different shades

different shades
Different Moments

Thursday, October 13, 2016

A post from Oct 13, 2014

Why on earth do I have brimming eyes when this talkative young nurse who has taken care of dad for 1 month and 3 weeks (in total) bids goodbye .. Maybe because she loved Baba, maybe because Baba loved her ..maybe because of Baba's puzzled expression when she tells him that she wont be coming from tomorrow... maybe because she had her own way of earning our affection despite often being scolded and disciplined.. maybe because she never made Baba or any of us feel that her concern was professional.. maybe because she had been with us in this journey in tougher times too (earlier when dad was in scg) .. she will be missed.. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Baba's room and Jethu.. childhood returns in many different ways

Ever since Jethu has been visiting us since 1986 (the first visit that we remember, although he visited earlier which Bro and I do not remember), he has always slept in the Master Bedroom at our Jagannath Ghosh Road house.. by Master Bedroom I mean the bedroom of my parents, the room that Baba had designed for himself.
Throughout all his visits till the one in 1997/98 (which was the last time he met Thamma who passed away in 2000), Jethu had slept in Baba's room.
During later visits that started from my Bro's wedding in Jan 2006, Jethu had spent the nights at another of my uncle's apartment or at our flats at South City Gardens.
This afternoon I persuaded him to leave the drawing room couch and go to Baba's bedroom for his post-lunch nap. As I made the bed in a hurry, Jethu gave a content smile and said, "I have slept here so many times!"
I felt good throughout the noon that someone I love was sleeping in Baba's room.. the room is otherwise empty these days. These days I have a lethargy towards making tea as Baba is not there and I too cannot have it. This evening was different, as I made sure that tea was ready by 5-30 pm like old holidays or days of Baba's illness when he used to be at home. I loved it!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

My BeTuraam and I

I first got to know him when he was 1.5 years old. That was the time when I got married to his uncle. This little boy and I stayed in the same house for around 5 months (on and off). That was the time when I realized that although otherwise known as naughty, my Beturaam was very very special. He had the kindest and the most sensitive heart and was extremely intelligent. He called me Bumma and he still does call me that. During our stay together, I always saw him rushing to my rescue whenever I was in pain, physical or mental. He was the one to give me a massage when I had fever and also the first one to come and hold my hand or hug me whenever I was hurt. It is almost 4.5 years that I have left that house. As all of you know I have never been a peaceful sleeper and my sleep is always disturbed by dreams or nightmares. During the painful separation and over the later years till today, I have never dreamed of his uncle as much as I have dreamed of him. Whenever, it had been a nightmare, I had called up and learned that something was really up. I got the chance to spend a few precious hours with this child today.. with my sweetheart Beturaam. He visited my place with his parents and little sister and I had a wonderful time. I can never thank his parents enough for making this possible. I love you Beturaam <3 span=""> This moment when you kept hugging me would remain with me forever and ever. I am so glad that there is no "divorce" between a Bumma and a Betu <3 span="">

Chhotomasi and Me

My dearest ChhoTo Masi or NabaNeeta Chakroborty -- I first met her in August 2011 when she came down to my place to meet me just after a marriage between her nephew and myself had got fixed.. She touched a cord in my heart that evening when she said "tomaar jeta ichhe habe setai korbe" (you will pierce your nose only if you wish to). Our next proper meeting was on the train when we were about to travel to Ranchi, on the night after the wedding, in the same compartment. As Baba bade me goodbye, assuring me "Kono chinta nei" (there is nothing to worry), Masi repeated the same words and gave me the most assuring smile. Instantly, a saree-clad new bride had the courage to ask a new masi-in-law, "Can you please climb to the upper berth, so that I can take the lower one?" She smiled and did that instantly. There began a new friendship, a new relationship, that went beyond "family ties". The next 4 days, she was my savior every moment.. an expensive saree tangled around me .. all I had to do was peep through the bedroom door and ask, "Masi ektu aasbe?" (Masi, can you please come?).. She did everything for me, offered every help that I needed in the new place.. the day she left, it felt as if my mother was leaving..
Our third meeting was 4 months later when she visited Ranchi with her entire family for her son's Sacred Thread.. My marriage was already in the doldrums and she knew the reason and everything else.. The way she tried to save the marriage was beyond my expectation.. You cannot expect one to go against her own kin and support a girl from a different family! But, she did that constantly. She counseled me and counseled everybody else who lacked emotion.. and she did that constantly for the 7 days that she stayed there.. I can still feel the warmth with which she requested people to keep the friendship first, and the marriage would survive automatically was her hope..
When I had given up all hope, but did not want to break the cruel news to my parents, especially because Baba was unwell at that time, I had requested her if I could stay at her place without letting anyone know.. Well, I had made this request to a few of my family members and cousins.. nobody had the courage to say "yes", nobody had the courage to say "no" (most avoided contact for months.. others behaved as if they did not understand my request).. But, this extraordinary woman, on hearing my request, did not even bat her eyelid once! Her reply was, "Yes, for as long as you want! My house is your house!" .. and she hugged me.
No, I finally did not stay at her place (just visited once in April 2012 only to meet her).. and I met her on this 27th September, 2016 (when she visited my place on the last day of our just concluded exhibition).. I met her after more than 4 years! (We have connected on FB and found each other a few months back)!
Never did it feel that we were meeting after such a long time, and after so much had transpired in my life! Never did it feel that she was not my Masi or my own mother <3 span=""> .. When I bade her goodbye, on that autumn evening, my heart was full.. I was again thankful to life that no law had been able to "divorce" Masi and me :)

