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Grandmother’s Day

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Kamalji, May 13, 2010.

  1. Kamalji

    Kamalji IL Hall of Fame

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    Grandmother’s Day





    A grandmother was a mother also,just as a saas bhi kabhi bahu thi, so I will write about her, though I am late, but Granmoms don’t go out of fashion for me.I will write about my Dad’s mom, Lilavati.


    Grandmom had 4 sons, Dad being the eldest, and no daughters. They used to stay in Hyderabad Sindh, now in Pakistan.That is why we are called Hyderabadi Sindhis, and also we are called Sindhwarkis, meaning those who used to go abroad. My grandfather died well before partition, in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place w:st="on">Africa</st1:place> where he was working for a Sindhi firm, and the telegram of death came on Diwali Day, a Black Day for Grandmom.Never got to see his body, I don’t know about the ashes, if they came here or not.But Grandma never stopped us from celebrating Diwali. She became a widow around 30 years of age.


    Now with 4 mouths to feed, the youngest being around two years or so, Dad I think was 12 maybe, she started stitching clothes for the neighbours and relatives, like a Blouse, petticoat, and make ends meet, a la the filmy scenes , that we have seen in many a movie.And most of the relatives moved their faces away, but she carried on.


    Now in those days, I talk of the forties, we had Sindhi business tycoons spread all over the world, mainly <st1:place w:st="on">Africa</st1:place>, and grandma pleaded with someone who worked in one fo those companies to take my dad. Well Dad came down to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Bombay</st1:place></st1:City> for the interview, got selected, he was like 14 or 15 maybe, and packed off on a steamer ship with dozens of other boys who were chosen.


    The work was like , 3 year trip, plus lodging boarding, and 40 rupees paid everymonth to granny, which was a decent amount. A gold Coin then of 8 grams , called ginni, was like 13 bucks , as granny used to recall. The bosses had given these boys, cartoons of Bidis, to be delivered to <st1:place w:st="on">Africa</st1:place> for they could not be exported legally, and they fetched a good amount of money there.


    For amonth, these guys were on the ship, so they had nothing to do, and decided to take out a few packets of Bidis, and started to smoke out of boredom on the ship, and that is how Dad started to smoke from that tender age, right till his last days. The working hours were like 9 in the mornings to midnight each day, with Sundays off.


    These Sindhis of those days , were like the Ambanis of today. We had groups like KC, Kishinchand Chellaram, ( the grandson is the relative of Lalit Modi), they have the KC college in Mumbai, and also Jaihind college, Dhalamals, Chainrai’s , Jasoti and Lokumal, who made the <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Jaslok</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Hospital</st1:placeType></st1:place> in Mumbai. Thereis a joke which says, that Jaslok is a step closer to Parlok (Heaven ).These guys minted money from Africa, and now newer Sindhis are there in Africa, place like Benin, Nigeria, Ghana, Sierre Leon,Lagos, Nairobi and other parts of Africa.
    They carved Africa among themselves, and said listen I am good in Ghana, u go to Benin, u don’t come here , and I wont come there, something like that.And then they came to Bombay, and u have Sindhi hospitals, colleges, many are real estate guys, like the Raheja’s, most of their incomes came from Africa.


    Coming to granny, she took care of us brothers, mom poor thing always in the kitchem, cooking, and we used to have guests that stayed on for months, but never did granny grumble. Mom sure did, but she was by passed. We had torrid days, very poor, where school fees of 5/- a month for each of us 4 brothers, used to be unpaid for months, we were sent home, and mom would come and plead with the principal , pay for a month, to pacify them.and the poor milkman remained unpaid too for months so was the grocery fellow.




    Well the goods days came in the early seventies, and when Dad started to do well in his exports, after working for years


    Soon Grandma sent all her 4 sons abroad, and after a while, Dad stayed with her here, while the others stayed abroad.


