Almost one month ago, it was an impulsive instinct to travel all the way to a distant part of the city to meet one of my close friend. Reaching his home, I realised his mother was not well, but not in a serious state of illness. As we (me and my wife) reached his home, she was sleeping. Talking a while to him, I felt restless, as I had met her a few times before and was feeling her presence and ever smiling interaction with us whenever we visited their home.
I slowly went inside and stood watching her near her bead. She was in a half sleep state. I slowly called her, Amma… suddenly she woke up and looked at me. His son, by now came near us, and asked her in tamil Amma, ithu yaaru theriyuma ( Amma, do you know who he is?). With the most beautiful smile I have ever seen, she said.. Nalla theriyumo… unnude friend.. ithinu munnadiyum inke neraye vaatti vanthirukku, eppadi theriyamal irikkum (I know well… your friend… he has come here several times before.. so how i dont recognise him)…
She was in full joy and spirit and had two or three spoon full of sweet we prepared and brought to her.
We left her home in good spirits and memories…
A month later, back on another unplanned and emergency visit. I got to know as I landed that she is in a serious condition and in ICU and that too surviving with the help of ventilator. I was continuously in touch with him and equally turbulent state of mind, and was determined to complete a pilgrimage already planned to Sabarimala.
Immediately upon my return to Bengaluru from my pilgrimage, I rushed with my wife to the hospital where she was in a critical condition. I had taken the Vibhuti from Sabarimala. For a change, that evening during visitors time , there was no visitors to see her, as she was in already there for some days. We somehow managed to reach the hospital, just 20 minutes before the scheduled close. As we stood near her and observed her, she was already in her final part of the journey from this world, which we never realised. With folding hands and prayers, we prayed for her relief from that painful condition and applied the vibhooti on her forehead and stood near her. As we patted her hand and legs, we felt she realised an affectionate a lifelong presence. We remained there for some more time and left the ICU ward with folding hands and prayers.
After spending some time with my friend, we left to our home. The next day, early morning, we received an sms on our mobile from our friend informing us about the demise of his mother.