Dinesh and Bawa

Dinesh and Bawa


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

An Alternate Reality - Who nose?!

Ivan for all of you once again!!

Well it has long been said that the Divine has a highly developed sense of humour, and is more than a little mischievous as well, but things are starting to get more crazy than normal!

I recently read a message from Guruji saying that for a while we all need to drive with particular care and attention. As one does, I immediately assumed the message was specifically for me - after all, I had recently had the privilege of driving Guruji around Sydney one day during His visit here, so He had experienced my driving first hand – this message was definitely for me! Well, it can't hurt to slow down & drive more mindfully for a while, I thought, a bit of good car-karma would be welcome.

But then came the rub. 'First check', the message went on to say, 'which is your active nostril, and enter the car with the corresponding foot first.'

I read the message again. It didn't change. So the next time I needed to drive I saw my "Check Nostrils" reminder note under my car keys and repeated it to myself like a mantra as I walked to the car.

Unlocking the door and glancing fugitively left and right to make sure no one was looking, I snorted onto the back of my hand to try and sense which nostril delivered the strongest air current. But it was a blustery day and the wind factor was a consideration. I opened my jacket, put my hand inside to escape the wind and repeated the exercise. No question, the flow of air from my right nostril was definitely stronger.

Well, we drive on the left in Australia and the driver's side is on the right. I opened the car door and stood for a moment trying to picture how it would work putting my right foot in first. The next thing I knew I was kneeling on the drivers' seat facing the back of the car. This was clearly going to require practice.

(It reminded me of the first time I used an Indian 'hole in the ground' style toilet. Then too I ended up facing the wrong way but I won't elaborate on where the objective of my squatting ended up!)

I climbed out of the car and tried again. I discovered that by ducking my head inside the car first, closely followed by my right leg and with a kind of quick hop and skip, whilst simultaneously sliding my left leg under my right, I could comply with the instructions while simultaneously experiencing a new Yoga asana – I decided to call it 'sideways dog.'

So driving has taken on a whole new meaning. Too often, of course, I forget the nostril check until I'm half a mile down the road. I do a quick check, hoping the left nostril is active which means I got in, albeit unknowingly, with the correct foot first, and can thus continue my journey in safety. The trouble starts when it isn't the left one. I normally check again a few times of course to get a second, third and even fourth opinion, but sadly there's usually just no doubt.

Like the other morning. I was half way across Sydney Harbour Bridge and suddenly remembered I hadn't checked. After several checks I had to concede the right was unmistakably active. It was then, and quite inexplicably, that I became gripped with a strong sense of impending doom. There was not a moment to lose. Act now or face certain catastrophe!

Fortunately, due to the large volume of traffic, it was moving quite slowly. I braked to a gentle stop and nonchalantly got out of the car. I now have a small but simple routine for such circumstances. The rules of which allow me to leave the engine running as long as I entirely vacate the car and close the door, before opening it and getting back in.

To satisfy the curiosity of the divers stuck behind me, when I get out I usually walk to the back of the car as if I'm checking something, (lights at night, boot door closed during the day.)

On this occasion, not only was there a line of curious drivers held up behind me, but I had also attracted the attention of the occupants of a police car held up in the traffic on the other side of the road. I noticed they were looking at me inquisitively.

I gave them my best 'everything's normal here officers' nod and opened the drivers door. Aware of their scrutiny, I performed my much practiced right-foot entry technique but, as life has it, my foot caught on the door sill and I dived pretty much head first into the driver's foot well.

It was one of those ego-busting moments but with potential for something more unfortunate. There was nothing else to do but clamber into a half reasonable driving position, smile engagingly, pull away and wait for the sound of the sirens. I glanced across at them as I drove off and was relieved to see they were just looking at each other and shaking their heads slowly.

Such events are becoming the norm now around Sydney and I can't help but wonder what I'll say when a policeman does finally challenge me on suspicion of being under the influence – which of course I am. Completely intoxicated by Divine madness, a delicious state brought on by association with our beloved Guruji.

I'm having visions of someone we all adore giggling in His kutir as He pictures devotees all over the world contorting themselves into various vehicles. Meanwhile,

I'm just grateful I don't have to get on a horse!

Sydney 2005

PS PLEASE write to him and tell him to write more... i would love it if this became at least a fortnightly column on this blog... what do you say?! :) You can read his other posts here and here. His email id is: ivan@artofliving.org.au


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"Faith is Giving Devine a Chance to ACT" said...

Hahahahaha!!! IVAN you are incredibly great :) i love to read your articles keep them posting regularly i mean everyday. Its a kind hearted request :)

I loved the last line : "I'm just grateful I don't have to get on a horse!"