    Granny used to tell us stories when we were young and we were fascinated with her stories.Some were about superstitions and here I list what she told me, most I am recalling me to the best of my abilty, maybe I may be forgetting some parts of them


    1) Never make a small child drink milk outdoors at night – nor breast feed him or her. Bcs she said there are fairies flying in the Air, and they will enter the childs body, and make him retarded ? Well now I see the fairies have disappeared in tehse days, for people drink milkshakes on the night outdoors eh !
    2) Never urinate on a tree, for a ghost will possess u. Maybe it means,t hat there is a beehive somewhere in the tree, and what if a bee stings u there , u see.!!
    3) Never go near a shamshaan ghat, what u call as a funeral pye or graveyard at night, for u might get possesses by a ghost. Now there are females ghosts too ccalled Dyans, who aer very pretty, but look at their feet, which are backwards.In that case, unzip and bare all, and she will run away ( out of shame or fear ? )
    4) Never cut yr nails in the night, it is unlucky.Maybe the meaning is, since the light is poor u could cut yr fingers .


    And maybe quite a few more, as I remember I will let u guys know.


    She was very modern in her thoughts and forbade the bahus of the house from touching her feet, and told them they need not put any ghoongat or cover their head.
    My two Uncles married late, well in their midcthirties, one was working in Singapore and another in Hongkong for more than 15 years, somehow they used to put off the topic of marriage.Granny told them, if u have any girlfriend , tell me, we will get u married to her, but please marry ! It did not matter to her even if they married the foreigners, but well ultimately they married Indian ones, arranged marriages.


    Dad loved her one hell of a lot as did the other brothers,for what misery she saw, in her younger days, was replaced with better days, own houses , cars, and a joint family.She had a fall , and she was in bed for 5 years, at our home. Dad brought a hospital bed for her, the one where u can with the rod raise the back of the bad,two nurses full time for her, she was almost blind. But dad would go and sit for a few hours in her room in the morning, talking to her, telling her stories of the days gone by, and my brothers, everyone chipping in.


    Dad used to sleep in the afternoon, evening go for a walk to the Sea Face, night take his drink in her room and regale her again, putting on the religious tapes for her, to listen, and when Dad wanted to come to Jaipur to me for a week, she would be very sad, a sick mother in Bed, poor thing what can she do. Immobile.


    Dad used to always say, I want my mother to go in my arms, after me who will take care of her.Well that is the way it happened, she expired in 95, and Dad immediately after a year in 96, though he was hale and hearty.


    Dad had told her, Amma, I will not take your ashes to Haridwar, I will have them immersed in the sea opposite our house, so that when I drink my tea in the morning, I can see u there. And she would smile and say, do as u wish.And Dad took all of us to the rocks on the SeaFace, ladies and children included, put her ashes on a white bedsheet, we prayed, and we set the bedsheet on the Sea, and soon it was down the waters.We all saw the reality in front of us, on that bedsheet, to what we are reduced to after we are gone.


    For Dad too the next year , we did the same, and I have told everyone, that I too want to be put in the Sea where my Dad and grandma are.




    I have been fortunate to have had them in my life, for me I have not seen God, but they are Gods for me.


    God couldn’t have been kinder to me.I am blessed.


    KAMAL MAHTANI


    Well to cheer u guys up from this serious blog I wont skip my usual jokes, so here goes.


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If More than one Mouse is Mice,
    Then more than one Spouse is Spice !!!!





    Jisko Dil Diya, <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Delhi</st1:place></st1:City> Chali Gayi,
    Jisko Pyar kiya who <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Chile</st1:place></st1:country-region> chali Gayi,
    Dil ne kaha Khudkhushi kar le,
    Ungli Dali, saali Bijli Chali Gayee !!!



    Census officer to lady – U said your husband died 10 years ago, but your kids ages are 4 and 2.
    Lady – Yes I said that my husband died 10 years ago, <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:City w:st="on">Not</st1:City> <st1:State w:st="on">Me.</st1:State></st1:place>




    Doctor asked pregnant Girl – When did this happen ?
    Girl – It happened when mom dad went for a movie, and my Boy friend came in
    Doctor – why did u not go for the movie with yr parents ?
    Girl – Well, it was an Adult movie !!!




