Friday, August 10, 2007

Simple joys of living!

Her hands were continuously working on those pile of clothes.The warmth of the sun and the smell of breeze were still emanating from those clothes...making me feel like just snuggling on them. Her face would beam with pride as she stacked up those clothes in neat racks, categorizing them according to size.

I still remember her squatting down with a bar soap and scrubbing brush...teaching me how to hand wash the clothes, with out wasting water. Every drop of water was precious, after all it was Chennai. She would wrinkle her nose in displeasure as I used to hang the clothes on the clothesline. She used me lecture me on the art of drying clothes. Her hands would then handle those freshly washed wet clothes as an artiste approaches his canvas...untangling all the folds ....each and every inch embracing the warmth of the radiant sun. Her work done she would smile at her own artistry....satisfaction bordering those lips. This was my Grandma. I used to spent my whole summer vacation at her place and today I can tell she has deposited many thought provoking moments in my memory bank....which I retrieve every now and then to enrich my life today....

Today I don't have to hand wash my clothes... washing machine has taken over....and there is the dryer which helps us dry clothes in winter!....But as I would like to deposit some rewarding moments into the memory bank of my kids, drying clothes in my patio with them is a task which I wish to undertake.

The other day as we were enjoying those wonderful moments at our patio I was approached by my neighbor. I could read a sign of displeasure on her face.
"Why don't you use the dryer?" , she inquired.
"Its very bright and sunny today. I thought it would be better for the clothes and also for my pocket...and more over my kids love doing this chore", I replied.

She was still not happy. " You see, people here do not dry their clothes outside", she continued...
"oh, what a pity..." I thought...
" I know ... I still wonder why people here do not dry their clothes outside?"I replied.
I knew she was considering me as an old fashioned Indian, not yet ready to adapt to the modern American life style.
I realized there was no point in explaining to her about the joy I experience while hanging those clothes with my little ones.They were learning numbers ,colors and were also being home schooled in sharing and taking responsibility.These were simple joys of living I wanted to LIVE....for I am sure they would one day be retrieved by my kids from their memory banks and help them LIVE their lives!!!

10 comments:

Naveen said...

good point you made here ..... it is the wisdom retrieved fom our "memory banks" that aids us in tougher times ...

MyVision said...

Yes Nandu, what you have said in the post is true. Involving everyone (especially kids) in household activities has many different aspects. There is lot of learning in each and every activities. Then I don't understand why people don't use the energy from sun to dry cloths when it is available in abundance. It's your choice what you like to do, may be within the accepted social and cultural boundaries.

It may be due to the extravagant lifestyle of Americans. But my understanding of American culture indicates, it stands for not interfering in other's life and leaving others to do things as they like.

Well, i liked the post. excellent articulation and expression. Also liked the pic.

Asha said...

nandu, very nice post...we enjoyed ur writing. you are correct, that the children learn even from these small things. keep on writing.

Nisha said...

Very well said...liked it!!
may b if u had used jargons like "am reducing global warming" this neighbour wud have admired u.....some people will never understand simple things in life until late.....

Sharmi said...

When I go to India, I still enjoy drying all the cloths in sun and when they dry up and become a kind of stiff it feels so nice. Some of my good cloths get spoilt in the machines here because of hear drying.

david santos said...

I come to congratulate you with your work, very good, and to desire good vacations to you

Bharathy said...

For the past half an hour I am learning abt you Nanditha...visited your webpage(saw your snaps)!!Yipee you are very young,Nanditha KUTTTTTYYYY..:)
kutty is after all a "girl" as u know..:)..I love this blog of yours too,coz this is sooo homely part of your writing I suppose...I Respect your principles and the way you present them one by one thru your interesting way of writing..
P.S-Why is Sathwika-food for soul still asleep?:)

krystyna said...

It is the best post.
I am an old fashioned woman too and I like to dry clothes in sunny and windy day outside.
Perfect lesson for kids. This photo is beautiful!
Best to you and your family!

Mocha said...

I am going to hang my clothes out and dry. I never thought about doing it fearing the questions my neighbours would have. Let me spread the simple pleasures of life to them as well

Purnima said...

U cdnt have worded it any better! How true, the joy of learning, the joy of hanging wet clothes,SIMPLE JOYS-NIRMAL ANAND!! Both of my kids help me too..u hv made a point there! Well one thing that never occured to me was click them at it! Oh..today I will..tks for sharing ur thoughts!