Hawkers are not allowed to sell on the trains in the suburban trains in Bombay. There is a lady who regularly sells sarees. She gets caught one day and she pays a penalty of 400 Rupees (4GBP). This does not deter her. She continues doing her job as she has no other option. Eventually she manages to buy a flat in an apartment complex in the suburb of Bombay. Her dream is to send her kids to a English language school. I admire her entrepreneurial skills. If only more women have the courage like her.
(India, a country where English is sought after but not properly taught. Could the Government train the English teachers from the public schools in England ? Why should language be a barrier in the progress of these children.)
The magistrate who administers the punishment feels for these determined and hard working souls, but he has to abide by the rules too. He composes poems that lessen the heaviness of his heart; he seeks refuge in the power of words. He wrote this beautiful poem on this women who sells sarees:
To run along these iron lines is our life
Combs, pens, bangles,
and beads thats all we sell.
We do not sell weapons and drugs
even then we do not escape the eyes of the policeman,
and the magistrate never tires of dispensing punishment
and we are such that we never fail to commit this crime
because of these iron lines
the flames of our cooking fires in our homes are kept alive.
While listening to BBC Radio 3 last week, on the topic of music and evolution, Nina Simone’s song captivated me immensely. She sang effortlessly, like the rain water flowing downhill, not knowing where it is going. Thank You Nina. You are not alive, but your songs are immortal. I am privileged to have discovered you and your music.
Birds flying high you know how I feel;
Sun in the sky you know how I feel
Breeze driftin’ on by you know how I feel;
It’s a new dawn
It’s a new day; It’s a new life For me;
And I’m feeling good
Fish in the sea you know how I feel
River running free you know how I feel
Blossom on the tree you know how I feel
Dragonfly out in the sun you know what I mean
Don’t you know
Butterflies all havin’ fun you know what I mean
Sleep in peace when day is done
That’s what I mean
And this old world is a new world
And a bold world
Stars when you shine you know how I feel
Scent of the pine you know how I feel
Oh freedom is mine
And I know how I feel.