Monday, May 28, 2007

Dance To Freedom….A Dance Audition with a difference!!!

Daddy Dearest

A boy, who lost his mother at a tender age of three and came to live with his grandparents , who were staunch Vaishnavites, in a remote village of Therazhundur, fled to Calcutta when he was 14 years, inspired by the communist movement. Later on joined an Italian company to earn his living !

But I am surprised that for a boy who had no guardian, coming from a village to a sprawling metropolis could take to constructive activities, learning languages, Tamil, English, Bengali , Sanskrit and even Italian. He was one of the founder members of the Tamil Writers Association in Calcutta and presided over many of their functions. He was truly a master of languages, I stumbled upon a book which is Tamil Lipi in original, the ancient Tamil script!

He recalls that day in the year 57, a depressed young man, further depressed by the news of his brother’s untimely death , had to go to Madras to perform the last rites. He found his brother’s room was full of God’s idols and the aura there in that room, which gave him the courage to fight life and take on the responsibility of his brother’s children.

He adopted himself to the circumstances , visited temples of all religion, climbed up to Vaishnao Devi, Badrinath and Golden Temple. He knew the customs, religiously practiced the traditions, but never forced us to practice. He believed in his religion , yet he accepted those who did not.

I should take cue from my father’s life and stop worrying myself with the friends that my son makes, and about his activities in my absence. If the then capital city of India, couldn’t spoil a village lad , the present capital city of India can not negatively influence my son !!

Akash : Am I right ??

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

A month gone by…….

Last month on 8th April at 9:00 pm, when I received the news, my world came to a standstill. My son thought I fainted and rushed to me with Glucon-D. I felt it would be impossible to continue living with out him for never in my wildest imagination I thought of my life without him. But alas, we are forced to continue living, do our duty as he did his till he was alive.

Sundays meant going out and enjoying Kulfi at Roshan di Kulfi or Chole Bhature at Nathus in Connaught Place. We never had to ask him for anything. We got whatever we needed. Whether it is carom board, cycle, it was there for us.

After his retirement, he used to insist on serving us food which we used to dread for he would fill out plates with huge quantity of food. And for a man, who never had to enter kitchen even to fetch a glass of water, he used to prepare tea and bring it to me upstairs when I was studying. He , at the age of 60 for my recovery of health did angapradshanam at Tirupati along with me.

He had a huge collection of Bengali,Tamil, English classics and was a voracious reader till his last days. The day he found it difficult to read even the newspaper, he lost his interest to live. He felt his brain is dying as it was not being nourished.

I had an opportunity to host him for a couple of months. He enjoyed teaching Sanskrit to my son and talk about the freedom struggle and teach him those few chapters in history. It was interesting to hear some one narrate about Khudiram Bose , Netaji in first person. He enjoyed the pakodas, fried vegetables which I cooked for him and ofcourse he had his chole bhature too.

He was very excited that he his going to have his hip surgery and would be able to walk on his own and even challenged my son for a game of cricket. Despite his handicap after the accident, he never felt handicapped. He used to move the objects in the house, took to washing clothes. He was disappointed that in my house, I had a maid doing all those chores and he was to sit idle. Much to people’s wonder, he enjoyed the malls, traveling places, eating ice cream at Mc Donalds, even in his 80s.

I am proud that the death embraced him without any pain . May he attain his moksha.