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I just love being a traveler

October 18, 2011

Some time back, my mother had called me a rolling stone. That’s because I moved so much in my life. For the past 11 years, I’ve been mostly in one home, a new experience for me. Yet I feel like a traveler, traveling through two worlds: India and the U.S. Two vibrant countries, one absorbing into her bosom all who came as aggressors, the other confused about how to and whether to accept others as immigrants while keeping the Native population in reservations.

There are layers in both lands that I love, but this is not what this blog is about.

You just never know what India will show you. Even a metro city like Delhi. We went to a neighborhood park yesterday, my mom with her retinue of daughter, housekeeper and nurse. Oh yes, and a driver who stayed in the car, probably sleeping.

The camera nestled in my bag, but I didn’t take it out. I was too busy juggling mom, the scenes and my husband who called just then. This is what we saw:

A lady passed by, possibly in her seventies, with two people who were obviously carers but not family. Dignified, peaceful, but I felt blessed that my mom and I could have each other. Family matters.

Another lady passed by and as I’d been bemoaning the tremendous weight I’ve gained since my dad died [my way of mourning or grieving seems to have been to neglect my exercises and even my mother-in-law was shocked to see how much weight I’ve put on], Lali pointed out – “See, that lady is even fatter than you.” Of course, she said it in Hindi, though she’s been taking English lessons and probably understands everything anyone says in English. I was not consoled, however. There’s a point I need to reach to push me into exercising. Perhaps seeing my homeopath today will do that. She’d scolded me the last time she met me, as she too has never seen me this fat.

OK, back to the scenes.

A retinue of runners passed by. Young, lithe twenty-somethings. What was surprising is the old white-bearded man in their midst! He was pointed out to my mom as an inspiration! Ma was walking quite smoothly with her walker, which is good in and of itself considering she had two hip surgeries early this year.

A group of young men passed us by, running with a purpose. I thought they were going out the gate, as the sun had set and twilight hours are short in Delhi. But as we rounded a corner, there they were again. Leapfrogging down the newly mown flower beds.

I haven’t yet mentioned the young briskly walking girl who’d already passed us by thrice by the time we had taken half a round of the walk-way.

As we went forward, the trainees, with a sense of purpose I haven’t worked out yet, were being directed by their coach to take turns carrying each other running down the grassy lanes.

Ma was tired and moved to her wheelchair that Jamuna had been wheeling. She smiled and we paused to watch.

The father we’d seen walking down the road on our way to the park, entered through the gate. His son was still sleeping on his shoulders, bent double. A vision of fathers and mothers running through American streets with special large-wheeled strollers carrying sleeping babes rushed through my vision.

I just love being a traveler. Life has such surprising moments.

The music of the cars whizzing by the Rose Garden at the end of the work-day, the sounds of husband in my ear from half a continent away, interrupted by a call from the gas delivery man, and gentle chatter of people resting in the benches strewn liberally around, all carried in the fabled dust of a Delhi dusk.

I just love traveling through life.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. October 19, 2011 11:24 am

    Traveling expands our life and brain too. Our religious pilgrimages are based on this. That is a way to make people travel as much as possible.

  2. October 20, 2011 3:35 am

    thank you mata!

  3. October 28, 2011 10:59 am

    … felt like we were walking with you. I’ve also put on a bit of weight – I think its about being over 50 🙂 – planning on some brisk walks and more yoga!

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