My grandmother visited me yesterday. Having passed away nine years ago she chose to pay me a visit in my dreams. Her visits, being few and far in between are always pleasant. Even though I knew her to a far lesser degree compared to my siblings, there was something about her that always caught my attention and has ever since stayed with me.
Being my mother’s mother she paid us a visit daily till we shifted base from Bombay to Goa in the mid 90’s. Balancing herself as she carried her pot-belly on her frail legs through the lanes and bylanes and up the four floors of my building, she made sure she got us our favourite sugar pills, which we used to call white chocolates.
Having been educated only till the fourth in Konkani medium, she didn't let her lack of education come in her way; because she, at a very young age had learnt that conviction is something that can take you places and is something that our books or educational system can never teach. The hardships she faced while she was young reinforced that belief in her. Always wanting to be well informed and not dependent on others, she would make the most of what she had, which wasn't much. Using the state owned Doordarshan to her advantage she would switch on her black and white television at 8 pm sharp to tune in to the news. For the next ten minutes she would be glued to the happenings on the screen absorbing every single detail and trying her best to comprehend what the anchor read by translating the Hindi into the best of English she knew. After ten minutes, when the news segment made way for the segment in English, she would sit through the English news as well. She did this for two reasons, to confirm what she had understood was right and to make sure she was abreast on all the happenings as some topics covered in the news in Hindi were not covered in the news in English and vice versa.
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