Link to Part I of this post : A nest without a bird & a bird without a nest. – PART I
With tears in his eyes, Rohit went into his study room and started drafting an email to his sister.
Dear Mrs. Geetanjali Shrikant Raje,
I am not sure if I still reserve the right to call you ‘Geetu’. So it’s appropropriate that I address you by your married name. Secondly, just like you, I could also have written a letter and could have relived my past. But I believe in remembering the past and not re-living the past. Hence, I am writing an email to you.
I am not sure if you still remember, I had a great childhood. I spent very few years of my life with Mamma but those years were the most wonderful years of my life. I remember, though faintly, playing with Mamma-Daddy in the small garden near our house. Mamma died early but not without leaving little seeds of her memories. Daddy was the one, who nurtured those memories till they became beautiful flowers of my life. I sometimes feel, you were fortunate to have never seen her die but I was the unfortunate one to see her die.
I am not sure if you still remember, I would diligently participate in swimming competitions because it was my passport for obtaining scholarships. My swimming skills never won me big medals but they helped me to win good scholarships. Thus allowing Daddy to spend minimal on my school and college education.
I am not sure if you still remember, I had applied for the educational loan because I wanted to go to Harvard. However, it was only on Daddy’s insistence that I stopped the loan procedure. I am not sure if you still remember, how furious I was, when Daddy informed me about the sale of our ancestral home in Ratnagiri. I could not bear that we lost our age old house just for my education. However, I still clearly remember what Daddy told me then, “Never bother about sacrificing your past for your better future!”
I am not sure if you still remember, my BRITISH wife, can read and write Sanskrit better than any Indian, we know. I acknowledge that Jennifer knew nothing about India before our marriage. However, I appreciate the efforts she took over years in learning not just about India but also the most ancient language of India. Due to her openness in embracing our family and our country, I felt that Daddy was never reluctant in accepting Jennifer as his daughter in law.
I am not sure if you still remember, I was never a Facebook Freak. However, I started my FB blitzkrieg only after Daddy started browsing the web world. I would post Photos and Videos of family vacations, office parties, festival celebrations, etc only for Daddy to see my well being. However, even today not many people, watching them realise that those Photos and Videos fail to exhibit my struggle of settling outside India.
I am not sure if you still remember, how perpetually Jennifer and I had requested Daddy to come and stay with us in London. However, each time he would politely refuse us for the reasons better known to him. That too in spite of knowing that it was impossible for Jennifer and me to leave our jobs and for my son to leave his college and come & settle back in India.
The money that I would give Daddy every month was not to justify my responsibility toward my father, as you would like to think. Maybe, it was an attempt by a selfish son to provide a life of dignity to his ailing father and to restore a part of his self respect, which he ‘lost’ by agreeing to leave Mumbai and stay with his daughter in Indore.
Lastly, I will have no regret if my son decides to treat me the way, I treated my father because I will be knowing the exact reasons that would compel my son to lead a life separate from me.
You had once felt that only because of me, our Mumbai home had become like ‘A nest without a bird’. However, after reading your letter I too felt something similar – ‘A bird without a nest.’
Rohit clicked the ‘Send’ button in the left corner the screen and switch off his Desktop.
Disclaimer: Dear Readers – I do not wish to justify any of the two letters in any ways. I only wish to present the two sides of a story, which is a reality in almost every second house around us.
—Have a nice day—