“This father’s day, I am expressing my love towards my dad by participating in the #HugYourDad activity at BlogAdda in association with Vicks.”
Dad, mom and myself, a curly 4 year old , were sailing in the Vanji (the traditional snake boat of Kerala) in the serene river in God’s own country when dad suddenly picked me up and immersed me in the beautiful waters much to my delight and mom’s shock! I remember squealing with joy on getting wet head to toe and he grinned from ear to ear…This boat ride for me,saw the beginning of a fascination for the crystal blue waters and the snake boat always wanting for more! Hydrophobia disappeared from my mind’s dictionary and little did I imagine then that 14 years later, on a vacation to the Dal lake in Kashmir, this impulse training would help me! I was surfing on the Dal lake, I slipped and fell into the weed infested lake, my parents stood petrified by the boat not knowing what to do but in a instant I came out of the water and swam to the boat!
…..I am the apple of his eye and he my idol
Dad, papa, father, appa…the word in any language, be it in the colonial or the vernacular, conjures up so many images of that of warmth, joy, happiness, security, strictness, pedagogue, role model, perfectionist, upholder of virtues….well this list is infinite. This sums up the creator of me, a person whom I always look up to for everything in life.
As I turn the pages back, lot of lovely memories of childhood flood my thoughts. Right from the 3rd grade, I was pestering him for a bicycle to which I got a constant reply, “come in the top three in your class, and I shall get you one!” No amount of cajoling could persuade him to change his stands and so I decided to burn the midnight oil and aim for the top spot. In my fifth grade, I managed to get the second rank and even before I could remind him of his promise, he had already tagged me along to the BSA cycle show room. I was overjoyed and selected a blue coloured ladies model bike and wanted desperately to ride back home, a distance of 5 kilometers amidst traffic. A firm NO from him and I knew he had the last word. He arranged it to be transported and the next day saw me proudly cycling to school much to the envy of my buddies!
…Appa always keeps his promise…
A few days later, an overconfident cyclist in me hit a school kid rushing out of school, he fell down and me too. I quickly saw that he was not seriously hurt but only with a minor bruise and without thinking twice escaped from the scene and never reported the mishap to anyone, least of all to my dad. In the evening, dad returned home with a grim face, he beckoned me and asked me what had happened that morning to which I innocently replied “nothing”. His face turned redder and I knew it was coming, a torrent of angry words for dashing into a small boy and covering it up. A friend of his had witnessed this and spilled it to him much to my discomfort! I was not allowed to go to school by cycle for couple of days for this action.
….Appa, a reprimanding person sometimes!
I had to sit with couple of my friends in his grammar class – first was the dictation and then he used to give 5 words, we had to look them up in the dictionary and make sentences with these words. Also, he gave verbs for which different suffixes had to be found like for example “put”;which had “put off”, “put in”, “put out”…and so on. These lessons in grammar were the building blocks in my life of language and he sowed in me the passion for reading and writing!
I was always first in the numerous elocution contests, thanks to my dad who whipped up fantastic write ups for my topics. I vividly reminisce the brilliant oratory on the topic “Olympic games” and even today can recall the words.
…..Appa, the brilliant pedagogue!
I was brought up to be independent, fearless and free, taking major decisions in my life such as education, career, marriage, on my own but he is always there, at every stage to support and protect me.
…..Appa, the pillar of strength!
He is a knight in shining armour, a man friday, a protective umbrella, a shoulder to cry, a watch dog, ever ready to give a helping hand and never allowing me to trip and fall!
….Appa, the unmatched!
And all I can give you in return is a Bear Hug that says it all!!!