One baby step forward

The backseat of the car, what a strange and unfamiliar place, offering up a different perspective on the world drifting by. I rarely get to sit there but after a long day of work where I was really seeing Anoushka awake for the first time in 12 hours, I couldn’t bare to have her be alone in the back. So I decided to be with her.

She made herself comfortable in my lap and I buried my face in her hair for an instant flashing back to Patna, the only place where I remember sitting in a rickshaw – the quartet, Mom, Dad and the two of us (my brother and I) sitting on their laps as the rickshaw wended its way through Shri Krishna Puri to our aunt’s place or to various other parts of Patna – Pataliputra, R-Block, Bailey Road, Punaichak, Frasier Road…visiting relatives or shopping or headed for Hotel Rajasthan…our favorite in those days – the flashback happened a the instant when I buried my face in A’s hair, I remembered that’s what my Mom used to do.

There was an indescribable feeling of wholeness, tinged with sadness, feeling her curled up on my lap, slightly drowsy, her arm casually thrown around my neck…sad because my recollections of my childhood are still sharp, almost as if they just happened, yet several decades have gone by since those rickshaw days…how fast will these years of a curled up child sitting on my lap fly by? Not a unique thought by any means but a potent one all the same.

There was another little thing she did that I remember doing as a child: I was holding her lightly around her tummy and then as the car ride progressed my hands naturally fell away. She didn’t miss a beat in retrieving my inert hands and placing them back on her tummy exactly as they were before. What was an unconscious action to me was actually a thing of which she was very aware. I remember missing a constant pressure of a touch that suddenly disappeared as well, I remember putting a parent’s hand back to where I was being patted and put to sleep again. History repeats.

Well, that’s what I’ll remember of this day other than the following:

We have finally left Raag Bilawal behind and have started exploring the Teevra Ma in Raag Yaman…progress! Finally!

The highlight of the day…a pat on the back from my music teacher, an endorsement to move forward in this musical quest.


  1. You've made a certain gentleness of style all your own! Wonderful indeed!

  2. History repeats, indeed. Happens to me all the time! And what better way to hold on to these precious moments than write them down! Beautiful, Prags. And congrats on moving on to the next level in your music class.

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