Thursday, September 15, 2016

September 8

September 8, 2006: I was released from Belle Vue Clinic after Dr Manoj Agarwal saved my life from a fatal viral diarrhea and severe anemia. Over the last ten years, he has treated almost my entire family and despite being the busiest of doctors have always answered my phone calls, requests, and text messages. I am one of those rare people who can walk into his clinic and tell his veteran assistant that I want to meet him, and I am allowed just like that!! Yes, it happened today only, as it had happened earlier.. particularly on June 19, 2015 (the day before Baba left us), when he kept my request and left all his work to see Baba ..
September 8, 2016: On reaching Belle Vue with Ma and Bro (as Ma was scheduled to have an angiograph today), I suddenly realized that today was the 8th of September, exactly 10 years of my release on recovering from the scary disease. After the cause of our visit today yielded relieving results (i.e. the angiograph revealed that another angioplasty was not needed), I had my lunch. I was on my own, as my brother had left for work and Ma was taken back to the ICU for rest and observation. After the nice filling lunch with uttapam and ice-cream, I decided to buy a chocolate for my favorite doc. On returning to Belle Vue, I entered Dr Manoj Agarwal's clinic and asked his assistant Shrabani whether I could meet him. Shrabani sighed and gave in. I went in and stood in front of his chamber as the door was closed and I could hear voices inside. After a couple of moments, he rushed out with long strides and I interrupted him, giving him the chocolate and mentioning the significance of today's date. Then I touched his feet. He was astonished and said, "10 years, already!" Then he asked about my health and gave me some valuable pieces of suggestion.
Soon, it was the visiting hour. I met Ma and narrated the incident to her and she looked glad that I paid my respect to a priceless doctor.
After the visiting hour was over, Bro wanted to have an ice-cream and we entered the eatery just opposite Belle Vue. He chose an ice-cream and I chose pomegranate juice and it was an enjoyable evening chatting with my brother while we devoured our choices. Although it was a jolt when we got the bill, it will be an evening to remember. In fact, it will be a day to remember.
On September 8, 2006, Baba and Bro had brought me home while Ma waited for me with her fish stew. Today, on September 8, 2016, Baba not being there, Bro and I did our best to be there with Ma. And I paid my respect and thankfulness to my doctor, marking a 10-year milestone, which made me feel good, really good. Tomorrow, Bro will bring Ma home and I will wait for her with my fish stew.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Post from July 7th, 2015

Prithiviraj Dasgupta was the 2nd visitor to our home who came to pay respect to Baba on the morning of Baba's Shraddh on June 30. He spread the garland, paid his homage, sat for a few minutes and left. Just as I watched him leave, I realized something strange.. a very very strange fact! Baba had attended Prithiviraj's annoprashon (first rice-eating ceremony held at 6 months of a child's age) in 1977 and Prithiviraj attended Baba's Shraddh in 2015, never having met each other on any instance during their entire life-spans. I did not get to dwell on this realization as visitors trickled in.
Today, as Ma and I were sitting at their place, Apala Dasgupta mentioned that Prithiviraj had a realization this morning. As Prithiviraj spoke, I found myself listening to what I had realized on the morning of Baba's Shraddh. Even Prithiviraj and Apala were as amazed as I was to see this strangeness.. Baba, as an architect employed in Kothari Associates, getting invited by developer Prabir Gupta for his first child's Annoprashon (cherishing the beginning of his child's life), a visit and treat Baba clearly remembered and spoke about (around 2009) due to the hugeness of the "lyangcha" that got served on that occasion.. and Prithiviraj having become and stayed my friend under the most unexpected and unusual of circumstances, attending Baba's Shraddh (marking the end of Baba's life on earth). It is stranger, that although Baba had met Apala on a couple of occasions when she visited our house, and Prithiviraj had visited our house around 2009-2011 on a couple of evenings when he had met Ma, Buro and Sayari, Baba and Prithiviraj had never met each other!
"We get only that much that we are supposed to get. Only that much happens that is supposed to happen." Prithiviraj summed up.

Thanks Aurna for just being there.. Thanks to life for keeping Apala Dasgupta and Prithiviraj Dasgupta as my "friends", despite every reason of it happening otherwise.. Thanks for a place that Ma agreed to go to, after all the disappointment I had over Sunday evening.. Thankful that I could take Ma out of home first to the bank, then to Gariahat, and then to meet Aurna.. Thankful for the few smiles and laughs that I could see from her, after her severe depression over the last couple of days.. 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Aasa Jaoar Maajhe - July 5, 2015

Went to South City Mall to watch "Aasa Jaoar Maajhe" .. A place where I have never watched a film without Baba.. Yes, I did feel his absence, but then, I also felt his presence.... As he was a movie-addict and loved going to multiplexes, today from the very beginning I felt his presence around me.. It is a film that is "BEAUTIFUL" to say the least.. It shows how little is actually needed.. It is a film for those who do not chatter in movie theaters.. It is a film for those who love good cinema.. It is a lesson for those who are dissatisfied for not getting enough from their relationship.. SO little is actually needed to be satisfied, to be at peace, to be in love, to stay in love, to give, to receive.. If you want to.. if you know how to.. Thanks Aditya Vikram SenguptaRitwik Chakraborty, and @Basabdatta Chatterjee for this unique film! Kudos to the debut director for this wonderful creation! Every award this film has won and will win is well-deserved.. I only had a small doubt whether the international audience could grasp the entire essence of the film without the translations of "tumi je aamar" and "nishi raat baanka chaand" in the sub-titles..
I can write volumes about the entire experience of today's watch and how it all unfolded.. how Ma ignored all my requests and stayed back home.. how helpless I felt to realize that I cannot make her feel better even if I want to.. But, then, I am stubborn, as everybody who knows me well is aware.. So, I will keep trying..
Ranabir Ray, thanks for buying the tickets .. could sell Ma's.. no money was "wasted"..