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

May 11, 2008

Space Truckin'

Red barrel on two wheels pulled by a once proud bullock. Kerosene and ice , delivered by bullock cart. This does not make for happy bullocks. Where earlier a car was either a Fiat or an Ambassador they now have to accommodate Lancers and Jaguars and other equally dangerous to bovine missiles. They have to pull up at multiple traffic lights where till a few years ago they had the run of the road. To get a bullock cart [especially when it’s loaded ] into 1st gear from neutral is not anywhere as easy as moving a stick shift. In fact when the inertia of the vehicle starts holding up traffic the cart driver often has to use the tail shift. And where does a thirsty bullock go for water ? The piaos [water troughs ] that stood outside the market where bullocks and horses drank their fill gave way to road widening. The piao outside St. Andrews Church is now a heritage monument. [ Non Functional ] .
The ice has to be delivered. Soon. More out of necessity than a Domino’s type sales pitch. The kerosene is not so critical, so a detour to Bandra Talao for happy hours is not frowned upon. And then comes the day that every bullock dreads.
Getting a pair of new shoes has all the joy of going to the dentist. Your feet are bound together and then yanked out from under you. You come crashing down on your side. A chisel is required to get your old ,now worn thin shoes, off. And then new shoes that have you saying Just don’t Do It are hammered on. In quadruplicate.While every single person between Byculla and Bhiwandi with all their visiting cousins from Belapur stand around watching. Watching your fright and pain. Hopefully the new shoes will keep the new paving blocks from wearing your hooves out. They fill up the old pathways with tar and paving blocks and you got to worry about getting shoed.
Kerosene gives way to LPG cylinders which were easier to deliver on cycle carts. Which now rust near the gas agency thanks to piped gas. Ice now can come straight out of the fridge or delivered in neat little 1 kg bags.
So what happens to the bullocks ? Do they fade away ? No. They just die . At Deonar.

1 comment:

Scribbler said...

There are two bullocks that pull the garbage cart at my place of work (which is a campus, not an office), and their owner refuses to take them out onto the road and let them see the facts of life, ie, traffic! I guess they have it so much better than our old Bandra bullocks.