Burial for barbarians

This story follows on from the previous story in which dear friend Helga’s body was laid lovingly to rest.



Under the scattered rose petals is Helga’s two day old grave, it’s been stomped on. The rest is garbage.
This is not an isolated shock; you see it all the time.


The culprits were mourners for a rich person; see the fat cat garland on the new grave:


Only men attend funerals here. One was so drunk he left his chappals behind:


You see it all the time. The Hindu burial grounds are disgusting. This is not an isolated shock. Other than Hindus prefer their own burial sites, so as to avoid disrespect. They are endowed with basic human dignity.

Unless a fresh grave is soon covered in cement, it’s likely to be dug up within a short time and another body interred, especially in choice spots like near to the road. This has been the Hindu Tamil way for a very long time:


That’s half a human skull minus the lower jaw in the centre in case you don’t recognise it, with broken whiskey bottles and a coconut – a nice touch that.

This incriminating scoop nestled in Mother Earth just a few meters from the grave of our dear friend. I noticed it yesterday but didn’t photograph it and wouldn’t have mentioned it without the advent of the barbarians of today intruding so near to our hearts. I had revisited the graveside this morning to catch the funky face of the lion overlooking Helga’s grave, thinking I hadn’t captured it on burial day although I had.

So it was fate that enabled me to find my voice: it was the callous lack of civic sensitivity in my face again did it.

Now I mention it. Are you listening?

We are so proud of our ancestry here. Where does that callous lack of civic sensitivity come from, how does it fit in to our ancient culture, one of the oldest living cultures: Long Live Classical Divine Tamil!

Hindu burial grounds are disgusting to most Tamils too, it pains their hearts, they tell me so and I believe them, it pains mine too. Most are endowed with basic human dignity and respect. Particularly for the dead. And the living in mourning.

Directly across the road from this evidence of alienation stands the remains of the little Ramalingam statue, the focus of the previous post called WORSHIP in capitals. Here’s what’s left of that today:


Well may we ask what kind of bankruptcy begets the desecration of neighbouring graves by mourners at a funeral, but no answer quite fulfils the gaping chasm of community consent; community consent by neglect to protest. What kind of bankruptcy begets this? The answer is clear: consensual Anarchy in practice. We have it.

Lack of respect for what is sacred to others must come from abuse and misuse of power by dominant others in vulnerable years of childhood. Such unfortunate persons are to be pitied.

Consensual anarchy breeds in fear.

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Morning SparkUps

1. The Family:


Here on Sadhu Drag lies the stage of the first SparkUp.
The little girl is already sparky. The little boy will begin just as soon as I ask permission to photograph.
As it happened permission was immediately given on condition that I wait.

While I waited, I didn’t:


You see this is the ToolBox; it is joint family equipment.
Now, here we go:



Indian Mothers are up and Sparky early.









2. The Friends:


These young blades are sparking up in rear-vision mirrors.



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An Old Haunt for Dhayalan

This morning I left home early with my camera.

It was lovely morning to walk in with a task out of the ordinary: to photograph the ordinariness of Opposite the Ashram, an old haunt of my son-in-law. A request had been sent through my daughter.
I walked around RamanaSamadhi until Deva turned up for his morning circuit check-in, after which it took us some time to reach the roadside speculating on the electricity situation without reaching any conclusions.

Despite all the new signs in our faces, what you find Opposite the Ashram today is hauntingly reminiscent only of the years since Agni Communications first opened, from the days when the new row of shops presented a local version of Modern Man.

These three beggar-ladies cum Money-Lenders have been sitting here since then, haven’t they?

Siva’s hidden behind the tourist in fetching shorts being beseeched by the old lady; if visible he would stir up nostalgia no doubt.
Progress does lurk behind the scenes these days – look:

A new pretty face. There are many more of these too.
Deva has matured greatly, recently returned from a jaunt about Europe from which he has learned much, being versatile and wide awake:

His SuperMarket is Superlative, like the Tardis, there’s more of it inside than out.

Next door has become DeLux, outshining all our Kashmiri’s and even Vak in Pondy:


We accept all kinds of cards in here:

But nothing can compare with this:

It’s better than finding money to see her.


Sadhus can still be seen if you peer carefully into neglected spaces, they will even signal to you to catch your eye sometimes in the mornings when most of them are queuing up already for lunch in ashram.
Joythi’s over there. Look:


I can never remember her name; the memory of the time her husband beat her almost to death always intrudes.

She sends greetings. So does Joythi:

And Chandra does too:


Now from Chandra fresh, crisp and calm, we go to what used to be your Den; don’t expect me to venture far inside, it stinks.

I do hope this isn’t what you had in mind.


There used to be a cold drink shop here with a zany rabbit rubbish bin but that seems to have vanished and the space it could conceivably have occupied is not apparent. That was Stefano ordering chai:

So Stefano caught me here and explained to me in detail that sugar – SUGAR – is the primary cause of over-weight (he claims to be over-weight) and also – as I read recently (the Tweet was forwarded to Devi) – also: the inflammation in the arteries that is itself the primary cause of heart disease (in italics).

Not long ago I stopped taking sugar in tea. I read that Tweet. As a result i found repeatedly that i didn’t bother to finish what was in my cup. Tea without sugar had become boring.

What i did to compensate the lack of sugar so essential to the tea-pick-up-experience was buy a beautiful brass mortar and pestle to grind the spices to make good chai. Since it did compensate somewhat and i hope you live to an old age, i went back and bought you one which i will bring home with me, you will like that.

Basically here things are the same as it ever was.



Now I came home and the hill is blue.



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