Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Tiruvallikkeni - 2

was when I learned to cook the first pot of rice. After breaking the rice up thinking that was how I should clean it. I cleaned and broke long grained rice that it looked like rice crumbles. I wanted to impress my mother with my rice cleaning skills.

This was also the time my mom had to hide all the bars of soap from me. I took huge interest in dissolving it in water and making bubbles out of it. For a house that ran on a very tight budget it was tough. This was when Mirinda was introduced to the market and they gave a crate of 6 Mirinda bottles gratis to every house in that area. It was such a big deal that people were discussing it in school the next day. I don't think we got a crate as we had gone out. 

I got to know one of the people I loved the most in Ramana uncle. He was a friend of my mother's and lived in Germany. Whenever he visited us, with his long sleeveless shirts because he couldn't bear the heat and his really short temper, he'd instruct the auto fellow "beach vazhiyaaga po pa". No matter where he came from the auto guy would always have to take a route from the beach even if it made no sense to go to marina beach and come back. 

He told me about something called Tae-kwon-do, played with me and I would visit Srihari Kota and the Space central school with him once in a while. I loved him to bits. He was very proud of his children, Padma and Kiran who were in Germany. He'd married a German lady and would visit family in India often. 

Padma, when she was 12 or 13 had once found some 300 or 400 Deutsche Mark, the currency before the Euro and had given it to the police. It was such a big thing that she was written about in the newspapers in Germany. 

I probably saw Ramana uncle twice or thrice, I am not sure, but I remember that fateful day that they had kept the water sump open at the Murudi's hotel in Luz. He hadn't noticed it and he fell right into the sump. They took him out and he was admitted at Isabel's hospital. His brain hemorrhaged and he died. I saw a small bucket full of what looked like blood. He'd apparently vomited it. I was only later that I knew he had a drinking problem. 

I remember running back to hostel and crying away for days. 

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