Posted in Children, Family, Kindred, Life, Memories, Moi, Nostalgia, Parenthood, Personal, Relationships, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Memorabilia

Switching channels constantly and not stopping at one, is probably the most widely popular pastime for bored people. I am no stranger to that. As I was switching channels today, I came across a song picturized on a huge star of yesteryears, from his last movie before he passed away recently, I have never been a fan of him or his brand of movies, but just the sight of him made me watch the entire song, a horrible tune and lyrics full of cliché, yet my eyes were glued to a visibly old and immobile star in his last movie. It is funny how the mind associated him to this era of my past, when he was a star, when his movies were hugely popular, when he was young and famous. It was not him I was seeing on screen, but the idea of me from that era, people who were around, things which interested me back then, life I had, Bangalore that was, my world in which I lived, ah what a bliss of nostalgia the song gave me. My eyes were glued to this star on screen, feasting on moving talking memorabilia from my past.

“Hello’ was all he said, as he answered my phone. Growing up is not easy, when you are an only child. Only another single child can understand the feeling of missing out on the camaraderie which comes naturally to siblings. Fortunately I had loads and loads of cousins, who were around during holidays and vacations, family gatherings and functions. I can remember so many occasions spent with a level of happiness which no amount of money, fame, travel or any other delight from today can bring back. We were a close pack for a long period of time, even when elders in that group got married and moved on, or found jobs and became busy, still we kept meeting each other, having fun at each other’s homes. I never realized when it all slowed down, when it became so few and far, and we all got lost in our own lives. All of us now have kids of our own, again many of us have a single child at home who is going through the very same pain as we did as kids. Hearing my cousin today made me hear all the words and stories from those days when our house buzzed with us cousins, our songs, our plays, our fights. Memorabilia of sounds that I cherish.

Blame it on global warming, or just time, weather has changed. We got untimely rain today. Rain in February was never heard of, and yet it happened yesterday and today. As I woke up after a customary weekend nap in the afternoon, my nose immediately got the whiff of the rain. My nose took me to our balcony to a smell of wet mud, a familiar smell of wet mud from my childhood. Bangalore in early 90s was nothing similar to current Bangalore. I remember a year when it rained 3 days straight, and so heavily that we were literally struck at home, with no power and supplies. It has been a few years, since it has rained for more than an hour. In 90s Bangalore, June to August saw rains every day, it used to be my favourite season. Our school year began in June, and so did the rainy season. As I walked back from school, I used to be was greeted with heavy clouds almost every single day, the smell of rain on the plants, trees and grass gave a fertile odour, a smell that I love till date. If nature were to be a perfume, it would be this. I woke up to these familiar smell from my past, and right into my school days. What would I pay to capture this memorabilia into a spray bottle.

Recently I chanced upon a shop selling a fudge of sorts, something which used to be very popular in late 80s and early 90s. The shop even had the same packaging as it used to be sold in those days. A fudge[halkova] wrapped in butter paper, cuboid shaped, sold in all small shops around schools. ah those days of spending .25Rs to get two full fudges. I could not resist but buy a whole box of fudge from that shop. It has been more than 25 years since I last ate those fudge, as I unwrapped the butter paper and put the delicate piece in my mouth, the taste transformed me into so many memories from my past. There is something about elementary school, the years before the high school which we tend to remember more. The childish curiosity in the world, in people, in friendships, learning/seeing so many firsts. Tasty memorabilia is all I needed to liven up my palette.

My oldest memories about my father is how he had a big hole in one of his earlobes, something which was due to an infection from an ear piercing. As a kid it fascinated me, how could a person have a hole in his skin. and that I could see through. Whenever he carried me, I would keep touching his earlobes, ask him many questions about it, keep asking him if it pains, and if it is possible for me to get such a hole when I grow up to be his age. It just became a habit for the 5/6 year old me to keep touching his earlobe. Many many years later, the memory of how I used to hold his ears has stayed with me. My son was goofing around with me today, and jokingly he held onto my earlobes. The touch, though brief brought back so many memories from my early childhood. A single touch is all it took.

We collect tangible souvenirs, and material memorabilia. Our senses preserve many more.

Posted in Children, Family, Kindred, Life, Memories, Moi, Nostalgia, Parenthood, Personal, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Gifts

I woke up with a smile on my face, it was pleasant dream, one of those, which kind of leaves you in a nice mood. I had seen my grandmother, the one who took care of me with so much care, I had grown up under her watchful eyes. She was trying to give me a gift in my dream, she was saying she does not know what to buy me anymore, she wanted to give me some money so that I can go buy something for my self. My grandmother never earned money of her own, my grandfather passed away when I was atoddler of 3 years, yet she saved from what ever little money she got from her sons, she made sure she always gave me a gift for “Ganesha Festival”. She passed away a year before my son was born. she is in my dreams albeit occasionally, this time around trying to gift me probably for the upcoming Ganesha festival. I vividly remember the dream how she wanted to give me 5000rs and wanted me to buy something which I enjoy. In my dream I was trying to not accept the gift from her, I was trying to persuade her how her gesture was enough, and she should use that money for some of her own needs. I woke up with a smile on my face.

