Monday, November 26, 2007

Up,

High up, up, up winding roads, it feels so odd, making eye contact with a tribal woman, accosting her and asking whether I could speak with her for a minute.

It feels odd, irrational even, to talk politics as she gently says, yes, you may speak. In her confused, amused eyes, you can read nothing, and to most of your questions, she offers no simple answers. Then, she stares off into space and mutters, "Once, the people sniffed at the wind and followed its bent. Now, people note which way the wind is blowing, but sometimes, they bend the wind a little bit, bend it to their own will."

In Kinnaur and Spiti, where, if they don't get into government service, they get into apples or peas without much of a fuss, they have voted. I probably will get around to writing about the experience of being there, later; in the meantime, my story on the pre-election scenario.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

i was in kalpa-kinnar in august and was surprised to see practically everyone (including the women) wearing green velvet himachali caps..my mom told me that green is the congress color and they distribute thousands of free caps as political advertisement....also did you notice how the stretch of road about 30 miles on either side of rampur (VBS's constituency) is better than anywhere else in the state...

Anonymous said...

Hey there...
Sorry for the intrusion...
I am looking for any Sophians (Ajmer) Class of 80..81...
My wife's name is Christine Bell..
Could any of you folks out there give me a lead??
thanks
Kevin

annie said...

anonymous: yes, i too was surprised. on my last visit to himachal, about a decade ago, I hadn't seen women in green caps, but this time many more women wore them. And not necessarily because they supported any party. Just because they had the cap and its a traditional thing, so why not?

kevin: way before my time. but sophia has been trying to do something about an alumni association. why not just call the college?

Raghu Karnad said...

Hi Annie - I think your link to Frontline is broken.

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