Thursday, July 12, 2007

Rare luxuries

Life's so full now, I hate any semblance of space in the crowd. Baba, Ma, N, G and I. When all of us are in the living room together-- N 3/4th out of the bean bag, sprawled on the floor, G on top of him, I in my sloth bearish (most lyad khawa) posture on the futon and Ma and Baba, the only semblance of propriety, on the chairs - it an mela-esque atmosphere. I ain't complaining, because, I don't have the same luxury when I visit them in Calcutta. So loving every minute of having them around.
Baba's been with us for a month now. Ma arrived a couple of days back. Baba flew down. Ma prefers the good old railroad. No amount of persuasion to get her on to a plane works. Her feet are too well grounded, I say. The train, wonder of wonders, arrived 10 mins before scheduled. She has come with one 24" VIP, a medium-sized red kit bag, a small overnighter, her trademark Guess shopper in which she carries her water bottles, a couple of plastic bags and of course her handbag. The suitcase has wheels so weight doesn't matter. But the red kit bag just can't be lifted. "what's in it, Ma?" "Oh just some stuff I thought you would need," she said, as a hint of embarrassment escaped her voice. Knowing my Ma, that was a really "loaded" answer.
Since she arrived on a weekday, I chose not to ask any more and got on with my daily chores before leaving for work. Ma quietly began pottering around revealing bits and pieces of the treasure she had brought from home and beyond. First, korapaaker jolbhora taalshnash shondesh (sorry non-Bengali readers, it is inexplicable, hence ethereal), white mishti doi (since I abhor the "lal" variety), a bag of "potol"-- some 2 kilos of it. A packet of Dalpuri'r pur, a watermelon, 2 cucumbers and before she came out with more, I left for office. On my return, I am asked what i want to eat. Aahh the bliss of being brought a glass of water, or even being asked about food-- I had quite forgotten about it. While I wallow in the attention, I look around for new additions to my kitchen. None that catches my eye. Very strange, I say to myself in the most Poirot-esque undertone. I wander leisurely in to the guest room and Voila! The flap of the red kit bag lies listlessly on the floor revealing stacks of "potato". Yes Potato -- in medium and small sizes. "MAAAAAAAAAAAAA!" I don't try muffling such screams, I don't believe they should be. "Ki holo?" She comes running. "Eta ki korecho?" "Egulo Doshghora'r chasher aloo," she says with the most unabashed smile (Doshghora is a pristine little village in Hooghly district where my Ma hails from. It's my Transcendental world). She's brought FIVE kgs of home-grown potatoes!
I know these days we pay for every morsel of our existence and hence "home-grown" or "from our farm" are rather romantic feudal concepts. But, I, dear friends have a long lineage of "landlords", commonly (de) recognized as Zamidaars in Bengali. That too, both from my paternal and maternal side. Despite the feudal system and landlordship being abolished now, needless to say, my parents revel in the lineage and have their own ways of reinforcing it in GeNext, much to our disdain. The above is a perfect case in point. But to carry Five kilo of potatoes as a separate luggage? Jeees!
I was too dumbstruck to take the conversation any further, even though Ma picked up her favourite refrain " Aar joddin achi, toke diye jai...erpor toh aar keu debey na." Thank God for small mercies to the last bit!
And let me tell you here, Ma comes from a different planet altogether. Ask her for a grain or a chaff and she'll get the whole paddy field for you. But very few people really honour the worth of such women. Sadly, including self.

13 comments:

Rimi said...

Alu toh bujhlam, kintu potol? Potol??? Jodi bujhtam Bangalore e potol paoa jai na, tao oi okhadyo bostuta Kolkata theke niye jaoar mane ta ki? Tomar Ma ki ekhono tomai jor kore 'pushtikor kabar' khaiye thaken? :D

Priya said...

Potol pawa jeto na until recently..now in abundance...kheye kheye bore hoye gechi!
And Yes, to your last question ;-)

Urmi said...

