Monday, March 27, 2017

The Memoirs of an Eighty year Old- Episode XII

Episode - The wedding

Part I

Hello readers! The entire wedding got too long to write in a single episode, so I have made divided it into two parts.

 The wedding date was set to January 7th, 1956 in Tirupati. Here is the wedding invitation.

Grandpa said he attended his wedding during the holidays of his college, the Sankranti holidays. "I told no one in the college about my marriage. Only the relatives and villagers knew. We were almost 50 people in total from our side who went to Tirupati in the train."

There is a custom of gifting the groom's family with money and grandpa said he asked for Rs. 4200/-. Odd number that! Why? I asked him. "It was for the train tickets, to and fro, for all the 50 members and to buy gifts for them, clothes, etc. And also to buy some jewelry for my mother and my soon-to-be wife. I always wanted to buy some gold for my mother. She had lots of it but we lost everything during the freedom struggle. You remember that my father was a part of it?" Grandpa asked. I nodded a yes. He continued, "I was still studying but wanted my mother to have some jewelry on her for my wedding. So I brought identical necklaces for both them."

The wedding venue grandpa tells me was in Allevelu mangapuram; the place of Goddess Padmavati's temple. Back then the corruption levels weren't so high and the places were maintained neat and clean. The rooms were already rented and the arrangements made by the bride's family. It was then just before the wedding that grandpa's parents and relatives saw grandma. The wedding was completely a traditional one. I asked if they enjoyed their wedding and they tell me, "We didn't know we were supposed to enjoy it." But yeah, it was fun, I think." grandpa added and grandma snorted...

Part II in the next episode. Till then, be happy, be good... 

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Memoirs of an Eighty year Old- Episode XI

Episode - How I met your granny

In this episode, Grandpa says "How I met your grandmother."

I wanted to know their story since some time, but I could get grandpa to tell me about it only recently. Dear grandpa is a very good story-teller and I enjoy listening to him tell me stories, especially the ones the actually happened in real life. So here it starts...

"Did you see grandma before the wedding? Who was the match-maker?" I asked him. "Of course I saw her. I was the only one from my family to see her before." he said smiling and continued settling into the story telling mode. "My mother's maternal uncle was the one. He was grandma's father's colleague. They worked in the Postal Department. Grandma's father was the Director of the department in Kurnool. It's a very prestigious position. It was when the state of Andhra Pradesh was formed, separated from Tamilnadu. The infrastructure wasn't there yet."

Coming back to the main story.. "I just joined in the Engineering college and was away from home. Your grandma's father and my mother's uncle visited my house casually and asked about me. My parents showed them a group photo of me & my siblings pointing at me." He said chuckling.

"Then once when I met my grandfather (mother's uncle) he told me about this and said we could casually go and see them. I agreed though I knew nothing about all this stuff. So we went." He paused.

I asked him, "What did you think of her? What did you ask her? Did you talk to her?" Shaking his head he answered, "No. She sat with us, all if us in the room for probably 2 or 3 minutes. Then they sent her off. I thought she was cute, I guess." He replied trying to remember exactly what he felt. "But I wanted to act like I knew about this procedure, so I asked if she can sing." For those who do not know, this is a standard question in the traditional process of match making. Any movie is going to confirm it. ;) 

"Do you know what her father said? He said who listens to people singing these days when there are radios! The radios were a luxury those days, mind you. Apart from that I said nothing. The elders dealt with all the things and I came to Hyderabad to meet my brother who was working here back then."

"I usually told him everything as he was my guardian. He took full responsibility of my studies. He was a little hurt but said he didn't mind if I liked the girl. He went to meet the family later and was satisfied. My parents got to know next and they approved. I left back for my college and the wedding date was set." He continued but I am going to end it here for the episode.

Grandma came into the room and I asked her what she thought when she saw grandpa for the first time. "I was waiting for them to send me back inside so that I could go back to playing hopscotch with my friends. I had a group of friends who were waiting for me to join the game." I laughed, so she explained, "It wasn't like they show in movies. I did not serve any tea or something. We did not really have thoughts about all this. The elders took control of everything. They fixed the wedding and began preparations. We just acted the part they expected of us."

I  just realized how long this episode is getting. Meet you again soon readers. Till then, keep smiling. :) 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Me or My Shadow!!

I walk around, aimless
thinking about nothing
when a form catches my eye.
And it is mine, my shadow!

I follow it, curious
towards a huge white wall.
The shadow grows larger,
and I stare, fascinated!

The closer I get,
the bigger the shadow gets,
dark and threatening,
it looms over me, frightening!

I lower my eyes, afraid
of my own shadow.
But then, I realize
the shadow begins at my feet!

I walk into light, it darkens,
I walk into dark, it vanishes.
So who's real? I wonder
Me or My Shadow!

Painting Credit: Mrs. Ratna Pochiraju