Tuesday, July 03, 2012

My Friend Ms.Madhavan

There are numerous people that walk into our days and sometimes into our lives, hearts and minds as well. This concept of unrelated, random folks adorning our mind's mantels like glowing candles, spreading fragrance and light always intrigued me to no end. I am this fortunate soul that way, to have crossed paths with some people in my life, who, enhance my very existence with their presence and love. Ms. Madhavan is the latest and 'most missed' on my list right now.
I can recollect the day I first saw her - in the line to Aarti's pre K classroom. She spoke animatedly to a fellow Malayalee mom, uttering alien words in a sing song tone. It took me sometime to figure out that they were conversing in Malayalam, a South Indian language that I got mixed up with Tamil. Yeah, it is kind of silly, since being a Southie myself, I should have guessed! So, this lady was holding her son in one hand, addressing him as "Kanna" every now and then and crooning in the same sing song language. Her tallness added a mysterious grace to her persona. Wide expressive eyes, lush, curly tresses left open casually, a painter's nose and a perfectly chiseled figure that defied  motherhood summed up Ms. Madhavan - an eye candy of a woman. The first thing that registered in my mind was her beauty. Being the 'starting troubled" I am, I didn't really attempt to converse with her until we were a few weeks into the Pre K program. She didn't talk much anyway - just smiled with wide eyes and a preoccupied expression every time our eyes met. My mind created a stereotype - "a pretty young mom, probably small towner, not much exposure to the world around her" and during our few conversations, I also slotted her as naive, quiet and slow to react.

     Many a time we hear from all wise sources that we should refrain from slotting people into stereotypes based on some random experiences, and Ms. Madhavan did reinstate that same lesson deep into my heart. Probably because I was destined to learn a thing or two about life, or probably because our destinies interwove into one another, her kid and mine ended up in the same room for their first school year after being classmates for two years of pre k. Slowly and steadily, our association bloomed, from conversations about school and after school activities in general and about parents and family in particular. I saw more and more of her and every little meeting got me closer to knowing the person behind that naive expression and pretty face. She used to sum up philosophies of life in simple sentences, quoting them in her own plain words - words that spoke of universal truths in palatable bits and pieces. Random mentions about Oprah Winfrey show et al, quotes from famous women authors and little surprises like that made her a very endearing, sensible and hearty company. Her sing song voice and her strong Malayalee accent that doused every bit of English she spoke was music to ears. Never into the territory of gossip, always looking out and worrying for others and taking up little tasks assigned to her very seriously and diligently were real icing on top for a darling of a woman. I am blessed to have crossed paths with many friends who taught me lessons of life, but Ms. Madhavan's association took a special place in my heart - her very many conversations, her oversensitiveness to certain things, the way she tried to humor me when I was in a bad mood - all made a lasting impression on my heart's canvas. And the biggest of googlies was her immaculate sense of humor. A little talk to her lightened up daily challenges and put things in perspective. We have both belonged to different lands, spoke different languages and were brought up entirely differently but the common ground I share with Ms.Madhavan is of great reverence to me and I thank all my lucky star alignment that led me to cross paths with her. She shall for ever remain my beloved "weather reporter" and that bright sunshine in the garden of friendship.