Time traveling in Bir
Bir is an incredibly special place which represents a blend between the modernity of western civilization while also seeing a glimpse of past life a village era.
As I sit in a modern western like cafe cum co work, I see lot of tourists and workation folk roaming the streets. They represent the modern workforce, which is information based, which is time free and location independent. I see a girl that has passed across the same cafe quite a few times which symbolized the new freedom to the youth. After a while I see an old fellow a kulfi walla passing by the street. He has bhompu in his hand which he blows in a pattern of two strokes and then waits patiently for kids to come out of their home to the street and get the kulfi. Before, as I was roaming the streets, I saw him travelling several KM ago. He must have been doing these daily long walkabouts in the hope that today he would be able to sell all and reap some profits.
It's almost a sense of time travel, this scene has taken me 2 decades back when I used to be in village and used to get excited whenever I heard such a sound. I remember that I used to request my grandmother to give me a few coins so that I could get that kulfi. Often when she wasn’t at home, I would take the money out of galla of the shop. We gathered around the kulfi Wala and then enjoyed the flavor with so much satisfaction and peace. Now back to the present. The kulfi wala is old, and I am not getting as excited as the kid I used to be. The abundance of pleasure has made the value and significance of such joy comparatively less.
The kulfi wala would still continue to roam the street in hope that kids will come out in the street and flock as they used to before. His dried eyes and veins on his head show how much tired he must but he could do nothing but hope.
The rush of success and cities has taken these glimpses away but if you come to BIR you can often see these glimpses again almost as you have time travelled.