Witnessing death is a strange feeling. There is something surreal about the pain, the shock, the inability of being able to avert what is going to come, and the very act of seeing someone go. Sriram, my first cousin, my brother, had a painful end last Tuesday, September 10th. He was just 42 and just in the middle of an important innings, nowhere close to the slog overs. Blessed with a wonderful wife, two adorable daughters, and an aging father, he had a life to look forward to. An infected liver because of jaundice, and his resorting to alcohol, did him in. Just the previous week, he was showing all signs of recovery. He succumbed to sudden multiple internal hemorrhages and was on life support the last four days of life before giving up. Will dearly miss my brother, though it is nothing compared to the loss my perippa, my SIL and my nieces are left to deal with. My younger niece, aged 9, is gazing at the azure every night because that is where I told her dad will be. One among the stars. Looking down at her and her akka aged 13. Smiling and appreciating every little and big thing they both do. Blessing them from there while mommy stands by them as a huge pillar of strength, educating and empowering them, helping them learn what is right and wrong, to help discern good from the bad. With the rest of us aunts, uncles, and grandpa to back her up and be there for them. Always. Rest in peace ra Srirama!
In another unexpected turn of events, Kolla, Vasu’s dear grandma, bid adieu last Friday, September 13th. I had blogged about Kolla here and here. She was a wonderful old woman with a lot of zest for life. She believed in living life to the fullest. Diet control to her was blasphemy. She used to have the spiciest, sourest, sweetest, saltiest, and bitterest of foods. A small bowl of ‘gotsu’ she made as accompaniment for her small bowl of Ven-Pongal, consisted of a minimum of 15 green chillies, tamarind the size of a huge lemon, an equal measure of jaggery, salt, and twice that amount of oil. She’d wipe her plate clean of pickles before I headed home from work. She used to hate me for my constant ‘No’ to her freaky diet, but loved me for everything else. She loved all her grand-children, though the grand-daughters were her favorite! She woke up to the Tamizh daily- Dina Malar. Her favorite news item was the going rate of gold and silver. She used to read the entire paper in installments, till 3.00 PM. The Tamizh soaps kept her occupied till 10.00 PM. She had read the paper and watched all the soaps the previous day. Kolla (or Kollas), as she was fondly called by her 8 great-grand-kids instead of kollu-patti, hit a sugar-level of close to 500 (and ironically, it was the week where she seemed to have resorted to some diet control) and was hospitalized early in the morning. She had a massive, silent attack in the late after-noon and had a quiet, calm death. Kolla style. Rest in peace Kolla patti.