    Santa’s neighbour died in hospital , So he went to his house and asked, “ When is the body coming “ ?
    Just then came the ambulance,with the body, and Santa exclaimed “ He sure has a long life, I was just thinking of him !!!




    Santa – Banta, why did u do potty all over the bathroom?
    Banta – Well I was following Abhiskeh Bacchhan’s advise “ Walk when u talk !!



     
  2. Arunarc

    Arunarc Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Kamalji
    There is even Grandmother's day which is celebrated on 21st jan and Grandfather's day on 22nd jan.
    I had read about your grandmother in one of your previous post I think you had written about her during her birthday if not mistaken. Or was it about your mom. But this post has more details.
    Before people had nothing but use to struggle so much for they living na...
    Now we don't believe in those superstitous but my mom still believes in all those and my grnadmom wouldn't beleive she use to shout at mom telling don't know who has put all that rubbish in you...hahaha
    My Granny was same she was very broad minded she never allowed her grand bhahu's to wear sarees only chudihars and use to force the guys to take them for outing and all.
    It was nice knowing your grandmother from her grandson.....on mother's day as she too was a mother...
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2010
  3. Padmini

    Padmini IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Kamalji,
    A nice tribute to your grand mother. From your narration, I understand that she was a lady with determination and hard work. She with her will brought the family up !!! When I was going through your post , I remembered the poem I studied:
    Grandmas are for stories
    about things of long ago.
    Grandmas are for caring
    about all this things you know.
    Grandmas are for rocking you
    and singing you to sleep.
    Grandmas are for giving you
    nice memories to keep.
    Grandmas are for knowing
    all the things you're dreaming of...
    But, the most important thing of all,
    Grandmas are for love.
    Grandmas hold our tiny hands for just a little while, but our hearts forever.Thank you for sharing the life of agreat lady with us.
    Jokes :
    Little Tony was so happy to see his grandmother that he ran up and gave her a big hug. "I'm so happy to see you, grandma. Now daddy will have to do that trick he's been promising to do!"
    His grandmother was curious. "What trick is that, sweetie?"
    The little guy grinned at her. "I heard daddy tell mommy that he would climb the gosh-darn walls if you came to visit us again!"
    A Jewish grandmother giving directions to her grown grandson who is coming to visit with his wife: “You come to the front door of the apartment complex. I am in apartment 14T. There is a big panel at the door. With your elbow push button 14T.
    I will buzz you in. Come inside, the elevator is on the right.
    Get in, and with your elbow hit 14. When you get out I am on the left. With your elbow, hit my doorbell”.
    “Grandma, that sounds easy, but why am I hitting all these buttons with my elbow”?
    “You’re coming empty handed”?
    with love
    pad
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 14, 2010
  4. parusabari

    parusabari Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Kamal ji,

    Um…one of those days when we do remember our loved ones.
    It is just that we feel sad they are not with us to share our good times.
    Lovely post.
    Today life is so comfortable for most but then too people crib. I appreciate the grandpa’s and grandma’s of yester years who created paths on their own and made others follow them.
    Holy ash that is what we all will be reduced to hai na.!!

    Well talking of Sindhis…..20years of my life have been spent in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">U.S.A.</st1:place></st1:country-region>
    I think you may know this abbreviation more easily ULHASNAGAR SINDHI ASSOCIATION. Our family stayed in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Ulhasnagar</st1:place></st1:City> for 22 years.
    Sindhi’s are known for starting up many small scale industries all over the place. They were the ones who gave a lease of life to the less blessed by hiring them for their services. Stitching, Papad and Pickle making, Furniture, Electronics, Car Accessories you name it and you will have a Sindhi friend of mine for anyone to refer to.

