Every year, like a normal Indian living abroad, we endeavour to visit our homes for many reasons. Those like me, who belong to the place I live, and have commendable adaptability to new surroundings rarely want to do so, because honestly we have moved on physically, though maybe not from the soul.
So this year too as school vacations approached we made our plans, tickets were booked, gifts were brought for relatives and friends back there. In my heart, I did not want to go, I was not looking forward to it, because for me it was not going back to a home that had someone waiting for me there. No, I had to walk into a closed house with a lot of nitty gritties to take care of. A house with walls and furniture covered in an envelope of dust and cobwebs. It was now home to pigeons and rats and possibly even cats, and there I would be disturbing their peaceful environment, and I will be an intruder in my own house! It is not an easy task to pick up the realms of a home, which has been shut for the last more than a year and turn it into a mini vacation spot for a month. But it was not a choice that I could choose, but it was an imperative part of my life’s theater that I had to play.
I envy those lucky people who can go back yearly to a home with people living in it, and actually sit back and relax, and enjoy “home”. But it was the other way round for me – dust, cobwebs, rats and cats – and me – dont go hand in hand.
Say what I may, it is something that needs to be done and do I will till I dont know how many more years. At that stage, it all seems very materialistic to me. Going back to endless formalities at banks that havent been completed for the last year, paying bills for things we are not using….. it was all so useless, but still necessary. I tell Rajeev, what is here to come back to, lets just sell off the house, close the accounts and move on. We will never have to come to Delhi again! All I get are the eyes popping off emoticon, and I have to in return give the all teeth showing emoticon!
I dont know why we cling to the past, why moving on is not so easy – especially after we are married and have a family and kids. Rajeev still holds on to the first shirt I brought him almost 18 years ago. It was a cheap, non branded shirt I picked up from Lajpat Nagar – nothing fancy, coz I honestly never shopped for a guy before. I just dont understand him. I have asked him quite a few times if I can give it away, but all I get is a “no” for response. I once hid it somewhere, hoping he’d forget it, but then “no”. He even wears it once in a while. I’d just wish he would clear off that and some other clothes from his closet and make space for something new. I just feel his closet is too overburdened with the new and old!
But I can understand him sometimes, in the sense that maybe he cherishes that shirt, or maybe even he’s happy hes still able to fit into that shirt as much as he did 18 years ago!! It just struck me, and I need to check out the truth.
I myself am very clingy about certain things which are really old. I have my school book which is full of remarks from my classmates and teachers – you know, the book which is passed around when you are leaving school. Its something I love and it always make me smile reading all those girly comments. I have the first rose Rajeev gave me tucked in that book, infact I do have quite a few of them. I have all of Vihas “firsts” – her first jeans, her first shoes, her first milk bottle…….. et all. I get very upset if someone talks about discarding them. I will keep them all in a treasure box and show them to her kids if I am alive till then.
Last year when I went to Kochi my aunt showed me a sweater that I wore as a child, and she gave it to me saying that Viha can wear it. I cant tell you how ecstatic I was to see that green and red crocheted cardigan.
This post is kind of a trip down the memory lane.
There is so much in life, in our past that we need to cling onto.
Memories made in childhood, school, friends. In betweeen all these even a few materialistic things find place, things you just cant bring to throw away – a piece of paper, a gift…….
You cant throw them away because they somehow make you complete, they make you the person you are today. But the truth above all truths is – you will leave everything and go one day. All you will leave behind will be memories in the lives of those who you met along the way. Beyond everything do things to leave good memories. Memories of love and laughter.