Well the year is coming to an end, once again, just like it did last year, and I’m thinking about stuff. Y’know, introspecting. And I’m thinking the December of 2010 has been a decidedly bittersweet month.
We just got back home from saying our farewells to Sheroo and her kids Sal and Zee. They’re the ones we went with on our trip up north last year.
Sheroo and I are first cousins, i.e her mom and my mom are sisters. We’ve literally grown up together, since I was born a mere twenty-four days after she was 🙂 We hung out together a LOT when we were kids, teaming up during our huge family get-togethers, sometimes being dressed up in identical outfits (thanks to some cunning planning on our mothers’ part), and coming up with idiotic games of our own, things we could only laugh about when we grew up. 🙂
She went away to college in the US, and I went off to Lahore to study art, but we kept in touch with postcards and hand-written letters and birthday cards delivered by snail-mail, some of which has been kept by both of us, exchanges full of all our new experiences in our separate spheres.
Eventually we regrouped in Karachi, and we both got married within a year of each other. I was tickled that she chose me to be her best friend in her wedding, out of all those girls she knew, and we ended up having a ball as she requested me to do her wedding makeup and we put our heads together to devise a pattern of mehndi for her hands that would match her ghagra. Yes, those were the days when it wasn’t completely unheard of to choose NOT to spend thousands of rupees on something that would be washed off in a few hours. 😛 Plus Sheroo was never one to indulge in anything but the barest minimum of lipstick, if any.
Fortunately, our respective husbands found kindred spirits in each other, resulting in us meeting more often than we would have had our husbands not hit it off as much as they did! 🙂 They’re both a little quirky, more than a little irreverent, and they can both talk for hours and hours about philosophy and politics and evolution.
Thanks to this camaraderie, we’ve shared good times and innumerable debates and arguments over countless kababs from Meerath, and multitudinous plates of nihari and many many cups of tea. It helped that our kids had an affinity for each other, so when the time came to test our friendship by travelling together, we ended up having an awesome time! 😀
It was on this trip though, that Sheroo’s hubby first hinted at an idea that took shape over the course of the ensuing months. It wasn’t so much about running away from this country as it was about experiencing a different way of earning a livelihood.
So when a job was handed to him on a plate, he decided to go for it. And so it happens that they are now on the verge of a new chapter in their lives, an adventure that will take them halfway across the globe, to set up home in a different world. It came as a shock for Sheroo at first, the idea of uprooting herself and her family from a very comfortable existence bang in the middle of a communal neighbourhood, with the kids going to a great school, and no shortage of friends or family. But the idea grew on her….
Even after all these years, Sheroo is still a bit of an enigma for me. Perhaps it’s the Scorpio in her that lends an air of mystery to her persona, as I STILL haven’t been able to figure out what makes her tick 🙂 She is a woman of few words, but that doesn’t stop her from having a ready smile and an ever-present tendency to burst into giggles….even while delivering bad news! There’s a stoicness about her though. And a decisiveness in her manner. So don’t you be fooled by her sweet disposition 😉 This woman, my dear friends, is a PILLAR of strength, as is most lately evidenced by the way she managed to pack essentials and wrap up everything here, in the absence of hubby.
So this post is for my cousin Sheroo, people. I’m probably going to miss her more than I realise. I’ll miss sharing the common experience of being fellow Karachiites, beset by the same problems, besieged by the same environment. I’ll miss her at our annual Eid get-togethers and I’ll miss her at family weddings. I’ll miss witnessing Sal and Zee grow.
But I’m thrilled for her, and judging by the mysteriously new gleam in her eye………I’m convinced she’s thrilled too. 🙂