Why are we sleeping in the refrigerator? I asked my wife. We`re not sleeping in the refrigerator; we`re sleeping in our bedroom, as we normally do, she replied.
This conversation took place during the recent cold wave that swept north India, and many other parts of the world. In UP, where we live, the temperature went down to 0.6 C, making not just the bedroom but all the rooms of the house feel like the inside of a fridge. The freezer compartment of the fridge.
Teeth chattering in ‘Morse Code’ i marvelled at this unique phenomenon of global warming. How had this global warming — which was melting the Arctic ice cap and giving polar bears heatstroke — all of a sudden become a global colding?
What next? Would they schedule the skiing and ice-skating events of the forthcoming Winter Olympics in the Thar desert in mid-July?
However, environmentalists soon came up with a phrase which explained why the planet was freezing over even as it was heating up; it was an example of what they call Extreme Weather Events (EWEs). Thanks to global warming the Earth would increasingly experience extremes of weather; unusually hot hot waves, unusually cold cold waves.
As we huddled in front of a feebly glowing electric heater, both of us bundled up in woollies, Tarnado, the dog and i mused on the wondrous laws of Nature which could turn global warmth into global freeze, all as part of the day`s work and no overtime either.
How cool — or how globally warm? — was that. How cool indeed, Tarnado yowled in acknowledgment, an icicle forming on the tip of his nose.
As we shivered and shuddered in sympathetic unison, it struck me that it wasn`t only the meteorological climate that was susceptible to EWEs; if anything, the “India against corruption,” the Indian’s rage over “Delhi-Rape-Case.”
This climate was even more susceptible to my type of spiece who analyses the situation, and then gives words, but care not to be a part of rage-driven crowd at India Gate or Jantar Mantar. The people of India, after the rape case victim died, became a reason of global warming as the youngesters in branded jeans and luxury cars lit the designer candles in unison.
The entire nation sat in front of Television sets like it did when Anna Hazare was sitting at Jantar Mantar. Then all of a sudden it had sat down on its thumbs and gone into hibernation.
Then cartoonists who are the biggest conspirators against Mamta Didi arrived and warmed up. Extreme Whether Events, the whole lot.
Economy? Reform? What dat? Then, again without warning, it had once more perked up and gone into reform overdrive. FDI in retail. Railfare increase. Fuel price hike.
Back in UP’s Extreme Weather Event, i decided to sleep in the refrigerator. It`d be warmer. I opened the fridge door. Someone was already inside. It was Tornado, snugly warm in sleep. I shut the fridge. It could have been much worse. Instead of Tarnado, it could have been our neighbourhood neta, seeking shelter from the vagaries of Extreme Whether Events.
*HAPPY REPUBLIC DAY*