Saturday, 17 October 2015

episode 37 hawa mein udta jaye

episode 37

he stood there covered in her colour. it surrounded him as well. the dupatta was pleased. the diaphanous one had been telling the story of these lovers ever since it slipped off her and fell in a heap on that first night they met in sheesh mahal. later at the mazar, it blew out wantonly, caressed his face, her first touch of his skin, as though something in her called out to him, and only he heard. at the guest house, as he called out her by her name of the first time, then lifted her up to take her home, the billowing dupatta trailed behind them picking up every nuance of the night and wrapping it in its folds.
today the dupatta had decided to tell the story its own way, giving the writer a break. direction was being taken care of by gust of wind. together they pored over the situation and decided it was time for magic. let the dialogue writers rest, and "if music be the food of love," let it indeed play on. shakespeare would have been happy today, because not often do lovers' meetings get this kind of drama and emotion built into it, tremulous, murmurous, sensuous, without even a single word being exchanged so much is said, and what's unsaid torments even more.


instinctively his hand had reached out to steady the person who'd collided with him as he made his way to the stall to fill his sister's offerings platter with the requisite things. vermilion, flowers, and the all important string. and now this, his dapper attire smeared with vermilion, red everywhere, on his face, hands, on her. as she came up ready to yell at the person for being so careless. she saw him, and went still with shock and surprise. he was oddly struck. for when his suv pulled up at bersarai, the place of the sacred tree where wishes are fulfilled when you pray and tie your string around it, he peered out of the window and i had a distinct impression he had a feeling he might see someone there.

of course, his eyes were behind shades and i couldn't be sure, but why did he scan the place otherwise? and why did that tender music float up, air a little pensive? and oh she was there. the dupatta had set up everything perfectly. the elder sisters would be used shamelessly to bring the two together, using that most symbolic of things, dhaga, string. all about ties, after all, our story.

so while she waited at the stall for the man to come back with dhaga payal had asked for for her platter, payal went to pay respects to the tree. on the other side, when di said she'd go fetch the things for her platter, he said, no, you go to the tree with akash, i'll get the stuff. she said, do get the dhaga also. dupattas flew everywhere, and as he stood in the distance, her pink lehariya flew up playfully. hey mister, i'm here.

however, asr was not known to catch signals from dupattas, used as he was to mini skirts and short dresses. he strode purposefully in her direction to go to the same shop as her since that's where it all seemed to be at. she counted the items on her platter happily and turned to walk to the tree. instead they walked into each other.

she went right round in a circle, scattering vermilion and flowers from her platter everywhere. colour, rich vibrant colour. her colour. now on him.

in many ways, this episode had echoes of the mazar. a powerful place of worship and wish making, here with a string, there a lock and key. a surge of people, joy in the air, many little activities, much colour and crowd. tantalising catch me if you can moments, will he see her? will she spot him? they miss each other, only to meet unexpectedly. a hush in the air.

sound of crashing waves on shore in my head. arnav the sea has dashed against land, and look, it is his happiness.

as he stands there holding her arm, rabba vey floats in. an exquisite sequence of two people unimaginably stirred by each other. exchanging glances, wondering, feeling all sorts of things without knowing what or why.

she reached to rub her eye, but her hand was held tight by him. he realised, and let go. she took a couple of steps backward. they would have turned away and broken the connection, but again the leheriya took charge. it swooshed up and started to vie aggressively for his attention. down, dupatta. he tugged it away and saw her with her fingers near her eye trying to rub away some irritating vermilion. involuntarily he reached out to help, she spurned him. perhaps too scared. an awkward moment, her hand went to her neck, she adjusted her odhni. this little tic of nervousness added enchantment to the episode in a few places. the poor girl was hungry. not even one jalebi jiji had allowed. she had been dreaming of her rakshas. and now this.

