16th and 17th August 2008
For the first time after many years of living in Bangalore, I went to see the flower show at Lalbagh.
The evening of 16th, it rained after I reached there and it was too crowded. I managed to take a few pictures, which is why I went again on the morning of the 17th to get a better appreciation.
Lalbagh is one place which gives every Bangalore lover some assurance and respite in the midst of the fast depleting greenery. It is one of those places that has not changed in years and mercifully so.
I managed to get there by 11 and it was not as crowded as it had been the previous evening.
A lot of hard work I must say; a cornucopia of plants, flowers and leaves not only collected but also assembled together to make a very pretty picture indeed!
Bamboo is sooooo photogenic...
For quite some time now, the pubs and discos in Bangalore have had to endure the effect of their unfavourable planetary positions.
The regular party goers, the “happening” lot of the city seem to have lost all purpose of living. Almost everyone is declaring Bangalore a “dead city”. No night life. No parties. No DJ’s. Nothing is happening man! It’s a dead city!
What a sad definition of life these people have.
As far as I am concerned Bangalore is a very happening city, a city full of life.
Theatre is happening here more than anywhere else. Rangashankara shows a play everyday. Alliance Francaise and Chowdiah Memorial Hall are not far behind. Well, almost.
Classical concerts are happening. Sonu Nigam and other singers are performing. Jagjit Singh ghazal concerts are happening. Art exhibitions are there. The climate is the best you can get.
Lalbagh flower show is happening! This city has more lakes than any other city.
Does anyone even know of the Basavana Parise or Kadalekai Parise? No, because that happens in South Bangalore. To most of them, Bangalore is just MG and Brigade road.
So what do you mean by “Nothing is happening”?
I mean, what more can a city be expected to offer to its inhabitants?
The only thing that’s not been happening for some time is the pub that is a synonym of tobacco, alcohol, drugs, illicit sex and some nudity (well, almost! You should go to the pubs of Bangalore; over half the people are more than half naked.)
And yes, there is illicit sex. These lounge bars, pubs and discos are the epicenters of flesh trade in the city. Mingling with the normal crowd, there are prostitutes glancing here and there, hoping to find some guy letching at them.
These prostitutes would not stand behind a tree in Cubbon park and get bitten by mosquitoes all night, like those rustic ones. You see, they are English speaking prostitutes! They have some standard. So they operate out of air conditioned lounge bars and cater to English speaking rascals!
The men, all drunk, falling all over the place, lean on these women sometimes, sliding their hands under the clothes of these women, sometimes kissing them on the dance floor and what not. Quite a sight it is!
Men and women smoke in style and smoke to glory. The smoke I am sure, reaches high heaven.
If you call Bangalore a dead city because all of the above are not happening, then I pity you for your definition of life.
Going once in a way for some music and dance is one thing. But being addicted to such pastimes…. I wouldn’t call it healthy. Forget about morality and propriety. Look at it from the environment point of view. So much of fuel burnt and such poisonous gases released to the air till late night. For what purpose? Drinking beer and dancing all night?
During daytime, traffic is inevitable. People have to go to work, students to school, etc. But after sundown what is the need to continue pollution and global warming? Why shouldn’t the city rest?
Most of the time, no useful work is done, but the flames are not extinguished…
Like Tagore said “As soon as the day of sunlight is over, the day of electric light begins. There is not much work done in it, but there is no rest, for the fire continues, as it were, to smoulder in the charcoal after the blazing wood has burnt itself out…”
I wish more and more people would read Tagore…
For holding such opinions, I have been mocked at and asked if I were a Bajrang Dal or a Shiv Sena or an RSS activist! All I do is heave a sigh. I am sure Tagore is heaving a sigh too……
As for me, although an exception in this sea of party animals and compulsive shoppers, I am simply happy to indulge in a healthy pastime. Trees, flowers, leaves, common people and roasted peanuts in the peaceful, serene garden of Lalbagh……