The festivals of Ganesh, Dussera and Deepavali arrive one after another in the months of Sept, Oct and November.
Thousands of idols of Lord Ganesh made out of clay and painted with bright colours are displayed in homes; make shift street corner associations, educational institutions and even in some government departments. Money is collected from the citizens [often coerced] for the performance of the functions.These functions involves braying loud music often into late hours. The idols are kept from two days to weeks and then taken in mini and major processions to be immersed in the nearest water body. These precessions are accompanied by music [noise] makers all the way. Our water bodies are already polluted. These idols and the decorations add to the insult. We spent a lot of money in cleaning up the Ulsoor lake and after this festival it was a pain to see the lake littered with refuse of every kind. Traffic which is already on the verge of collapse did collapse on several days and came to a stand still in many parts of the city when these processions were on the streets.
Next came Dussera. Similar to the above in a different way. Same noise, street side pendals and litter for days on end.
Next was Deepavali. At the time of writing it is just about ending. In causing damage to the environment and disturbance to the peace and quiet of the city celebration of this festival takes the cake. It is supposed to be a beautiful festival of lights. It is no longer so. It has become a festival of noise and smoke. Fire crackers went non stop from dusk to near dawn for the last there days and a blue haze covered the none too clean skies of this city. Noise haters like me have had a hard time. Here I am joined by countless petrified animals [pet dogs in particular].
Don’t we have a better and more cultured way of celebrating these festivals? Should the revelers have no consideration what so ever for others?
When will we become better citizens?
They sit in front of me day in and day out with faces that tell their own story. Some are blank, some sad, some vacant, some stare, and some are worried but very rarely happy and contented. They listen to what I say rarely with attention that I feel I deserve. I can make this out by the expression. The wandering mind has a face on which inattention is writ large. There are some who keep saying 'hu hu or achha achha when I am talking as though to encourage me to continue. Though these expressions of encouragement often irritate me I try not to get distracted but when they are made to hide indifference and inability to follow I tend to get upset and try and bring them back to the subject of the consultation. When a patient is paying me for my time it is his business to try and not waste it by not listening and it is my business to try and make him understand. Both of which frequently doesn't happen even after so many years of practice, is a bit worrying. It is extremely difficult to make an uneducated lay person understand the intricacies of why his or her thyroid is not producing thyroid hormone [when you yourself is not sure why] and why she should be taking the tablet daily, when you are being stared at by an obviously uncomprehending face. But what took the cake was a recent incident when a patient who was patiently explaining his problems suddenly stopped midway and asked me,' Doc are you with me so far?' That stopped me dead in my tracks. Are the roles being reversed? Are my patients too feel the same way looking at my face? These are very disturbing thoughts.