Friday, May 10, 2013

2013 TRIPS: Trip No 5- Delhi Again

Once again, like a homing pigeon, I flew to Delhi for the second time this year on an official trip. Last Tuesday I went to Delhi on my fifth official trip of the year. This trip came at an opportune time. My kid who was on a school trip to Nainital was in Delhi to spend a week with his cousins, my brother’s kids. It has been almost three weeks since I had last seen him so I was kind of restless to see him. I thought I couldn’t bear another week’s wait when this lucky chance to go to Delhi presented itself.

The meeting at Delhi lasted half a day and I was free after lunch. I thought of checking out the bookstores to see if I could find other titles by Arun Joshi. From the meeting venue (India International Centre) Janpath was the nearest place I could begin my search. For a moment one of the sellers on Janpath had me in excited suspense when he told me he had an Arun Joshi title but it turned out to be a false alarm. At another seller I saw Chimamanda’s ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ that I wanted to buy but did not. My next stop was at Khan Market where I thought I’d find at least one title at Bahrisons. I did find an Arun Joshi title but it was ‘The Foreigner’ that I already have. Nevertheless I picked it up. Then I had the idea of going to Nehru Place where there’s a used book store where I had earlier picked up a book by Edward Albee.

I got there at around four in the hot sun. At the book store I did not find any title by Arun Joshi but came across a book I was looking for. It was Paul Theroux’s ‘Pillars of Hercules’ and it was a massive tome that was on sale for five hundred rupees. Since I did not plan to spend so much I did not buy it but now I think I should have bought it. Afterwards I went to my brother’s home eager to see my son only to learn that he had gone out to play. He came after an hour’s agonizing wait and I hugged him like I hadn’t seen him for years. He too seemed happy to see me. He had lost weight since he had been on miles long hikes in Nainital. I returned to Hyderabad the next day feeling glad to have seen my kid after a long time. On Sunday he was back home.

The Sunday Haul
On Sunday I spent a short time at Abids because I had to go to pick up my son who was returning from Delhi. During that short hunt I found yet another copy of Helene Hanff’s ’84 Charing Cross Road.’ I got very cheap at only thirty rupees. This copy was in good condition and had a nice plastic jacket all over. The other Sunday I had picked up an old copy of Sri Sri’s ‘Mahaprasthanam’ for ten rupees. I had been thinking of reading it since a long time and at last I found a good copy. I haven’t yet started reading it because Srikant borrowed it from me.

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