Sunday mornings started bright and early at home in Bangalore back when my brother and I were still in school. Sunday mornings were not for getting up late, whiling away time in front of the television or for lazy breakfasts. Sunday mornings were action-packed adventure days.
My dad, my brother and I would wake up early, freshen up, eat a quick breakfast or sometimes not, grab a huge tote bag, leave my mother at home and head out.
I would always wonder why my mother did not want to come with us. How could she want to stay home? But now that I have children of my own, I know exactly what she must have been feeling. I wouldn't mind staying back home all alone, just sitting there by myself in blessed silence, with uninterrupted reading time.
My dad had an old Bajaj scooter then, but we would let it rest in its parking place in our narrow compound and make our way to the bus stand, about a five-minute walk away.
The bus stand would be near empty, may be a stray family here and there heading to a wedding or some such event. We would wait for a bus, any bus. Our trip, you see, had no destination. We would get on the first bus that looked like it had seats for three people and go wherever it took us and stay on until the very last stop. It was a great way to see the city, watch the people that got on and off the bus and listen to my dad talking about this building or that building.
On one such trip, we found ourselves at the Majestic bus terminus. We headed in the direction of Avenue Road and found ourselves in front of Abhinay talkies. We looked at the movie billboard and the movie timings. There was a showing starting just then. We bought tickets and went right in.
That's how I saw Shaan.
That's also how I saw The 36th Chamber of Shaolin at the Galaxy theater. We had missed a good fifteen minutes of the movie, but nobody was particularly bothered.
After three or four hours of loitering around, may be a movie squeezed in, definitely something to eat somewhere, we would head to the nearest vegetable market, fill up that tote bag with all sorts of vegetables, and if we were anywhere near MG Road, with lots of goodies from Spencers and head home on another bus.
We would then take over the kitchen under my dad's supervision. My mother was forbidden from entering the kitchen on Sundays. All of the vegetables would go on the floor, we would pick one of each kind, cut them into large pieces and boil them along with the rice and dal in the pressure cooker. When the vegetables were done boiling, they would go in a large pot with the dal. My dad would then open up the spice cupboard and open every spice powder (rasam powder, sambhar powder, curry powder, gojju powder, garam masala powder, chilli powder...) jar. He would then methodically take a little bit of the powder from every single jar and add it to the pot along with tamarind and salt.
Within half an hour of our coming home, lunch would be served. Whatever it was, that thing that he made, it was delicious.