I have never been able to relate to my dreams well, some times I get such unrealistic ones, and other times something which is believably close to reality.

Adulthood ruins simple pleasures.

Long after I started earning, my parents used to gift me occasionally, I always tried to say that I did not need anything, even though deep in my heart I loved a gift, more importantly their feeling of wanting to buy me something. Birthdays are no fun if you have to buy your own gifts, festivals are more fun if your loved ones buy you something. Call me materialistic for loving my gifts, I wouldn’t be apologetic for this.

Having enough buying power does not make me forget the longing for asking someone to buy me something. I love it when I can ask my wife to buy me my favorite cup of coffee, when she asks me what she should buy me, my face lights up. I am sure she knows how much I enjoy these things she buys me when we go for a walk, be it coffee or a lovely dosa around the corner. It just makes me feel a little younger, gives me a feeling of being taken care of.

My parents have stopped buying me things, they have stopped even attempting to buy me gifts for my birthdays and festivals. It has a lot to do with me profusely refusing their previous gifts, it could also be something to do with them knowing how much money I make, or them thinking I no longer entertain their gifts. I dont know how I can tell them I miss those gifts. I miss the freedom with which I could ask my father “Anna, please buy me that chocolate”, “Anna, buy me that shirt”.

Adulthood ruins simple pleasures. It has ruined the ease with which kid in me asked things from his parents.

As I watch my son grow, and every time he asks me something, I kind of think of this and feel sad, feel sad about how a time will come when he will not ask me for anything.

Posted in "Theory of pursuit", Children, Family, Kindred, Life, Moi, Parenthood, Personal, Thoughts, thoughts to think

Pop Culture.

Today is Father’s day.

I have not been big fan of celebrating things which have been alien to us, Father’s day, Mother’s day these seem made up to me, a means of certain corporations trying to sell things to people by playing on our emotions. That being said, i have to admit, they have been successful in doing so, and these so called “days” appeal to us in a way that they hoped it would.

Last few posts have coincidentally been about based on parenthood, I didnt plan it that way, but it ended up being so. I guess there are mainly two events in a man’s life which changes his perspective in life, one when he get’s married, and “he” officially becomes “we”, second when he becomes a father, and “we” officially becomes “us”. When we become parents, a very customary question which is often asked is “how is parenthood, has it changed you?”. This is one of those questions where a simple question has a profound answer, something which we will take years and years to find an answer to.

Fatherhood has definitely changed me, there is no doubt about it. I have had few people, who are not keen on having kids, ask me sarcastically what did I achieve by adding to the population of the world, even thought I respect their cause of not adding to the world population, I can only pity them for not having the pleasure of learning on their own, the satisfaction and contentment of living parenthood. I have carefully chosen word “living parenthood” because there are a few things in life where the experience in itself is achievement, and that no third person can make us realize that.

One thing I have realized in these years is that, the statement that children are needy, is a myth. I know they depend on us for certain things, they need us to take care of their social, cultural, educational, financial and all other needs, but they are not dependents, they are in need of “things” and not us. Parents are much more needy when it comes to children, then the other way round. They have material needs which end up being fulfilled by parents, it can be taken care by any else too, however parents are much more needy of their children, what we look for in children cannot be satisfied by any other person in this world. The amount of emotional attachment we develop over a period of them growing up is enormous, and they can only feel the same only when they become parents on their own.

I have been a child for my parents, I share a strong bond with my parents especially my father. However, becoming a father has made me realize the kind of needs I had as a child, is so much smaller and insignificant compared to the kind of need I now have as a father.

I have tried to distance myself from the “antu” [stickiness] to my relationships, specially to my son, who I can already see spreading his wings, developing his own mind, his own preferences, his own sense of right and wrong. I know the ball has already got rolling, the day he began his kindergarten, his world is expanding at a pace much faster than I am able to absorb, the kite has taken its flight, and I am just a person who “feels” is in control of the kite’s flight, it is going to be just few more years, before the gusts of life is going detach my wonderful creation into a wide open sky, and I am going to watch it with bitter sweet memories, at the same time as a father I will root for the kite to go beyond the seven skies.

Working from home due to this pandemic has given me a greatest gift for this year’s father’s day. The gift of spending quality time with my son, the gift of playing the role of a father the way I wanted to, holding his hand when I feel like it, hugging him when he wants it, feeding him things he loves, there is no better gift than the satisfaction parenthood brings.

Happy Father’s day!