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If I can just give to the world more than I take from it, I will be a very happy man. For there is no greater joy in life than to give. Motto : Live, Laugh and Love. You can follow me on Twitter too . My handle is @Raja_Sw.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Life is a melody of love - "Ek pyaar ka nagmaa hai"

Today evening, while heading home on the motorway, back on my way from Amsterdam, I had an interesting experience.

Well, about as interesting as one can have alone in a car. :-)

It was not rush-hour – I had consciously ensured that I would not hit rush-hour traffic.

So here I am, listening to BBC4 on the radio and comfortably hitting 120+ km, as is quite normal for me at that time of evening.

And getting overtaken by cars doing way more than that . The speed limit is 120 but seriously, you can hardly be blamed for doing more than 120 on a five-lane highway if the traffic – and the absence of (or disregard for) radar / cameras - allows you to step on it.

So I pass the exit for Schiphol Airport – and screeeeech !!!

I am rudely awakened from my semi-attentive mode as I notice that the traffic all around me has come to a sudden halt.

In a few meters, the 5-lane drive is becoming a 4-lane one. The rightmost lane is being closed.

Obviously this results in some slowing down of traffic.

But there is “slowing down” , there is “bumper-to-bumper inching” - and there is a “grinding halt”. Regular long-distance drivers on highways (I must confess I am not one) recognize all these situations, the last one obviously being the most dreaded one.

I found myself in this last category – NOTHING moved in my lane.

For a brief period, I toyed with the idea of trying to move to another lane – but then decided to drop it. Yes, it looked like the other lane was moving a bit – but if my experience in queues (whether immigration or check-in queues at airports or any other type of queues) was anything to go by, any energy expended in this direction would only be futile.

So I stayed in my lane – and just waited for the traffic to move.

It took a while – actually much longer than I expected. Which sort of surprised me because we still had four active lanes. And this was non-peak. So what was the big deal ?

Well, the big deal – which I got to know only a bit later – was that further on, the 4-lane had become 3-lane.

And even further on, the now-3 lane had become 2-lane. So yet another lane had been shut off.

I still do not know why all these lanes had been progressively shut off. There was absolutely no sign of any accident or road repair work. But it did make sense to me that if you convert a 5-lane motorway to a 2-lane one (that too not very far from the airport), the chance that traffic will build up is not entirely unrealistic.

The only saving grace is that the weather was very good. Had it been snowing or icy, it would have been a mega-drama.

As it turned out, the traffic came to a standstill.

Not being very much used to these situations (like I said, I don’t spend very much time on a daily basis on the roads), I just had to sit and twiddle my thumbs. Well, not literally of course.

In this situation BBC4 was beginning to get to me. It was all very nice and there was this conversation going on which, for once, had nothing to do with the financial crisis (thank God for that !).

But I wanted something relaxing, something soothing. Something that, even if I had got stuck for another 30 minutes, I would still have been cool about.

I switched from radio to CD.

Now it has been a while since I have last listened to CDs in my car. The default has always been radio.

I did not even remember what CDs I had in the car.

So I switch from radio to CD – and then this song plays.

My mood completely changes.

I listen to it. And then go back to play it again. I listen to it. And then go back to play it again.

For somebody who does not have any “intentionally soothing” songs in his CD collection, I cannot think of a more random soothing song. At least amongst Hindi film songs – which is pretty much what I have in my car.

So here, ladies and gentlemen, I present you the song that played in my car today. It is a lovely, lovely song.

In fact, the song itself literally translates to “life is a melody of love”.

Ek pyaar ka nagma hai

I have tried to translate it below for those who do not understand the lyrics. It is such a beautiful song, this is the least I could do.

(My translation is not a literal translation – it is a contextual translation. I think some of the originality will be lost in translation anyway but if anything is incorrect (or somebody can come up with a better translation), please do let me know. I will be happy to be corrected).

First the transliteration :
Ek pyaar ka nagmaa hai
Maujon ki ravaani hai
Zindagi aur kuchh bhi nahin
Teri meri kahaani hai

Kuchh paakar khonaa hai
Kuchh khokar paanaa hai
Jeevan ka matlab to
Aanaa aur jaanaa hai

Do pal ke jeevan se
Ek umr churaani hai
Zindagi aur kuchh bhi nahin
Teri meri kahaani hai
Ek pyaar ka nagmaa hai

Tu dhaar hai nadiyaa ki
Main teraa kinaaraa hoon
Tu meraa sahaara hai
Main teraa sahaara hoon

Aankhon mein samundar hai
Aashaaon ka paani hai
Zindagi aur kuchh bhi nahin
Teri meri kahaani hai
Ek pyaar ka nagmaa hai

Toofaan ko aanaa hai
Aakar chale jaanaa hai
Baadal hai ye kuchh pal kaa
Chhaakar dhal jaana hai

Parchhaiyaan reh jaateen
Reh jaati nishaani hai
Zindagi aur kuchh bhi nahin
Teri meri kahaani hai
Ek pyaar ka nagma hai

Then my rather feeble attempt at translation into English :

Life is a melody of love
It is the flow of waves
Life is nothing more than your and my story

Life is about finding and then losing
It is about losing and then finding
It is about coming and going

From the few moments called life, we need to steal a lifetime

Life is nothing more than your and my story

Life is a melody of love

You are the current of the river
I am your (river)bank
You are my support
I am your support

There is an ocean in our eyes
Brimming with hope

Life is nothing more than your and my story

Life is a melody of love

The storm HAS to come
But after coming, it has to go too
These are but transient clouds
They have to fade away after hanging over us briefly
Only shadows remain
Only marks (signs) remain

Life is nothing more than your and my story

Life is a melody of love

That's it. Simple - yet profound.

The traffic clears after a while – but I have long since not bothered to keep track of time.

For I am lost in this most timeless of melodies. Admiring the music, admiring the simple yet absolutely meaningful lyrics. What is a few moments of waiting in traffic when you are confronted with such profound wisdom !

(Those who understand the sensitivity of the song in the context of the film will also appreciate its picturisation. This is no ordinary love-song.)

Anyway, I hope you listen to it and enjoy it as much as I did today.



Nandini Vishwanath said...

:) One of my fave songs. Very under-rated, I think!

Jewellery By Shalini said...

Another very enjoyable blog Raja :-)

Pyaar Ka Naghma is such a beautiful and meaningful song.

Svaha said...

Raja, hope you are well. Great to read your blog.

Memsaab said...

Thank you for the translation!!! :-)

Anonymous said...

Yes, it is a wonderful and evergreen song, no doubt ! music is good and the picturisation was on a beach.Btw, Nanda refused to accept money from Manoj Kumar for this cameo in "Shor".
How stupid of me to think that you are based in Mumbai !

Milli said...

Thank you for the translation. I truly love this song. My mom used to play it all the time so this song transports me back to my childhood.

As a side note, I like your profile photo. It is very nice.

Sindy said...

Thank you for your wonderful English translation. I was so impressed that I thought I may ask you for the Enlish translation of Hindi bhajan "Bhagwan Meri Naiya Us Paar" if you don't mind - such a wonderful bhajan. Thank you.