Ties that bind

A note to my brother

My earliest memories of you include fighting over chalk, chocolates and crayons. Weekends and summer holidays (when you weren’t in Calcutta) were about whether we should play ghar-ghar or teacher-teacher. We fought over TV serials and very importantly, which episode of Ramayana or Mahabharata to watch that afternoon. We’ve fought like crazy, I’ve bullied you and you’ve made me cry often. But you are the closest I have to a sibling. In age. In temperament. Ma said it was because we share the same zodiac sign.

So I begin with an apology. I’m sorry for the times I didn’t show up, for the times I disappointed you, for the times you felt let down. I’m trying to make up.

Last year, when Ma told me in passing that we were considering a proposal for you, I had little to say in response. I merely nodded, in indifference. I was curious about the girl in question but I held on to my patience. When she became your fiancé, I called up Papa in the middle of a busy work-day and said I want to meet this girl. Before we could chalk out a plan, I was informed that you too had said a yes. That evening when I met you for dinner, you quietly called me into another room and said, “Didi, aapne to abhi tak photo bhi nahi dekhi hogi na. Yeh dekho!” And then you showed me the first glimpse of my Bhabhi on your cell phone.

I met your fiancé a day later when she was coaxing Dadima to eat something. And suddenly everything felt so right. The earnestness on her face, the euphoria on Dadima’s, it was perfect. It is how I’d always like to remember Dadima.

Over kiwi margaritas, strawberry milkshakes and pesto pasta, we became fast friends. And our childhood trio now included a new partner in crime…Continue reading.

*First published on Parentous.

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