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Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Dearest Appayithathayi

Earlier today there was a phone call from India. We were having an afternoon nap. Without realizing that it was day and looking at the clock and seeing 1:30, I told my mom, "isn't it too early to call me for a birthday wish. how many times do I tell you to note time difference before waking me up too early? Call me later" and my mother goes "have bad news for you, and by the way, it is afternoon for you and it is 3 AM for me! Appa is not with us anymore".

My grandfather, who I call "Appa" (daddy) because I saw my mom and all her siblings call him Appa, named me Sundararaman because he was reading "Sundara Kaandam" from Ramayana the previous week. The name implies, Rama who belongs to Sundara (also known as Hanuman or Anjaneya). A pious man who always put family first, there are so many words that rush to my mind.

My grandpa has filled our lives with happiness, tried his best to teach us how to enjoy and appreciate life, handle difficult situations and has been a role model to all his kids and grand kids (which we will pass on to his great grand kids) on how to appreciate people, god, music, and culture.

More than anything, he taught every one how to love, cherish and appreciate one's spouse. In April, when I went to visit him (last time we met), was talking to a local auto rickshaw driver near Hotel Carnival..

Me: Adayar Sri Krishna Sweets ponum pa, variya? (have to go to Adayar, will you come?)

Driver : Jodi Thatha peran dhane nee? (you are "Jodi" grandpa's grandson right?)

Me : !!!

Driver : Unga thatha mudiyudho mudiyaliyo, patti kayya pudichu enga ponalum ezhuthukitte povaru, adhanaala naanga Jodi thathannu solluvom! (your grandpa holds on to your grandmas hand and takes her with him everywhere, irrespective of wheather she can or cannot walk. So we nicknamed him "Jodi" thatha .. which means "partner" by the way!).

He lived a full life. My paati, their 6 children and families which include 11 grand children and 5 great-grand children will all miss him and will definitely celebrate his life.

It feels sad that out of all those people, I am the only one who will not be there and have to go through a grieving process remotely. It is times like these that we need to have Star Trek like Transporters made available sooner. While the rest of them are all gathered in one place as I type this to cremate him, have put together a tribute to him on youtube.

Here is to my Dear Thatha...




We love you!



ps. this is a collection of photos and videos from what was available here. the sound in the background is his reciting Ramayana in 1993 for me. He gave me that tape so I could listen to him whenever I missed him!



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10 Comments:

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 11:25 PM, Blogger Poetry wrote...

God rest his soul in eternal peace.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 12:20 AM, Blogger Kavi wrote...

May his soul rest in peace. And i am sure he lives on in you and other members of the family. In the values and the ideals. And ofcourse in the love.

Praying for peace and strength for yo and all members of the family.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 5:20 AM, Blogger Ugich Konitari wrote...

What a wonderful tribute from a grandson.

(I don't really know you, but seeing the family video suddenly brought back memories of my late parents....)

May his soul rest in peace. And remember, no one really goes away. They live on, always in your hearts and minds. My deepest condolences to you and your family.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:13 PM, Blogger Sriram wrote...

My condolences. May his soul rest in peace.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 8:38 PM, Blogger Just someone wrote...

My heartfelt condolences!

A wonderful tribute indeed!

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:51 AM, Anonymous Me wrote...

Sorry to hear this. My heartfelt condolences.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 4:41 PM, Blogger Sivajini wrote...

His recital/singing sounds so divine and beautiful, I've never heard it like that. My condolences to you and your family.

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:53 PM, Blogger Pavan wrote...

Sundar,

We are saddened to hear about your grandfather's death. Our condolences to you and your family.

-Pavan and Deepti
(Sriram's friends)

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:53 PM, Blogger Pavan wrote...

Sundar,

We are saddened to hear about your grandfather's death. Our condolences to you and your family.

-Pavan and Deepti
(Sriram's friends)

 
I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 3:28 PM, Blogger Balaji S Rajan wrote...

Sundar,

I can understand your feelings. It is very sad to lose someone who had been so close, a role model to you. He should be proud to have a grandson like you as well. I saw the whole video, and his voice in the background is a great tribute to him. I saw his smiling face in the videos and it is just before my eyes. If a person like me who saw the video just for few minutes could not bear this, I could not imagine how you would have felt. Worst is to be in a far away land, when you lose someone in our homeland.

Hope you recover soon from this loss.

 

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