Posted in My life

Sailor, Ahoy!

I’ve never set foot on a ship, but I know how it feels for a sailor to wipe floorboards after a storm.

-Me

My house has a special feature–water harvesting. When it rains and the wind is in the right direction, which is at least once a year, (this year has been rather generous in this regard) the unique technique used in the windows allows maximum possible amount of water inside.

Since my room is the highest room of the tallest tower in the area, the amount of water it can intake can put a Civil engineer to shame (“Why didn’t I think of this? I could have saved riven Yamuna. I should drown myself in this pool.”) I think the architect who designed the house worked with King Akbar in Agra, since a similar water harvesting technique has been used throughout the Agra fort and Fatehpur Sikari fort. The only mistake he made was to forget creating a tank at the bottom to contain the water it collected–such a waste!

So, whenever it rains and the wind is in the ‘right’ direction, the I play the sailor, while my daughter sitting on the bed squeals with excitement and works as the lookout–“Look Maa! Water from that window too!”

I specially remember this night when my daughter was one and there was a storm. Lights went out, the inverter didn’t work, and we lighted a candle. Then the wind moved in the ‘right’ direction and water came in from all of the five huge windows covering two walls.

Suddenly we were sailors of the old times on His Majesty’s Ship in storm. One of my family members had run upstairs to help and together we bailed (wiped) water out of the room, while the Princess was sound asleep in the King’s arms. After five minutes, when it was clear that no amount of bailing/wiping could help, the King ordered us to abandon ship and we took the nearest escape route to the floor below.

Water came to us from all directions, raining down the stairs that led to the roof. It followed us down the stairs in torrents, trying to drown anyone en route. Wet from the water falling from the stairs above, we made it, somehow, to dry lands of the lower floor, leaving all our belongings to fate.

Three hours later, when the rain stopped for a while and the wind took a break, I returned to our room to find it water-logged. It took me three more hours to put out the beds on the roof to dry, and to clean and dry-up the room and the carpet…and get ready for work. No sleep for me that night!

For many years, we have looked for ways to make our room waterproof without sealing the windows (since sealing them will turn the room into an oven) but to no avail. It doesn’t stop me from loving it though.

I fell in love with those huge fancy castle-like windows the day I entered this home for the first time. They gave me the sense of living in a hotel with a spectacular view…mine is that of trees and a field across the road. Well, beyond that there is a water tank and houses, but it is as good as it can get while still living in a city. And then there are birds that knock on my windows so often…

Some inconveniences are worth it…

Author:

I am an Instructional Designer, avid reader, small-town woman and working mother with a fish-eye perspective. I have just published my first book, The Forest Bed and other short stories. If you like my stories on this blog, feel free to Like, Comment, Reblog and Share. You can reach me at shailygrwl@gmail.com or through my Facebook page facebook.com/shailyagrawalwrites/

6 thoughts on “Sailor, Ahoy!

  1. These inconveniences are fascinating!

    I literally felt like a stowaway on ‘His Majesty’s Ship’ as I read this piece. I felt the splash of icy cold water on my face, and on my feet. Your use of imagery was powerful.

    You have the spirit of an adventurer, and, I love adventure 💕. Count me in on your next sea voyage. I’ll make a fantastic third mate.

    Liked by 1 person

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