We had just returned from a trip to Singapore. The whole trip was so amazing and we had such a great time there. And then we settled for another extended holiday at mom’s place.
I remember very well – it was the day of Chitra Pournami (the full moon day in the Tamil month of Chithirai). When the moon is wonderful and glowing, we always have our dinner in the terrace, under the moonlight. It’s such an amazing experience. Added to the comfort levels were my patti’s amazing hands (its called kai manam in tamil) – those hands had a magic to them. Whatever she touched tasted so delicious that we’ll surely be licking our hands and asking for more. And when she mixes the simple Thayir sadam (curd rice) and gives a spoonful in our hands, we wait for the customary Maavadu (pickled tiny mangoes) or the Vetha kuzhambu to be poured in the center of the Thayir sadam and we gulp it down very quickly, preparing ourselves for the next round of rice that comes our way. Even thinking and writing about it makes me miss my patti and her delicious food !
**Pardon for wandering into Patti stories – couldn’t help it**
And on this particular Chitra Pournami, me and my two little ones (the younger one was three years), my sister, brothers, dad and mom were all there to feast on what my patti was going to feed us in our hands.
My mom’s place was in the second floor and we had to climb two more floors to reach the terrace. We took all the necessary food, pappad, water, towel and started climbing. I was constantly watching the little one, as she is very much prone to get distracted and not see her way. The staircase was lighted well with tube lights. And we reached the terrace. The terrace was dark except for the moonlight and what an amazing sight it was.
We had such fun eating under the moonlight. One of the best ever experiences to have in one’s lifetime, is to stare at the stars and moon and that’s the moment when the Universe tells you that you are absolutely insignificant compared to the size of the stellar bodies. Its such a humbling experience.
I was also constantly showing the girls the different constellations all the while feeding them. The elder one managed to eat on her own, but the little one was finding it difficult to take the rice in her hand and gulp it too.
After we were done with eating and relaxing, we started to get down for home slowly. It was getting late and we wanted to hit the bed.
The moment we went to the stair case landing, the little one said, “Now, I can see you clearly Ma”. I was shocked. When I asked her “Didn’t you see me clearly in the terrace?”, she said No. She even said that she couldn’t see properly in the night lamp in the bedroom, because it was dark for her. And she just assumed that even we cannot see in the night lamp light and never told me before about it.
It was a rude shock to me. We rushed to the ophthalmologist the next day and found that she needed corrective glasses. She still wears them.
But that moment when she said with such clarity about not being able to see me in the terrace helped me to take her to the doctor and get the problem sorted out.