Jul 6, 2013

The Sounds of Nostalgia

I am in Chandigarh visiting a friend. We sit in her garden sipping Nimbu Paani and lament about the heat and the delayed monsoons. As if taking pity on us sweltering in the heat, a cool breeze starts. And as it picks up, the little bells on the wind chimes hanging from a low branch on her mango tree clink musically.

And just like that, I am back in Kyoto.



I walk in silence up a narrow path twisting its way up to the Shinto Shrine. It is shaded by trees on both sides, flamboyant in their autumn colors of rust and orange. The air has the chill of the coming winter in it. The path is strewn with dry leaves that crunch under my feet as I walk. In the distance the bells of the shrine ring softly, continuously. And in that sweet sound there is something of the autumn’s sadness and melancholy. 

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I walk briskly down a street in Delhi. I am late for a client meeting and my mind is on the presentation I have to make. As I pass a restaurant, its door opens and some jazz music floats out. Suddenly I am not standing in Delhi’s commercial district, sweating in my best formals, my laptop bag biting into my shoulder.

I am in Montreal, on a balmy summer night.

I have just two days in the city and determined to make the most of it; I decide to go for a late night walk. Even at that hour the city is vibrant, pulsating and alive. The street ahead is blocked off and there is some sort of stage at one end. Intrigued I walk towards it and realize that I have stumbled upon one of Montreal’s impromptu Jazz events so common in the summer.

 Although I am alone, I decide to stay and listen awhile. The concert begins and soon I am swaying to the music and tapping my foot to the beat. I clap wildly when the performance ends, and when the next number starts, even livelier than the last one, the person next to me impulsively takes my hand and dances a few steps with me. Strangers, we bond together for those few moments over our love for Music and Life. 

                                           -----


Every place has its own music, its own beat. Along with the people that I meet, the food that I eat and the sites that I visit, it is these sounds, this music that I carry in my heart. And when I am least expecting it, I hear something that transports me back into time and brings on a kaleidoscope of poignant bittersweet memories of places visited and times well spent !


This post is written for the That Tuesday Thingy Contest on Indiblogeshwaris


51 comments:

  1. Such a picturesque post it is Ruch! Just Wow!

    There is a Rabindro Sangeet 'kothay amar haariye jawar nei mana mone mone...'. It means inside my heart there is no restrictions to places i visit. I can visit anywhere and anytime at least inside my heart/thoughts.

    And music and memories surely have the power to transport us to anywhere we want to.

    I have loved the way you have connected diverse cities here with music and of course with your oh! so beautiful words.

    All the best.

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    1. The song by Tagore is so true .. there are no restrictions . inside our heart we can fly hwere ever we want to !
      Thank you. I am glad you liked the post !

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  2. Wow...just wow....I don't know what to say..Lovely write up!

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    1. Thank you so much. Glad you like it !

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  3. A very nice post indeed. Transports one to various places described here. Very vividly described.

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  4. May I just tell you that this was the best one for me? It was like I was watching a movie. Frames changing one after another, city after city, landscape after landscape. Brilliant work, Ruchira.

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    1. Thank you so much Naina. I like the way you compared it to movie frames !

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  5. Wow!! You write with such flow...such ease...and you draw a beautiful picture for your reader :) Few sounds, smells, taste are so peculiar to a specific city, you are naturally transported back to good ol memories when you encounter these....i can relate so well to your post!! Thank you :)

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    1. Thank you so much Aditi. And welcome here !

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  6. Loved the journey you took us on.

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  7. Wow..! Just simply wow! You made me smile with tears in my eyes. You write beautifully always but this is surely one of your best ones.

    Loved it. And yes, nothing binds people as strongly than music. :)

    Dagny

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  8. I agree Ruchira.

    There are times when my mind gets transcended while body is still lingering on, and that feeling is precious. Loved reading about yours.

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    1. Thank you ! So often we might be at one place physically but mentally we are somewhere else ! The mind is allowed to fly isn't it !

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  9. 'Every place has its own music, its own beat.' And how true is that. Ruchira, you have a very melodious writing and somewhere it touches a chord. Well done on the prompt. Good luck!

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    1. Thank you so much. Glad you enjoyed it !

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  10. Beautiful. Yes we all carry a music in our heart, sometimes the other noises drown it. You just touched a chord :-)

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    1. Thank you ! Yes we all do carry music in our heart and it helps to drown the unpleasant noises !

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  11. This Is also an around the world post
    Beautiful
    Really every place has its own music but it has no language na
    It's universal religion !
    Loved ur narration
    Good luck !

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  12. Mind travel and time travel weaved in beautifully :)

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    1. Thank you and welcome here Pooja :P

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  13. The brain stores information in symbols - music and smell being the preferred input of data. You captured that so beautifully in this post. Loved it

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    1. Thanks Ritu. So often a certain song or smell simply transports us somewhere else no !

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  14. What a wonderfully put post on the prompt. And with you I travelled. I did. I had fun in all those places with you through your writing. Like always Ruchira you have written something we take back in our minds from your blog :)

    Richa

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    1. Thank you so much. What a lovely thing to say !

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  15. Music transports you back to events and places and people. It also takes you to where you have never been. Nice work, Ruchira :)

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  16. Lovely, Ruchira. It's amazing how we associate sounds and scents with places and people.

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    1. Thank you Corinne. Yes it is amazing the way the mind stores away sounds and scents and then relates it to things !

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  17. A post only a travel buff can write. I guess you love to visit new places and meet new people.

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  18. Music does that to me. There are songs that take me right across continents and across time zones. Lyrical post,nicely written.

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  19. Simply beautiful! Enjoyed the journey to the various places with you! :)

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  20. Yeah...can so much relate to this when I go home to Bangalore. Not just the music but, each place has a smell too. Wonderfully put this Ruchira.

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    1. Very true. Each place has its own scent !

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  21. So poignant! Loved it. You should consider publishing a short stories book - I'm serious!

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  22. Loved the post Ruchira. Music, smells and even laughter can transport us so easily to distant places we have visited in the past.

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    1. Ohh yes. Music and smell can transport us instantly to a totally new place !

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  23. What a beautiful post, Ruchira. One of your best!

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  24. You actually time travelled. Beautiful narration.

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  25. Amazing post Ruchira nice to see your article thanks for sharing.
    Passenger Lift

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  26. I love how you equated each city with the other! It's true that each city is unique, but there is also a oneness in most!
    Your writeup also goes very well with the video prompt!

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  27. Past always seems to be pleasanter than the present.

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  28. A post that felt like a movie...Like I could do flashbacks and short story currents and juxtaposition with current narrative...I love this piece. We exist in a place only physically.in our mind how we travel and when we travel!

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