Especially those in dusty, not pretty, one in a few thousand towns across the nation? Where living is a simple business, governing is almost nonexistent. Intricacies of administration are less and extended conversations on daily predictable mishaps are more the norm. “Why is the chai less sweet today?” “There was more cow dung to avoid on the road today, too much of a nuisance, I tell you!’’

In the good ol’ government offices in india, the fans run at a comfortable, lazy pace. perhaps, dirty and even tired of doing their job, they however never fail to cast their charm!

– The Indian Trumpet’s Fan Special Edition

There is an element of ennui that is all pervading. Plenty of tables, weighed down heavily by very dusty brown files, any movement to the desk causing the mini dust storms to rise.

The one thing that keeps time with the inactivity in these offices is the ubiquitous fan. High up in the ceiling, rotating endlessly. Lazy sweeps of its blades taking in the view from above. Through the maze of creaking tables and metal chairs, watching the chipped ceramic tea cups with muddy tea idling on the tables.

Swoop, whoosh, swoop.

The occasional scurry of activity when someone senior walks in, the fan sees the shiny bald head of the official, sweat beads evaporating in the cooler air of the room. Aiding in mid-meeting siestas, watching the subordinates move from passive watchfulness to nodding off. It works like a metronome, keeping rhythm with the office going. Only matched for rhythmic company by the ticking of the clock. The continuity of the harmony only broken by the irregular annoying dripping of the tap nearby.

Swoop, whoosh, swoop.

The fan is over 30-years-old, having seen the same tables and chairs for decades. Not an official day when it has stopped running. Of course, respite coming from the power cuts. More so in the summer. The time when it feels wanted the most. Almost reverential are the looks that the minions below give it. God like status achieved by being present but not being able to enforce its presence.

Swoop, whoosh, swoop.

Round and round, ever watchful. Look at that watchman dozing and almost falling off his stool sitting outside the office. The fresh faced newbie joining the old guns, full of enthusiasm, looking up scornfully at the old dusty fan, full of smugness of the city bred. Oh and how that smugness turns into a sense of placid directionless life but more importantly how the fan then ends up being a thing of longing, as a vestige of a past life.

Swoop, whoosh, swoop.

Whispers, rushed furtive whispers. The men on either side of the table look all around to ensure no one is listening. But they forget the fan above. Holder of secrets, of activities not unknown and definitely not uncommon, and absolutely not honest. The rustle of paper money, of scratching pens used for signing. The escaped sigh of relief on either side, muted by fan.

Swoosh, whoop, swoosh.

Endless, constant.


Keep blowing the Trumpet! This & many more stories await in the pages!