My Bhuaji (my Dad’s Elder Sister) passed on to the other world today! Since my earliest childhood days, I have remembered calling her “Bhuji”, and “Dadiji” was the name we used to call our beloved “Phupaji” (who passed away a while back also). Since I was born, she has been the Grandmother to me. She had christened me with the name of “Timi”, which stuck to me and the whole extended Family knew me by that name, till I got married. With shocked relatives calling up my Dad, after reading the wedding card (which had me mentioned by my formal name), and asking “when did you get another son and from whom??!” :-)
The last I met her was in August, just before leaving for Australia. It was a surprise visit of 3 days, which I had made on an impulse and just followed it through. It was the last time and I am thankful for my impulsiveness for that. She was looking great and as happy and full of humour at that time, just like I have always known her to be.
My Dad has been the baby in the Family, with Bhuji being almost 10 years older to him. He used to get all the pampering and loved being spoilt silly by her. Her house was the place, where we used to spend most of our Summer holidays. I still remember the house and the way it evolved. It was a brick and mortar construction, created during the partition days, from my “Dadiji’s” imagination and inventiveness. He had done up 2 rooms in the front, with a big arc in the center, where lovely cool breeze used to flow through during the high heat of the Amritsar Summer. The “veeda” or patio, was a brick and mud area, where all the kids used to play around in. And we loved it there. The onus of being the youngest fell on me and I used to take full advantage of being spoilt by her. She had a way of making food so yum and delicious, and with loving care, that even the vegies used to taste great. Although, she being what she was, it was always my favourite dishes and never the vegies used to show up, as I hated them :-)
Even when I grew up, I used to love escaping to her loving and caring arms, which used to always be welcoming, whatever mischief I used to create and run into her arms for protection. Even growing up with all the hardships, she faced, she was the epitome of humour and love for us all. Never have I seen her not live up to the humour and most of it rubbed on to us as we grew. Whenever I used to be there, it was the choice of food which I choose that got made, and she used to ensure that everyone who was there got what she/he wanted to eat. You could feel that love attracting you to her always and that is what made me go over.
She will be remembered in my heart forever! Alive with all the Love and Affection and Humour she has left for us to carry on with.