A September Visit To My Hometown



This is a rundown of my experience of a visit I made to my hometown and family in September 2023. There’s a place where I build and keep some personal narratives, and I found this there while searching for something else yesterday. I felt that it was post-worthy so here it is.

My September visit to home—a week-long halt at Chalakudy—ended on the thirteenth and I have come back to the city with a reminder that working on myself, usually career, is always the best thing to do and brings the most happiness and satisfaction.

My overall presence and experience during this visit was not surprising: my absence of more than a month, even during Onam, wasn’t felt in my mind or of my family. Perhaps it lingered in their thoughts, yet remained concealed from the surface; It was just another day for them. This time, on this visit, I had enough time to free many of my sensations and attend to most things around me. And that’s why, working from the old “arena” (the meaning is the same, and is also recent Twitter term for workspace), the table where I’ve done many things before, left me wee nostalgic about how the times have changed and career progress that has been made – only in a bright way. Amma added to this sentiment by adding that – you only get to live through every single phase of life once, referring to my periods of infancy, which she has always loved and is now lost in time (and echoes in eternity).

Quality time was also spent with Ammathe Muthassi (maternal grandmother), who’ll be here for three more weeks until her leg heals. On the day before the first day of Onam (Onam is spread over ten days, last being the most auspicious), grandma slipped and fell on the living room’s carpet, ultimately becoming the current household’s pioneer in bringing Plaster of Paris home. This also meant that the wedding at Manthredam had to be missed — an event much looked-forward since months ago as it featured an opportunity to convene with the old cousin-friends from Varikkassery after a long while. On the weekend, we talked about the particulars of her wedding at Kottayam, how culture and time has progressed, and some usual old tales around her days. At times, I felt like she looked older and more of her hair had grown gray – an effect possibly left from her forced arrest to the house. Ammathe Muthassan (maternal grandfather) also paid a visit with Appams he got from the temple on the particular day and the previous. The old man has gotten thinner. I pray for his best.

On Saturday, I re-watched Gladiator, mainly to listen to the dialogues from its first half before Maximus is forced to become a slave. It’s still an amazing film from all aspects, and whoever acted as Marcus Aurelius did his job really well. It was also nice to revisit and soak in some medieval Roman chivalry—scenes about sword fighting, brotherhood, and empires—into my modern psyche.

Sunday ended with a drive to Athirapilly Waterfalls with Achan (father). Athirapilly felt closer than I expected and the view was simply majestic and humbling. Whenever I’m at Athirapilly, I think about the first human being to watch this view and how it must’ve felt for him or her. And while driving, I need to remind myself to be aware of the line on the left, I realized. Although I expected to have some good ol’ father-son conversation at the time, that only came later, after I explained what happened in the last monthly team meeting from work and after he explained about change and quality management (his thing) for possibly the gazillionth time in my life.

In the intricate tapestry of time and memory, I find this feature the most interesting and peculiar – they don’t appear linearly. The recesses of my mental faculties hold a vague recollection of a flurry of events, like a computer overloaded with randomly allocated read-only memory. It’s pretty interesting that great people have many things going in their lives, and still manage to do many great things.

Anyway, glad to be back in the city. Cities and dynamic economies surely are interesting, and we have to do what keeps us late in the night.

What we do now echoes in eternity.