I am Mallu
Being born a Malayali and living as a quintessential one — whether it is the best thing in the world, I don’t know. Will I find out? I don’t know. Is it a blessing? I can for sure say yes.
If you are Indian, you must have often heard one say — Mallus are everywhere! If you’ve been to a stand-up comedy in India — making a joke out of this not-so-trivial fact is undoubtedly on the agenda. They say if you ever went to the Moon, you’d find a Malayali there too, selling chaaya (Tea). Exaggerated as it is, there’s no smoke without fire (Mallu proverb I’ve grown up hearing). It is as blatant as it looks. We, “Mallus” are all around the world. And am talking about the 7 continents, not just the 28 other states in India.
Today, when I think of going back to my hometown Kochi, it is only for the joy of parental care and affection. The city I grew up in, the land that contains my roots with all my childhood memories and my chuddi-buddies for life, is nothing but a mirage now; the reason why I said I don’t know if being born a Malayali is a blessing or not. That’s the thing with us Mallus, once we leave Mallu land, there’s no coming back. Unless you go to the Gulf and they throw you out after you’ve taken what even your children can live with. That’s a different set of quintessential Gulf NRIs from Kerala, who slog their ways out in the Arabian deserts to send money back home so that his “aanti” can go to church flaunting that “Gelf” perfume.
When I look back today, I realize there’s no way I can ever live in a city where all my dear ones are. There’s always my aunt and family in the Gulf, my oldest childhood friend who’s settled in the US with her techie hubby, the rest of my childhood friends who are scattered all over the country and outside, my favourite teacher who’s gone to Russia to settle down…the list just goes on! Should I be happy that no matter where I go, I will always find shelter? ☺ I don’t know!
Ah. But do not be mistaken, you don’t meet Mallus, Mallus happen to you! And Mallus don’t just happen to you. We grow on you as well ;)
Top 3 reasons why I would trade anything in the world to be born Mallu again…
#1. Mallu comedy — so here’s the deal. Find one person who’s grown up watching Mallu movies and movies of any other language and ask him to choose sides.
So how long before he cracked up recalling his favourite Mallu movie dialogue?
#2. Perfect holiday getaway — also home! A pic sans photographic filters and effects, there’s the reason why Kerala is called the God’s own country.
#3. Malabari chicken biriyani, Kerala porotta, chilly beef fry, puttu & kadala, appam & chicken stew/ fish molly, karimeen fry, kappa and meen curry, idiappam & duck roast and naadan kallu. Enough said. And you thought “sadya” was our speciality.
Have you planned your next trip to God’s own country yet?
Originally published at http://bablisara.blogspot.in/