As our horizons of modernization are expanding, our family size is contracting from nuclear to miniscule. Living together with siblings and cousins is something which has been much abandoned by this generation. A lot of social, economic, psychological factors have contributed to it.
I hail from a family where its members have remained closely knitted with one another. Growing up with a brother and six cousins, all elder to me, has been a different experience all together. Right from our childhood days we have remained a bunch of crazy people. However, attending the demands of our professional lives has now made us stay away from each other but this has never been used as an excuse to not see one another.
Comes the weekend and in which ever part of the state we may be, we report to the place of ÔÇÿCaptain DhundiyaalÔÇÖ. Yes, we call him ÔÇÿCaptain DhundiyaalÔÇÖ because not only is he the eldest amongst us but he has the great ability of finding anything that goes missing in the house ;). His wife, whom we unreasonably call ÔÇÿGGÔÇÖ, is the most happening woman on earth whose motto in life is to remain ÔÇÿallergic to moronsÔÇÖ. Another character in our group is lovingly called ÔÇÿRules RamanujanÔÇÖ. From childhood he has strictly forbidden to his self-made rules, unsuccessfully trying to influence our lives with them and successfully absorbing all situations when we have taken a dig at his rules. Besides them the rest of all of us are called ÔÇÿMotuusÔÇÖ. Years back we had unanimously decided on calling each other by this name to maintain parity and to reinstate the fact that we all come from the ÔÇÿkhaate peete ghar kaÔÇÖ family ;).
It is truly fun to have everyone together under one roof. What we do in these two days is simple. We talk, cook and eat. Well these might seem really simple but it is not so. We talk but we talk extensively. At any point of time, night or day, you will find at least one of us jabbering. Age has never been a barrier among us to put forth our views. We have serious talks over ÔÇÿmasaledarÔÇÖ tea like how to defy the rules of ÔÇÿRules RamanujanÔÇÖ, what to prepare for breakfast, lunch and dinner and on a lighter note how to compete in pulling each others leg.
Those who say that too many cooks spoil the broth; I would ask them to come and taste our broth. With too many hands hovering over the ladle, someone checking the salt in the dish whiles the other adjusting the spiciness in it, we come up with the perfect item. Whether it is ÔÇÿpaneerÔÇÖ barbeque or ÔÇÿsamosasÔÇÖ or fish fry, we, the amateur cooks, under the leadership of Captain Dhundiyaal and GG, can make all kinds of creative and efficient arrangements to give the right flavour to the dish. Check out the picture where we have used a flower pot as an oven for preparing ÔÇÿpaneerÔÇÖ barbeque ;). Perplexed? Well there is more to our craziness. We are a lot of people who besides cutting cakes during our birthdays cut bars of ice-creams! 😀 😀
No matter how much ever we grow up, we still carry that childishness in us. Every time we meet, it seems that we are meeting after a month. So much we have to share with each other that time seems to fall short. Bidding adieu, we eagerly look forward to meet each other the next week.
I am sure that as youÔÇÖre reading through this all happy moments of togetherness with your siblings and cousins are coming up in your mind. So what are you thinking? Pack up your rucksack and head towards their place. I have already started to pack mine ;).