And I don’t know how, Mi. Not complaining really…but a little surprised nevertheless. The good news is I don’t have to alter the bag of clothes I’ve been procrastinating over for months now. The bad news is all the clothes I’ve bought since are a size too large. Okay, so to begin with I usually go in for a slightly larger kurta – because the size that fits me perfectly feels a little too snug. Ugh. Also, I am cool with a slightly larger size – literally. Summer is almost upon us. I didn’t even notice winter – although my skin did.

The days are so warm and the sun is scorching. I am thinking of those days we used to feel so happy about the clothes drying quickly thanks to our verandah being bathed with sunlight for the better half of the day. We would rush through our chores in the morning and have the clothes hung up to dry by 9 am so they could soak in the sun. “Vidya, the sun’s heat is being wasted” you’d say and we’d use that as an excuse to make things.

Now, I dare not keep anything in the verandah, unless my goal is to mess it up. Those pigeons are a menace. Our neighbor has some netting strung up and before they knew it, one stupid pigeon got in somehow and didn’t know how to get out. Like that time a couple of them sat in the enclosure and didn’t know how to fly out and kept flapping their wings. Then Sury gently lifted them out and let them fly away. We’ve covered that place with a plastic sheet. Yeah, I had the last laugh on that one – for preserving the plastic sheet that our mattress came packed in!

For one of his seminars Sury was gifted with a plant as a memento. We were so delighted. Only to find, two days later..that the pigeons have started to nibble on the leaves. They have no taste, really. They are also scraping the walls in the verandah. I have to move the plant indoors soon.

I wake up every morning with a headache and suspect it is not my eyesight. I mean, it had better not be…these glasses are way too expensive. You’ll be proud to know I plan to go for a complete health check tomorrow.

Oh, tomorrow!. Feb 8. We’ve been talking about it all the time, marveling at how it is now four years. Somehow, to me, it doesn’t feel that way. Probably because I am constantly talking to you in my head. Reliving moments, crying over some, laughing over some. I remember how Gopmama rushed over on Feb 7 and was furious with me that he didn’t see you alive. None of us expected what happened.

I’ve arranged lunch at the Seva Sadan.

Nothing will fill the void you left, Mi. We’re trying to be practical and practice your principles. You always gave good advice, even if we laughed at it sometimes. What I’ll never get over is how you lived the “love is the answer, no matter what the question” attitude.

As you rightly kept repeating, we realize so many things when a person has gone.

Reminds me of that story about the brahmin boy whose father constantly scolded him for not doing his sandhya vandanam and all the rituals that go with the sacred thread. He kept telling him that one day he would realize things. Finally, when the father dies, the boy completely turns over a new leaf and does all the things his father expected of him when he was alive. His mother feels sad and tells him, how nice it would have been had he done these things and made his father happy when he was alive. What was the point of it now?

I am glad you insisted we said our I love yous every day and did not postpone any intentions we had, waiting for an auspicious moment.

For you.

Brinjal Curry