Holla! Its raining in Shahpur. The monsoons are here. Not as good as last year, I have been told. But they are still enough to color the place green. As I mentioned in my last blog , the summer here was brutal. But since last month, its been like God is trying to make up for all the heat. The whole place is covered in green, the skies are always cloudy and very rarely sun peaks in.
Just the kind of weather that makes me very happy and makes sure I look forward to work. Back in June, the scooty rides to and from my karmabhoomi(workplace) Silpatti were a torture I had to mentally prepare myself for – scorching sun and dry, hot winds . And now they are leisure rides that fill my heart with joy.
I got ill in June because of the heat and had to go home. When I was coming back, my mom was worried I may again get ill in the heat. And I promised her that if it would be as brutal as before, I would come right back. But voila! When I came back, I was greeted with a completely different Shahpur than the one I had left.
Every season in Shahpur brings its own joys and challenges. So let me dive in.
- The pests!
So many pests. I know I complained about the pests earlier too, but their numbers have touched all new highs. The place has sprouted all kinds of bugs. I can just say it would be an entomologist’s dream to be in Shahpur right now.
Since I had recently recovered from illness, I got even more cautious about mosquitoes. I wasn’t satisfied the fast cards were doing their job properly. So I went ahead and got mosquito coils which last all night long. The only problem: I was choking from the smoke, I can’t say for the mosquitoes . So began the thought train about a new solution. Turns out it was ubiquitous by its presence – the mosquito net. But I had never thought of it as a real possibility. I had never used a mosquito net in my life and putting it up seemed like a lot of work. But I eventually got down to using it. It’s not too bad. Infact I feel like a princess in a castle sitting inside it.
I mentioned in my last blog that I was wearing shorts and minimal clothing in general at home to beat the heat. But the weather nowadays is pleasant (average 25 degree) and the most important thing-there are just too many bugs. So I am back to conservative clothing, making sure the mosquitoes get very little of me to bite into. Though they are crafty and make the most of the hand dealt to them!
3. Garbage disposal mechanism
Ever since I came to Shahpur, I have been segregating my waste. I throw my kitchen waste just next to my house where a variety of animals finish it off depending on their respective tastes- crows, cows, dogs, cats. Its open house.
But these days , the cows have plenty of grass to dig in. So the kitchen waste is not enticing enough for them. The dogs, cats and crows eat the leftover fish/meat bones but most of the kitchen waste just rots away. So I had to start disposing the kitchen waste just like the plastic waste – by throwing it in the disused well next to my house.
4. Market day
Wednesday is market day and I used to look forward to stocking up on my weekly veggies and just enjoying the hustle bustle of the marketplace. But the rainy season has dampened the spirits a tad. The weekly market is laid out in an open ground. And it gets real muddy. And if there’s been fresh rainfall, large parts of it turn into a muddy pond. It’s a herculean task to go around the place and come out unscathed. All my footwear are covered in mud and I have stopped washing them. I consider the mud on my shoes as battle scars, that I am proud to show off!
The fish sold in the market before could be categorized as small – most of them not more than a couple of kilos. But now, the size of the catch is just huge! I have heard stories of people catching fish as big as my height. I haven’t seen that big a fish, but I have seen fish half my height. Its new and fascinating for me. Speaking of which..
Earlier, there hardly were any fish eggs sold in the market. And now, they are available every single market day. I have been told fish get pregnant, get real heavy and are sitting ducks for the fishermen. I keep getting told by the fishermen that the fish eggs are the real deal. But despite telling myself that the famous delicacy caviar is basically fish eggs, I still haven’t got around to trying them. Hopefully, eventually the spirit of adventure carries me through!
This is as good as the weather gets in Shahpur, warts and all. My mother didn’t believe it for a long time. She thought I was making it all up to calm her worries about my health. One day while talking to her on phone, I heard her say to my Grandma ,”She keeps saying the weather is good. I don’t know how”. But it is. My Grandma got enticed enough to plan another visit. Hopefully this weather doesn’t let her down and stays put for some more time. Though it would be great if pests take leave!