This week I’ll return to Alangudi

JUNE 03 — We had to take a ride on the buggy from one terminal on the other, but it did not matter. I got the information mixed up, and therefore something had to be done — because we missed the connecting flight to Trichy.

I just was not prepared for a 8 hour ride through the better part of the Tamil heartland to arrive at the Karraikudi intersection to Alangudi where my cousin Muthu was waiting in pitch darkness.

That was 5 months ago, when I travelled with mom to her hometown.

This Saturday I will be in Alangudi again, without mom.

People asked me a lot on how I am doing when mom just died, they do less of that now. It’s going to be 5 months and that’s how it should be, the asking I mean.

Mom, at our stop before reaching Alangudi last December.
Mom, at our stop before reaching Alangudi last December.

December seems a long time ago

We were not meant to go to India. I never meant to go to India. Something came up and I was to go to India, and I got that extra ticket for mom. But that was to Chennai, so I booked some tickets also to airport closest to her hometown.

Failing to board the plane for that short 25 minute flight to Trichy from Chennai, we managed that long taxi ride to her village.

She’s been sick for some time, we were only able to guess how sick she was. There was no getting her to a doctor, and the only one she’d talk to was not allowed to examine her properly.

And now she is dead, and I an orphan. At least by doing the trip together, I am unlikely to be a stranger in the land of my mom’s birth.

That is mom’s final gesture to me in a life of just helping me be a better person.

This Saturday, I go back to the village and thereafter a ride to her favourite temple at the tip of India. She named her first born after it.

I believe it will make things better for me, though I’m not sure how.

Saturday is a big day.