August 22, 2008

THATHA, CAN U HEAR ME????


I loved him more than anybody else in this world!!! Pretty orthodox yet very modern, the most respected person in our family...My grandfather, Mr. V.Krishnamurthy was a perfect man by all means – from having worked as a perfect bank manager to a perfect grandfather. He was a specialist at making “Kozhukattais” (steamed dumplings with very tasty sweet or savory lentil and coconut fillings, in a rice flour pocket). He meant a lot to us! I was fortunate enough to have him to repeat the story of Prahaladan (a young man who showed an amazing level of devotion in spite of severe threats to his person). I used to admire his fantabulous usage of words, his expressions, and his soft voice that could not even harm an ant! Can still recollect his voice… How can I ever forget that??


Thatha was admitted in Vijaya Hospital for a bypass surgery.. Few days after the surgery, when he was shifted to the normal ward, he told my sister, Jayanthi aka Jandy n me that we were the most special grandchildren he had! We shared a real special thatha-pethi (grand-daughter) relationship. I loved to hear his childhood stories. Year after year, his health deteriorated, but he made sure he never lied down on his bed unless the pain was totally unbearable. He started using crutches, and I couldn’t see him walking with a support! Truly not my thatha!!


It was on December 17th, 2006 5.30 pm that I spoke to him last. I really thought I could meet him within a few days and spend more time with him. He couldn’t speak much. His voice seemed to have disappeared. He sounded frail. My college was reopening on the 18th and I had been to my granny’s place to get aasirvadham from the elderly folks. His room was partially dark, with a 0W bulb illuminating the room. I went next to him, kissed him on his forehead n said, “Thatha, am leaving now. I’ll be back on the 24th to see u sitting on the chair and hear u say, ”Vanthutiya kozhandha, eppadi iruke?”(Have you come child? How are you?). Am sure that’s gonna happen and am gonna miss you till the 24th. Take care”. And for this, he replied saying, “You may come and see me, but I won’t.” I was dumbfounded. I didn’t know what to say. I just said “Nothing’s gonna happen. You take care”, and walked out of his room. No one knew he told me this. On the 21st of December, he was hospitalised for giving saline. We all expected him to get discharged the next day and I didn’t really consider it to be very serious.


I found someone knocking my door at 5.30 am on the 23rd. My warden was standing outside, trying to wake me up from a very sound sleep. Finally, I managed to open the door. It took me 5 minutes to understand what she said. Thatha was no more. My mom had tried calling me, but I couldn’t hear my phone ringing. So she had called my warden and informed her. The next minute, I found myself throwing things into my bag, haphazardly, and ran out of my room without even brushing my teeth. I tried not to cry. Within a matter of a few minutes, I was standing out of my college gate, felt like an abandoned child. My cousin, Neeraj, who was also studying in the same college as mine, was already in Chennai. I was all alone. I faced the most distressing moment of my life. My dad n brother-in-law were giving me options as to how to reach Chennai in the shortest time. “Take a flight”, “ No, take Pandyan Express from Ariyalur”. I preferred the latter option since there were no flights from Trichy to Chennai in the morning. After 15 minutes of desolation, I saw the headlights of a bus. Reached Thanjavur at 6 and found out that it would take 2 hours max to reach Ariyalur; which means, I’ll miss Pandyan express again! I was lost.. totally lost!! My only option was to get into a government bus to Chennai. I took the first bus.. which was scheduled to leave at 6.30 am. I was the only passenger on board, and to my dismay, the bus didn’t start till 7.30. I found the driver and cried to him, explaining my situation. And I really don’t know what happened, within half a minute, the bus was full and the driver started the bus. The journey was not pleasant at all. I was waiting to see thatha for the last time. The bus moved slower than a bullock-cart, making my situation worse. The roads were horrible; all twists and turns, bumpy, making me feel nauseous. My mobile battery was almost dead and I was askin my frnds if they knew the “special” code to give my battery the reserve life or whatever. In between all this, my dad n brother-in-law kept calling me and updating me about the ceremonies happening there. The cremation was planned for 3 o clock.. gave it so much time just for me.. for me to have a last look at my grandpa. But to my dismay, the bus reached Tindivanam at 2.30! Which made sure that I wont reach Chennai on time! My mobile battery was dead.. making all connections void. I reached Chennai at 5 pm, half-dead! Was very angry with everyone around. I didn’t see my thatha!! The person who I loved more than anybody else had gone! All that I got to see was his metallic hip-plate.


Its two years since he’s gone, but none of us feel his absence. Of late, my uncle says he’s been able to talk to my thatha in his dreams! It may sound funny, but the details he gives is stupefying. Thatha gives details about his past, how he feels in his new home with his parents! I kept my Degree certificate under his photo one night and the next day, he told my uncle that he was very happy and that he would always be beside me in all my endeavours. Well, now, even though I miss him, I know he’s there next to me, all the time. I talk to him now and then, though I don’t get a reply, am sure he can hear me and am sure he’ll talk to me one day!

8 comments:

shivaprasad said...

hey....nice one.....similarities that this one shares with that of mine is astounding... a very good attempt.... do inform me about the next post.....

Sindhu said...

thnx shiva! and i was shocked reading ur post!! coz of the similarities!! wl keep u informed!

Time, Money and Security for Rs.995!!! said...

Hi Sindhu.. Ur blog is really nice.. I enjoyed reading it.. Thatha mela evlo paasam!!! Very good. Keep it up!!

laksh said...

hey sindhu nice one re...so true that those whom v love never leave us :)

SHREE said...

sindhu really touching nd for the first time my lappy's touchpad gets wet(cox of tears) nd i didnt notice till i touched it...tats d effect of ur post ..there r some bonds in d world tat never can be broken,tis was one.May he shower his blesssings on u..

Madhuvanthi said...

hey sind.. got to read urs now.. i can recollect the incidents tht happened in N-235.rather.. sequence of events.. it sure was tragic the way u went back home shattered!!

இத்யாதி said...

Loss is Usual... Having a mind to loose is not....

YES for SHATHEESH said...

thathas r always spl 2 us