Since childhood, Sapota was watching Republic day parade on Telly except for when we have republic day celebrations in school and Sapota was among the participants. Sapota wondered how would it be to watch that thing live. Sapota somehow managed to get tickets for republic day parade last year. So this blog is more than a year late, but as always, Sapota can certainly come up with shitty reasons, but this time its just plain laziness.
Anyway, so we reached there on time, and it was early morning 6:40, bloody cold, and swarms of people coming to see the thing live. But still the turn out was low, because of terrorist threat and all that. Sapota just have one argument against that, If we are not safe at Janpath, we are not safe anywhere! Folks your houses are no fucking fortresses, get the fuck out of them to visit something worthy.
See Sapota had no overwhelming feeling of Patriotism or something. The reason is that there is literally nothing patriotic about singing patriotic songs, watching so called patriotic movies or for that matter watching parade at Janpath. Sapota wanted to see it how good our troops look when in they march in unison. All nations are equally good, so what is all that chauvinism about? Yes, Chauvinism and patriotism are two different things, but people fail to draw the line. Anyway, sorry for the gyan, but Sapota made his point clear.
So Sapota and his friend model settled on this uberchilly filthy metal bench and started discussing the program schedule for the day. So finally the Hon'ble chief guest Her Excellency the president of Democratic republic of India Mrs Prithbha Patil arrived in a black Merc limousine, waving to everyone. Following her were Guards of the president on camel. The funny thing was, there were folks, who were collecting camel dump, running just behind the camel troupe. The announcers(English and Hindi) were very typical Doordarshan style, which I prefer over anchors from private channels. So as Mrs President took her seat, the show begun. The first one to appear were Para commandos, they were on double march. Its most beautiful coordinated march I have ever witnessed in my life, they were all singing and they were fully armed with bag packs and Short machine guns. Movement of each and every foot and every elbow were in microsecond precision. Following them were Maratha regiment, they were equally good, except for the fact that they were on normal march and their uniforms were pristinely creased. Next to them were Rajputs, bloody tall and with moustaches that can make a lion pee in his pants(err lions don't wear pants).
Next there were many other marches from many units of Defence forces right from Navy to arti to Radars and what not. Then they displayed few missiles, not able to recall correctly, but it was agnee or prithvi(probably a replica). Then there were many other security forces like BSF and Delhi police and Delhi fire service. Interesting thing was seeing CRPF march, they were all tall and well built dudes with striking uniform with white boots and turban with butterfly like top yellow coloured, their march with clockwork precision was spectacular. Later the NCC cadets follow, they were playing "we shall overcome", given the fact, that they are just students, they were very good.
Most funny thing were exhibition from state. Some of them seem half hearted efforts, some of them totally disoriented. Sapota totally fail to understand if they have even made some progress to showcase. MP state's forest exhibition was totally a dumb idea, with no thoughts whatsoever.
Anyway, there were lot of school children singing and dancing, they were cute and well coordinated for their age. Sapota can't now recall the name of school or the dance they performed(see this is the disadvantage of being old).
Last portion was seeing signal guys coming on motorcycle. They are called motorcycle daredevils. Sapota have seen them in past, but seeing them live is another experience all together, these guys just steal the show. They are so well coordinated and all stunts are effortlessly performed. And all of them were of Royal enfield: army version.
Last part of the ceremony was seeing air to air fueling, which was invisible to sapota, as it was way too high in sky. Later, fighter plane soared in sky, one of them was quite low. The ceremony ended after Mrs President left in her limo.
This one was not particularly all that grand due to bomb threats and low turn out, but experience was fantastic. By this time we were too hungry, so we headed to breakfast at model's house.