We bump into at least a hundred people in a day, thanks to overpopulation. We used to know at least twenty five of those people because you had met and known them personally at some point in your life. Then, there’s just this various section of people who you were familiar with but now they don’t seem to be around anymore. If the world starts changing faster than your internet speed, chances are those who can’t move enough fast are going to be left back. In history.
Here are some of those people!
1. The family doctor
The person, who visited our place very often and in movies, had the one iconic dialogue: “Isse injection deke sula diya hai. Kuch problem ho toh phone karna.” Our entire family knew him and we even recommended him to other people’s families. Now with specialization and technological advancement, we have different doctors for different ailments. And the poor chap has taken a backseat permanently.
2. The family servant
Good ole Ramu kaka is the stuff of legends – he served the family for generations, he did the entire housework without question and the family treated him with kindness or disrespect depending on how rich they were. But now the family servant has been replaced by Kaanta bai, and the woman comes with her own set of ‘Terms and Conditions Apply’. Talk about unfair.
For the uninitiated, these people were the ones who woke up people every morning by singing songs about Lord Krishna. They were the hipsters of those times, were never ostracized and were an integral part of the community. Today, their duties have been taken over by these ultra-futuristic devices called – alarms.
4. The vegetable vendor
This guy came to your doorstep to sell vegetables to you. All the neighbours on the floor would come together, deliberate and debate about the quality and quantity of vegetables to be bought. He even carried weights with him in order to allot them the appropriate quantity. Now we just head over to the mall, spend our money on groceries we are definitely not going to use and call it a day.
5. The school rickshaw-wallah
Before there were vans and minibuses, there were school rickshaws – a bunch of scared four to eight year olds squashed uncomfortably inside the rickshaw. The guy who drove it knew each and every kid and their parent, knew how to calm a kid down during a bad case of tantrums and was simply the most amazing driver of all time. He was there before carpooling became cool.
6. The anda-pao wallah
This is the guy who brought bakery awesomeness to us – bread, doughnuts, biscuits, nankatai, kadak pao, etc. Everyone in the family waited for him to turn up so they could basically raid his stock. Now we just nip into the nearest CCD for our weekly dose of pastries and cookies.
7. The ice-cream wallah
The uncle came, carrying a cart of love and announced his arrival by ringing a bell. All the children flocked to him to gorge on their favorites – kulfis, malai pots, ice candies and of course, ice creams. But we don’t see him anymore. Because chain outlets like Baskin Robbins, Amul and Gelato came in like a wrecking ball all over the poor guy.
8. The bhaandi wali
She came announcing “Bhaaandeeya!” selling you new utensils all in exchange for your old clothes. She knew your likes, dislikes, the children in the house. She would sometimes get some far flung temple prasad or even have a cup of tea at your place. Now, again, we just head to the mall and have no clue what to do with our old clothes when we buy a gajillion new every week.
9. The machchiwali
If you haven’t woken up to your mother and the machchiwali bargaining over fish prices on a Sunday morning, you have lost out on some of the most hilarious conversations of all time. The woman went from door-to-door to sell fish, had a sharp tongue and was as much a hassle as semiconductor wires in physics. Now we have the option of buying fresh frozen fish even ready to eat tawa fries.
Many people like these are not seen around anymore for one reason or the other. And to all of them we say, you are missed very much. Which ones came around in your region?