Its raining in Barcelona and getting really cold. I have never experienced extremities of weather in India because my stay was only in Bengalooru. Most of the localities say that this is not at all cold. Here I am freezing 😀 . Little did I know the weather predictions are almost accurate,you should see them before you leave home and also cursed myself for sleeping in Geography class in school,drawing caricatures on the map because I could not understand what was going on here. I was also very comfortably brought up in my city so that meant I was not even responsible for what is happening at home.
Now I sit down to write my expenses,walk a mile more to save money, cook, wash, study, work and repeat mode. A week with a lot of assignments I went bonkers. It was not difficult,but it was the pure mindset of it was so easy before. My father’s friend (who is more my friend) called up to say this is the drill everyone should go through if you are outside home. He was absolutely not sympathizing but telling the harsh realities of life.
I have made new friends here, some absolutely don’t speak English,few speak broken English and yes a lot better English. I brokered a deal with my landlady and her daughter to teach English and learn Spanish from them. So that’s going on well. I teach kannada to non kannadigas through whatsapp in kannadagottilla.com, while teaching I always had this question as to why and how do they make so many mistakes when it was explained so clearly. But now I am on the same boat learning a new language. This was one of the many learning for me in Barcelona, until you step into the shoes of someone you would really not understand the problem. The whole concept of empathy is little overrated!
After the busiest weeks, I finally went to Tibidabo. This place provides the spectacular view of the city, travelling through different modes of transportation to reach there. My cousin whom I hadn’t seen for a long time visited Barca for his work and thank god he mailed me to meet. It was really nice to see him after a long time,have nerd talks (because he is one) and talk kannada. He is one of the big achievers in the family who did extremely well in studies,focused and most probably very patient. I was quoted about him many times at home to be like him. We decided to go to Tibidabo, of course he educated me about the weather apps, to still eat Indian food and how to find what and where. My whole avalakki making experiment became a disaster a month back, had to shamelessly ask him to cook 😀
The place we went to is the tallest mountain in the Serra de Collserola which is 512 meters (1,680 ft). More than the destination the travel was fun. I didn’t know there was something called Funicular Railway. This is a cable railway in which a cable attached to a pair of tram-like vehicles on rails moves them up and down a steep slope, the ascending and descending vehicles counterbalancing each other (explanation duly given by the obvious). It was fun like a child to see that it works so beautifully. After discussing why this can be / cannot be done in India like typical Indians we reached the Tibidabo.
This place was amazingly beautiful. The moment I saw this, I could only remember the poem written by kannada poet Rajaratnam about the mist in Madikeri, a place in India. He says metaphorically that mist and the mountain are like mother and the child hugging each other which never ceases to move away. He also says that the earth and sky are hugging each other. how awesome is the poem. I have to thank my family for letting me read literature in my childhood due to which my expressions are easy. The whole scene was amazing.
The walk upwards reminded of the childhood that we had common things to share, but what surprised me was the talk about respecting privacy, treating woman as equal and actually living life on own terms. It was synced up with me, he did speak so respectfully about his wife about pursuing both their dreams not compromising on the societal pressures. I saw very less people like that in my country because a marriage meant a big compromise from one side and all the societal norms applied mostly to the girl. I had to answer a few queries back home on me pursuing masters at wrong age (25 years is old you know) and actually end up with nobody. But I saw my cousin spoke nothing like that. I felt proud and happy that his thoughts are really wonderful about respecting a woman and her dreams. Also he attributes a lot of his thinking and change in perception to Sangeetha his wife. It’s not about gender but the sheer respect to each other is actually expected.
Aah the mountain has a church on top of it. There are stairs/lift provided and you could go up there and see the whole city of Barcaaaaaa. Kuvempu, a poet and a GnaanaPeeta Awardee wrote a poem about the surroundings of his place (malenaadu and river tunga) and said nature is the signature of the god and the poet merely expresses it (Devaru ruju maadidanu). I recited the poem on top of the hill to really believe that its true. Yes the god was up their opening his arms, looking at the people who came there. The experience was mind boggling.
Coming back we recounted how our lives have changed and our siblings have grown up. Life was much easier before, NO it was that we were protected from the reality. Now its all open,things just come up to the face and you would have to solve. The grown up phase sometimes bites me but it’s fine we should be doing it. A great weekend came to an end with bidding adieu to a fellow kannadiga, my family. Yes I met few more kannadigas here, one a family friend who said you should not be a sparrow go out and explore because this your life. This is a common dialogue I hear from everyone who have seen for a long time or rather now. Yes i promise to explore and yes write more 😉