A walk down memory lane


The first waft of jasmine flowers

Hanging around my porch,

From the little flowers that smile

Take me back to that first home

My parents bought with hard-earned money.

A beautiful home, with a garden in front

Adorned with flowering trees and bushes,

Filled with love by all of us,

Filled with giggles of a bunch of their young kids

Running around, playing with the ball or a butterfly.

These flowers with their nostalgic scent

That captures me into an unforgettable moment

Now remind me of all that love, that joy.

When in the kitchen, cooking for the day,

The scent of turmeric, raw and unique

Flies me back to that beautiful day

My badi didi got married on a sunny day.

Filled with hopes and anxieties,

Starting a new chapter of her life,

She giggled as we smeared her face

With dollops of turmeric and loads of wishes.

Now, when I stand here taking in this aroma

I can see that day clearly, with all vivid images

As if it just happened, right this morning,

I feel like I can hear her tell us what she felt

As she stepped out of the comfort of her old home

And went to live into a new home,

I remember the tears that rolled down all eyes

Of my sisters, brothers, parents, aunts, uncles,

As she said her final goodbye to us from the car.

And talking of nostalgic memories,

How can I forget the emotions I experience

Each time I add ginger to any of my dishes?

As I took up my first job after college

Many many wonderful years ago,

I came back each evening, tired and exhausted,

And the only thing that cheered me up instantly

Was my mother’s adrak chai that she served.

She knew how to smoothly take off my exhaustion,

She knew what I needed to feel good.

Without saying anything she read my mind,

Without explaining she knew how was my day,

And this is what I remember when I smell ginger now.

It was not the tea that I tasted and

It is not that which I remember now,

It is her feelings, concerns, love, care

All rolled into one that stands right there

In front of me each time I’m hit by the smell.

When it rains in Delhi, on those rare days,

And the open areas around me bathe in its shower,

That mud gets wet and releases a mystical aroma

That envelopes me with its warmth.

Each time I am embraced like this by wet Earth fragrance,

I remember the day of my wedding.

As I stood on the podium greeting guests

With my new husband and family,

Down came a torrent from the sky.

But miraculously we didn’t have to worry at all

As it just soaked the shamiayana with open space

And the indoor seating and food were all saved!

Now when it rains and look out my apartment window

Taking in the bouquest of freshly wet Earth,

All I think of is my little D-day rain adventure,

All I remember are the blessings God had sent my way

As I had stepped across the new threshold of my life.

No matter how old I grow, no matter how much grey hair,

The only talcum powder I like is Johnson and Johnson.

And each time I spray it on myself,

Through its pretty petite pink bottle,

And smell its innocent fragrance all over me

I wonder if I use it because it reminds of those days

When I had my first baby and started a new phase.

Those initial days of struggle, those new learnings,

Those little lessons, trials and tribulations

Little discoveries, a few failures,

A bundle of joy depending totally on me.

As I had bathed her, toweled and wrapped he,

As I tapped Johnson and Johnson powder on her,

I had senses a deep inner serenity and pride,

And each time now I use the powder,

Somehow it helps me relive those moments,

It helps me touch that inner sanctum of calm.

And finally how can I ever forget,

As I travel on this nostalgic path

My beloved blog that I started last year

After having  stepped into my middle years.

It came from my love of cooking,

My passion for creation, food, recipes and
Experimenting with nature’s products.

So each time I smell the heart-warming

Aroma of tadka, mustard seeds or jeera

Spluttering in ghee, with curry leaves or onions,

I feel my life has come a full circle.

Each whiff of a food item, each tang of a herb

Reminds me of the day when I started this blog

Full of uncertainties and questions.

Growing up with dreams, getting married,

Having children and growing them up,

Somehow I lost myself, I lost touch with who I was.

But now in the fragrances of food items in my temple.

That is my kitchen, I have finally reconnected

With the most important person in the world

That is nobody else, but myself.

p.s. This post has been written for a contest organized by Ambi pur. Please do share feedback!


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