially to Panvel.

I could have described all this in better language, detail bla bla...but I'm too tired, and my brain fell asleep ten minutes back.

It was an awesome concert, a thought provoking conversation with an interesting chap. And I also splurged in two thousand rupees worth of novels.(Yea yea...before you say hypocrite, I had gift vouchers. I don't splurge.)

I'd say it wasn't a half bad day at all.

So, with my body aching in places I never thought possible from all that headbanging and jumping, and droopy eyes just waiting to hit the pillow, I bid all you farewell and goodnight. I shall get back to dreams of "Neha" and our salsa dance, which I've been putting off writing for God knows what reason. Guess I want to keep it as a beautiful thought in my mind for just a bit longer.

Cheerio guys!

These are the books I bought:


Anonymous said...

*shivers* @ The auto rickshaw guy's story. Talk about struggle aur yeh jeeta jaagta example tha. BTW, what's the fuss about these indian rock bands? It's time I listen to one of them. I've been hearing about parikrama a lot these days. Gift vouchers to an excellent concert--could life be any more bliss?

Good one =)

Kishore said...

the first book there is bad-ass:P
You saw porcupine tree eh? proficient band i must say, and lucky you!

Mads said...

Liked the auto rickshaw guy's story..btw mumbai auto wales do chat up a lot..i noticed that :P
and band shand...u enjoyed a lot..coolio :D
2 states !! 2 states !! :D :D

Dhanya said...

Too much ink in your book list :O Tell me, how is 'Maximum city'? I am judging the book by its cover and I need a new book to read.

Cheryl said...

Ugh. I've got to get my reading back on. Real life is just not that cool.

Life 24*7 said...

Fantastic post! Your day roped in experiences of carefree entertainment pitched up against a common man's daily tyrst with life in mumbai, beautifully written! Following the story ... awaiting part III

Abhinav said...

I'm not saying they are bad but somehow Parikrama is little Over-hyped because of the actual Indian Rock scene :)

Autowala was inspiring.. Let's see if I can get hold of some autorikshaw someday!

Books? :-o Brave!

Shaunak said...

Check out some of the bands. They're pretty good.

Thanks, and yeah, the first book was great.

2 states of being: Sleepy and High.

Maximum City is something you'll enjoy if you're a hardcore mumbaikar. I've travelled in my city almost as much as this guy has, and shared some similar experiences. So I'm finding this quite interesting. But I've just gone thru it upar upar se. I'll let you know how I find it.

Books are my escape.

Since the story's protagonist shares her name with you :D

Books are awesome! Grab an autowala returning home sometime late at night and start chatting.