I can imagine you trying to get on horse when ur right nostril is open :) hahaahahaaa....funny!!!!!!

Vishal said...

hi bawa n dinesh ,
first of all i wanted to know why were you not there on blog for 4 days . like me there must be hundreds and thousands of people waiting to read something new,interesting and knowlegable everyday.
well IVAN is simply tooooooo good. he really has very very good sense of humour

Anupam Gupta said...

TOO GOOD bau...absolutely love his style of writing...

and WHERE were you all this while????5 days no post....:(

don't do this to your fans bau...seriously..

Have written to Ivan...

jai gurudev

hamsa_tachyon said...

Absolutely, terrifically, gorgeously hilarious !! would love to read Ivan's pieces regularly too ! will certainly drop him a note! (already have earlier, actually :) thanks a lot!

Raghavan said...

sideward dog L O Helplessly L !

Jai Guru Dev,

aparna said...

ha ha ha !! thats funny!!!

Jai Gurudev!

Siddheshwar said...

Awesome Bau.........
jus gr8!!!!!!!
yeah it has to be.
i will email for sure.
nice stories.........

Nikhil Saraf said...

Truly hilarious! You ought to start writing frequently, ivan! Please dont turn down the email requests you get for the same..we love reading about your experiences!! :)

Jai gurudev!

gauri said...

wow Bau...Ivan is too good... i was laughing from the beginning till the end of it all..... his way of defining anything is just laugholcolic as i would call it.... YES we want to read more from him and it would be lovely and our pleasure to have his space here every fortnight. Thank you Ivan and Bau.

Anonymous said...

hi bawa,
Welcome to Pune.
Ivan's blogs are really nice ones :)


Parth said...

simply superb..!
like the sentence he said at last:

"I'm having visions of someone we all adore giggling in His kutir as He pictures devotees all over the world contorting themselves into various vehicles."

very true....;)

Jai Gurudev

Chao said...

Ivan..that was hilarious! Thanks for the laugh, I had one hell of a mad day at work, on the road, at home..you name it. Your post made me laugh, like really laugh...

And I know know that Guruji wanted me to experience the road-madness in order to appreciate and follow the advice he has given about the nostrils :) Only, every too often, I have a blocked nose and am breathing through my mouth :D What to do then???

Weekly, fortnightly whichever...we want more of Ivan :)

The Soul: said...

lol lol!!
and next time do tell us about the whole squatting episode!! :P

bawaaaaaaa..u've been tagged!!!!

komal said...

Jai Gurudev Bau,
this is hilarious..... i couldnt stop laughing when i read this....
i am sydney now.. just settling in.. probably going next sunday for the follow up....

Acoustic Dreamer said...

"The next thing I knew I was kneeling on the drivers' seat facing the back of the car."

Abhay Karnataki said...

haha ha! very funny and picturing indeed... fun read in the morning!

Dilkhush Singh Kohli said...

Jai Gurudev :)

I adore his writings. He is really hilarious... I will surely send an email requesting for more.

Thank you for posting it here. I LOVE THIS BLOG !!!!!

Guru Ang Sang,


ArtofLiving said...

JGD. This is too much. I cannot take this much longer .... On second thoughts, keep it coming ;-)


vinitaa said...

hey bau ,

Ivan defi has a gr8 sense of humour and also after reading the article shows complete surrender to Guruji ... Feels gr8..

thx bau ...

and hey y nothing for 2day on ur blog ...



Ashish said...

Bau too good articles...
IVan is really great...
Were waiting for your article...

Love you.

priyanka said...

jgd bawa!!!
i just loved the article!!
its really v.interesting to read..
its so wonderful to know about ppl around the world who think just like me:-)
love u.

et said...

u've got a beautiful blog.ivan was very well.pl. get some of ur creativity & acoustic senses into ramnik bhaiya.he has 2 stop acting like a male 'plain jane'.

Sandeep said...

How about a regular column on the Yoga Vasishtha or something ? Stories of the Buddha and his disciples ?
Perhaps Guruji might have better suggestions here.

Most of these young readers are unaware of their ancient heritage. Given that you have accepted monastic life, you have the time and background to inform them. It could also raise the level of discourse on this blog.

Grace descends when effort to discover the truth is made! :-)

sareena said...

this is mind boggling..... an amazing piece of work.... u can actually visualize the person doing those silly acts..:)

uday said...

hahaha...that was so good...luckily when i had heard this message of guruji i used to travel by my office bus...so i did not have to invent new yoga asanas...hahah....

jgd :)

Monica said...

hahahahahahahaha !! the birth of an asana !!

Abhi said...

Maybe an "Ivan" label would inspire Ivan to write more :)

Of course, I use 'Search' to hunt him down on the blog :)

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