just before coming here, he'd had an overwhelming experience with the calendar. she was in him, difficult to switch off. and now here. since the moment she'd slapped her resignation on his palm, in fact, since the night of the guest house, he hadn't been able to say a word to her. he tried to bring it up, even as she stole a glance at him at the stall. but just as he said: what you said... she turned and hurried away. she was in no state to speak with him. he was furious, no one turned their back on arnav singh raizada and stalked off while he was talking. we know how much asr hates this. khushi had to do it, of course.

at the tree, she went on to tie her string; fully engaged, happy, looking delightfully innocent doing the rituals. he stood away from it all. and struggled for composure, hiding behind a wooden mask like face, a nonchalant air. but that was not to be.

one of the most lovely songs i've heard in a serial, or anywhere, tuhi bata mere maula faded in. at the mazar too it had played. and now here. a spiritual place seemed to be the natural home of a song that seeks the ultimate uplift of the spirit... its immersion in love.

tu hi bata mere maula...
tu hi bata mere rabba...
naa paas aa sake na door ja sake...

agar pyaar inko kheeche, takraar inko roke...
(the last line pretty much the theme of the episode: if love pulls them to each other, clashes stop them.)

and his eyes fell on her. mesmerised again. she looked up, saw him, eyes widened. later, she hid behind her lovely pink dupatta and looked at him, chori chori. oh iss pyaar ko kya naam doon?


a wily dupatta blew up to give akash a hint. and then everyone met everyone. khushi was awkward, then tried to relax. di forgave payal her rudeness the other day, repeating elder sisters are meant to be like that about their younger siblings (funnily both of them have younger siblings who not only take care of them but will do much much more for them). she also said, no need to worry for khushi, she has a lot of himmat. this got to the man. akash was bemused having found his dupattewali. mami ji was displeased with this return of phatti sari and flaunted her one and only son. it was fixed that all the fasting women praying for a good husband and their husband's well being would meet at the same chandni chowk mandir. the last few minutes were dense with talk, the dialogue guys were back. we were being now guided toward the next meeting at the temple.

under all the pleasantries a certain tension grew. our man was angry at di's noticing both had colour on them and then her:  

"kahin aap wapas dono ne jhagda toh nahin kiya na?"
he brusquely announced it was time to leave. yet before leaving, another long look at khuahi. while she fidgeted with her dupatta.

back at home, her colour still on him. wiping with tissue fails, he chucks it in frustration. standing by the place where he goes to find calm, his little pool by the room, he clenches his fist and grinds out:

"aj tak kissine mujhse aisi badtameezi karne ki jurrat nahin ki. tumhari itni himmat kaise hui, khushi kumari gupta."

no one has ever dared to be so rude to me. how dare you, khushi kumari gupta.

a beautiful episode. romantic, smooth, elegant, utterly absorbing. resplendent in colours and rich in symbols: red, vermilion, strings, a tree with all the positive life and fertility connotations of a tree, a place of wishes and prayers, reflections on glass, and more. what can you say without saying a single word? ask a dupatta. it will likely say,"everything important."


hawa mein udta jaye an aside on a dupatta. this beautiful about 2 to 2 and a half metre piece of cloth is associated with a woman's "laaj" her honour and self respect. while often very pretty, it covers her and keeps her safe from lustful gaze. for khushi, her dupatta was always a very important part of attire, even though she wore it folded to a narrow sash across her neck and over her shoulders, it was essential for her sense of respect. it said soemthing about who she was. and another side of this lovely garment, its charming naughtiness, its eloquence as it sways and falls and billows and floats. in iss pyaar ko, the dupatta has an important place. it is not only a symbol of khushi's respect/honour, it is narrator, or so i've often felt. and around it some of the most fascinating sequences have been built. 3rd july 2012, on the cliff's edge when he placed her dupatta across her shoulders, it was as though he took her honour as his responsibility, an elemental instinct of a man vis a vis his woman, to me this was their true marriage [and i've always considered there temple wedding valid]. her breath returned when her fingers felt his heart beat. he adored her, then put her dupatta where it belonged with care and feeling, he picked her up and walked ahead, temple behind, dupatta picking up all the nuances of the day, wrapping them all in its folds.)


those teej episodes
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