When I first saw the trunk in bedroom upstairs at my grandma’s home, I could totally feel my hands so wanting to open it to find what was inside. Curious about its history, I questioned my Grandma and she told me it was a gift by her mother. That old trunk has stayed with our family for over 70 years with many things hidden in it. Old trunks always have many old treasures. When I opened this one I found treasures of belongings, memories, prayers …

What was the first thing I did after opening it? I tried her saree. Then the metal earring. The stone studded hair pin. The bangles.  The georgette saree has gold embroidery with Resham, Zari and thread. Beautiful.

The trunk sits half-forgotten on the dusty floor in the room. But for me, who was curious enough to peep inside; I found stories of adventure, adversity and accomplishment told by the people who lived it. I opened the diary written by my grandma and I found the most romantic words she ever wrote for grandpa. She wrote: “Yaad karte karte subah ho gayi” (Night has turned into a dawn while I still miss you). Also, there were her emotions flowing in the pages she felt when she married her only daughter off (my mom). Here are few lines from it – “It was from your eyes that I’ve learned to be a better mother. From your eyes, I found myself.”

Another thing which in the trunk was a ‘dream’. Shy dream. Bold dream. Beautiful dream. Forgotten dream. And then I thought about my dreams. Dreams of a nomad. Wanderer. I have always dreamt of having such a trunk where I could put all my possessions that I would collect from traveling around.

I remember few years back when in summers I visited grandma with my cousins. We were 7 in numbers.  All the boys got busy with the football and we 3 girls decided to sit and play the makeup-artists on each other. We brought our moms’ abandoned bangles and necklaces.  While we were returning back for our homes, we decided to hide these things in the trunk so that we would ‘find’ them as some ‘hidden treasures’ on our next visit. Silly old days!

Oh yeah, there was another small box kept at its extreme corner! Full of grandma’s wooden jewelry. A beautiful small coconut bag which according to her is a memory from her honeymoon. Grandpa took her to Kerala 🙂 Today it is in our home still holding that time. The old trunks are faithful. Each one has a story.. a wonderful living story. I find mine the most wonderful! (to be continued…)

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