Me and Achchi after voting.
People often ask me why I live in Sri Lanka. I find this a rather strange question, but here is one answer. My family is here. Lately, I’ve been in the neighborhood and I have lunch with my Achchi (grandmother) at least once a week. On one level, I will never starve in this country. On a more important one, it is a blessing to spend time with the people I love.
So I had some rice and fish curry and chatted about relatives and what country my father was in. After lunch we sat on the porch and looked into the newly manicured garden. My Achchi told me about when I was a child, when she’d come to help care for me in Vancouver (Canada).
She said that somedays we’d go outside and she let me run around without my diaper. Once I was supporting myself on a short wall and I started peeing. She described how I looked down, utterly fascinated and somewhat confused at this strange occurrence. Apparently I was used to simply peeing my pants and the actual mechanics came as something of a surprise.
We both laughed, and I can tell that she still sees that child when she looks at me. That is a look that never softens. There are all manner of reasons to live somewhere, but I would really miss these moments and memories if I was abroad. It truly is nice to be around family. I know they care for me unconditionally, and it’s nice to be able to do little things for them, especially as everyone is getting older. I’m not the best grandchild or anything, but I don’t think my Achchi wants much more than an occasional visit. It’s nice to be able to do that. For me.