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Showing posts from September, 2010

Once upon a time

Summer in Bangalore, a long time ago.

A family came visiting relatives. The elders got together, drank steaming cups of coffee and caught up with the highs and lows of a year gone by. In a time without email and even the telephone, the rich, orthodox Tamil words entwined themselves in the rafters and burrowed into the nooks. The youngsters, left to their own devices, played games, read books and explored the neighbourhood. Imagination was a prized asset.

M's cousin brother R, called Bangalore - R to distinguish him from Hyderabad - R, owned a gramophone player. More importantly, he owned, as far as one could tell, the only Beatles records in the entire family. And by family, one means immediate, 1st, 2nd and 3rd level relatives. Which, in a Tamil Iyer family, was a LOT of people. Naturally, owning these records made R quite popular among his mates. One in particular, D, would drop in every now to listen, nod and croon in unison.

At 17, M, whose upbringing could only be called cons…