Saturday, January 14, 2012

Moustache tales.

Appa is growing his moustache again!

I'd like to believe that my father is the most good-looking, charming person in our family (until I), and the moustache (which I've never seen him without) only added to his charm and general sense of wholesomeness. I could never imagine appa without a moustache, and I didn't know how attached he was to it, till he sat my cousin down, when he started to grow facial hair, to advise him on the merits of having a moustache. :)

And then October 2009 happened and Appa had to shave his moustache. Later, every few weeks I would say to him, "So, are you going to re-grow the moustache?"
It takes the attention off of the bald-head I reasoned, it makes you look evil if you don't have one, I insisted and your face looks angrier, I told him, without the moustache.

He refused stubbornly, every single time. And I let it go after about eight months or so. We have moved to griping about weightier issues.

Today, I saw him on skype after two weeks, and he'd re-grown his moustache. There really isn't a story to spin here, an elegant recorded moment of bereavement humour or even a note of poignant shock for three seconds when I opened that video call window.

I'm just very very happy.

As hard as it has been for me to [.] my mother, it has been infinitely more difficult for my dad to have [.] her. Our struggles in dealing with the events of Oct 2009 are similar, but our contexts are vastly different. I cry when an email from her email id shows up in gmail search results, but he finds old love letters from when they were engaged while spring cleaning. My cupboard in London is thankfully memory-free, but he shares his cupboard space with a set of shelves that used to hold blouses and matching saree petticoats, but now hold bed linen and spare towels. I carry around in my jewellery box a ring that my mother bought for me once, but its well hidden and mostly obscured by crap from Oasis and Topshop. My dad though, glances at the dressing table at home everyday, which still holds a half-empty bottle of perfume (the maid sweetly picking it up, cleaning the table, and placing it in the same place as she has been instructed to do). The mirror has a bindi she stuck on it the last time she was able to walk to the bathroom and shower by herself, but in London, I have no sticker bindis in the shape she used to favour.

And so we struggle, in everyday bits and pieces and we have been getting better, but there are days when I have felt that only I was getting better and my dad, in that house, in that city, in that bedroom and that kitchen, was never able to move on as I have.

Today I am just happy.


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