Monday, September 24, 2012

My Daddy strongest………..




Today is my dad’s 72nd birthday and I don’t really have a gift in place. What do I give him? He already has all that he needs. So I picked a bouquet to bring in the happy occasion. Most girls idolize their dads, I was no different. I tried to be like him, but really could not match up! The amazing things he taught me in his lifetime were never via a serious talk or by reprimanding. They were by his real life stories, some great anecdotes or simple questions that made me think up of solutions. Yes, there were times when he did lose his temper, but that was once in a blue moon, literally!

I remember when I was all of 9 years; I wanted a scooter (the poorer cousin of the scooty these days). Back then it was a luxury and Dad could not afford it, but he did not refuse, he simply said, “Beta tu scooter lekar kya karegi, thodi badi ho ja, cycle le doonga.” (Sugar, what do you need a scooter for, will buy you a cycle once you are a bit older). It seemed like a great proposition, the scooter was forgotten as I began weaving dreams of proudly riding my new bicycle. When I was old enough to own the bike, my dad said further, “Cycle toh main le doon, par soch raha tha ki jab tu college jayegi toh Luna hi le deta hoon.” (I can buy you the cycle, but was thinking of picking a moped once you head for college) I jumped at the offer, a luna moped was the ‘in thing’ back then and so I happily traded the bike for it. Of course time and tide wait for no man and I was at the threshold of owning the luna when dad said again, “Luna chhodh, maruti car hi le doonga tujhe, tu driving seekhle.” (Forget the luna, learn driving and I will buy you a Maruti car) By then I figured it would be better to commute by public transport and said, “Dada aap ab car toh rehne do, plane hi le lenge.” To which he haughtily replied, Umeed par duniya kayam hai(The world survives on hope). That my sense of humour has been inherited from a reliable source is pretty evident.

Growing up he was my confidante. He’d be the one I’d talk to about anything and everything. When asked if he did not have a son, he’d point to me and say Yeh hai na, 100 ladkon par bhari pad jayegi”. (This one can compete with 100 boys). The glint of pride in his eyes was unmistakable. My sister and I had the best man in the whole world to call our father.

If there was anything that dad loved more than us, it was his car. He'd wash and clean his beauty till she was shinning like new. Unlike most of us, he learnt his driving by following a BEST bus. Well the story is such. He had to deliver some prints from Famous studios, so he took the car. Being his first time, he moved at a slow pace and tailed a BEST bus. He'd stop wherever the bus stopped. Slowly and steadily he reached his destination, safe and sound. And yes he drove like a BEST driver all his life. Never noticed speed breakers, loved the horn and had something against signals. 

For a not so great driver, he had amazing clarity of thought. I had kept memories of a relationship I once had, safely tucked in one corner of my cupboard. Dad came across them. In his infinite wisdom he said, Jo rishta raha hi nahin, uske astiyan ke boj tale kyun dabna?” (Why carry the ashes of a dead relationship?). That evening I burned all the memoirs I had saved for years. And just like that I had my moment of closure.

By nature I am quite headstrong unlike him. He had all the patience in the world. I’d get worked up when things would not go my way. I'd get into nasty arguments but he on the other hand could make people dance to his tunes with a smile.  He'd always tell me "Joota hamesha gift wrap karke marna chahiye, saamne wale ko accha lagta hai" (Always gift wrap a shoe when you intend throwing it at someone, it works like a feel good factor). My crown of the Queen of Sarcasm was a well earned one in the years to come. 

In spite of being in the film industry for 45 years, he was a teetotaler. Whenever he was asked to have a drink, he’d laugh and reply “Jiss gali jaana nahin wahan diye kyun jalaoon?” (Why would I light up a path I don’t intend travelling?) Needless to say, I take pride in being a teetotaler myself. 

Dad always knew his way around. He believed in God irrespective of which community they belonged to. He loved good food and great music. The life of the party, he was a fab dancer. He loved white and could make the most amazing 'maa ki dal'. He also was a simple family man and loved receiving gifts on his birthday. And so as I reached home, I pulled the bunch of flowers and gently placed them near his photograph. A lone tear somehow managed to escape from the indomitable emotional fortress I had built. Because today also happens to be his 6th death anniversary......





36 comments:

nivs said...

Vini .. like i think i remind you every year on ur dad's bday as well as death anniv ... the old man is super-smiley looking at you from where ever he is .. lucky man to have a daughter like you !!!!

