2007 April – My wedding with S was finally fixed (Ours was Love marriage that why I used the word ‘finally’). The first preparation step towards the wedding was renovating our house. My mother was very happy and had already spoken to one of our neighbors about renting their house temporarily.
We had to vacate the house for workers to start their work. We had been living in the same house for more than 20 years, trying to empty the house was very tedious… we were digging in, more and more things were coming out. It was the turn of the attic in my bed room. One of the workers had climbed in plugged in a bulb and exclaimed to see number of the articles (Baboi idi antha kaali cheyali antey oka roju antha paduthundi amma!!!) that were dumped here over the years.
First thing that came down THUD!!!, was a bag filled with my footwear that I probably collected for a few years. My mother dared to put them up all up in dirty gunny bag. MUMMY ….. goes high a horrifying tone … but then no use she was no where around not even in the mood to take all this. Opened bag neatly and slowly to see all them covered layers of dust, all them looked like they were of the same color .. Err…. brown or beige or biscuit or something in between. I dug into the bag found one of my favorite pair of chappals that bought in Pune a few years ago. Beige flats with the finger holder and leg strap nicely embroidered with yellow and purple threads. I neatly cleaned them with cloth hanging around and put my legs into them and thought of nice bhandini print salwar.
Then about 7 school bags filled with books came down. When I was kid I had habit of buying a new school bag every year. After every years annual exams I would pack all my books in the bag and put them up in the attic (waiting for my dad to buy me a new school bag). This practiced continued till my graduation days; only thing that changed was that the books would go into the huge bookshelf. I opened a couple of school bags and was going through a couple of books. I was amazed to find my ten years report cards; each had a passport size photograph on it. Looked through all of them and was wondering how much one changes and learns in 10 years. I was smiling looking through those report card not remember how good I was at studies(Was just above average in class, never got any ranks nor aimed for any) but good and joyful those days were.
Out came a cry for help and jumped out of the memories, it was my maid she was not able to carry the suitcase that was being passed on to her. The green suit case came down to floor from our hands. This was my favorite suitcase, the biggest one we had (the hard suitcase with out wheels) in our house. If my mother was packing this, it meant that we were going out on a looooooong vacation, usually for summer holidays. It had lost its handle but was still heavy. I opened the box to find heaped up clothes squeezed down into the box… all mine. One by one I removed them and picked up a few of favorites –
The Famous DDLJ dress, mine was Bluish black, I remember it had a creamy top that went with it, could not find the top in big lot.
- Two long skirts, one white with huge black flowers on it and other with pink flowers on it and seeing I thought I could where them around at least couple more time since long skirts were in and I can be sure no one around will wear something like mine.
- A blue Denim shirt, on which Jadeja signed for me in Banglore airport (got big growl from my mother when back home for spoiling nice new expensive shirt and then that was OK. I loved Jadeja)
Soon I went into next room pulled over the DDLG dress. It looked perfect on mismatched blouse, a little above my knees. I was proud that my 8th standard dress still fits at the age of 24.
A long list of items started to pour down badminton bats (just the frame and no nets), flattened football and volleyball, Barbie Doll- hair standing upright (would have had hair cut in my bro’s Salon) and twisted legs and couple of bhindis sticking to it ….. and went on a list of old toys….I then a opened rolls of posters, seeing them I couldn’t stop laughing. All of them of Saif Ali Khan, with a curly crop of undone hair and funk both on the fore head and the neck, this was may be during the days of Mein Khilladi tu Anadi Days. My father never allowed putting them up on the walls.
Then, big things lined up down the attic. Stored teak wood which was probably put up when we actually built the house in 86 – 87 and never saw light again. Fevicol cans that had manufacturing dates of 1985, 1986. Boxes of rusted nails and screws, Aluminum chairs (which I remember seeing only old photographs), Huge utensils that probably used for cooking during our Gruhapravesh in 87. Steel utensils with my grandfather’s name etched on it. Old mattress and bed sheets brought together with a dobi knot and loads of other things. All of them put together could help two families sufficient with home supplies.
By afternoon we put everything on the floor and my mother walked in, as she saw me she started laughing seeing my attire an old hat, a brown top with DDLJ dress and jeans beneath and clad in pair dusty embroidered chappals. The rest of the evening we spent in distributing all stuff to the watchman and other workers. Except the wood, a few clothes and of course my footwear we had nothing we could use or will use again. Finally we had an empty Attic.
Now my mother has gotten back her storage space. And from the next day we all know what’s going to happen. All that’s useless will go up again and get accumulated probably till before my brother gets married and that’s no near … may be another ten years to go.