Belated Happy Independence day to the Indians out there (and Pakistanis for the 14th)
This song touched my heart from the moment I first heard and saw it. It says everything.
I have been brought up outside India and am often criticised for my attachment to it, because there are so many things wrong with it - corruption, poverty, waste, pollution…
Some individuals resent the saying ‘Happy Independence Day’, saying that India is yet to be truly free and in many senses this is so true.
But maybe for one day, we can celebrate what is good in life and not ignore the bad, but appreciate the manifestation of beauty that grows in spite of the bad things.
I remember writing the following more than a year ago, but it feels relevant.
wherever one chooses to live, there will always be pros and cons
when i come to india for holidays, i see a lot more of the pros than the cons because i don’t live here and don’t face a lot of the problems on a regular daily basis - crowds, pollution, etc because i know i’m always going back someplace where things are different.
nevertheless i like to try and imagine what it would be like to live in india, because i never really have
i wanted to write about all the things i love about india
for those skeptics out there, i’m well aware of the cons so if you have nothing nice or constructive to say, I respectfully ask you not to say anything.!
i love the food. there is nothing else like it. i used to say my favourite is thai or italian food, because indian food ovreseas can get a little boring. i still love the other cuisine but real indian food? matchless.
i love the colours. everywhere you look, there are colours. perhaps that’s my artistic side, i feel very strongly about colours but i just notice it so much more here. i love the greenery. it’s polluted, croweded and at times a concrete jungle, but when you see green, it’s gorgeous and it’s lush. i love the red earth. i love orange jalebis. i love the rainbow of sweets. i love the sunsets - the sun is a beautiful enormous red orb in the sky, it looks so different (actually due to the pollution.. but it looks lovely.. something beautiful coming through..)
i love my family. i love the extended family i’ve created in australia, but i sorely miss my aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins… i know i’m blessed to lead the life i do, but i wish the cost hadn’t been growing up away from my family. i miss them so much, even when i’m with them because i know my time is limited. the bright side? when i finally see them, it’s so wonderful and i get to look forward to more holidays in india! :)
i love the bumpy rickshaw rides. i love riding in the train, feeling it rock from side to side.
i love coming home to india. there are so many things that make me sad like seeing the stray dogs or the poverty or the pollution but i come back for my family.
There is a sense of belonging that I have experienced in India, even though I go as a ‘tourist’, that I haven’t experienced elsewhere in my life.
So I chose this song from Swades because it says everything I couldn’t possibly express by my self.