The Monsoon Is Here!

After all, the rain did come. It was destined to. Thundering over the hills, sweeping aside the heat, turning the earth green, dripping down the eaves, well, turning the world green, as if a carpet is spread.. In my small house in the valley it fell in a cascade down the mountain, filled a dam, and then proceeded to flow smoothly down a canal made for the purpose.

The rain, the monsoon, the mausam (in Hindi), is a season of rejuvenation, happiness, and sadness. Happiness for the new world out there, and sadness because a lot of houses and low-lying areas get flooded in this season. In the great city yonder from my home the poor get poorer in the rain. Their food gets soaked, their furniture gets washed away, and they don’t have sleep for a few days because of the incessant rain. The government promises them flats in new buildings and, unfortunately, it gets a long time to be built. Meanwhile life goes on.

The rainy season has been erratic of late. Sometimes there is a big deluge, sometimes it hardly rains. Rain hasn’t been falling evenly these few past years. That’s a cause for worry. Some fields get excess rain and some fields get no rain. Where there is excess rain the crops get washed away, where there are no rains the crops wilt, turn brown, and die.

You say global warming? I say, yes, but can’t we build our ground water reserves? Create new ponds and bunds so our water isn’t washed away. No, I don’t mean big dams that submerge entire villages. I mean small earthen dams that can hold water. Nothing great to ask from our leaders. Surely they can do as much for us.

India has only three seasons in most of its territory. Summer, Monsoon, and Winter. Spring is hardly noticeable in most parts of the country and merges with summer. Flowers bloom not only in spring but in monsoon and winter also. This makes our country unique, exotic. There are flowers blooming at all times of the year and also verdant greenery through monsoon and winter.

Monsoon, or, mausam (the word from which it was derived) means rainy season. Mausam has also been turned into an euphemism for season. We consider rain as THE season, the season of happiness for the farmer, the tiller of the land.

So, um, have a good monsoon!