Saturday, 2 January 2010

My days in Palghat , Kerala

This remembrance of my days in Palghat is like going into the misty atmosphere of December and still be able to recollect the vivid pictures I had kept in my mind when I was hardly 4 or 5 years old.My paternal grandpa's house was in Palghat , I use 'was' since it no longer belongs to us which we sold around 70's and now I heard big buildings have come in that place and the old house with big garden around had been demolished along with the memories of the previous owners of the land.
That house so big ....well can be described as a bungalow with halls, bed rooms,pooja room,dining,kitchen ,garden around the building with coconut trees, mango trees,guava trees, flowering trees of many varieties,a big well and a nearby a big bathroom which was like a hall of present day.
From the bathroom there was a way connecting the Pooja room- without going into the house , could go to the pooja room directly.
Kitchen was separate and the dining hall was so big where around 40 or 50 people could dine.
For small boys like us this house was like a playground where my grandma or mother could not find out where we were unless our names were called for lunch .Hide and seek games could be played inside the house and the garden as well while doing so , we could pluck some fruits hanging low in the garden like guava or mango or 'seetha'
fruits which we never said we did to our elders since they could shout for eating them without washing.
Another escape from this house is , we could go into the next house which was our another grandfather's house [ my grand father's younger brother ]; to go into the house we did not need to go through the street.Between the two houses , the compound wall had a door which would always be open day and night though which we could go into the house and spend time , nobody would bother why we were there etc.,
If the grandpa happened to see us in that house , if ever we were seen, he would call and give sweets of those days , which were called 'orange mittais' in those days, I dont know whether that mittais are still available,that mittais were kept in a glass jar only for us since no young tiny tots were available in that house-- may be he would have used one or two mittais in those days.
My grandpa I have never seen since he passed away before we were born and we were told by my father he was in Railways and more than six footer and worked in various places. My another 'thatha'[ my grand father's brother] resigned from Railways to look after the properties and take care of the agriculture lands.
In one of the halls on the left side , I remember some musical instruments like tabla,harmonium , veena and violin were kept which we came to know latter days were played either by my uncle [ my father's younger brother] and one of my aunties.
Here I have to tell of my uncle , who is a master of many things; he was a photographer who developed his own photos in one corner of the building with his tables, cameras,developing room. He used to play many musical instruments and draw pictures of individuals in black and white either by seeing the photograph or asking them to sit in a chair and did.
My brother was admitted in the 1 std in a local school where one of my aunties was a teacher, since I was also adamant of going to school I was also taken to school by my aunt and I was sitting in school in a class.When everyone's name was called ,my name was never called in that school which I complained to my mum and aunt, so in the subsequent days the teacher used to call my name last and I was happy.I came to know when I grew up that I was not even admitted in the school since I was not eligible owing to my age, so my aunt asked the class teacher to call my name at last.
Then my father got a transfer to Tamil Nadu and I started my schooling ,well anyway my malayalam lessons were only one year although I see malayalam movies regularly , I dont know to read or write or speak, but understand completely.

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