The Wall : 2011

September 6, 2011 at 6:01 am 1 comment

sorting the tiles and getting ready

Dear Friends,

 A bit late in the update even after such a momentous weekend, primarily because the Wall left us exhausted. Exhausted in a good way, a job well done.

The day started for me with a call from Ruben with an update that he was getting more tiles and water from his side and also from Suman. Such a good way to start the day, a note of solidarity and generosity. Such acts continued through the day and the next with people landing up at the Wall, helping out, bring food and water, juice and ice-cream. Walking up to the wall was like revisiting an old friend and also being part of a reality makeover show. Dipang and Sweta had the whole show orchestrated with the road divided into sections for different colours and also showing us the way.

Clearly all of us knew what was needed but did not know how difficult it was to get going. Chipping and cleaning the wall, breaking and sorting the tiles, mixing the cement, drawing the outlines and then getting the tiles on the wall. No wonder we get mistris to tile our houses. Work was slow and hard and the beautiful sunny day was not so beautiful anymore, the heat just sapping our energy away. Had it not been for the energy of the kids the adults am sure would have let go. Their enthusiasm and zest got us going, not to forget the tea, biscuits, egg bun, cream roll and pepsi ice. Wish i could document all the typical Darj comments of passers by but one suffices, ‘satis banaey cha’ The work did not finish on on the 3rd so all of us trooped on the 4th too. Had allu paratha for lunch and worked till two jeeps had to be brought in to light up the wall. That’s about when all of us decided that its a work in progress and it had been a job well done. We leave the wall for now and revisit it sometime later.

As of now the WALL stands for all that it says and the DIGNITY of People Living with HIV/AIDS(PLHA) in the Darjeeling Hills. It showed the world that PLHA and the rest can come together hand in hand and whip out a work of art which challenges us the MOUNTAIN PEOPLE to live in HARMONY and in OWNERSHIP of our HOME. This can be done only if all of us can PARTICIPATE in the process of EMPOWERMENT and bring about a process of HEALING and FREEDOM. This is possible when we have ONE LOVE and DIGNITY. (words in upper case are from the wall).

The two days had curious passerby’s, to ones who came up and said ‘good job’,to some who said can i help and be a part of the process?. People read the leaflets we had kept and also dropped their mite in the donation box. i hope the multiplier effect happens and the mass of change agents increase to become a revolution of acceptance and solidarity. For this i believe that the wall must continue as a physical reminder of the state we want to reach as a society. At this juncture i also do not hesitate to add that other walls did not get the revolution happening and reminds of the Late Gil Scott Heron saying ‘The Revolution will not be televised’.

I would like to sign off with a note of gratitude to all who were at the wall in mind body and soul and remind that the “road is long with a many a winding turn, …he aint heavy he’s my brother’ the hollies.



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Entry filed under: Events.

International Candlelight Memorial 2011

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Priscilla Prerna Rai  |  September 7, 2011 at 4:20 am

    good work..just plain good.wish I could be there to lend a hand. Wonderful writeup


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