It was back in the summer vacations in 1994 or 95. We had just moved into Vishal Apartments, and gelled in with the gang of kids there. Thatha, had just gifted us (me and my sister), the coolest set of board games. We had Scotland Yard, Life and Battleship to spend our days with. Mama, had given us the amazing concentrates for the grape juice and the mango juice and the orange juice. Amma, had made them, and got a bunch of other small things to eat.
The mood was all set, for afternoons after afternoons of board games. Of, fighting to decide who gets to be the Mr X. in Scotland Yard. Of chalking out strategies to outwit the thief (many of which included following the thiefs eye-board movement). Of gasping and smiling when someone got married in the game of Life. Of sharing school stories. Of making fun of the maths tutor, who came with 15 pens. Of making fun of the dance teacher, who thought he was a she. Of discussing the morning Cricket matches. Of making teams for the evening kho-kho.
It was a magical summer.
So, this one afternoon, we were playing Scotland Yard, and sipping the wine-colored juice, thinking we were rich people, betting with millions of rupees and sipping whiskey as they see the game unfold. Amma (and Appa), has this incredeble ability, to gel in with the kids, so much so, in a few minutes, you don’t even think that there is an adult around. As, we were playing, Amma, as a matter of conversation, asks all the kids, ‘What does your father do’. And, everyone starts answering, Business, Doctor, Doctor, Banker etc etc.
As the question, travelled round the circle, it stopped at another brother and sister pair of M & J. Of everyone in the group, only me, Vidya and amma did not know. Suddenly, everyone became quiet. M looked upto J, and slowly whisphered that their Father is no-more. That he passed away, when she was quite small. Amma, quickly changed questions. And, in a few minutes, we were back to concentrating deeply on the game.
Till then, death, to us was just a phenomena in the movies, and a orphan ( M& J havetheir mother, a truly faboulous lady) was Oliver Twist. At that moment, it became reality.
At that moment, I (and am sure, Vidya too) realized that, some people are really not as lucky as us.
Appa would have been surprised by the extra attention, we showered on him in the evening.
A couple of days ago, I learnt that M is pregnant. I am sure, she will be a great mom.
For me though, it is just as shocking, as to learn that my 5 of my friends will be married by the end of the year.
As I was standing in the bus stand in the evening today, there was a squall. It was getting dark and ominous, as I stood waiting for the bus. As the bus approached my stop, it got the red signal just before my stop, and the squall stuck. The sky emptied everything it had, like it just overturned a bucket full of water, and the bus was standing, a few feet away from me. And, I got totally drenched. And, I loved it.
Just finished watching ‘What Happens in Vegas’. It is a formulaic movie. Take a guy, a girl, apply formula, put happy ending, release it. But, well made. Just like Jaane tu. Any movie that makes me feel good, is a good movie.