Visiting Grand Parents used to be the only time when the Joy of having many umbrellas multiplied the possibilities of games, laughter and Humour.
But one day without any knock, or warning grandmother died an exceptionally unusual death. All those years the perception that I carried of association, I could never feel it again towards my birth home, my birth courtyard, after grandmother was gone. No sense of belonging. My village had started to look congested. May be that was why parents must have left it. In 1982.
On the mud terrace of our ancestral home, fragrance of cow-dung cakes still brings to my mind the nostalgia of my grandmother cleaning the courtyard every morning. Even before the sun would rise; while telling me with love to keep sleeping. Upla* are still used for cooking and cleaning. And just last week were also used for lighting the pyre of my uncle. Father’s eldest brother.
Death of a family pillar changes a lot of dimension. For one It brings overwhelming, repulsive, abominable silence in homes. I felt this once I arrived in that room again, after all those years. I don’t remember the last time I was inside it. So much had changed, but also it was all the same. The sound of an elderly man taking tea from the saucer instead of the cup. Outside an abandoned mobile tower provided new patterns of keeping Uplas emerge. Sound making squirrels arrived, cows mooed, chirping birds and the circulating sound of one sewing machine handle, made heat bearable. One Charpoy* under neem tree pulled all the children to it. The tree absorbing everything and made sitting under pleasant.
I sat watching comers and goers. Nearby a hand scooping up the water from a well became its first vessel. And the fingers of both hands intertwined becoming its first basket. Elderly commanding the kids, as each command was leaving an undesirable sting in children who were forced to carry that out. Where there was nothing before, within moments a few people came together, standing just like that. Without any planning, any announcement. There was perfect mystery, image worthy symmetry, without any appeal, expectation or motif, without any words spoken they were there. Transmitting. And remarkably all sat where they stood, together. Looking, away from the body, asking what was already established and then again becoming quiet after knowing the known.
Evening dawned. A new born baby cried out of hunger. The crowd stood marvellously together. No body had eaten anything. Anything since last night. And will not eat for the next three days in that same house where the death has happened. But children were found eating biscuits which they had bought from the only shop in the village. They asked anyone whom they caught seeing them, to eat. But It was time to start the last walk. People were asked to see the face for the last time. The cries of women filled the sky again. How could an image collect cries? Or at least I shall try.
Sharing the final walk towards mother Ganga.
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If today is the first time you have arrived on The Road to Nara, you are heartily welcome ~ Namaste
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I will take this opportunity to introduce you to About me and importantly;
As a co-traveller, taking you through Ten Lessons I learnt from several years on the road, before you coarse on your own Road to Nara.
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You might also like to know about My Little School. If you wish to come over for a visit, to share your stories or to share one of your magic tricks with children, you are heartily welcome here
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