The other day, V and I were on our way home from a routine road that I could walk blindfolded. After all, I have an almost 28 year old love-hate relationship with this city – Nagpur. Every road is an etched map in itself.
This city holds all my memories, it holds my life in its hands. Childhood memories, growing up years, college years, friends from all phases, good and bad memories, my darkest secrets – it is holding everything in it safely as I am holding them. Sometimes its scary isn’t it? Or is it not? The fact that your best friend and this city knows everything about you, inside out. Only difference is, one can spill it out while the other will make you go through those moments everytime you get out on these very roads. The city doesn’t care if you had a good time or bad. It just means to show you what your life has been.
And that particular road didn’t exactly bring back good memories for me. But on the other side of that road was an area where I had spent the most fun time of my childhood. This was definitely irony for me. It was like standing at cross roads, only, I had chosen my path way back from this junction. I’m not regretting anything I have done in my life, but this road reminded me how simply blunt our lives can be – in a good way. There’s no need to hide, no space to hold back. Everything is an open book in the form of a city! Sometimes you can’t even look at a building and speed up to avoid it, while other times, you crave to go to another that has been an important part of your life.
The city, its roads, its lanes and by-lanes are a chapter-wise book – you just have to flip through and its similar to being in a time machine. What varies though is, you know how to come back this time. How not to mess up the future. And how happily to live your today.
A city is that part of your soul, which refuses to leave you, how much ever you want it to. On the contrary, its the same city that runs through your fingers like sand, when you try to hold on to it tightly. It’s an emotion of another kind.
Gorgeous Nagpur Sky!
As a kid, when my mother’s only sister visited us or we visited her, I would always wonder how me and my sister would be at that age. Especially after being married. As time passed by I would adore the way my mother and her sister would talk about their lives in a very simple and innocent manner; sharing experiences, updating each other. I have an image stuck in my head of the two, where they would fall into their afternoon naps while talking about their lives. Both me and my sister always wondered whether we would behave the same way?
When my sister visited me after both of us got married, it was a strangely formal feeling. My formal farewell to her from a married woman to another, hit us both. And her moving to the US changed things drastically. When I visited her recently, we spent the best of time together. In fact we realised that both of us have never spent such time together, owing to something running in parallel – studies, jobs. We had an amazing time doing nothing but sitting with each other, conversations flowing throughout. And both of us remembered my mother and her sister. We laughed, we adored them and most importantly we understood them.
Now when my mother is turning 60 and my aunt is turning 56, I laughed at the way they were arguing recently! When they were leaving from our house, I stood there and wondered whether me and my sister would grow old the same way. Will we argue even when we turn 60?! They know each other inside out and even mend their ways to get things done, simply to keep each other happy. Isn’t that sibling love? The thing is, we never imagine the future in terms of age. I never imagined any of the people growing old around me. And now when I see these two sisters, it brings so many emotions and thoughts as to what and how will the relationship with my sister be.
As I saw my mother helping my aunt with something, I saw an elder sibling and a younger one. Although they looked their age, they still portrayed a youth that probably stays with siblings all their lives.
(Source – http://bit.ly/1a1akRa)
Like a lot of other people, I come from a small town in India. I have spent 22 years of my life in this city called Nagpur where growing up meant being careful of a lot of things. The one thing I am supremely proud of in my life are my parents. I know I can’t have enough of that pride and have probably mentioned that in almost all the posts, but it is true. Why I come back to it again today you ask? Well, it’s a part of being grateful for certain things in life.
I have been brought up in a typical middle class family. My parents are the most humble people I have come across and the first ones I met in my life. I don’t know what changed when or rather I wonder whether the upbringing we have had was normal for that time. My parents were so normal about certain things which I did not see in a lot of my peers. Especially the way some parents would treat their daughters. If I look back now, I realise my parents never spoke of discriminating against daughters and sons. I didn’t come across this discrimination till quite later in life, and that too not from my parents’ side. I and my sister were their daughters, and it ended there. They never once mentioned a wish to have a son, or the fact that we were any less than having one. Our duties, our responsibilities were never thought over by the fact that we were girls; those were just that – duties. My mom never invited us into the kitchen to ‘learn’ the art of cooking. Both of us got interested when we felt like it and we just observed our mother in doing so. If you ask me, I don’t remember when exactly I learnt how to cook. It just came from observing my mother.
When my sister wanted to move out of the city to pursue a career, like any other mother, she was anxious. But she never stopped her; yes she expressed her anxiety but never stood up against my sister’s biggest wish. And then, which mother isn’t anxious for her child? What I find intimidating today is the behaviour of certain parents who don’t want to let go of their daughters to fulfil their dreams. I have seen so many! And trust me, such examples make me thank my parents for making us so independent. In today’s time as well, I look at girls who are scared to take a step towards their life because of their parents and sacrifice on life itself! You know, I remember an incident when we were in college and some relative visited us with his family. The way he forced certain rules on his daughter (well into teens by the way) just in terms of having meals, completely left us flustered! When we brought it up to our mother, after they left, our mother was so confident that we would run away if she had done anything like that to us! We laughed then, and now I realise how confident she was in our independence, our freedom – in us.
I see parents today, and I look at mine. I wonder what made them bring us up this way…. In the end, what makes all of this worthwhile, is the life we have and the way we lead it – with love and freedom – lessons learnt from two most amazing people in my life.