    To mention of College, When you have named so many Sindhi Institutions I have Studied in Smt. Chandibai Himatmal Mansukhani College another one which was run by Sindhi Management. Among the friends still with whom we are maintaing good cordial relations are the Gangwani’s, Nathani’s, Talreja’s.

    Most Sindhi’s are generous. They don’t hesitate to help others financially. Also they are good hosts. This reminds of many Sindhi Marriage’s I have attended. Food is the most important part starting from Chaat to Chinese. In Ulhasnagar you will find every third shop to be a snack shop- hot gulabjamuns, Jalebi, The best Samosa and Patties…with green chutney and Sev.Now see where this post of yours took me to…..



    Never Abhishek Bachchan or Idea Company would have thought people would take their lines so seriously.



    Love,
    Parvathi.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2010
  5. monifa13

    monifa13 Bronze IL'ite

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    Pranaam Kamalji - You made me cry today but this is the reality in life. All of us will have to go someday but we too will leave some memories behind..
     
  6. jananirbk

    jananirbk Senior IL'ite

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    Dear Sir!!

    I must confess this is my first FB to your post though i had read most of ur posts, and am amazed by your writing on all topics !!! I miss my grandparents a lot!! Three of my paternal and maternal grandparents were gone before I was born and I remember only my maternal grandfather, who visits us rarely!! I always longed for my grandparents!! Now, When I see my daughter pampered a lot by her grandparents, the time they are spending together, I feel blessed are the ones nurtured by their grandparents !! And now Kamal Ji, after reading your writeup about ur grandma and Padmini mam's poem, I have to say I got nothing to share about my grandparents!!

    Regards,
    Janani Natarajan
     
  7. ganges

    ganges Gold IL'ite

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    dear kamalji

    that was a very touching write up from you. I admired both your grandma and dad. it is erally a boon to have such a good family heriditary. Eventhough you gave us this time a sentimental posting you add some humour in the apt place. there you are. great Kamalji and keep it up. I loved the jokes part too.


    ganges
     
  8. Kamalji

    Kamalji IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Aruna,

    i was not aware of Grandmother's day or grandfather's day.Foreigners need days to remember their elders, we dont hre in Asia.

    Wow yr grandma was very modern too eh ! that is the sign of maturity, that they too change with the imes,a little of course but still .

    Thanks for the first comment and a great one too.

    Regards

    kamal
     
  9. Kamalji

    Kamalji IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Pads,

    Yes grandma wa a great lady, as we did not have TV, and other gadjets not even a phone, our only entertainment was her, i shudder to think what if we wer eyoung in this generation with mobile,TV, video games, would we have paid a fraction of attenttion to her ?

    The grandma poem is superb.Yes she is there for us, to help and guilde and love us as we grow up, too good.

    Coming empty handed eh ! HAHAHAHAHAHHA

    Yes true if had something in his arms, he would have had to press by the elbow.Shrewd lady eh !:biglaugh

    thanks.kamal

    How come i dont see any posts from u pads? you have so much to share, i can see in yr FB's and u dont post anything.Come on, and share, please do.

    REgards

    kamal
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    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  10. iyerviji

    iyerviji Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Kamalji

    YOu brought me memories of my grandmother, my mother's mother who stayed with us only. She was very loving and anything we ask for she used to make and give.

    Nice to know about your grandmother. We are also told not to cut nails in the night, especially on Tuesday or Friday night and should not be thrown anywhere, as if it anyone stamps the nail they will become ur enemy. I still believe and dont cut my nails in the night and throw them in the sink.

    She organised everything for mysister's marriage and prayed to God that she will offer 1008 modhak after my sister's marriage so that the marriage goes on well. Before my marriage she was laid with cancer , so she told me you have looked after me very nicely so God bless you with a good husband and you have to pray for yourself as I wont be there during your marriage. My husband is from her place only. I got married one year after my grandmother's death.



    Pranam
    viji
     

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