The rains always give romance and a place, an altogether different personality. It was a rain washed afternoon in Kolkata, a few years ago..as it is perhaps today. I was invited to a friend's house, a semi formal get together. I am often prone to wearing white and that day too I chose to wear a white Orgenza Saree. The gathering had people from different walks of life. As everyone walked around the rain drenched slightly damp gardens, I stood in a corner sipping my wine and enjoying the conversation glide around me.
Suddenly I realized someone's hushed footsteps on the soft grass behind me. As I turned, I saw a gentleman leaning against a tree watching me. As I smiled hesitantly at the unknown face, he asked me, "Have you ever seen the Victoria Memorial on a rain washed day?" I shook my head slightly in the negative.
The man looked away then, his eyes hazy. He said, "Every time it rains I try to go and see the Victoria Memorial, it looks like a beautiful woman sitting resplendent in her finest hour, without a care about the world. Soaked in rain from head to toe, she is ethereal and something that only the mind of an artist can touch, because the brush and words fall short...you have shades of her today, you look very Calcutta today".
The man vanished I never got to know his name, but till today whenever it rains in Calcutta, I'm reminded of a wet afternoon, strangers with a sense of romance like the wild winds and the lady in white.
*The highlight of this piece is definitely not me or what I wore..it is an attempt to portray, an elegance that was/is Calcutta. And the romance associated with the rains.
( Image courtesy Google Images)