It had been 11 years since I last went to lucknow so when I was told that we would be going there for a family function I walked down the memory lane. Lucknow has always been one of my fav places, cause of my nani. She had just enough love to give everyone, be it her kids or grandkids. There is something about the air, the people, the food, I’m sure some of you might just think of Lucknow as a place but for me, its so much more.
Spending the summer holidays, eating amazing delicacies, exploring the historical monuments, was a part of my growing up years. I used to wait for June to come so that all of us would meet at nani’s place and have fun. My maternal family is probably the coolest ever, everyone is given importance and respect regardless of the age. Nanajis, nanis, mama, mami, mausajis, mausis and all of us have always had a great time together.
I was extremely close to my nani, so 11 years back when I went for her funeral, I was very depressed. She was the reason I started believing in God, nani would explain to me the importance of family which I never understood back then. I would always sleep with her whenever she was around and she would patiently listen to my lame stories. After she passed away, I just couldn’t go to Lucknow, either the plan didn’t pan out or we weren’t free but mostly because I couldn’t imagine lucknow without her.
After the tickets were booked, I began googling the places I wanted to explore cause I had made up my mind that I wouldn’t be staying at home much as it might depress me. I scribbled down 9 places that I wanted to see and kept the paper in my bag. Almost all my family members were coming but since all the kids had grown up, I guessed they wouldn’t want to hang out with me since I was the eldest so I told my mom to go around lucknow with me and not leave me alone.
Throughout the journey, I kept wondering how would I react, what would I say but as soon as I reached our home, I felt so much at ease. Everyone was gearing up for the function, the kids were running here and there, the teens were busy on their smartphones (snapchatting, sorry had to mention it. Hehe) and the mausis were deciding what to wear. It didn’t feel that I had come after 11 long years.
It was my chote nanaji’s and nani’s 50th marriage anniversary wherein all of our relatives had come from different cities. Our mums were busy meeting people after ages and introducing us. The oohs and ahhs could be heard from a distance I guess. Hehe. “Oh she looks just like you” was the thing I heard the most. The music, the sound of cameras clicking, the giggles had set the ambiance perfectly. Everyone had made efforts to make the timeless couple feel special on their day, the kids had made a video and a card which was such a cute gesture. I guess when you enjoy, you don’t realize how time flies by cause by the time we wrapped up, it was more than 1 am. After returning home, my cousins decided to play dumb charades, I joined them since I didn’t know what else to do. But boy oh boy, I have to say, I havent laughed this much in the longest time!! Even though I am more than 6-7 years elder to all of them, I felt like a part of the gang. I’m smiling reminiscing how crazy we must have looked while enacting the most insane of movies. We slept at 5 am which speaks volumes about the fun we must have had that day.
In the morning, my mausis and mami asked me to get ready for shopping as all the ladies were heading out. Can you guess what my answer was???? Well, I refused!! The people who know me or follow me on any social media platform know what a big time shopaholic I am, I’m out shopping every weekend so for me to refuse to leave the house meant huge deal but since I wanted to spend time with my cousins I stayed back. Mausaji, mama and my cousins decided to teach me to ride Royal enfield that day, which was such a adrenaline rush and also soooo cute. The cousins who taught me were the ones who would sit on my lap and pull my cheeks, I have given them piggy back rides and today they had grown up so much that they were teaching me something. Too much awwww happened that day. Hehe.
Over the next two days, we rode the bike, went for midnight drives, strolled around, pulled each other’s legs, clicked a million pictures, argued who gets to be Chandler Bing ( which we all eventually agreed was me) talked till 6 am, watched movie (VIP seats) hehe, made funny videos, we even invented games. I had come with a mindset that they wouldn’t like me hovering around and that’s why I had made an itinerary but they made sure that I didn’t feel left out, which meant the world to me.
Lucknow might be a place for everyone but for me it was, is and will always be home. No matter how old I get, no matter where I go, lucknow will always be my happy place. My family is undoubtedly the best, from my nanaji to the youngest cousin!
Thank you for teaching in your own sweet way what family truly means , the kid back then didn’t understand what you meant but the girl writing this, knows.