Friday, October 11, 2013

Abids on 29th – Part 2 – pens, watches, and ritual…conversation over Irani chai with Vinod and Umashankar...

Vinod said he’d be at their regular Irani haunt and I went there… Umashankar was also there with another friend…and over sips of Irani chai, there took place a very interesting conversation…I was wearing my father’s HMT  Black dial Pilot and Uma noticed it…he had a rare White dial Pilot on…oh yeah, he is also an HMT watch collector and a fountain pen enthusiast…he then started relating an incident where he was visiting a well-known photo studio and the proprietor kept looking at the watch Uma was wearing and that his eyes had followed Uma’s hand as he was talking…and finally, the photographer had to ask…‘is that a Pilot?’…presumably he was also an HMT watch lover… 

Vinod was listening to this bemusedly… and then he said…I can understand people having many fountain pens, one can write something with them, you know…but I don’t understand having many watches…you only look at them…Uma smiled and said the watches that he collects are not just watches, but mechanical watches…Vinod said, what’s so different about mechanical watches, they are like other watches…then I said, I remembered reading somewhere about people using fountain pens, mechanical watches, cutthroat razors, and such ‘classical’ things...people with similar temperaments… one has noticed that, generally, people who like using fountain pens also have a thing going for watches, especially mechanical watches…also automatic…I said, it is a kind of ritual that these ‘gadgets’ entail…that fascinates some people…you wake up every morning and go into these rituals…fill your fountain pen with ink…wind up your mechanical watch…use a cutthroat razor for your morning shave…there are steps involved and also preparation is necessary…and these jobs done with a great deal of concentration...one has to be very careful…or else ink on your shirt…or nick on your face…so, this is the fascination, nothing else, and it has nothing to do with the number…Uma brightened up and said…yes, I was thinking about this…and now I got an explanation… 

3 comments:

Shirley Mathias said...

Hey, I am planning a visit to hyd after 13 long years. my husband and i are interested in books n fountain pens. me the former he the latter. we are planning trip to deccan pen stores. we are there on a sun and mon could you please recommend a good second hand book market?

winding river said...

Shirley...Hi...Deccan Pen Stores at Abids is by far the best in Hyderabad...as for second hand books, you might enjoy your time at Best Books, Lakdi-ka-pul...they have a very good collection...I have purchased a lot of books from them...they also have an outlet at the YMCA premises, Secunderabad... happy shopping...

winding river said...

Oops...forgot to mention this, Shirley...in case you are in Hyderabad on a Sunday, dont forget to visit the second-hand book market after 11 in the morning at Abids...you'll get a rich haul...