The Human Aspect

In times of a crisis, different people react in different ways. During these times, many people overlook the little things. The small details which escape the eye. Or the small details which makes your will for survival stronger.

I like to call it 'The Human Aspect'. The Human element.


I saw a very excellent documentary on Discovery, Surviving Mumbai yesterday. And noted down these small details.

The gunmen rounded up some guests in the hotel and this woman, she was wearing a black evening dress. When they were rounded up, she quickly wrapped a black pashmina around her.
To appear as a 'conservative, middle-aged woman' to the Muslim gunmen. I think that was very quick thinking on her part. Or it could've earned her the gunmen's wrath.

This guy, he's hiding in a room in The Oberoi or the Taj (I forgot which one). He looks outside the window and there is a house in front of the hotel. He can view the inside of the house and he sees a man...brushing his teeth. The hotel in front of him is burning down, and he's carrying on brushing his teeth. Like nothing's happening.

A woman remarked that the terrorists wanted to wash their hands or something, but they couldn't open the taps. They could open-fire among a crowd but couldn't open a tap. "But when you have a gun." she said. "Everything is possible. Isn't that interesting?"

The staff of the Taj hotel were extremely helpful. They sealed the guests inside the Chambers and themselves remained outside and led the terrorists away from the Chambers. This guy who worked in the Taj had the chance of getting out and getting home to his wife and children, who lived just three blocks away. But he decided to stay and help. He died two days later. Vir Sanghvi wrote an article a while back, praising the dedication of the staff at Taj towards its guests even in such a crisis.

Anjali Pollack said, "When the doors finally opened and light spread out, a commando walked in. And I swear, at that moment...he looked nothing less than Brad Pitt to me."

I have a book which recounts the experiences of women detained at Concentration Camps during world war2.
One woman wrote that there was this other woman in the camp, who used her very limited ration of margarine to smear on her face, instead of spreading it on the bread. And they were given very little food.
There were a group of French women, who went inside the gas chambers in Auschwitz singing Marseilles.

In the camps, everything was so filthy and dirty, you couldn't clean up properly. Women's heads were shaved off and sparse little hair grew on them. But once, these girls encountered a French man who was exiting from the same door as them. He held the door open for them and said, "Apres vous, madame." Which means, after you, ma'am. That little gesture made them feel a bit more woman again.

My stupid keyboard's given out and on screen keyboard is not fun.

More later.

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12 Reflections:

Tangled up in blue... said...

You really astonish me when you write something like this, Srishti.

And I feel so proud of you.

Please know that I really really mean it when I say that I was nowhere this mature at your age.

They say, a crisis brings out the best in some people and very worst in others. And sometimes, when bad things have been happening every day, we almost get used to them, sensitized, numbed.

But there are those people, who find it in themselves, inside the very last inch of them, to be kind, to help, to show bravery.

And that is the test of courage isnt it? To be brave inspite of fear.

I hope that I never have to face that test in my lifetime. But if I do, let me pass the test. It wud be enuff.

This is one of the best posts I have ever read on the blogs I have found.

Thank you for this, Srishti.

Tangled up in blue... said...

And, what is the name of that book? I really want to read it.

soin said...

bah yes.i wasnt that mature too.i was worrying about arsenal and movie tickets.and i prefer we go through some thing like trying like this for some time.coz we will know if we are strong enough or not.i wish i knew a bit.not much.and i saw the program too.and if youre interested see a documentary on juarez,mexico.its about women and stuff.and then reconsider

The Tragic Life of Pi said...

@TUIB : Totally totally agree with you on srishti . And I think a similar comment of mine lies somewhere in her blog posts !

Srishti said...

@TUIB: This comment means the world to me. Really. :)
Because, actually, I have this complex or whatever with being sophisticated and mature. I don't look my age, I can manage to trip on a flat surface, and I get excited very easily. So more often than not, mature and I do not come in the same sentence.When someone says something like this to me, it means a lot.
Thank you. =)

You're totally right. But if you do have to go through that test, you'll come out much stronger in the end. More than you already are.

The book is The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank. I became obsessed with Anne Frank when I read the book when I was 12. This book is not very popular...I found it with some effort. But beautiful book. Heart wrenching.

@Soin: Who says I don't worry about Arsenal? ;) Well, I don't...though I love Rooney. And availability of movie tickets is a constant worry.
Oh, okay. Will definitely give it a watch. Thanks. =)

@TLOP: Haha...yes it does. Thanks.

diaboli said...

rooney?so did you see the guy who was brushing his teeth in a football match in the stadium?
surviving mumbai was a shit showed only a part.there are many good independent ones on the cyber sphere.and even the smallest etiquette at times like these seem so big?so am i to infer that be cruel at normal times and when the time is cruel be polite and everyone will like you?

Newbie Mommy said...

Simply amazing, baby girl. Love the content, the way you have articulated it and the message you want to share.

Srishti said...

@Diablio: Why would I see the guy who was brushing his teeth in a football stadium? :|
I haven't seen enough documentaries to judge whether Surviving Mumbai was 'shit' or not, but I think that Surviving Mumbai was pretty cool.
Infer all you want, and then lemme know.
And please take care. :)

@Newbie Mommy: Thank you so much, mommy. :) I'm honored. :))

Anonymous said...

nice post. thanks.

Srishti said...

@Anonymous: Thank you! :)
But why're you thanking me?

Anonymous said...

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