Rachna said...

What a touching post, Vinita! Hugs to you. Dads are so special. And, I am sure he must be very proud of you and of course, he is always close to you for you to reach out!

JANU said...

Hey...you got me teary lady. Hugs hugs and more hugs. <3

Roshan said...

It would have been an honour to know a person like your dad.. regards.

Anita Jeyan Sandeep said...

Fond remembrance. Very touchy tribute.

vasu said...

Very lovingly penned ! May his soul Rest In Peace !

Corinne @ Everyday Gyaan said...

It must take guts to learn to drive following a BEST bus - that's the one vehicle I would stay away from! I can see where you inherited your courage and your humour from, not to mention your philosophical bent of mind. His words: “Yeh hai na, 100 ladkon par bhari pad jayegi”...are very true!
RIP, Mr Bahl, knowing that your daughter is doing you proud in every way!

Ruchira said...

This is such a touching tribute. And how wonderful that you have so many good memories of him. I think he is right about the 100 ladko pe bhaari part :)

pinashpinash said...

A proud dad and a proud daughter :) :)
Dads are the best, and daddy's girls we are. that did stir me up, Vinita!

Anupama K. Mazumder said...

Such a touching and inspiring post. I am sorry to hear that it is his death anniversary too. Lots of love to you.

www.anucreations.blogspot.in

Allka Gurha said...

Being a daddys girl I had to read this....I lost mine a decade ago to the dreaded C.

You have written this so beautifully.Reminded me of my dad.

Love

akanksha said...

Awwww I am sure he must be smiling at you, from up above and showering you with all the love. Our close ones are always as close as we feel.

Hugs

Susan Deborah said...

The last line touched me so much. A lovely tribute to a wonderful father. I lost my dad when I was 13 - I don't have many memories of/with him. It seems a long time ago that I had a dad -- lot of water under the bridge. When I read posts like these from fellow-bloggers, I think that if my dad was alive, it would've been different.

Big hugs and lots of love across ether.

Joy always,
Susan

writerzblock said...

What a beautiful tribute! Moved me to tears :-(

sharmila said...

I read this post aloud to my dad. (He was doing what he does best somewhere in the background..repairing random household stuff with something more random!)
BTW ,a great lesson there Vinita,driving behind BEST!!Shayad isiliye main aur tum driving nai seekhe.Let us correct that!
Touching tribute to a great dad by a proud daddy's girl.{{hugs}}

akita said...

badiya didi badiya ...

Farila said...

He is a very wise man.. thanks for sharing his wisdom with us. Your tribute touched my heart deeply.

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Nivs....but I think I was luckier :)

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Rachna, your words mean much...

Blogwati Gee said...

Janu, I guess we were too close in our posts and closer in our experiences......hugs babe

Blogwati Gee said...

Thank you Roshan. All who knew him...did share your sentiments.

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Anita. Nothing less would do.

Blogwati Gee said...

Thank you Vasu for your prayers.

Blogwati Gee said...

Corinne, oh yeah...he was like that. I strive every day to be the daughter he wanted me to be.

Blogwati Gee said...

Ruchira, lol, yup in retrospect I think it was a warning to the menfolk!

Blogwati Gee said...

Pinash.....I know that feeling...

Blogwati Gee said...

Anupama, there was a time I regretted it was the same day. Today I feel it was perfect for we always think of Sept 24 as his birthday. He made sure we have only happy memories of him.....such was he.

Blogwati Gee said...

Alka, I am sorry to hear that. But believe me.....they watch over you...I know this for a fact.

Blogwati Gee said...

Yes Akanksha....I know and believe that too.

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Susan. Heartfelt wishes is all that I needed yesterday. Sending you the same warmth for your healing. Love, hugs and prayers.

Blogwati Gee said...

Writerzblock..............is all what I can manage to say

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Sharmila specially for reading it to your dad.....it made me feel very nice deep down in my heart. Love you too.

Blogwati Gee said...

Akita.....almost heard Dada say it.....Love you....muah!

Blogwati Gee said...

I am glad Farila and yes he was a wise man.....still trying to be half as good as him :)

Fuadh said...

One thing he told me just stuck to me for life... and I find myself repeating it to people even now... "Ek chup, sau sukh".

Blogwati Gee said...

Yup, Fuadh....I remember that one too. He just was so full of wisdom.............gosh, I miss him so much.....!

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