Born and brought up in Pune, it’s safe to say I have seen a few monsoons. Pun intended. I have seen this city drenched in the lush green shades, and, recently, I have seen it dressed up in lesser shades of green. Sigh, modernisation can sometimes kill the best parts of the city.
However, each year, monsoon brings with it the entire array of ups and downs for me; as I’m sure it does for you as well. On one hand, the writer and the artist in me thrives within this season, while on the other, the working class citizen groans and grumbles every time he has to step out and reach work on time on heavy monsoon mornings.
There’s a famous belief in our Marathi culture that those born during monsoon have a certain affinity. Although it’s true to a certain extent, many of my monsoon-born friends absolutely dread the season. Why? Pretty obvious. The restrictions it puts on our schedules. I mean, of course, there’s always a way around, but sometimes you’re just exhausted of finding it.
Take for example, any kind of weekend outing. You spend the entire week working hard and come weekend, you want to do something fun, but nope! Look out the window and it’s pouring! Or the constant power cuts, the humid nights, the traffic jams throughout the day. My childhood went away in falling sick constantly and missing out on school, but I’m sure I wasn’t the only one.
However, Pune monsoons have a different charm altogether as well. It’s… romantic, I suppose. Pune is still blessed with greenery, and aesthetic scenery. Our surroundings, the rivers, several lakes, historic forts, they all make up for good treks or hiking/camping. Not to forget the street food and special homemade dishes we love, especially during this season!
Also, compared to other cities, our monsoon doesn’t punish us (sorry Mumbai). With just the right amount of duration and volume, our monsoon helps us to sustain and thrive. It reminds us all of simpler times, nostalgia, the childhood! Also, monsoon brings out the grit in us. Despite the difficulties, it has taught me to overcome my personal grudges and reach my destination. Literally! It makes us understand empathy, for those who do not have shelter, food, the basic necessities.
Truth be told, monsoon is like a rose. Beautiful, but complete with its thorns. It’s impossible to hate it or hold a grudge against it, but it can also be “prickly”. However, a simple life isn’t worth living, is it? We all need our fair share of ups and downs!
Here’s to grandly welcoming the monsoon season, petals and thorns alike!