Zest for life


She would have been upset if Sachin Tendulkar had got out at 87. “He was playing so well,” she would have said, “he could easily have reached a hundred.
It’s such a pity that he had to go”. That’s just what those of us who have had the good fortune of knowing ‘akka’ are saying now. She was playing such a glorious innings. Why did she have to quit the scene all of a sudden?

I wonder if ‘akka’ herself ever thought of her mortality. May be not. She had so many interesting things to pack into her day, that she would not have considered thinking about aches and pains. That was not the only aspect in which ‘akka’ differed from her contemporaries. I have never met another octogenarian who actively pursued such an amazing range of interests. Akka was deeply into music; watched all day and night matches live, tried out new recipes from cook books and TV shows, tailored her blouses, keenly followed news stories and serials.

And most importantly, she had the time and energy to cultivate and nourish relationships. ‘Akka’ had the time for everyone single person who came into her life. She kept in touch with those still in the paper age through phone calls and letters; and she reached out to the gen2 and gen3 through the e-mails. Perhaps the name ‘akka’ stuck because she herself seemed to belong to a borderless generation.

Considering the number of contacts she kept alive, I am surprised that even a couple of hours per day on the net sufficed. For she not only not miss sending in a birthday/wedding day greeting, she also acknowledged the acknowledgements to that. With the result that at any given time, the ball was firmly in the court of the recipient!
‘Akka’ was perhaps the only person who sincerely went through all the baby pictures and travel pictures family and friends loaded into the web album. Proof of this was in the detailed commentary that came from her within days of the posting.
I remember with guilt that I had grabbed a little more of ‘akka’s time with my pastime. ‘Akka’ read every one of my published articles, and promptly called to congratulate and convey her comments.

‘Akka’ once mentioned that she liked movies with a message. “I wish they would make more films like that,” she said. I wish god would make more people with the same mould that he made ‘akka’ with.

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