About fifteen days back we were privileged to have a convention called “America days”, organized by Saurastra University and few other bodies in affiliation with the US consulate, Mumbai with media partner being BIG FM. This was a novel effort happening for the first time in Rajkot (being a grade C city). Various lecture series on various topics like Visit US, Higher education in US, Visa issues, US-India Business Opportunities, Cultural aspects in Communication, geography of US, Climate changes, etc. were arranged and various dignitaries from US, US consulate Mumbai and few dignitaries of various fields from India had come to deliver the lectures. I did take this opportunity and attended few selected programs of my interest and concern. The sad part was people here are in such slumber that they hardly took the advantage of such programs. Consulate had presumed that people will throng to attend and had booked a big auditorium but to add to their disgrace, the big auditorium was barely filled to a quarter. I wonder if they will ever undertake such series in future here at Rajkot.
During this program series, one evening a Carnatic music program was arranged. The performers were ABCD’s, who had received Fulbright scholarship to attain Masters in Music from maestros here in India and had traveled all the way from Banglore, where they are taking their coaching, to perform here, bearing in mind that there is no direct flight to Rajkot from Banglore so they took a flight to Mumbai and from Mumbai to Rajkot. The audience as like the other days was to the bare minimum. But to my delight both the performers, were exuberant, bubbly, confident, young, performed wonderfully and were least concerned whether the crowd was there or not or whether the crowd was active or passive , good or bad. They were into their performance leaving apart all the external factors. The Carnatic singer has educated in Neuroscience but was into the singing since the age of eight and was here to get mastery into Carnatic vocal while the violinist majored in western classical but was here to learn Carnatic music on violin. The promptness with which they sang and played from classical numbers to bhajans to Indian numbers and western on demand of the audience so swiftly was praise worthy.
While my sister and me did congratulate them for their performance and had a general chat with both the girls, what impressed me most was that they were in no way American born confused desi(ABCD) but American born confident desi’s. Kudos to both of them.
While we are loosing our culture and going western, it is such people in west retaining the culture of the east.