If you have to ask you'll never know ! [L.Armstrong]... thats Louis not Lance.

Jan 9, 2008

Lets go fly...!

A piece of paper, a few broom sticks [ from the stick broom not the grass type.]and some string. Put them together with a boy from Bandra and you have avionics that rival NASA.You pasted the paper onto the stick frame in what approximated a square. The paper had to be fine tissue papaer but if push came to shove even newspapaer would do. And then you tied a Kuni. One up zero down. Thats one finger measured horizontally above the upper connection of string to kite and and none at the lower end. Kite flying is not a spectator sport. The person who drew the short straw [ i.e. the smaller one who could be bullied ] was given the kite to hoist. He took the kite twenty odd metres away ,faced into the wind and when you yelled at him he would leap into the air and throw it as high as he could. Houston, we have lift off. If the flier didnt co-ordinate his hauling in of the string , ok Manja,, it was many attempts before the apple fell away from the ground. When it did the hoister had to charge back to the flier and stand a few paces upwind of him with the firki at the ready. [If you have to ask what a firki is go listen to Britney Spears.] He had to be ready to give deel. I.e. feed out the manja as your kite soared higher and higher. You had to get it between the telephone and electric wires. Then past the odd branch of the drumstick tree and finally past the television antennae that were the final gaurdians of the gates to the open skies.Then you got older and just flying a kite was not enough. Your manja had to have the finest glass on it to make it the sharpest. Your kite had to be reponsive to little flicks and tichkis for aerial sorties. Your point man who held the firki had to be tuned in to you to know when you wanted deel and when he had to lapete. You engaged in aerial combat [ ok Lugees]with squadrons of the Luftwaffe, from the buildings down the road. Jockeying for supremacy of the skies. Climbing high into the sun so that with one fell swoop the manja of lesser mortals gave way leaving their kite slowly floating away on the breeze. With a flood of chokra boys running after it. Waving long sticks with a twig tied at the end to ensnare the vanquished. And when you where vanquished you hauled your precious manja in as fast as you could before it snagged on the antennae or telephone cables or trees that you had skillfully manouvered thru on your way out. Your firki had to be in the hands of a master, to stop the manja you reeled in becoming one big gotala. This master would turn around and keep the tension on the manja by letting it pass between his legs while he spun the firki with both hands at a speed of twenty frames per second or more. Yeah I should have just said a blur of motion.The gurus of kite flying would engage in a lugee, slice their opponents with a skill that made Jack the Ripper look like Mr. Bean ,then capture the fallen kite in mid-air by entwining their manja with the trailing manja of the loser and then haul both kites in thru the maze . Skill ? The progeny of Neil Armstrong and Sunita Williams could'nt do it. With joint parentage . You have to be born in Bandra for that.

For any clarifications on the terminology pl address comments to Karl. [My cousin] whose Dad, my Uncle Giles taught me how to fly a kite. And who with his brothers Sylas and Elliot are among the afore mentioned Gurus.

15 comments:

Dinesh Alexander D'Souza said...

Sylas was the kiteflying guru, Elliot almost fell off the terrace once while walking bakwards on the unwalled section (saved by Aunt Wilma who shouted out to him in the nick of time) and Karl ....well .... I suppose he probabbly was the best kite flyer having learnt from his brothers how to fly a kite without falling off the terrace.

David said...

Hey Clement to be more precise it is not Gotala but Gucham!!!!. And I am sure your beloved cuz Karl the so called kite flying guru would not have come across this word....lets test the bugger...Karl can you tell us what is Jhol??? lets see if you qualify being a Bandra Bugger like my sweet cuz Dinesh.

Anonymous said...

Jhol- manja with a stone at the end.Used for all sorts of things including sabotaging some unfortunate person flying a kite from the terrace behind you who tried to sneak up on your kite from the rear!!

bandrabugger said...

Hey David / Noella.
Got you placed now. Curly's sister. Of course I know you. Lots of Gucham guchi. Or as we now say Gucci.Jhol is below the belt and if we caught anybody doing that we'd give the bugger solid pasting if he was smaller than us. Some choice badwords if he was bigger than us... and then run for our lives.
Clement

Karl said...

Noella, don't suck up to Dinesh " my sweet cuz" ...... no matter what you say you will still be his Aunty.

Floyd said...

But the question is who had the best manja in Bandra?
Did you by any chance try with Fanchu and Chintu to make manja by Auntie Kitty's?

David said...

Hi Clement! Thanx for the info on Jhol, you are too cute for words. Ok now please continue writing as I am keen on reading your next topic. Karl you Daaag! Just Shut up before you get some galies from me. Ha Clement forgot to ask you one thing what is barik manja called it has a particular name do you remember???? Was trying to figure it out but could not get the word.

Dinesh Alexander D'Souza said...

Curly's other sister, Andy might know as she was an avid kite flier too.

Karl said...

Hey Dinesh which sister are you talking about ? I remember Andy was really good looking, sweet and very nice to talk to, and the other sister was rude, mean and nasty. Is that the same Andy you are talking about. Lots and love and regards to Andy's other sister. ;)

Nima said...

Wot men Clement! Lot days became - no blog. Gotala happened or manja got cut. Give some deel quickly. We are waiting to lapete.

Doreen said...

Manja got cut...Clem - writing about Sankrant in Bandra...although you never fail to spend it in good ol' Khotachiwadi!!

Was good to see you there!

Have enjoyed the blogs - How about a piece on K'wadi - Bandra link??

Dinesh Alexander D'Souza said...

You can take the man out of Bandra (to K'wadi), but you just can't take Bandra out of the man.

David said...

Hiya Clement! Whatsup? Given up on writing? Or running out of topics? Come on you can do it Clem we are all waitin for a good read....La Noel

Anonymous said...

Hey wat about the "kai poooo cheee" isnt that wat we all said when a kite got cut - the victor shouting at the vanquished across the terraces and then braking out in some jig
wat your saying men

bablu said...

Ha Clement forgot to ask you one thing what is barik manja called it has a particular name do you remember????

Bark manja was called KHINCH(pull) manja coz we had to pull it rather than give Dheel like the other Manjas.