Many stories in our lives, no matter how little, but leave us changed.
I begin with my own family’s story, which broke my barriers of India-Pakistan, and changed my life for all times to come:
Living in a rented house in New Delhi, India for some time, we were faced with a senior couple as out Landlords, who were old workers of a radical extremist organisation. They put restrictions on my parents for the list of food items we would not be allowed to cook in the kitchen.
Auntie, as my parents called her, would come and check the kitchen often. But since my parents were complying to their demands, respecting their sentiments, they did not object. In fact, they let her reassure herself.
Once my Papa’s Khala in Lahore, Pakistan went sick, and he wanted to see her before she passed away. Luckily we got the visa too, easily. My parents informed Uncle-Aunty that we are going for a visit to Pakistan. Honestly we expected a negative reaction.
On the contrary, a day later, the senior couple came upstairs to us and made a ‘moving’ appeal. They said they lived in some house in Lahore before migrating in 1947, as newlyweds, and if we could get the picture of that house. The house address, they had memorised by heart, even after almost 29 years, in 1978
The address was (some number), Ram Gali, Lahore.
We went to visit their house, took pictures of it. The current residents were very hospitable and showed us all the different curious things about the house they had left preserved “as it is’ in the house.
One such thing was the OM installed at the head of the entrance of the house.
When we returned back, first thing my Papa did was to develop the photos, and present it as an album to them.
The couple cried in tears seeing the pictures and hearing the details we had told to them from the residents. They were particularly moved at the OM still in place, and the name of the street still being Ram Gali.
Almost the same time, my Nani had passed away, and Ammi would feel depressed. Auntie said, “You are my daughter, as it is I have none ”. She had two sons, who were living away.
Auntie never came up for checking the kitchen, but to give guavas from her tree in the back yard to us kids, or jasmine (chameli ) flowers from the garden, which my mother loved so much.
Our house was under construction. Uncle offered, “Take me there, since I have experience in house building I can give you some suggestions”.
After 6 months we moved to our own house. But the relationship of love continued. They did not visit much as they were very old, but whenever we visited their house as family we were received by hugs with “We are your Nani Nana.”
Attending an AGM of an NGO for seniors, Mr Roy, from DELHI, INDIA narrated a story with emotions & tears:
“My 89 year old mother was admitted in a hospital emergency in Toronto, in a semiconscious state. The attending doctor, considering her age & condition, to my horror said
“You must prepare yourself for an end-of-life measures for her”.
Mr Roy replied: “She is my mother, so I do not accept your offer and demanded for a change of doctor.”
They complied. And another Dr Kirmani, with origin from KARACHI, PAKISTAN was assigned. He told me “Just pray for her, I will try my best.”
“After 3 weeks in hospital, my mother came back home, with mild recent memory loss, but is active and reads newspapers but she forgets easily. My mother is alive and prays for Dr Kirmani’s well being each day”
I would beg anyone who has any story of LOVE, please share here in the comments and on event page:
Celebrate India, Pakistan Independence Days for PEACE on 14, 15 August