Sundays with Dadi were a bliss. She didn’t just love food, she loved making it. Food was on her mind all the time. In fact, most of our family friends remember how she’d welcome them when they came home, “Coffee kudikaringla?” [Will you have some coffee?]. Soon after, she’d busy herself making a hot cup of filter coffee, that remains unmatched in taste till this date.
Sundays, in particular, were different because it meant eating Dadi’s special Bisibella bath with a dollop of ghee, garnished with fried groundnuts and crispy appalam to go with it. The waft of piping hot flavours in the rice would fill the house and soon see each of us tip-toe into the kitchen to see if lunch was ready. The menu for lunch was almost always the same every Sunday, with Vaanghi Bath [brinjal rice] being its only serious competitor. Once in a while, variety rice like lemon rice, puliogare [tamarind rice], coconut rice and tomato rice would make an appearance.
Dadi was always the head cook for these lunches. Her mind would start working from the previous night. Everything would be mentally organised – from ingredients to quantities. And while everyone relished her food, she’d have a standard line after preparing each meal – “Innike seriyaave varle!” [Today, the taste isn’t upto the mark]. Eventually, this line became an inside joke as all of us waited for her to say it. We’d tell her that if she doesn’t say it, then something was definitely wrong with the food. This conversation would leave us all giggling.
Fortunately, these happy memories linger on and sometimes give you the strength to cope. They’re a reminder that the end isn’t the only thing to remember. What is important, is the journey. The moments, the times spent together, the love, the laughter – they can never be erased and one can only be grateful that it all happened instead of cry that it’s over.
I think I have an inkling on what’s coming in chapter 4. Stay tuned, guys!