It’s the Loo, they say. You look around, don’t see any such amenity, smile politely, move on. You take a few more steps in the sweltering June heat of New Delhi and meet another local. He too smiles helpfully. You smile back. How do they still keep cool in this 100 degree plus heat, you wonder. He looks at your rivers of sweat, smiles knowingly and pronounces his diagnosis with his fingers pointed heavenwards. ‘It’s the Loo‘.
All you can see is a dusty, hazy sky and feel a harsh dry wind that seems intent on sucking out every last drop of moisture out of everything in sight. That, actually is the Loo. The dry wind that blows in from the North-west Deserts, especially during the first two weeks of June, every year. It not only brings lots of business to Coke and Pepsi but also sets the stage for the monsoons to come.
If you are among the fortunate few to experience the Loo in its full-blown glory, take care to keep yourself hydrated with lots of water and fresh fruit juices. Keep an umbrella handy as most monuments you visit on your trip around Delhi require a fair bit of walking.
Also try and visit monuments like the Jama Masjid and the Red Fort either early morning or evening. It might be a great idea to spend the afternoons – when the Loo is at its strongest – at indoor and air-conditioned museums like Teen Murti or even an art gallery.
Better still, step into any of the bars that dot the city. A chilled glass of beer is a know cure. As for breaking the ice with the guy next to you, start off with: ” The Loo this year, it’s particularly bad, isn’t it?”
Photo: Sanjay Kumar