On Friday, I decide to spend the night at my grandfather’s place. He sleeps at 8 o’ clock or so, so when I get there around 10, he is asleep.
At 10:20, I hear him getting out of bed. He shuffles past my room and goes to the kitchen. I hear the balcony door creak open and close. I hear him wash his hands in the sink. Then, silence. He doesn’t walk by my room again. A little concerned I get up to find my grandfather standing by the sideboard.
“What happened?” I ask.
My grandfather, caught in the act, confesses, “I felt like eating a banana, so got up.”
I chuckle and go back to bed.
In the morning, he wakes me up at 6, asking me to retrieve a bottle-cap that has fallen.
I do so and go back to sleep, after a rather crazy, loud conversation (because my grandfather is hard of hearing).
He wakes me up again at 6:20 to ask if my father is in town. We have another loud conversation.
At 7, when I’m ready to leave, he has just entered the bathroom for his bath. He has laid his table for breakfast; he has changed his calendar to February; he has kept his chair ready so that he can sit and pray.
By 8:30 yesterday, my grandfather had died.
Truly incredible, for me, are the decisions he made. A person aged 89, he prayed everyday, performed all the necessary rituals on his parents’ death anniversaries…
And donated his body to medical research.
No cremation, no funeral, no ceremonies.
Rest in Peace, Thatha.