Celebrity Column: Monsoon Madness, writes Shweta Bachchan Nanda – Those women brave enough to seek out a social life in the rains are not unfamiliar with what havoc the moisture plays with our hair, skin, clothes
Shweta Bachchan Nanda
Hey there! After a brief sabbatical where I have binge watched, read and eaten through my days. Seen one kid off to college, travelled enough to make my Instagram posts interesting, and borderline enviable. Attended a couple of things (read award shows) with the folks. Gained kilos and grey hairs, the latter without the acquisition of anything resembling “wise” that it is said to be commensurate with. Made repeated and unwanted visits to another kid, who keeps reminding me he is fine and could well do with being left to get on with studies. Been the most annoyingly active member on every WhatsApp group chat I am on. Written a bit, mainly on ‘Post-its’ reminding me to GO TO THE GYM, SORT OUT MY WOOLLENS, GET EYES CHECKED, WRITE A BOOK!! You cannot say I don’t have goals! The point is… I’m back… to grumble about the weather and everything else ad nauseum. Let’s dive in shall we — Monsoons! I hate the monsoons! While everyone else is romanticising the sipping of garam chai and garam pakoras — it’s a common tea-time snack for most Indians in any kind of weather, so why the fuss? I am in revolt.
I’d like to start with the traffic-snarling at the best of times, the monsoons manage to take it up a notch by bringing it to a complete halt, every underpass worth its salt is waterlogged either once during the season, if not permanently. Leaving you sitting inside your car scribbling curse words and peace symbols on your fogged windows. It’s 2017, so you pull out your smart device but spend an increasing amount of time refreshing the page in the hopes of kickstarting your sluggish internet connection, the inordinate amount of rain has managed to cause a break in some kind of cabling that will take the rest of the day to get fixed… ditto your WiFi connection at home.
Those women brave enough to seek out a social life in the rains are not unfamiliar with what havoc the moisture plays with our hair, skin, clothes. After half an hour of having your hair pulled at the salon, you emerge only to have your bouncy mane flop like a badly-made soufflé. Adding insult to injury is the way your hairline forms tendrils the minute it comes into contact with the great outdoors, curling onto themselves like worms when prodded. Unattractive to say the least, and untamable. Then there is the process and trauma of trying to pull up a pair of jeans that only yesterday were flattering, but seem to have become two sizes too small. The sickly feeling of tugging and jiggling into pants — that have taken on the consistency of cling film — inch up a body nourished solely on protein bars and quinoa. Your skin by mid-day has taken on the tacky quality of flypaper… Mid rant my screen goes blank and my father’s smiling face replaces the word document I have been working on. It’s a Face Time call! He is in Malta and begins to show me the magnificent views from his hotel window, “Only clear blue skies since I’ve arrived.” He says rubbing salt into my wounds. My windows make me feel like I’m in a neverending car wash minus the residual fresh lemony scent, because smell of earth pummelled by rain — OVERRATED!