India Wins Cricket Match Against England.

Cricket is one factor that unites India like nothing else perhaps does. You cannot meet an Indian who has not played cricket or has not been an ardent admirer of the game from the side lines. Each is also an expert on the game.

The Indian Cricket establishment is the richest in the world of cricket and its commercialization of the game has made billionaires of many players who compete with film stars for popularity and adulation.

Cricket is also a metaphor for India. One always can read more into a game than just the game itself and the latest game is a classic example of this.

India and England were to play seven one day and two five day matches. The first lot of five consecutive matches of one day games were duly completed with India winning all of them. The last two games were not played as the Mumbai attack took place.

The England cricket team even contemplated canceling the rest of the tour but, they decided that they would continue with the two test matches except that the venue for the first match was shifted from Mumbai to Chennai.

That the match was played, hopefully sent a loud and clear message to the terrorists that no matter what, Indians would continue with their normal lives as soon as possible and in this endeavor that the England Team helped by playing, made Indian hearts go out to them for doing so.

The match itself was a boring three and a half days for Indians, with England dominating the proceedings. The game took on a life of its own, on the last session of the fourth day’s proceedings when Virender Sehwag took the battle to the England camp with a swashbuckling performance. The ground work laid by him helped the following players to build on and under difficult conditions register an emphatic win.

The star of the match, though not the man of the match award winner, is a player from Mumbai who scored an unbeaten 103 runs to steer the Indian team to victory. He dedicated the win and his performance to the people who perished in Mumbai as well as to those who liberated the city.

If there was a message from the performance of all the players, from both the sides, that was this; terror cannot take away our spirit. I hope the powers behind the horror are listening.

Old Is Gold.

What has age got to do with living joyfully and doing ridiculous things?

I was baby-sitting my friend’s granddaughter earlier this evening. I had taken this bundle of energy; all of four years old, to our local park’s children’s play area. There are two different sized slides, a pair of swings, a number of jungle jims etc, and it is usually quite crowded with a lot of youngsters and their caretakers.

My ward, wanted to climb up the ladder and slide down from the bigger slide. I was quite prepared to let her, as I was able to stand below to catch her, if she slipped.

She did this a few times and suddenly decided that it was time for me to do the same! No amount of my persuading her that the slide would not accommodate my bulk would convince her.

There were two other small children watching this exchange. One accompanied by her young mother in jeans and a t-shirt smiling at my discomfort. The other one was accompanied by a wisp of an old lady, possibly around 75 years old or so, in traditional Indian dress, who too was obviously enjoying my discomfort.

The young mother tried to persuade me to climb up and slide down too, and I was appalled at the very suggestion. The old lady’s ward, another four/five year old, suggested that her grandmother show me how to do it! This suggestion was very well received by the other two children and, the much-amused young mother.

Before I knew what was happening, the old lady had climbed up the ladder and slid down the chute. She had the brightest grin that I have ever seen, and a pair of twinkling eyes that was simply out of this world.

That was enough for the chorus to start all over again, and except for the watchman of the garden coming at that precise moment, I would have had no choice but to perform the feat performed by this astonishing old lady. With the help of the watchman, I was able to convince the children that the slide would collapse with my weight if I climbed on it, I escaped.

I bowed deep down before the old lady and expressed my admiration for her spirit. She smiled at me and said that I should have tried too!

Was it ridiculous? Would you have done what the old lady did if you were a grand mother?