19 June 2011

Dad

I suppose it started when you rowed Mom out to the middle of a lake and threatened to throw her over if she didn't marry you. Okay, I'm sure you disguised it by talking dreamily about wanting to settle down in life, but that's what you were really saying, wasn't it? You knew perfectly well Mom couldn't swim!

That kick-started a process that culminated in one of the most beautiful things that ever happened:

(Okay, so I had a few extra pounds. FINE, a LOT of extra pounds. But that's not the point...)

You pretty much made the family what it is. You helped Mom do what she always wanted to do. In many ways, you invested so much in her and helped her achieve everything she has.

You invested so much in Gautmik and me. You are around when we need you. Always. And you still give us our space. You've been a friend, a role model and a teacher as and when the situation has demanded it. As we grew up, you've become the voice of reason. You've never let us feel deprived of anything. You've been open with us. Cried with us. Laughed with us. You've been brave and stubborn in situations where lesser men would have done things differently. You've taught us how to do our own thing, how to be our own people. You've laughed in the face of societal customs.

We sometimes lose sight of the fact that you didn't pursue your own dreams to make sure that Mom, Gautmik and I could. That when you were my age, you were working long hours travelling from one side of Bombay to the other on buses and scooters to feed, house and care for a family of three.

You've built a wonderful family, Dad. You make me want to be a Dad.

Love you Dad.

PS. Although your voice of reason is the perfect offset to Mom's ... well ... lack of reason, I still think you got it wrong when you didn't allow me to get an achkan made for Oxford because you reckoned it would pose a threat to my life by making me look like a Muslim fundamentalist.

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