Monsoon Blues


As 13 of us from St. Philos were dancing under the storming rain in the Khasi hills of Cherrapunji highest rainfall with the precipitation 26411mm in a single year simultaneously back home likewise as every other year our hills is again capsized on the roller coaster of monsoon disaster ridiculed this time of enclave hazards as of bombarding the incised jhoras and drains on which stately hotels have been constructed. What a capture of the rarest kind on the cover page of the National Geography would have been of cylinders people erupting out of the plastic concrete volcano through the buildings, thank god by dint of luck we were saved or else four or five buildings would be washed away. Fortunately, we are still remotely distant from the civilization or else we would be all zipped in the Museum or entertainment parks to entertain the homo sapiens.

My thoughts wandered as I crossed the gigantic living root bridges naturally self-renewing and self-sustaining of the Khasi hills bearing the weight of million tourist, furious foams of waterfalls cascading through the hard crop of granitic rocks almost swallowing us harmlessly. The storm thundered roared as we ventured forth through the exotic sacred forest we had to be a part of rain God and Goddesses the natives narrated and if we dared to pluck or touch any flora or fauna the wrath of God would be on us. It’s not less than going through our forest the only difference we don’t find woodcutters, poachers, looters nor the hierarchy of bureaucrats, it’s the village community that manages. At the end of the trekking, we entered a small shack where the women served two or three spoonfuls of rice and one chokta sungur ko masu and jhol which would be our chakney only tester an economy where once the monsoon is over Cherrapunji becomes a desert.

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God of small things, 4ft 9 inch average height smiling people cut off from the rest of the world , two-room house like our own washrooms,surviving in the harsh climatic monsoon and winter desert on the stony rocks of the Eastern Himalayas have contributed in the preservation conservation and sustainable development of the Natural Biodiversity in India where tourist flock to seethe pristine Nature untainted. Thank heaven their tribal status and elite ignorance with innate environmental culture have saved them from the fiends. Be it the cleanest village in Asia, or the crystal clear blue waters of dwaki or the immaculate 7 sisters waterfalls, cradled in the warmth of the communion of their identity, ownership to the soil of their belongingness.


That draws me back home, in fact, we’re more endowed with Nature’s Gift subtropical and temperate climate for any crops, floriculture, tea gardens, tourism, hub of education with the view of Kanchenjunga anywhere and everywhere, no doubt political cliché erosion is evident but what about our social righteousness of belongings to our place, environmental preservation conservation and protection. National geography declared Mawlynnong as the cleanest village in Asia and we’ve been rated as the dirtiest city. Every time we pass the Teesta NHPC is cursed, but at its inception how many of us were aware of the( Environmental Assessment Impact ). I remember arguing with my retired professor from N.B.U was then the president of West Bengal Environment Manch and reminding him of having more than 9 or 10 faultlines across the River Teesta to Coronation Bridge and that the Dam would be a time bombshell for the hills.

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Truth is always bitter but the consequence irreparable, and cannot be the wisest out of the fools L.O.L I intend to drive you with the flippant side of the Monsoon blues. If you google you are notified with a ring..” on Monsoon blues ..Carry the most colourful umbrella, have hot coffee or soup, invite your friends for dinner and we’ ll waltz with the blues, beat the monsoon with skincare, foot care, hair care bla bla “

Well, I hope you won’t take it amiss if I leave you with some notification on Monsoon blues for now and the next if there’s next…

  1. Dig the base floor of your building to see the concretized plastics blocking the drains and pipes running under you before it kills millions.
  2. Measure the veranda of your houses every year for they have extended an inch or so remember we are living in a gelatin subterranean region of pyritic rocks that get dissolved with the rain.
  3. Train yourself to disaster management, its included in the West Bengal Syllabus, wise are they, at least their sympathy is with us
  4. Don’t ever travel the N.H 31A during monsoon, better mortgage all your high-rise to buy helicopters, what about another chapter of fresh Julus demand for aerial routes I warn you our soil is too fragile for alternative route be it rail or motor.
  5. Don’t worship Teesta for its murky, slimy killed by atrocity.
  6. Most importantly carry the umbrella of responsibility and accountability.

I Pause but there’s no End….till the next monsoon if there is.

SEE ALSO:  The Teesta Valley Branch of the DHR

Writes: Theckla Dhakal

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