Grown Ups


Every visit back home adds another knot to the fine braid linking memories, relationships and feelings. This time, my home was the neatest train wreck – furniture scattered and walls hacked off for the last “Great Renovation”. After that, it all depends on my sister and I – not quite a comforting thought!  

I was playing the good daughter over the long weekend and attempted to be indispensable to my Mom (or so I’d like to believe) by giving her a much-needed break. We were like Batman and Robin you know.. smoothly tackling the renovations along with the cleaning, washing, laundry and gardening. Dad was being… err.. Fox? Temporary handicap has made him a one-arm soldier which has fueled his motivating wisecracks 😀

This visit added a jewel to the braid…

See, I am extremely lucky to have always been considered an “adult” by my parents with varying levels of responsibility and wisdom in spite of the apparent insanity.. And it feels so good that they completely trust my thoughts, my decisions and my actions – while drilling in that independence. I was never just a sounding board and my opinions were considered every time. The degree of this underwent changes as I grew up, even though I myself never realized it. But this time even as I kept wearing the young girl hat, my parents pointed out how the times, perspectives and depths of our conversations has intensified and evolved. They were shocked proud when they saw how well my kitchen shenanigans came along – according to Dad, that is a sure sign of being a grown-up.

So yay! Finally made it 😀

My “man to man” talks with Dad which includes politics, economics and finances are now natural. And with Mom… Well, that’s multi-dimensional! We welcome everything under the sun, the moon and the stars – her work, social issues, family issues, and now wedding bells *hides under blanket* And this visit was something else… For example, the renovations brought up many discussions on the antiques decorating our house. For the first time I seriously ran through some of my ideas for my future home and even bagged a few of my favourite items. Mom couldn’t stop smiling as my enthusiasm reminded her of how she been exactly the same! We totally fawned over the vertical garden for our balcony and almost brain-washed Dad into it 😀 Those few hours with grandma and mom over afternoon tea (chocolate milk for me) were so typically feminine with generation gaps rendered irrelevant amidst naughty laughter and rude jokes!

During every visit, my parents get presented with someone who isn’t just their little girl but also an individual not entirely incapable thanks to their gentle guidance. Sure she still demands pocket money and pats, but we even get those moments of being in sync as grown ups. Cheers! (I am probably a big entertainment as well, as they witness me stumbling through blocks my life as they once did – and how I handle it.)

At times, the apple doesn’t really fall that far from the tree. And I couldn’t be happier 🙂

Happy Mother’s Day to all, fathers included! ❤


Not Without Hope


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This incidence has been playing on my mind for a while. I have been travelling like mad and this was supposed to be yet another trip to the railway station. However, I was in for a surprise as I hailed an autorickshaw to catch my train. 

Who knew that the driver was about to make such a profound impact! He began with the usual – “Going home for the holidays? Where are you from?” Cautious and alert, I responded to his questions. He slowly steered the conversation to professions and life in general, adding his own two cents in the process. And the next twenty minutes unraveled many preconceived notions about life.

He admitted unabashedly that he is ‘angutha chap‘ (illiterate) and yet the insights he offered on the administrative state of affairs would have made any journalist salivate. An engaging man, there was pride laced in his words as he told me about his cousin who had completed his graduation and now had managed to buy a comfortable flat. As he spoke of his children, parental determination flared in his eyes, “Come hell or high water – they will complete their education. They will not be left without the luxury of choice unlike him.” Right now, they are a family of eleven people staying in a small six room house with two bathrooms. As long as his children could study in peace, he would happily continue sleeping in the hall.

Fond of gardening, he tended two gardens – a common terrace garden and one in their balcony that blooms with different jasmines. He handed me one – radiant and delicate. It’s a good day, he said. The flowers were an offering for the deity he frequented. He offered me one more flower seeing the delight evident on my face. He quietly added that he hoped the fragrance was lovely as he hadn’t taken a whiff. “It’s for the Gods. It’s not my place.” 

Instinct said this wasn’t a case of blind faith but years of learned and lucid belief. This was a man who had a difficult upbringing but hadn’t let it become an excuse. He had made the best of what he had and not buckled down ! He had adopted a philosophy to make lemonade out of the lemons and have enough to share as well.

More than anything else, he was a reminder that friendly social people exist who aren’t always predatory. He was an example that literacy does not mean that a good old-fashioned interaction cannot be an enriching experience. He showed me that life simply cannot exist without hope.

I thank him.

After a long, long gap I am joining in Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday! I am so happy that I am coming back with an opportunity to share my encounter with this commendable man. The prompt we have is “naught/knot/not” – I really ran away with this one!

Tale Weaver’s Prompt #26 |One Operation

Jail Window

The prison cell clicked shut behind him. His new home for the rest of his life. He looked into grimy mirror and saw…

The eyes, blind. The ones that had seen the flames licking her body

The ears, deaf. The ones that had heard her inhuman shrieks

The nose, choked. The one that had smelled the aerosol that cold night

The mouth, dry. The one that had almost tasted the stink of burning flesh

The hands, senseless. The ones that had scorched from the inferno

The mind, numb. The one that ached to cry out against the horror

An unplanned witness in hiding he had been, but unluckily not unnoticed. Once finished with her, the killers had sought him – grim and merciless. The anguish and despair that had run through his veins felt like a distant dream. Replaced by the feeling of inevitability that had rooted with the deal he had struck with them.

He had offered no resistance when he was charged with murder. He could have blown away their evidence with a breath and a word. His body and his senses would have banded to expose every hole in their judgment. But he was trapped. By the invisible shackles of his heart and chained to the faint glimmer of hope that had woven like a silvery web around him.

As he saw the setting sun cast its last rays through the railed window, he knew that with his confinement he had been gifted a new ray of life. Today, as he calmly stood in his bleak corner, his daughter was being wheeled out of the operation room into the loving embrace of her mother. They would have a future filled with promises and hope paid by the small price of his incarcerated existence.

The exorbitant operation had been paid for by a “kind” stranger.

Written for mindlovemisery’s menagerie. An intense video/song prompt – Metallica’s One.

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