With mercury levels reaching out to Himalayas for salvation in Summer, we are left to reconcile with the uncomfortable, sweaty truth of our cities that dawns the moment we turn on the Air Conditioner that hasn't been powered by electricity. Material comforts are illusory unless they are powered by higher forces. That everything is uncertain is perhaps the only true wisdom chronic power shortages will demonstrate religiously every day to our lives.
You may find it hard to believe this. While several people fume, fret and agonize at the realization of not able to carry on their regular routine during power cuts, I am one among the few, I would love to believe, who savor each and every moment of it. Thanks to the grueling summer and woeful Indian administration, I have had several occasions to enjoy this moment when I lived in Pune. What makes this moment special?
Well, you can never predict it! It arrives as the first droplet of rain, to soothe the parched minds running like 24 x 7 News Channel in our lives. No ugly debates on the state of our affairs and no ticker of thoughts trying to gain attention. Isn’t Power Cut the holy whisper of the divine to drop whatever you are doing at the moment and simply be yourself for a while?
You wake up from the slumber of work and begin to look around. You realize night is actually dark, free from the evil machinations of those wicked inventors who invented everything needed to make humans work anytime and everywhere. Whatever you were doing for so long, which occupied your mind until now, isn’t important anymore! A fresh surge of relief spreads in the air. You come out in the starry night to notice the moon which never caught your attention. The moon seems to be in bliss, wallowing itself happily over the flotilla of clouds. You realize how sometimes, doing nothing can be joyful. It suddenly dawns that it has been a while since you spoke with your beloved. The talk suddenly sounds so real and intimate. Those sweet exchanges of banter make you realize why moon has been the ultimate host for romance since time immemorial.
As I am writing this, my unplugged mind begins to think of wicked possibilities. Perhaps, every multinational company whose HR teams pursue wishful dreams of camaraderie and bonding inside cold, life-less cubicle spaces should declare certain periods of time as Power Cut hours. Nobody is supposed to do anything during this hour. They are free to do anything other than work. Imagine the rich dividends companies would reap from these no-cost investments! X%[insert your favorite number] increase in employee productivity that would emerge from real conversations with co-workers, unhindered by technology. Who knows? It might even remind them that their business is actually run by people and not technology.