By Monica Bakre
‘When life gives you lemons…make lemonade’. Is that the only thing you can do with the ‘lemons’ that you get in life? Well, no! When life gives you lemons, there’s definitely more you can do!
Having been a lover of old Hindi film songs based on Indian Classical music all my life, there is a time during the day when I can listen in and virtually flood the house with floating melodies and with family not being driven to stuff cotton balls in their ears to shut out the loud volume. This is generally in the mornings before breakfast. The staff has been inspired to listen in and appreciate too, they already having been enlightened on the finer aspects of life, definitely more enriching than regular neighbourhood gossip!
And so, there was this morning when I inserted a CD (only audio, no video) of the famous music director, Naushad ji in the player and settled down in an easy chair to enjoy the music. The staff was instructed to keep their ears open to some beautiful music which would emanate presently and pervade the whole house, melting any sadness or negativity that there might be around.
The first song, “Mohey panghat pe …” began, I sat up, listened in hard, not Lataji’s velvet voice, someone else, not a bad voice but not Lataji. Huh? I sat, in fact, sprang up! I skipped the player to “Yeh zindagi ke meley…” (Yeah, indeed, I was witnessing some ‘meley’!)
Not Rafi ji? Some other male voice! I adjusted the volume of the player; played around with buttons that I thought would magically rush to my rescue.
No change! by now, the third song had started ”Mera pyaar bhi tu hai…” expecting to hold ‘taal’ to the rhythm of Mukeshji’s captivating rendition, I sat back. Again, some other male voice! This made me reach out and expressly grab the cover of the CD, in which in very fine print, it was loosely mentioned that the CD was that of renditions by upcoming artists.
Now, what do I do? Do I deprive myself of the original joy that I had settled down for? Or, do I abandon the CD? I could feel slight irritation, which slowly mounted to a faint sense of injustice, which I thought I could appropriately address through lodging a complaint with the music company and even perhaps claiming damages from them!
Slowly… in time…good sense prevailed, and I got a wonderful idea, I drew the curtains in the room, told the helpers to leave me alone for a bit, closed the room, and with eyes shut, proceeded to listen in to the next song ” Utthaaye jaa unke sitam…” (Providence had made sure that this song, appropriate for the situation prevailed!)
I was serenely fantasizing that I was a JUDGE on the Indian Idol platform! How cool is that?
With my keen ear for music, I could catch the slight flaws and appreciate the predominantly superior level of singing, well trained voices, and earnest renditions.
“Waah!”, “Kya Baat Hai…!” I would exclaim at the touching, accurate parts, copying the judges that I had seen on TV. In fact, I even imagined myself as the favorite judge being watched by millions on televisions in their homes. My responses had to be accurate, dramatic, and impressive. I was a judge on “Indian Idol” after all! This was a mammoth ego-booster for me!
And so…on played the CD…and …the new singers (wherever they are based) got immensely appreciated genuinely in a home far away, unknown to them, by a lady who decided that ‘when life gives you lemons, become a JUDGE’!!!!!
About the Author: Monica Bakre is a qualified counselor/psychologist, with interest in reading, writing, cooking, music, and pets. She describes herself as an observant, absorbing, thinking, speculating, and sensitive individual.