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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

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Denmark| To this day in our breath

A land of happy people
17th part

To this day in our breath …

Tariq Mirza, Sydney

By the time we reached the car, we were shivering from the cold. Although it was hot in the last decade of April, the cold in Scandinavia never ends. Even in summer, the cold returns with the onset of rainy season and night. Especially in such coastal places cold winds blow. People here use heaters for twelve months and wear warm clothes and their shoulders bend but the cold of the body is not lessened.

On the way back, Tahir Adeel received a call from a friend from Germany. These friends were inviting Tahir Adeel to attend a mushaira in Munich, Germany the next evening. Tahir Adeel initially apologized but the friend’s insistence continued. Eventually they agreed to go. So the next evening he was in Germany for a mushaira. If there is harmony between the countries and the people are happy then how the distances are bridged is a good idea.

Its light remained on for a long time even after sunset. Tahir Adeel filled the car with petrol. In the meantime we filled the cup of tea from the service station and got ready for the return journey. This time Tahir Adeel chose the motorway instead of the coastal highway which proved to be a very light speed. It took us three hours to reach Copenhagen in an hour and a half. It was dark outside the car so we had our party inside. The blossoms of poetry and literature began to bloom. Interesting incidents of poetry and literature began to be narrated.

There were many such interesting stories in the book of Nasr Malik Sahib. Because he has a face-to-face meeting with most of the poets of the Indian subcontinent. In the days of exile, Ahmad Faraz had stayed at his house for some time. Thus, he had many interesting things to tell. At the same time, the sweet words of the late Taslim Fazli and the sweet voice of Mehdi Hassan started melting in the ears.

I have been listening to this song since childhood. Even today, after listening to it thousands of times, it fascinates me. In the beginning, the magic of Mehdi Hassan and Noor Jahan’s voice used to speak louder than the lyrics of this ghazal. The charm of the heads was established that Taslim Fazli’s everlasting poetry, delicate imagination, spirituality, poetry and the magic of words permeated the heart and mind.

Is Blocky a delicate idea? The body is flexible. “What a wonderful idea. What a song It seems that an entire ghazal is appearing in front of the eyes. What would be the standard of ordinary poetry in those days when it was film poetry? How far was that too?

Dinner was ready at Tahir Adeel’s house in Copenhagen. Apart from the three of us, two more friends of Tahir Adeel also came. I also listened to their speeches from these poets and had a lively discussion on Danish lifestyle, history, geography, weather, literature and other topics. Around midnight, Tahir Adeel dropped me off at Nasr Malik and then at the hotel. The fragrance of the love and hospitality of this young friend and the fond memories of this day added to my heart.

A large grocery store across the street from the Grand Hotel was open 24 hours a day. I went inside to buy some essentials. It was a very big store and it had different parts. Inside, dozens of tourists were busy shopping. But there was no one else in the store except one person at the counter. Therefore, it was becoming difficult to find the required items. When I reached the counter with the required items, many people were standing in line in front of me. The shopkeeper scans the goods and points to a nearby machine.
Customers would put savings in it, the machine would count them and vomit the receipt. Anyone who had to pay with a card would touch their card with Eftpos, pick up a receipt and walk away. The shopkeeper only received notes. There were machines for both savings and cards. Customers would pack their bags and go out. Thus the shopkeeper’s responsibility was minimal. That’s why there was only one person in such a big store. If there was such a big store in Karachi, Lahore or Islamabad, at least ten or twelve people would be busy.

In developed countries the minimum wage and the rights of workers are so high and on the other hand the competitive rate of profit is so low that they cannot afford extra staff. Even well-meaning businesses can’t afford to pay off unnecessary workers. On the other hand, machines, no matter how expensive, are cheaper than people’s wages. The downside to this method is that there is no staff to help and comfort the customer. Usually you have to help yourself. In addition to those who are unfamiliar with computers and modern machines, the elderly who are accustomed to assisting the staff are strongly dissatisfied with these machines.


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