At an exhibition in a nearby hall in Calicut, Kerala, someone approached my mother, ‘Please aunty, buy these tupperware boxes. You can store enough things in style in the refrigerator’. “The price?”, asked my smart middle class frugal mom, ‘only 1500 Rs, aunty,” the girl chirped.
Not one to mince words or hide her practicality, my mother replied, ” Child, its plastic after all. We prefer not to use it. ”
“Secondly, I plan well. So I don’t store cooked food for another day in my fridge. Tell me, who is going to check my fridge to see how fashionably I have stored stale food in it, Thanks, but no thanks, I am happy with my steel dibbas.” She walked off.
In her simple sensible and old fashioned ways, my mother is no less than a revolutionary.
For one she has been steadfast in refusing to take help from maids. She preferred and still prefers to do much of the dirty work of running her home, herself. The benefit, well, a cleaner home and a slimmer mom, active in her sixties.
Two, she is not a believer of medicines, especially the allopathy ones, which we generally call, English medicines. For every fever or cold, there is an alternative therapy that she runs, usually by herself. Her remedies are mostly home made, learned by observation of her father who was a practicing Ayurvedic physician and from her own experiments and experiences. Benefits, well, no medicine pouch to carry around!
Three, here is a lady of grit. Time has tested her patience, wrenched her guts with pain and loss, but she has managed to keep up her spirits through out. She tells me of how she had acted in school plays and now she participates in Akshara Shlokam, reciting Sanskrit Shlokas in small groups for smart entertainment. She learns them, at least a new Sanskrit shloka each day and recites it in her soulful voice. Results, well, a sharp memory, some happy company and a sense of achievement.
Four, she is a no-nonsense person. So she is not someone to offer false comforts or praises. She will tell you what she thinks of you on your face. It is a little tough at times but beneficial in the long run. So, if you think you are going through a hard time, she will tell you, you are not. She will prove that your life is better than many others and you will have to
grudgingly admit the same.
Five, her ability to give. She is a giver, she enjoys creating good food experiences, helping in keeping up her good company, aiding senior people around her, asking and inquiring about the members of the family, friends of my brother so much that she is quite a popular woman. Benefits, well, there is always a visitor at home, hoping to see her or talk to her, complaining of not getting to meet her enough! Fan base!
Isn’t she a fine lady? She surely is. Tupperware can never manage to fool this woman with its jargon!