Saturday, 16 January 2010

Down memory lane

Imagine a period in time where trains from Chennai to Madurai cost only Rs. 8/- , theatres sold tickets for 75 paisa (and that was the costlier one) and a month’s catering of food for two people cost only Rs 8/-. It wasn’t too long ago either. Just sixty years ago, there were no cycle rickshaws or even kai-rickshaws (pulled by humans) and a tram-route across T. Nagar and the High Court area.
This was a time when Panagal Park, the most crowded part of town today, was deserted by 8.00 o’ clock in the night, with just one light in Ranganthan Street that shone because trains ran through that region. My grandfather used to travel from the Presidency College to Chennai Egmore station on a maatu-vandi (bullock-cart) so as to go back home. For him, a whole month’s salary meant Rs 50/-.
Sometimes, my grandfather asks me how much something I buy costs. And usually, he is flabbergasted by the soaring rates placed in front of him. I never used to understand why. Today, when he was recollecting ‘those’ days’ memories (translated as ‘anda naal nyabagangal’), I was wondering what all changes he must have encountered in this fast paced world.
From a point in time where there were no lights and fans, he is now in an age with inverters, A/Cs and cell phones. He has travelled from a time where seven kilos of rice used to cost one rupee. Though I can wonder at the past, it is difficult to put myself in his place. I do not know what I would do without half the gadgets we have today.
            So, today, I took a trip down my grandfather’s memory lane, and was fascinated by what I discovered- a whole new world that isn’t yet dead in the memories of our world.




3 comments:

愛的理由 said...

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today..........................

'lenny' DICKENS said...

Have you read 'grandmother's tales' by R K Narayan? if so, is the tale your version of your grand'pa?
I liked the pun in your title - 'the lane'.
expecting more from you.

lenny

Sayujya said...

oh! yeah. actually, the pun never struck me! interesting!!!