super maha kumbh 2013!

17 Feb

i was at the maha kumbh people! exactly on mauni amavaasya (v.v.v.v.v.imp day to dip), i took dip right at the sangam spot:) means u shud ideally chase me down n rub ur head at my lotus feet. hehehe:)

ofcourse there is a story behind it all. a divine synthesis of scrupulous spontaneity.

a photographer friend and a marathon runner friend and i were to go initially to the kumbh together. photographer, cos it is paradise for people adept in clicking with those heavy expensive lens; the marathon runner cos walking a minimum of 25kms at the mela is a given; and i…well for no real reason. turned out that i was the only one who went after all! …all alone ( here i am not including the 3 crore people who came from all kinds of civilization)

so when i went to the kumbh, to my great relief i found that there is an art of living camp there. and believe u me, it was the prettiest, village themed camp. all the other baba and mata camps were wastefully flamboyant if the baba/mata was famous, and pathetically messed up if infamous. the entire 38km area was full of flimsy tents which wouldn’t keep u even slightly warm in the biting cold at night and will burn ur body in the harsh sun during the day. i, however, was housed in a cradle of comfort and affection at the prettiest cleanest aol camp:)Image

60yr old super dynamic roshni aunty who had come all the way from fiji island, and a nameless boy from pune joined me for the dip on d-day. we left at 8.30am in silence. (cos thats how it is to be done ideally, ‘mauni’ amavasya remember?) after 7kms, we reached sangam ka bank. there weren’t any boats plying earlier in the day but we got tremendously lucky and got a boat to the exact sangam spot for our dip! it was an exhilarating feeling and my eyes welled up. as i sat in the boat and turned my head, i saw oceans of people in all directions waiting for there super special chance. it was even more alleviating to realize how immaculately miscible the sangam is. so at any spot really, it’s perfect.

Image

when guruji was asked abt what the importance of the sangam snaan is, he said, our paap is so easy to wash away cos its simply like dirt on the surface of the body. so dipping in sangam is a prateek of that. meaning we are so pure within… no matter what. guruji added, ganga stands for knowledge, yamuna for love and when they meet, saraswati which is “gupt” ,manifests i.e. wisdom. epic explanation!

more than my legs which were giving way, it was more of a mind thing to get back to the camp after claustrophobically walking for total of 15kms to and fro.

the 3 of us, got back at 1.30pm. now, i had a train at 5pm. we were inside the kumbh area on the day of the biggest snaan, so not one vehicle is allowed to leave or enter the 38km zone. so i had to hurry to the station…WALKING. easily about another 15kms away. but i was no fierce bhakt like the 3 crore others whose avg. age was 60yrs., and had travelled in inhuman, adverse conditions to get here with tearing bags precariously balancing on their head supported by a frail yet committed body. i am a mumbai girl who goes to taj for dinner on her birthday. so i had to get a ride if i were to reach the station. i walked a km and hitch hiked with a local college boy who was super excited that i was of the opp. sex and from mumbai. double whammy. so we waded through the masses on his bike until he found me a cycle rickshaw. i knew he wud go to any extent to prove his machismo:) good for me! so this unknown guy who was clearly my knight in shining armor wrt kumbh, rode a good 10kms to get me out of that mad mad chakraview.

seriously. the kumbh seems like a place warped in time. i don’t know if it’s the tremendously high energy levels of the place because of the bhakts or something else..but one definitely gets a slight fear of being sucked into that energy forever. some alternate zone it is from where there is no way out literally and metaphorically, both!

nevertheless, when i got onto the rickshaw, my knight promptly asked for my ph.no and said he wud call me if he ever came to mumbai. 🙂 but i gave him a wrong number. still feel slightly bad abt it… i blessed him with all my heart though! …by now it was 4.30pm. the rickshaw guy was my grandpa’s age, if he were still around. i really had to keep a rock in my heart and keep telling him to ride a little faster while the world of people who were walking to the station were way faster than his rickety rickshaw!

luckily i got to allahabad station just in time. here i realized it dint matter whether i was before,on,or after time. nothing mattered actually. except saving dear life. cos i had entered the epicenter of a freaking concentration camp where i was sure to collapse out of lack of oxygen simply because all the people spread out in the 38km kumbh zone were now in one mini station. but i was determined to leave. so i invoked the jhansi in me and reached platform 10 where my train was supposed to be. there was no train yet. and for a while. there were people sitting even on the tracks.. and it was announced that u can get into any train if it goes to where u wish to go. with or without a ticket. in essence, they wanted us to just get lost. as fast as possible. are u at least getting a faint idea of the helpless breakdown of what i consider our fairly efficient rail duniya?

IMG_20130210_174445goes without saying, all trains were indefinitely delayed. cos they let every train fill to its brim before it left the station. now my e-ticket was wait listed at 5, so i technically was ticketless. but so were the other 20lakh people. i heard another train ready to leave for mumbai from platform 6. i fought for my life to climb up stairs from pt.10 to the bridge. i was very close to losing my right hand in the crowd cos my bag was stuck in the middle of a stampede. i reached the bridge half dead. turned left to walk to pt.6. but i got this sudden queer intuition that i shud go back to pt.10. it was strange cos i had a train waiting to leave for mumbai. still i immediately turned and walked back heeding to my inner voice which was starkly clear though the body it came from, was about to collapse. all the bsf and raf jawans i came across while i was clambering through hoards of people, told me to go back and stay in allahabad for the night if i cud, cos i was to travel alone. i did leave and i stayed with a new friend i made 2 days ago in the city. while her mum fed me hot rajma chawal at night, she watched in the news that pt.6 collapsed and 20 people died. it was more or less the same time that i was at the station.

that moment it was downright incontestable that throughout the odyssey of the maha kumbh, i was clandestinely taken care of at every inch i moved. an angel was assigned and it did its job exquisitely.

thanks angel.
thanks provider of angel.
i owe u one.
jai guru dev!

P.S: i went to kumbh the next day cos guruji was scheduled to come. spent super cute time with him. after 2 days, left kumbh in a car. felt uneasy. came back. missed flight. spent more time with guruji and managed to leave only in my 3rd attempt. believe u me, it was like this magnetic force which wanted to keep me there till the end of time. i am finally back to the wifi world. i m still figuring out if i am happy or sad~

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6 Responses to “super maha kumbh 2013!”

  1. Khushpinder Kaur February 17, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

    I love ur super cute way of telling a story..
    “Thank you provider of angel” 🙂
    I wish I was there to experience it !

  2. Tajender February 17, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

    amaggging! 🙂

  3. Nischay February 17, 2013 at 7:28 pm #

    reading this was my mini trip to kumbh

  4. tanuja February 17, 2013 at 8:40 pm #

    Amazingg!!! The hollywood ” adventures of..whatever! Can go swap flies! Dis is epic!:)

  5. Shilpa February 26, 2013 at 2:38 pm #

    Superlike Mani, really…its so beautiful…thanks for sharing…

  6. PK March 5, 2013 at 12:32 pm #

    Very stupid of you to go alone..no wonder provider of angel had to provide 😛 glad you are safe and sound ! poor guy that gave you a 10km ride you broke his heart also 🙂 no wonder you had to stay back to wash away more sin 😛

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