My Paati

I'm sure I speak for many of us when I say that the comfort, sense of belonging, and nostalgia we feel when thinking about Thatha and Paati at the Thiruvanmiyur house is unmatched. We live such large lives these days, however, I'd give anything to go back to being a 10-year old, standing in Paati's little kitchen, watching as she prepared a feast for an extended large family, listening to the sound of her soft voice, and smelling the amalgam of vibudhi, chandan, spices, antique pots, special bakshanams, and her love-packed cooking. Paati set the benchmark for what it meant to make a house a home, and I'd like to think that I can take after her someday.

Paati carried herself with the sweetest of dispositions; every request of hers was impossible to deny, especially when she'd ask Vidya and myself to sing for her. She knew exactly what who was doing what, and how the world around her was functioning, but always chose to be a woman of few words, great actions, and greater observations.

One of Paati's trademarks, in my opinion at least, was her glimmering nose ring - lighting up her already divine face like MSS, emitting a seraphic energy, and embodying a glow powerful enough to make Kanyakumari envious. Her loving force field was unmissable, much like her infectious smile.

I must have been but 18 when she passed, and to this day, her voice chimes vividly in my mind; soft and loving, yet reminding you somehow that she was the matriarch of the house and you'd be wise to listen to her. She would often say, "Andha Ambujam Krishna paatu paaden", and I wish I had sung it for her more often. That song, Enna Solli Azhaithaal, still renders me both content and mute, as though her energy is still in my presence.

Miss you, Paati. I promise I won't stop singing for here to listen to Nitya & Vidya singing Enna Thavam Seithanai

May 17, 2021