Thursday, October 22, 2009

when was the last time you saw one?

Yesterday evening, as we were starting the evening Yin yoga session, the electricity was cut off. It was interesting to practice in total silence and with candlelight, trying to figure out the pose only through the shadow of the instructor. I thought the power cut would only be affecting a neighborhood or a street, but as I leave the studio and start walking towards home, I realize it's probably the entire Ubud. I must have mentioned before that Ubud does not have the most pedestrian-friendly sidewalks. They are full of cracks and big holes to allow rain water to drain. They also constantly ascend and descend to allow motorbikes to drive through. All these, combined with the complete darkness did not help at all. I tried to use the ipod to light the way and it helped (I'm not sure if the guys at Apple thought about the flashlight functionality but it works when there are no other options). It probably took me double the usual time, but hey I was finally home. I noticed a faint light as I was walking towards my room and thought it might be a candle to light the path but it turns out to be a kerosene lamp in front of each room. Such a beautiful and soft light, bringing childhood memories from Ankara...

In the 80s, when power cuts were a norm rather than exception we had a few o them at home, along with a box of matches that was always on the top of the fridge. So whenever the lights went off, either the grandma or the grandpa would reach for the matches ( t was a big no-no fir us kids to touch anything related to fire) and light the kerosene lamp for the living room. If the cut lasted longer, candles would be lit for hallways, bathroom etc. once the lights were back, the adults would mindfully wait for another minute or so and put the candles and kerosene lamp off without making much smoke. Electricity cuts became less frequent and kerosene lamps were replaced by torch lights or rechargeable lamps. Almost 30 years later in Ubud, I was again sitting under the same light, eating mangosteens and thinking these... It was a peaceful and beautiful night.

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