My generation from old-time India - there are a few of us still hanging around, most still quite compos mentis.I remember when my last remaining parent died in 1983, for the first time, mortality was shadowing me, just at my shoulder. I could not shake it off.
The thing about this generation - what makes it so special to me- is that we were the last from old India, now totally lost to television soap, nylon saris, mobile phones and the rest. When one falls ill, I am threatened. When one died, as happened a month ago, the first of this generation and a gentle and wonderful man at that- I was bereaved and infinitely sad.
I am frantic thinking there is so much to record, which will pass into the mists of time unless I chronicle it. Above all was that joint-family feeling, all of us connected, being responsible for all the others, obliged to share good and bad times. There was a capacity to love because there was more time to feel.
I wonder whether I am just living in a mirage - that all this is in my head only.
This bucket-list has a virtue: the order is uncertain. Nobody can say, 'Now it is my turn.' Or indeed how long we will stay functional. But for now this fraternity is important to my own well-being. I am selfish of course - I need them.
As long as I am able, I shall travel to find them, enjoy that special language we speak, laugh and know precious kinship. A very special blessing indeed. No one can take it away from me.