Travel Shot: The tailor at Landour Market

I sat in the car with a sense of disbelief.

Here I was on a short holiday at Landour and a few hours after arriving there, was stuck in a traffic jam. I thought I had left traffic jams and noisy cities behind me in Mumbai, but the honking, the slamming of car doors and the fact that my vehicle hadn’t moved an inch in the last 15 minutes brought a sense of déjà vu.

My car driver had switched off the engine and gone off to investigate what was holding the traffic up. It had started raining by then and after waiting impatiently for some ‘progress’, gave up and started looking around. School had just got over and the narrow road was filled with school children returning home and were having to do it by squeezing between the vehicles stuck in the traffic jam to find a ‘route’ to get through.

Then I turned left and looked out of my car window into this.

Landour Market, Landour, A holiday in the hills, Rokeby ManorThe car had been parked outside a tailor’s shop, and you can see just how close that was — we were at hand-shaking distance ! It was such a tiny shop that it had space only for the tailor, a hand-operated sewing machine, and piles of clothes in various stages of readiness. It was the kind of shop that would be called a potti kadai (literally: box shop or a tiny shop) in Tamil.

The tailor was trying to patch a frayed shirt collar. As he examined and snipped away at and patched the frayed collar, he didn’t look up from his work even once. Nothing distracted him — the honking cars or the school children or the fact that there was a vehicle parked right outside his shop and blocking any kind of access or that the passenger in the car was observing him intently. Nothing.

He continued working quietly and as I observed him my impatience and irritation at being stuck in a jam slowly ebbed away. Just like that. Watching the tailor at work was a lesson in concentration and how to tune out distractions and focus on the task at hand. My task, if one can call it that, was to relax and enjoy my holiday in the hills. And after that moment I did just that.:)

One of life’s little lessons was delivered (perhaps for the nth time) rather gently — there is no point in worked up over things that are not in your control.


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10 thoughts on “Travel Shot: The tailor at Landour Market

  1. Landour… the land from Ruskin Bond’s books…a place I dream of visiting once during the foggy days of winter and fantasize about running into Mr.Bond… Oh how I feel jealous of you…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Landour is a beautiful place, Shraddha. More beautiful than you can imagine. It is home to many more writers than just Ruskin Bond and I was lucky to meet two of them. I’ll be writing about them soon, so watch this space.

      PS: Don’t feel jealous, make a trip to Landour soon. 🙂

      Like

    1. True, Zephyr. Lessons wouldn’t be what they are if they were not unexpected.
      Also, I feel we don’t always value these lessons from people we know. But somebody else saying the same thing is gladly accepted. 🙂

      Like

    1. Sometimes, I wonder what is in our control. 🙂

      Life’s little lessons are so important for I have always been forced to stop and rethink and change directions or gears, and in this case, slow down like I really mean it.

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    1. The tailor didn’t look up from his work even once ! I can’t focus either if there are distractions. Sometimes, I wonder if it is because I don’t find the task on hand interesting enough or whether I really do have a problem focussing on the task on hand. Something to think about for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The Tailor has indeed mastered the art of focusing on his work and not getting distracted at any cost. Very well observed .
    However one thing comes to mind now , may be this traffic jam , the students leaving school would have been a daily routine for the Tailor , who would have become accustomed to its regular occurrence, hence would have become even more “determined” not to get distracted at any cost.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome to my blog, Shubham. Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting.

      The students passing by would have been a daily occurrence, but an SUV blocking the entrance to his shop may not be a regular one. Still, his concentration was amazing.

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