An eventful 30 days or so . Srin has flown the coop to study in Delhi - it has been hard letting go of her because she is a wonderful daughter and companion, but sometime,somewhere , one has to cut the umbilical cord and this was as good a time as any . It reminded me of another time , another place when I crossed the country in the opposite direction from Lucknow to Santiniketan - not that I was a totally willing participant in that exercise .
The week we left her behind was a totally girls' week in Delhi spent in taking in the sights for Tani's benefit, spending time in the souks (!) and the restaurants fot all our benefit . The Big Chill Cafe at Khan Market was a big hit ,Veda, Moets , Moti Mahal , were all tried and tested but yes we did go back to The Big Chill , the most . The pastas, grills , frozen yogurt, baked potato and cheesecakes were to die for. The bread at the cafe was great but the foccaccia at Moet's was scrumptious - soft and stuffed with herbs served with a delicious tapenade, oozing green olive oil,just thatright bit of tart,astringent taste .
We bought kurtas in Anokhi , saris at Utsav,bags, Oshos, skirts in Janpath, book at Bahrisons - I hadn't been to a standalone bookshop in ages and enjoyed browsing in all those corner bookstores that populate all the Delhi markets .
The sights of course were marvellous and as I explained to a very literal Tani , just being in the now sanitised ruins of the Purana Quila , one could , if one took a deep breath , smell the sweat and rancid animal smell of the invading hordes , the skins that they flung around their shoulders, the blood and gore that ran in the streets of Delhi , the smoking swords , their arrogant self aggrandizement manifested in the monuments that they built .
Of course Tani being Tani , bless her , said "Ma that's history", but that did not stop her from looking fearfully over her shoulder in one of the mausoleums in the Humayun's tomb complex.
It rained when we left Srin at her hostel so much so that I couldn't see the room she moved into. There is an empty space in the house , a little less clutter ,there are the phone calls that help us to keep in touch , so removed from the waiting for letters and a mad scramble to see what the post had brought - news sometimes sanitised and controlled to spare that one person so far away.
But there is a gateway and through that gateway is a lot of light and hope and a prayer for a bright future which is up for grabs ...