But but but, Priya - if that is Doshghora'r potol, then it makes sense. And this is from as vehemently an anti-potol person as you could ever find. (No offence to Ruru's brother hehe)

Remember the kochi potol bhaja and luchi and chholar dal. Ufff... unforgettable :)

Priya said...

tai toh bolchi pujoye chole aaye..let's relive the moments...who knows perhaps for the last itme...

Sudeshna said...

sudhu alu potol?dashghara shunei koto kichhu mone pore gelo.sei rather mela sei telebhaja aar tokdir muri makha... sandhya bela gari baranday boshie antakshari kela aro koto ki....is it possible for us to forget buluda even?

Urmi said...

E ki!!?? Eta ki reunion hochchhe naki??

Kiran said...

I really liked ur post, thanks for sharing. Keep writing. I discovered a good site for bloggers check out this www.blogadda.com, you can submit your blog there, you can get more auidence.

The Anonymous said...

Hey.. Have a story to share, without worrying about revealing urself ?.. Tell it to the virtual world... let the world know your story but not your identity. :) http://www.project71.com/readme Enjoyy!

The Anonymous said...

Everyone should see this.. http://www.project71.com/readme Enjoyy!

mystic rose said...

this is such a sweet post, I enjoyed every moment of it.

adam said...

Hello I just entered before I have to leave to the airport, it's been very nice to meet you, if you want here is the site I told you about where I type some stuff and make good money (I work from home): here it is

milf said...

black mold exposureblack mold symptoms of exposurewrought iron garden gatesiron garden gates find them herefine thin hair hairstylessearch hair styles for fine thin hairnight vision binocularsbuy night vision binocularslipitor reactionslipitor allergic reactionsluxury beach resort in the philippines

afordable beach resorts in the philippineshomeopathy for eczema.baby eczema.save big with great mineral makeup bargainsmineral makeup wholesalersprodam iphone Apple prodam iphone prahacect iphone manualmanual for P 168 iphonefero 52 binocularsnight vision Fero 52 binocularsThe best night vision binoculars here

night vision binoculars bargainsfree photo albums computer programsfree software to make photo albumsfree tax formsprintable tax forms for free craftmatic air bedcraftmatic air bed adjustable info hereboyd air bedboyd night air bed lowest pricefind air beds in wisconsinbest air beds in wisconsincloud air beds

best cloud inflatable air bedssealy air beds portableportables air bedsrv luggage racksaluminum made rv luggage racksair bed raisedbest form raised air bedsaircraft support equipmentsbest support equipments for aircraftsbed air informercialsbest informercials bed airmattress sized air beds

bestair bed mattress antique doorknobsantique doorknob identification tipsdvd player troubleshootingtroubleshooting with the dvd playerflat panel television lcd vs plasmaflat panel lcd television versus plasma pic the bestThe causes of economic recessionwhat are the causes of economic recessionadjustable bed air foam The best bed air foam

hoof prints antique equestrian printsantique hoof prints equestrian printsBuy air bedadjustablebuy the best adjustable air bedsair beds canadian storesCanadian stores for air beds

migraine causemigraine treatments floridaflorida headache clinicdrying dessicantair drying dessicantdessicant air dryerpediatric asthmaasthma specialistasthma children specialistcarpet cleaning dallas txcarpet cleaners dallascarpet cleaning dallas

vero beach vacationvero beach vacationsbeach vacation homes veroms beach vacationsms beach vacationms beach condosmaui beach vacationmaui beach vacationsmaui beach clubbeach vacationsyour beach vacationscheap beach vacations

bob hairstylebob haircutsbob layeredpob hairstylebobbedclassic bobCare for Curly HairTips for Curly Haircurly hair12r 22.5 best pricetires truck bustires 12r 22.5

washington new housenew house houstonnew house san antonionew house venturanew houston house houston house tx

sulagna chatterjee said...

ohh the sound of ptol and aaloo makes me whine for home..considerig durga pujo round the corner i soo miss the dhunuchi naach and everything bangla :( loved reading your post..my baba ma too have the same concepts of "eikhane toh bhalo kichu pavaa jae na..taai nie eshchi"