There are moments and places in our lives that go unnoticed in our career-building exercise. Yet, these places and moments reminds us of something – of the times when you were happy, the talks that may have been inane to an outsider but were crucial to us, the bonding that we developed with each other and the place. For me, Chadri talab (pond), located in the vicinity of the Firayalal Chowk, represents such a place.
It is not a very beautiful place – definitely not the sort that fascinates and attracts people. But for me, the memories that have been built across the place, especially at the site near the steady water, have made it beautiful. Intrinsically, it has become an inseparable part of my memories, my moments, my story – and eventually, my life.
My friends and I used to gather here in the evening. We used to sit here in calm, in peace. We used to talk and laugh about various stuff like most college-goer talks – about girls, jokes and less about studies and careers.
People often ask me, “What is the best thing you have done in your life?” My heart responds, “I have spent some amazing moments with some amazing people at an amazing site called Chadri talab.”
Yes, there are moments that come and go, and more good moments will come and go. I’ll smile at them, relish and forget them. And of course, in the struggle to become the face of the crowd, I’ll forget the moments that I spent at Chadri.
Yet, one day, when a tired me will recount the journey that I have gone through, the time spent at the pond will automatically bring a smile at my face. I guess it’ll also cheer my friends who have been privy to all these ridiculous talks we have engaged in.
I think this is what defines life. You try hard, you fail, you succeed, you become rich, you live a posh life. But the one thing that remains with you (in the course of your struggle, your successes and inevitable failures) is the time you spent, unashamedly and unabashedly, with people who were close to you.
For UNESCO it may not be – but Chadri talab is my heritage site. Whenever, at any stage of my life, I’ll visit the site, I’ll feel good. In my opinion, that is what a heritage site does to you – it gives you inner happiness.