The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.

Wednesday 9 April 2014




While randomly chatting with a colleague, this nostalgic subject matter of the good old days cropped up. The conversation began with the household discipline on milk-drinking habits when we were children, something that I was much undisciplined at, always intent to decline and sabotage the mission of my family members to get that glass of milk down my alimentary canal, and we went on discussing similar things in the short free time available during the hectic days of election planning and programming.

During this conversation, the subject matter cropped up that I intended to tell in the initial line here. Again, it was linked to the household discipline in our early childhood days and teens.

Many TV screens were flickering with content before our eyes and our discussion graduated to one of the most disciplined aspects of our lives those days – access to TV, and especially the category of content. And the person carrying the power to wield an atmosphere of discipline in the family happened to be the father or (and) any other family elder having stature similar to the father.

And our reactions were mix of respect and fear whenever we faced the situations of an approaching threat of being scolded (with some mild slaps occasionally) when caught some entertainment (read song) based programme on TV.

Respect, because a father is still the ultimate hero and the role model in the traditional Indian families.

Fear, because we wanted to catch the song, cartoon and movie programmes desperately and relished watching the TV to watch as much as possible whenever father was out.

Fear, because, watching entertainment content like songs was heavily rationed in those days and was certainly a no go zone from the father as such programmes were scheduled for the time band of the day supposed to be our study hours in my family. A heavily rationed TV content, regulated by the whims of the Door Darshan officials only compounded our misery.

Fear, because, father’s entry constrained us from watching the favourite TV programmes like Chitrahaar, a programme based on songs that was telecast at 8 PM on Wednesdays and Fridays if I still recollect it properly.

I still remember how we would scramble to leave the room or shut the TV while watching Chitrahaar and heard the father opening the main-gate of the house. The time between the main-gate of the house to the TV room was enough for us to exercise our options.  

The time of the father’s return to the house, from his office, or from some other work, was not fixed on most of the days. And those were the days when having a landline phone happened to be a luxury. So, most of the time, we were on tenterhooks while watching Chitrahaar. Our attention was split between watching the programme and attending to the signs that could have told us of the father’s arrival. Yes, we were quite disciplined in doing so.

But, even then, we would get caught, regularly.

But the next day, it was the routine, as usual, we all, my sisters and I, the single brother, back and disciplined on the mission.

Oh the good old days. Missing so much the subtle charm of living that time. 

Life, Chitrahaar, Chitrahar, Looking Back, Father in an Indian Family, Watching TV in DD Days


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -