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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Of endings and storytellings


I have always loved listening to stories. When I was a small child, I used to have two rounds of story telling everyday. One by my muthassan and the other, by achan. Muthassan always slept early, and so the first story telling or rather, listening as it was the case with me, was always with muthassan.




My muthassan was never like other grandparents. He wasn't the stay at home person. My muthassan was always busy, travelling throughout the country, staying at home only for a couple of days at a stretch every month, and so for me, every minute with him was precious. Everyone was scared of my muthassan. He had a hot temper, and he lost it quite frequently. I confess I was scared too, but then I was a small child, and small children always manage to escape the wrath....of anyone.




Muthassan always told me tales from the puranas-The Mahabharata, Ramayana, Jataka tales, the Panchatantra...all the stories that has ever been published in the Amar Chitra Katha Series and much more. My muthassan always had the knack of actually telling stories and not just narate them. Through his stories, I saw Ravana with his 10 heads and twenty arms, I saw the sudarshana chakra of Sree Krishna, I saw visions of a little squirrel rolling on the sand, helping Lord Rama build the Rama Sethu...I would listen enchanted, as muthassan reeled off stories, day after day, one after the other. I still wonder how Ravan managed when he got a cold. Wouldnt all his 10 heads sneeze at the same time? I wish I had lived at the time of Birbal and Tansen, of Shivaji and of Hanuman, I wish I could see Lord Ganesa eat at a feast...coz muthassan always spoke of these people as real people, people you and I might have known, people who would have been interesting to talk to and meet up with.




I've told you that my muthassan wasnt always at home. So sometimes, he had to leave a story unfinished,beacuse he had to travel the next day, and wasnt there at home to complete the story...I didnt like this much. It meant I would have to wait days, probably weeks to listen to the rest of the story. In the meanwhile,I would conjure up endings on my own. I would make Rama and Ravana fight inside my head. I would end stories my way, and make new tales out of old ones. I would continue this everyday making up different endings everyday, till muthassan was back to complete his story with the real ending....




I miss having stories told to me. I miss making up endings to stories. I miss my muthassan...as i told you, he was the best muthassan ever...

24 comments:

manu said...

tht was special :)

manu said...

rather sad now, the post reminded me of what i missed as a child

suji said...

thanks vrinde, for waking me up and taking me back, to my childhood.

Sandeep Balan said...

that was really touching vrinda...i feel all those visualisations and cooking up endings at that young age really developed your ability to churn out stories at will...thanx to ur muthassan...time for the next story ;-)

Usha Pisharody said...

In my case it was my Muthashi.. :)

Nice post!

vrinda said...

@manu

:) dunno wat else to say :)

vrinda said...

@ suji

and thanks for reading sujichetta...as usual :)

vrinda said...

@sandeep

hmmmm...never thought abt it in that way...now i have one more reason among many to thank my muthassan for :)

vrinda said...

@usha ma'am

my ammumma isn't much of a story teller...for me it has always been my muthassan :)

Sashu... said...

lovely... :)

vrinda said...

@sashu

:)

crumbs said...

:)
grand parents...there is nothing quite like them in this world, huh? I liked the simplicity of this post...it's refreshing

crumbs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matangi Mawley said...

:).. wow! i was reminded of my grandpa.. n his fav.. the rajnigandha!

vrinda said...

@crumbs

yup...no replacement for good old grandparents :)

vrinda said...

@matangi

i've read the rajanigandha on ur blog :)

The Mind Bedouin said...

i agree with sandeep balan ... guess ur writing side was honed a lot by ur grandfather.... :)... and thanks for takin me down memory lane as well... tho for me, the stories were mostly about the happenings in the lives of my grandparents... :)

J said...

Lovely post :) It is nice how much i have started appreciating the small things in my life since i started blogging! People, happenings, are more so in my memory NOW and the fact that I can share it with so many people thrills me.
I loved reading about this special person...and i think i respect him already for the stories he brought alive for you. Fueling your imagination as a child, building a fantasy world for you and also imparting so many values through these tales.
As a pscyhologist, I place much importance to this interaction between a child and parents at home...these are the building blocks of one's personality. You were fortunate for sure!
Enough said :P Almost a post this comment became :P

Ammu said...

Dear....u made my evening..feel like u took me to childhood..in the case of storytelling...its a real art...some ppl r blessed with that...im having such blessed parents and my childhood was colourful with the stories told by my grandmother..!but sadly...im not that blessed in it..! :-)

vrinda said...

@ mind bedouin and ammu

u r welcome....for taking you both down memory line tht is :)

vrinda said...

@ J

welcome back again :)
i agree with you that blogging has made me see the best in small things too...little big things if i could put them that way. sometimes i have this urge to write though i might have no idea as to what to write on...it is then that these posts come into being. little big posts about little big things... :)

Amu said...

this is beautiful. :) :)

i never had such a grandpa. my childhood consisted of rehashed cindrella stories. cindrella who wore lots of watches... and was called rakhi. sigh.

vrinda said...

tht was innovative :) a rakhi cinderella :)

Amu said...

cinderella**

i told you. my spellings are haywire. aargh.