Bonding of Generations

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I've got married recently and like any Indian wedding my house was swarmed by relatives, friends and well wishers for more than a week. Like most of us I too was delighted to meet them after a long time (last time we met was during my brother's wedding four years back). It is even more surprising and pleasant when you meet the older generations. For me it was meeting my Nanaji (mother's father). He was not able to make it for my brother's wedding and it did leave some emptiness in the ceremonies. Nanaji is the eldest among all the relatives. His presence matters, his blessings matter, his witty jokes matter, his outright comments matter...


When he arrived, as always my brother and father rushed to welcome him. My father happens to be one of the adored persons in the family. After a while of catching up and chatting, I heard my father say "He seems to have forgotten a lot of things. I will show him photo albums to help him recall." He sat with him with photo albums. As they flipped through the album Papa helped him recall the people in the photographs. Nanaji is an amazing photographer himself and most of the photographs in our family album are his contribution. To my surprise Papa recalled the exact events and year when those photographs were taken. His effort did show some positive results; Nanaji said "Yes Shyambabu I remember now!"

It made me so sad but at the same time I just fell in love with my father. He is not any ordinary person...the 'vanilla' flavour category. He stands apart from the crowd and people around him. The thought of making an effort to help Nana recall and talk with him patiently is worth a lot of appreciation. The beauty of the incident is that Papa didn't even realise that he had done a commendable job. His believe that showing photographs would be help had actually worked!


When I sat next to Nanaji and he called me with my pet name "gurrbhai", it almost brought tears in my eyes. He remembered me...yay!! He handed over a bundle of 500 denominations in my hand and said "Go spend it all", it made me smile. Inside I was wondering does he remember anything from my childhood...the way we kids used to ransack his room, read books from his library, pulled out goodies from his well stacked fridge and most of all his exquisite collection of stationery especially pens. I doubt anyone could beat him at that. 


It was the night before the wedding. We all were so tired and all set to sleep. And as all houses when packed with people there was a sleeping arrangement being discussed who sleeps where! That very day my Mausaji (Uncle) had also arrived (the other son-in-law). Without much discussion both son-in-laws volunteered to sleep in the same room as their father-in-law. It was such a precious moment for me. It will always remain in my memory live and fresh as it happened. I do not think my Nana would have ever thought at a time when he is forgetting things, people and relatives and is so ill that he needs help to walk, talk and eat and is under constant supervision that his son-in-laws would be there for him. I doubt when he had formed these relationships some decades back he would have expected this from them. But it happened, if I could have ever shared this with Nanaji I would surely tell him how lucky he is. 


Now that my father also is a father-in-law to two of his daughter's husbands I often wonder would he be half this lucky ever! Well I don't care he will always be the person I look up to and adore so dearly... I love you Papa :-)



Very heart-warming article.

Very heart-warming article. Makes me remember my own  nanaji

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