Midnight in India has a profound significance for more than one reason. One positive thing about the moment of time worth mentioning: India gained her independence from British Raj one midnight. Too much water has flown in Yamuna river since that ‘tryst with destiny’. The old bells have been ringing out on all these year ends, but without bringing in a free and fearless India, especially for women, i.e. without any twist in their age-old saga.
On a serious note, incidents (sic— the word is used only for any occasional things happening) of assault on women are on the increase. The recent rape on a night in a bus that was plying in Delhi exemplifies this. This brutal crime on weaker sex apparently prompted government to gear up law administration.
Apart from that shameful night for the civilized India, and talking of nights I go through, they all look alike for me. Exceptions occur when I am forced to pick someone at the railway station on the morning next. Thinking about such unpleasant jaunts, I tend to stay awake all night.
While I was preparing for my annual examinations, the days used to stretch into nights unknowingly. Next, it is common knowledge that time freezes when a certain pair or group of people is together, obviously they are the loved ones. At the same time, when they are separated by distance, the time heaves a big sigh and runs slowly into eternity. Einstein discovered it at a physical level, relatively speaking. Apparently he would have fallen in love with the world’s lab. One of my most hated instructions from my former bosses was, ‘You had better do this in no time.’ I found the expression crazy and would end up with no work.
Oftentimes we heard: ‘Time and tide wait for none’. Yes, they don’t wait for even weatherman if we keep polluting earth, and the hurricanes hit us time and again. Again, the biological clock of our global village has now 24 hours displayed on its face at once, instead of the 12- hour format. My friend has three kids abroad. Conveniently he bought for himself three clocks that would keep three different times. He watches them all the time expecting to receive call any time, though it is asking for his Alzheimer’s time.
With TV becoming the mightiest robber of our (all) times, with its myriad channels competing in one-upmanship, it is apt to quote Marilyn Manson, ‘Times have not become more violent. They have just become more televised.’
So I stare at TV and do my own countdown for the New Year dawn in Australia on this eve of Christmas.
(In the past, my earlier version was on the New Indian Express)