I just wanted to say that you are my super hero. I have admired you and copied you since the very first memories of my childhood.
The childhood. Playing marbles, hide-and-seek, and the ball games…. You taught me how to ride a bike; no training wheels on it, just the faith that you were there to catch me before I would fall.
Mom sang the lullabies that have faded from my memory; you told me the stories – vivid stories, long stories in short winter nights. The stories of love, bravery and wars; you told us the tales of Alibaba and Aladdin long before the TVs came to our village, long before I learned to read a chapter book.
I recall you worked in the farm from dawn to dusk. Those dawns, the farm, the black dog we had, the sugarcanes, the sparrows flying around and the annoying crows trying to steal the bread – I miss them. I wish I could go back and relive those days again, to be that child again.
Climbing the Jamun tree, plucking the ripe mangoes, flying a kite, using a sling-shot….don’t remember how I learned all that. Maybe you taught me; perhaps I watched you and copied you. But, I learned so much from you, some of the stuff i was not even supposed to. Blissful ignorance, little worries for a kid. I used to think that I knew everything that you knew, even long before the teenage years.
The teenage years, I was growing by an inch every day. I would be taller than anyone in our family, you predicted. You were so proud of me. “After all, a man’s true measure is based on his physique, not brain nor money”, you would say jokingly.
Then, I learned about money; the coming and going of it. You did not sit me down to teach me the value of money. Perhaps because you did not want me to know the ugly side of our household finances. But I learned about them, and the money that was always in short supply.
Raising a handful of kids with limited means, the income from a two acre farm. It was not easy but you raised us well, with dignity and pride. I saw you struggle, I saw you sweat, but I never saw you give-up. Through thick and thin, you put us through colleges and universities. We not only survived but flourished because of you – because of your presence, because you are our father.
I am not sure if you are watching us from above, or if you can hear me. I just want to say that I am very proud of you, dad!
Happy father’s day, dad!
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