This trip to India was both terrible and a blessing.
It started off perfect. Rohit had lobbied for a vacation for the whole family in Goa, so we could all spend time together without any other distractions. Ro hadn’t been to India in three years so he didn’t want to see a bit of everybody piecemeal, after work, or to travel to different places to catch up.
We rented a couple of apartments in Goa near Calangute beach. It was nice, the kids and grandparents had a great time splashing in the pool, the kids entertained themselves and we all walked to the beach and enjoyed the shack life.
It was really idyllic. The day before we were supposed to leave, Achachen, Rohit’s brother got a urinary infection and he didn’t come out with us. We didn’t think much of it and we carried on with our beach plans. Later, that night his fever wouldn’t come down and Ro’s parents and his wife went to a hospital for a paracetamol injection.
That’s when things started going pear-shaped. He had very low blood pressure and they quickly diagnosed septicemia. That was the beginning of three frightening yo-yo days when things seemed alternately hopeful and hopeless. In the end, though the doctors couldn’t save him.
The rest of our trip seems like a blur now. There was a funeral at home, there were newspaper articles and tumblrs. There were memorial services and there were so many condolence visits.
It’s really hard to write about this. I want to write about how much fun we had when we all lived in Bombay together, how we all played Calvinball and Scrabble and all sorts of card games together. I want you know how he used to cheat outrageously at Pictionary. How much happiness I used to feel when he got out his guitar and everybody would sing along. How getting in the car could mean going on an adventure. I’ll miss going to new places on his recommendation. There are so many things that keep popping up that I can’t make a list of all the things that I miss.
The day before we left to Goa, Ro, Advaith and I took a nap while Aditi hung out with Achach. His office is a enclosed balcony off the bedroom we were napping and we could hear their conversation. He was so good with her. It will always be a sorrow to me that she won’t even remember that afternoon and that Advaith won’t even have that.
I can’t believe that I don’t have one photograph of him from this holiday. I guess the blessing part comes in here – that we were able to spend time together, almost like old times together, that Rohit got to spend time with Achach after three years, that we could be there, that we weren’t in America, waiting by the phone for updates.
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
― Maya Angelou