The Tomb of Safdarjung


I’m currently going through a major mind shift in life. Priorities, habits, choices and lifestyle are all going through a shift. It is as if my place in the cosmos is moving. I feel the earth beneath my feet slowly but gradually shifting, hence leaving an empty space for me to free-fall and may be to keep flying until I fall on something solid again – a new earth.

I have never really enjoyed waking up early in the morning ever in my life, as far as I remember. But nowadays, I have started loving and enjoying everything that I did not imagine in my wildest of dreams liking anytime soon in the future, waking up early included. I now like to wake up early, take a nice shower (makes me feel new), wash my clothes myself (it is like a physical exercise regime for me) and meditate in the morning. It is as if suddenly out of the blue I made a hyper jump and am now living in an alternate universe. Everything around me including my body are the same, but the things I now do or like indulging in physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually are a wee bit different.

I recently paid a visit to Tomb of Safdarjung ( I had never been to this place ever before in spite of living in this city for about 7 years ) and Connaught Place ( with new eyes ) accompanied by Nikita, my freind. I wanted to start at 6 or 7 AM from my place and wrap things up by 9 or 10 AM in the morning keeping in mind the infamous Delhi summer heat ( envious of all the places in the world where it is still spring, or raining, or snowing ) but since I had company ( Nikita, don’t kill me for this ), I had to be accommodating and so we met at the Safdarjung monument at around 10:30 AM. It was piping hot (welcome to Delhi, Jaspreet) and we both felt like being roasted in open air, but thanks to our jolly hearts we had each other to entertain and hence to keep us both occupied and distracted. I have to admit that I felt a little victorious secretly for being right about the heat at that point in time and making Nikita feel (a little if nothing) bad about it. Yes, I can be evil too. I am allowed to. We measured the lengths and breadths of the monument while noticing no touristy people other than ourselves and wondering looking at the tomb, whether there is anything underneath it or if anyone would ever have had tried to open it to see what lies beneath out of curiosity. We were the only two non-couple type people amongst all the ‘in the heat of the moment type’ lovers and couples in and around the monument. I was just happy that they didn’t come in the way of my self-proclaimed photography.

Looking at all the amateur couples, making out at an ancient tomb seemed like a bizarre idea to me. Is it just me or am I actually living in an alternate universe now? Or did I visit the monument in an alternate universe? Strange¬†questions coming out of a touristy local’s mouth after seeing random people (read couples) not being touristy at this tomb. Again looking at the tomb in the center of the monument, I was wondering who is the crazier lot – me, the couples or society.


Puraani Dilli

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

This ancient, rugged part of the city has always intrigued my heart like a million others. There’s history in every nook and corner and discipline in chaos if you look closely. I have seen its early morning routines of the weekdays, just before it shows its morning-ready face to the regulars and newcomers alike, struggling and taking in all the human and material energy that comes its way everyday, through the days till the last hours of the late nights. I have witnessed its morning rush, had a bite of its afternoon paraatha lunches, intermingled with the evening hustle, shone alongside its night bazaars and experienced its late/very late night food paradises all alike. It filled my soul with joy when one fine day out of nowhere, I heard an unseen man singing a happy song in his mother-tongue perhaps in his kitchen while getting ready and cooking for himself and his house-mates. I could not resist but stand still and smile in a lonely gali at 7 am in the morning listening to him sing, chatter and share laughter with his mates. Unable to see anyone around after trying to find and see the shape of the singing man, it was as if after all my failed attempts at achieving nirvaana for countless days I was finally able to stand still and be in the moment and just live. I saw hope in the mundane in that invisible singing man.