Life takes us on myriad paths and when we come to the original path taken, we seem to be lost.
Same happens when you meet someone after a long time and you are shocked to see how life has treated them.
But then life is like that.
We were in Mysore for a day. Hubby had some work and we tagged along. Morning was spent at the zoo. The kid enjoyed even though he had to walk about 3 km, And we had a nice time with him, explaining everything and answering billions of questions.
But it was evening that I was waiting for. I had done my B.Com in Mysore. We were to meet my Uncle and Aunty. Uncle had been my father’s colleague in Bhilai. A relationship which began there had matured to them being my Local Guardian.
Those three years will always be cherished. It was that time when I finally started understanding life. Aunty who helped me transform. Uncle who guided me and in true sense they two are the ones who laid the foundation of my spiritual growth.
Even today I can smell the badam milk which she used to give me early in the morning while MS’s Suprabhatam played in the background.
Sickness, moroseness, celebrations all had one destination-VINUTHA. (the name of their house)
Sonny wanted to see the ‘bus’ of Mysore and so we boarded a bus to their place. Got down at the supposed stop. Only to realise that the whole area had completely changed in the past 17 years.
And they too are living in a different house now as their house is being renovated.
What followed for the next half an hour was chaos. The better half being the better one geographically got angry that I could not locate a place which I had frequented so much. The anger was more because the son had had to walk some more.
He wanted to return to the hotel room. I refused to comply. Nowhere was I going without meeting my mentors.
Then finally Aunty asked us to wait where we were. She came in an auto. I got in and she hugged me then and there. The wise one’s anger melted away. The younger one was shocked to see someone other showing so much love to his mother.
We went home. It smelled the same of badam milk and agarbathi, of love and familiarity.
But what I was not prepared to was the vagaries of age.
In our databases we nourish the same old image of years gone by without realizing that age might have caught on.
We caught up on memories, The other two ‘s eyes bulged out more and more. They had not prepared themselves for the love and memories that we exchanged.
And all the while I burnt inside
How could time tarnish my happy memories. Why aunty had to shuffle, why Uncle had to tremble?
But still there was a feast to gorge upon. We were touched. In spite of physical limitations Aunty had taken so much care to see that we were fell fed. And everything prepared by herself. In an age where we pick up our mobiles to order food for self or guests. Here was a woman in her late 60s who made everything herself for a friend’s daughter.
We got up to leave she hugged me again. I choked up. Will I be able to meet them again? How much more would Time have hurt them?
We came away wiser. Their love flowing through us which in turn strengthened our bond.
And while I say a prayer for them everyday, I say a request too now, please keep them in your loving embrace always.