Saturday, June 22, 2019

In conversations with co-passengers

Journey #1

I was on my way to Patan in a small van. One old man got into the van and sat in front of me. Answering my questions about Patan, he questioned me in return about my place. 

"Hyderabad," I said and he spoke a lot in Gujarati. 

I couldn't understand a word. These days, most languages are bilingual. English is mixed in some way or the other but, this old man spoke a lot of Gujarati which I couldn't understand at all. 

"He's a businessman and has buffalo business in Hyderabad," said another person sitting next to me. 

Great. Glad to meet many businessmen in Gujarat. 

Journey #2

On my way to Ahmedabad from Patan. I boarded a train and had a co-passenger who got into a conversation with me. He speaks in Gujarati, I speak in Hindi. I barely understand him yet, I didn't stop asking him questions. He may have understood my one line answers and kept asking me simple questions. 

We don't know each other. We hardly understood each other's language yet, we spoke. We talked about Patan, it's history, crops. 

He's a farmer and handles dairy farming as a side business. 


I took an auto from Sabarmati Railway Station to Gandhi Ashram. The election season and can see Modi everywhere. Looking at my traveler attire, he asked me where I'm coming from. After sharing a titbit of information. He asked if election got over at my place.
 "Yes," I said. 

And Ahmedabad being the capital, I couldn't stop asking, how is it in Ahmedabad. And the story got started. 

"You don't need to ask. You don't need to campaign. Modi will win again. It's Modi everywhere."

I was playing the role of audience to the appreciation of Modi. After a few minutes, he tells me in a lesser tone. "Sir, here people think accordingly to caste. Idhar Log Jaathi Bedh bahut he, vaisi Vote bhi Karte log."

 It's everywhere. The political discussions have never changed. Be it in newsrooms, friend's banter it's always who. God bless people who talk on 'what needs to be done.'

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