G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

Shel Silverstein : “Talked my head off Worked my tail off Cried my eyes out Walked my feet off Sang my heart out So you see, There’s really not much left of me.” ~

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Plucking Tea...चढे चहाचे रोप, उपटतां स्तन हाले?

Today December 1 2013 is 104th Birth Anniversary of B S Mardhekar (बा सी मर्ढेकर)
""५५.

बोंड कपाशीचे फुटे,                                                  
उले वेचतांना ऊर;                                                     
आज होईल का गोड                                                 
माझ्या हाताची भाकर!                                          

भरे भुइमूग-दाणा,
उपटतां स्तन हाले;
 आज येतील का मोड
माझ्या वालांना चांगले!

वांगी झाली काळी-निळी,
काटा बोचे काढताना;
आज होतील का खुशी
माणसं गं जेवताना!"

(मर्ढेकरांची कविता, पृष्ठ  64, 1959/ 1977, मौज  प्रकाशन)

As oft-mentioned earlier, I lived on gorgeous tea estates of Assam continuously for a year and then, on and off, for another.

I remember our first winter there. One evening I excitedly asked my wife why I was smelling summer flowers of Maharashtra at this time of the year in Assam. She couldn't guess. I was told later that tea plant smelled like them occasionally.

I have also stayed in, equally gorgeous, Nilgiri tea estates in the South for a while.


But to my eternal regret, I never plucked any tea.

courtesy: http://tea-plucking.blogspot.in/

 I now feel bad after reading the following by Giji K. Raman in The Hindu, September 1 2013:

"...In the past centuries, they (British) came as planters, denuding hills to plant tea. Now they come as pickers of tea, not as labourers but as tourists. So do not be astonished if you see foreigners picking tea on estates in Munnar. It is a slow change happening in the tourism sector here.

On an estate at Thalayar, tourists who come to savour the beauty of the landscape are given a chance to pick tea. That most of the tourists who grab this opportunity are from the U.K. is not lost on the local populace. It was the East India Company which started planting tea in the mountains in Idukki.
British-made historical monuments, such as hanging bridges, bungalows, remains of ropeways and a railway system in Munnar, all related to the plantation sector, remain in the district. On the Thalayar estate, tourists can pick tea leaves in the morning and visit the factory in the evening. Again, an official says, it is the British who prefer the package..."

Mardhekar's poem above says while pulling groundnuts from the ground, breasts of the lady shake (भरे भुइमूग-दाणा, उपटतां स्तन हाले;)

I wonder what happens while plucking tea.

  • A British tourist plucks tea leaves at the Thalayar estate in Munnar. Photo: Giji K. Raman


    A British tourist plucks tea leaves at the Thalayar estate in Munnar.

    Photo: Giji K. Raman for The Hindu
     

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