Posted by: cochinblogger | October 31, 2017

My Friend, the Sun


I was on my way to The Kerala Water Authority office to pay the water bill. The sprawling complex lies in an old residential part of the city, full of magnificent old mansions and quaint ancient houses built in the classical Kerala style. I always admire the old traditional houses when in this area, and there are so many of them.

As I was looking at one such house, a window of an adjacent house opened. A moment later, an old lady appeared in the window, but she evinced no interest in the activities outside. Instead, her eyes were on a book in her hands. She was a study in concentration. As she stood motionless reading the book, framed by the window, I took the picture that appears on top of this post. It was late evening, and I suppose she could’ve switched on the light in the room. Perhaps the frugality that is second nature to the elderly led her to open a window instead. Or perhaps she preferred natural light to electric light. As a young girl, she would have
grown up with sunlight and the light of the oil lamp.

The electric light is a wonderful invention, but for an elderly person with failing eyes, sometimes only the sun will do. I know this from the example of my father. He had advanced glaucoma, and a stage was reached when he could
read the newspaper only when seated in the balcony, the light of the mid-morning sun’s rays streaming directly onto the newsprint.

One day, his eyes deteriorated beyond the reach of even the assistance of the bright sunlight in the balcony.

But until then — the sun was his friend.

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  1. A moving and poignant allegory of life itself…

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