Dear Muttacha (grandpa),
It has been almost 8 months since I last wrote to you, on my trip to Malawi when I was on a break from my studies in New Zealand. Prior to that I used to write to you when I was 13 or 14 – do you remember? How can you, of all the people in the world forget – of course, your modest self will never admit to your sharp memory.
Yet now… It is with great despondence that I write a final letter to you.
To the man who told me mythological stories every night during the summer holidays.
To the man who would buy me ‘milk biki’ biscuits and chocolates on his evening walks, or let me tag along; the little girl in me would love to skip by his side in eagerness.
I love you.
To the man who would endlessly play board games and cards, letting me win without fault, and at the same time sometimes choosing to thrash me for a game of carroms.
I’ll never forget those moments.
You, Muttacha, who was forever punctual, doting, and incredibly caring – you never deserved to even suffer in the slightest way you did in the last 15 days. Lets not forget your own dignity, in which you strived to take care of yourself, never wishing to be troublesome for anyone else.
How do I even begin to describe how much I will miss you? I recall how every time I’d leave Kerala you’d always wish me to study well and hard – you were always an endless support for my academics. I also remember that you’d call me to wish me on my birthday; no matter where I was in the world – without fail, every single year; oh! It came as such a pleasant delight for me.
And now, my dear Muttacha, as I sit and grieve for your loss, I feel numb with shock that I will no longer see you walk out your bedroom door. Or standing at the doorway when I’d come back at night with my Mum, so anxious for our safe arrival. What else can I say? Your loss will be irreplaceable.
Did you know, that once Amma made a fleeting comment, that the communist in you has been passed down to me, and although she meant it teasingly to me, I remember laughing and inwardly taking pride that I had at least one of your traits in me. Anything that is said in relation to you is truly honourable for me, for there is no better person whom I would love to be more alike to.
We share much more than the same star my dear Muttacha. For me, I have always looked up to you, with respect, love, and admiration. I’ll forever remember you and hold you close to my heart.
You will be missed dearly. Thank you; for all your teachings, encouragements, and the memories. May your soul truly rest in peace.
A broken-hearted granddaughter.