Bedardi Sardi – An Uncommon Tale of a Common Cold


A wise man once said, ‘Sardi hona aur pyaar hona, similar hota hai.’ In case you’re wondering who said that, it was me…and yes I said that when I had a cold. Now what’s the similarity between falling ill with a cold and falling in love, you may ask. Well, everything! Your raaton ki neend and din ka chain are taken away, food loses its taste, days are bitter and nights longer than ever! Now you tell me yeh pyaar hai ke sardi ke saath bukhaar hai? But beware, both are double-dholaks. There’s a dark side to both of them. Just like in pyaar, ishq and louve one goes through dard-e-dil (not dard-e-disco), one experiences the full-blown wrath of dard-e-sardi while suffering from a cold.

Dard-e-sardi is pure agony my fraand, it’s Mother Nature’s way of personally whooping your pichwaada. Think about it, Mother Nature knows all our weaknesses. She knows that we are puny little bechara oxygen breathers. So what does she do? She does a rasta-roko on our main oxygen passage…a.k.a. the nose. And as if having to breathe through your mouth wasn’t bad enough already, she decides to make your throat dry and scratchy so that you begin to sound like Anu Malik singing Opera. Conniving as she is, she has connected your nose and your throat with your ears, such that if either one is affected all three collapse like Harbour railway on a rainy day. And finally, the coup de grace, Mummyji Nature won’t even reveal the top-secret cure for this deadly monster. Don’t believe me kya?

Well my fraand over the last two weeks everyone from dadi-ma to baaju wali aunty swore to me that they had a sure-fire cure for my cold. ‘Steam le lo beta!’, said one. ‘Vicks laga lo!’ said another. ‘Hamari family ka super special, karela-chaap kaadha pee lo beta. The rest is all nonsense. This is the good shit!’ said another enthusiastic aunty. But to no avail. Honey and ginger, turmeric and salt water gargling, D-Cold etc etc. all proved impotent before the almighty sardi which refused to budge like a Kanpur-wali Mamiji who came ‘visiting’ for a couple of days and ended up staying a month. Sad no?

Today, thanks to technology we may have sliced bread, elastic-wali chaddis, soap bars that pani mein reh ke bhi melt minimally, but somehow through it all we haven’t been able to figure out how a blocked nose can leak endlessly. What’s sadder is that despite the fact that colds are incurable and incredibly contagious (and did I mention incredibly annoying already?), we still don’t take them seriously. To this day, school teachers consider the words ‘cough and cold’ on a leave note as ‘I was just plain lazy to come to school yesterday’ and make a murga out of your poor little sniveling bacchas. It’s about time we changed this trend. We must create more awareness about bedardi sardi through all forms of the media. Heck even a Taare Zameen Par based on a kid who suffers from acute maxillary sinusitis if that’s what it takes (Aamir Khan, are you listening?). Only then will poor victims like me feel sardi mein bhi pyaar ke warmth ki garmi ka ehsaas. Chalo, I’ve done my bit promoting this noble cause. Mera kaam to ho gaya. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go search for my hanky! Achooo!

P.S. The writer of this article made a full recovery from his sardi but next week wonly it relapsed. After multiple guesses by fraands and family alike, the doc said ‘Sinus-it-is’. As you can see it has taken an adverse effect on his writing. So please to forgive him!