I came back yesterday after a brief one week vacation. The main purpose of the visit was to bring back my family, but my wife postponed it owing to the swine flu scare and baby being too small to take the harsh desert weather. I had to agree with her: why take the risk? They would join me in Feb, after her first birthday. A chance for her Grand-parents to live their moment with her (at my expense- Thanks to video chat though).
My daughter is seven months old. Unlike her mom and dad, she is extremely naughty. In fact my MIL feels that she is the naughtiest in the family for several generations. She knows how to get things done her way, or get the world to revolve around her, which is anyway the case back home. Come have a peep and you would know what exactly the definition of the word ‘pampered’ is.
We had her (my daughter’s) chorunnu( first feeding) ceremony at Guruvayoor temple on 8th night. It was fun and more like a picnic or get-together than a pilgrimage.
However small my vacations are I always look forward to them with zeal and zest. Since we fly in the easterly direction I get a chance to see the perfect sunrise, and then it’s the moment of wait, lasting for few hours before we finally sight the land. When the plane is flying over the land I am totally mesmerized and captivated by the sheer beauty of it-Kerala with its luxuriant greenery, the rivers flowing like serpents (in fact it resembles a large python swimming across a placid lake), thriving life in the form of buses and trucks, houses in all sorts of shapes and designs.
Once landed and finally out of the stale warm air of the plane, I am suddenly greeted by the cool and fresh bouquet of the moist breeze, often swathed in rain drops and aroma of the green coconut palm.
Then there is disappointing long wait at the airport, an abnormal queue for immigration and customs check and finally baggage clearance, the most dreaded of all.
Once out of the airport, I look forward to my people, waiting for me often hours in advance not listening to my alerts about the delayed flight, finally a reunion with a warm hug.
Once at home, there is a half hour debriefing of all the events of the past year, my whole family surrounding me in a perfect circle. Once freshened up its time to hit the dining table, to taste the most exotic delicacy of the world, mother made breakfast.
In the evening once rested and recovered from the jetlag, it’s time to visit my girlfriend, or my eternal girlfriend: the roaring yet tender hearted Sea.
I love the sea, the waves, the sand and the beach in their entirety. It is bewildering to look at the sea as it makes me feel very small but it also makes me inexplicably happy. I am passionately in love with the vastness and the complexity of the sea; I am also scared of it. Yet I love playing with the waves and staring at them for hours and hours together. I also love watching the red sun slowly disappear into the sea, leaving behind a wave of darkness and gloom.
Once on the beach we make merry building sand castles, collecting sea shells and what I love the most; playing with the waves. I challenge the sea and the waves and as the waves move back, they carry the sand under my feet; suddenly I get a sinking feeling in my belly, and how I love it!
As a child I loved playing with the waves, chasing crabs, writing on sand to be guzzled by the sea and challenging the sea further and further, but now as an adult I enjoy it more watching silently. I enjoy the sun going down, giving me a felling of emptiness and a miserable sadness of losing someone so near and dear.
The food is heavenly, especially the home made. My Mother-in- law is a god gifted chef and her Kappa and meen curry is out of this world. The taste lingers in my mouth for the whole year after my vacation and makes my short vacation so much more special.
As with everything in life there is a time of departure and that’s the most saddening of experiences in life. It also gives me a feeling of emptiness inside and every time I have to depart my family I feel miserable and sad. It is as if I am losing something that is so dear to me, but the very thought that I would be seeing them another day makes me get up and walk back, albeit disappointed.