20th March 09, Friday :
Nothing different from a normal working day. Everyone is busy inside the office. People are standing and talking about projects. Few are inside the meeting rooms and discussing (arguing ). Others are busy playing with keyboard. But it will be different in a while because it’s time to push folks to go to the cricket ground! Yeah! We have cricket tournament going on and one of the team from our group is playing today. Opposition is one of the best team but so what; it’s always fun to cheer for your buddies!
Our workplace is on the first floor. So let’s come down to ground floor to go to the ground. Once on ground floor, walk little further to go to the main door. Open the door… Bang! Bang! A surprise is waiting for you! Something which is PRICELESS and yet absolutely FREE! A CLOUDY EVENING!! It was certainly HOT when I left home in the morning. Wonder how god must be remembering and managing so many climate changes across the globe Anyways, it’s time to take a deep breath and “feel” the evening! God, thank you for such a lovely evening.
Come to the ground. Folks are practicing. Throwing balls. Taking catches. Bowling and little bit of batting. And slowly crowd (our group members who are not playing the game) started growing and someone grabbed a mike to provide running commentary
There are few chairs. But why everyone love to sit on the chair? It’s so far away from the center of the ground. Come on boys! Let’s sit at our favorite place. On the ground. Near the boundary line. Where people can hear our screams and cheers even if they are at the center of the ground
Match started and it was over. Match was fun. We lost. Yet it was fun We shouted, screamed, laughed, commented, cheered, clapped, provided expert comments and did everything possible to enjoy every bit of our presence on the field.
[Microsoft cricket ground - captured on some other day while watching a match and relaxing on the ground]
Alright. Game over. What next? Another match . Yes, amongst us. We divided group in two teams. It was a fun game and slowly it started getting darker and darker and cooler and cooler. Wow! I am enjoying while fielding on the boundary line.
All sudden, it’s pretty dark and hey do you see those beautiful lightening which appear and disappears at the speed of light? Oh maybe that’s why it’s called lightening I removed sandals. Now I will field without footwear. I am enjoying cool breeze and feeling of green grass right under the bare feet.
What is that? People started running towards the building. Oh..why are we so scared of the nature? Why we search for shelter even before rain starts? It’s been HOT for so many days..oh months I should say. It’s such a great relief to have a beautiful evening with cool breeze and dark clouds and what are we doing? Running away from it. Back to the air conditioned cubes which create this false ceiling and false walls and everything else that comes between us and real world and prevent us from enjoying a priceless evening
I am reluctant to go back. Walking slowly towards the building. Climbing stairs and about to swipe the ID card to go inside the building. I just looked back at the ground, trees and sky. Oh wait a minute; did I see a human being sitting very relaxed at the center of the ground? Yeah! That’s my friend Suresh!
What next? Just rush back to the ground! It’s difficult for me to describe but it’s a very special feeling when you are about to do what you really want to do. As I started walking towards the ground, I felt joy of a child.. Same way I used to rush to enjoy the rain when I was a kid.. My existence was filled with happiness and my face was covered with a BIG SMILE!
I walked to the center of the ground and stretched my body and slept on the ground. What a feeling! Have you ever slept on the grass? Have you ever felt that heavenly comfort? When your body is relaxing on green grass, cool breeze is blowing you away and when you open your eyes, only thing you see is : The sky!
I am still sleeping on the grass and chatting with Suresh [and I don’t want to disclose what we chatted but it was more about how we used to enjoy every moment – heat, cold and rain – when we were kid. How heat, cold and rain didn’t affect us at all even if we played in open for the whole day. Why and how all sudden we are so delicate that we run for shelter even before it rains! We refuse to go out in heat even if it’s nowhere close the peak summer.. and lot more ]
Oh guess what? It’s started to drizzle!!!! Yippi! First rain of the season! You are at the center of a lush green ground, sleeping on the grass and enjoying first few drops of the first rain for the season. SIMPLY PRICESLESS! As they say in MasterCard advertisement, there are few things money cannot buy and this is surely one of them. You can buy a ground but you can’t buy rain and certainly you can’t buy childish joy and happiness!
It’s been awhile since I have enjoyed rain. I remember in college days, I used to take a long walk back home when it poured. I used to remove shoes, hold it in my hand and walk bare feet on the road for close to 2km. When you are enjoying rain, what you find interesting is – how the same rain is so scary / troublesome for others as you see people standing under the tree or hiding at the bus stop. They try to avoid the same rain which you are trying to hug
When I walk in rain, when I let my body get wet by rain, I always feel like I am accepting blessings from the god. Just like you remove dirt from your clothes by spinning them for hours inside the washing machine, its god’s way to wash humans and remove dirt. Dirt which doesn’t appear so apparently. Dirt which can’t be removed by daily bath. Having raindrops allover your body is like cleaning your soul.
I don’t like rain in morning when I have to go to the office and of course I can’t get myself drenched every time it rains. But first rain of the season is always special. If time and situation permits, this experience stretches beyond just first rain
Go out and enjoy the rain next time when god showers his blessing. Trust me you won’t fall sick or nothing will happen to your beautiful skin or fancy clothes. All you will get is – priceless joy of being close to nature and reliving your childhood once again!
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