The memory lane, a smell away

It’s so amazing, how smells can trigger a memory. I was walking up to the next floor (our office is on two floors) and on the stairway I passed a colleague who had used Cuticura Talcum Powder. As soon as the smell hit my nose I was taken back to my ancestral house in Kerala..specifically to the ante-room in the ground floor room. From this room mid-afternoon I would stare out into the ‘thodi’ or garden when I was a kid. And this smell took me back there.

See we have an ancestral house in Palghat. It’s a house with about 8 rooms and an attic. Behind the house we had rows and rows of Mango, Jackfruit, Papaya and Coconut trees. And the front portion is a cemented area. We still have maintained the gate which is actually a weird gate. See it is a wall with a huge window like opening..that is the entrance! I would stand in it and jump onto the narrow road…

I used to be scared to go to the back of the house, where the firewood is stored. That’s where my great-uncle was cremated. And that place freaked me out ever since. The next house is my great-uncle’s house. So i used to walk between both houses.

And the first floor..I used to look out of the huge windows on to the front portion of the house – to the gate. In the evenings, I would sit there and look at the setting sun. Each room had a bed which was so high. I used to find it so difficult to climb onto one. There is still one picture I remember. It’s of my cousins and I when we were kids. We are sitting on the sofa in that house and I am wearing a peacock blue pavada-blouse – the traditional skirt and top. And another one where I am sitting on my grandma’s lap in a white frock…

Granma and me

God I miss those days so much. Someday, If I make enough money (or if I marry a very rich guy) I am going to buy back that house. There isn’t much of the house left. But I want to buy it and restore it to it’s earlier glory.

One thing that makes me smile now – The biggest Cuticura joke – we used to use the term Kutti Kura (small cockroaches) in jest.

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~ by tia on March 10, 2008.

2 Responses to “The memory lane, a smell away”

  1. i so know wht u r talking abt…our ancesteral property is in nedumangad…it dates back to the british colonial rule times…supposedly its haunted…i have seen a woman , when i was a kid, sitting at the foot of my bed combing her hair…now i explain it away as night terrors, bad dreams etc…seemed pretty real tht time..

  2. *tys
    And that explains the short story…

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