Life and other things

Memories ; part two.

Thank you to all of you who have read the first part and left encouraging comments. Much appreciated.
so where were we? Ah, the arrival of my father back to India, much against his will. He was devastated to leave the life he has built here, his friends and all the fun he had. There he was suddenly plunged back into the conservative and very orthodox Indian society of the early 1940s, and expected to marry someone chosen for him by his father!As it happened,though he lived the rest of his life in India,but he remained a westerner all his life.all good thing
This created a rift between father and son, which never healed.
In my memory, I never saw my grand father and father being close to each other.
My mother came from an aristocratic family,brought up under strict tradition ,but a rebel at heart. She wanted, and did write poetry,something which was greatly frowned upon; girls from respectable families were nor seen nor heard. So her attempts at having her poems published in a woman’s magazine ,resulted in family displeasure.
Their wedding was a lavish affair, as my mother the eldest among daughters,and hers was the first wedding in their family,no expense was spared. Indian weddings go on for weeks anyway, but this was very lavish by any standard. It is said that several elephants carried her dowry,and that there was so much stuff that it took hours for the procession to pass.
My mother was a beautiful woman,sensitive,intelligent and very caring.
My father had spent so much time in the UK,in his formative years that he was a throughly western man.We do hear about immigrants not integrating in the British society, this was other way round,west has changed him so much,that he was having problem integrating back into the society he was born in. And he never did. He always hankered after England. The seasons, the people and the life style and the food and drink.From Kraft cheese to cream crackers,we had it all.
I grew up with a familiarity to English values.We always had a very British breakfast, a fry up, and toast and jam and marmalade,everything was imported.We always had two cooks, one who cooked English “dishes” and one who cooked Indian food. Father ate his fried egg, toast ad marmalade for breakfast until the day he died.
So the marriage to a my mother, who had lived a very sheltered life,and educated at home, as most women were in those days, was a shock to his system.
Soon after the wedding,my father who has by then joined the army, took his new bride and moved to a cantonment area.It was the British army ,and living among the officers,the first thing he did was having my mothers long hair chopped off into an ultra modern permed style.She started to use make up and soon became the life and soul of the army social life, cocktail parties and dinners were every day affairs,and they were having a time of their life. My father was happiest when he was in the company of the British officers.
But as they say all good things come to an end!
And my mother found herself pregnant, with me.
This couldn’t have come at a worse time. They have been married barely a year,and were having a time of their lives and suddenly they were being forced to abandon it all and take on the responsibility of another being!
My mother freely admitted that she tried every which way to get rid of me,throwing herself from height and drinking neat gin,but i was not going to budge.
To be continued.

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