Monday, October 10, 2016

Catering for the twilight years!

The day had begun on a quiet note and today was a holiday thanks to the ongoing Dussehra festival. Rema and Achu had kicked off for Palakkad by about a half past 9. Their car had been here since the awful day of 04 Sep when they'd come to have lunch and spend that Sunday with mom, at the helm of affairs, out here. But what turned out to be was catastrophic, that none of us had even thought of or were prepared for!

After the formalities at the hospital were over that day, my sister and I'd gone ahead with mom's body to our parents' place at Kottarakkara. Achu had followed us in the car along with Padmakumar and Lekha. The car was driven back to Guruvayur, by your's truly, a day after the immersion of mom's ashes at Varkala. Ever since that day it has been in our porch waiting to be driven away by Achu when he came back from Bangalore on short leave and today, was that day.

Achu's eye needed an ophthalmologist's attention which his parents had provided on reaching Palakkad and has been put on medicines and an antibiotic course for five days. He returns to Bangalore tomorrow and begins paving his way to take up the new job on offer, in his hometown. Rema had carried mom's personal effects - her clothes - to hand them over to an orphanage/old age home at Palakkad. I'd parted with mom's clothes - many of them still retained her aroma - with great anguish!

The evening walk was out as Babu Syriac - Joma and Anil - Radha had fetched up around 7 o'clock. It was a nostalgic trip down memory lane, with everyone missing mom all through, because had she been there, she'd have been at the center of the proceedings playing the perfect host, giving me orders if and when I made errors in looking after the guests!

It also happened to be the 34th wedding anniversary of Babu and Joma. We'd wished them the day before yesterday by e-mail but had completely forgotten about it and Anil's prodding was required to trigger the thought process! Wonder whether it was part of my increasing forgetfulness or the disarrayed state of mind after mom's passing away, I just kept quiet when Babu had playfully questioned my loss of memory! ........Nevertheless, apologies Babu and Joma, for my faux pas!!

It was during the course of the evening that a plan for setting up a 'nest' for five of us - from the SSKZM's class of '72, with like minded outlook towards life at a place in Kerala of our choosing to cater for the twilight years, for companionship - was discussed! Babu Syriac, Suresh Laxman, Anil Nair, Louis George and I would make up the tenants of the nest. After ascertaining the willingness from Suresh and Louis, the location, the financial implications towards the making of the nest - it would be by refurbishing an accommodation owned by one among us as it will reduce unnecessary expenditure and we don't have the money to splurge either - the year of commencement of our living together etc will be worked out through deliberations.


They'd returned to Thrissur to put up at Anil's place for the night!   

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