I don’t know when and how Pizza went on to become a five-hundred rupee plus affair, with exotic sounding toppings and whatnots. To me, pizza has been something a lot more basic, a lot more personal.
Sometime earlier this month, I took a trip down memory lane. The clock had run backwards after standing still for a split-moment. Triggering things off was this – a Pizza. Not like the ones I dissed above, but this – a hundred rupee, simple, three chopped veggies on a pre-made base, tomato sauce & grated Amul cheese affair. Back then it used to cost a mere fifteen rupees, a princely sum for that time.
I used to look forward to the monthly ritual where dad used to bring this small disk of yumminess. There was nothing remotely Italian to it. Yet, it tasted heavenly. Maybe it was because it was so rare an indulgence, or the fact that we couldn’t quite afford it then. The palate wasn’t exposed to all sorts of yummy food that it has experienced in the past decade or so. But more importantly it was because of the sacrifice that went into that indulgence.
You see, the restaurant from where the pizza would come, stood pretty much in the middle of the route from the train-station to home. The bus frequency wasn’t as well-developed and rickshaws were unaffordable. So dad used leave work an hour earlier than his usual time and take the ninety minute train ride before getting off at the station. He would then walk twenty minutes to reach the restaurant, place the order, and wait patiently as it was prepared and packed in that white, cardboard box. He would walk a further twenty-five minutes, climbing five flights of stairs to hand it over to his son who would be waiting eagerly for it. Sharing a slice had never tasted better on any other pizza.
The Pizza I had earlier this month came the closest in resembling the one from my childhood. And I have had my share of pizza nut none have tasted has never tasted that sweet ever. Those who know me only know of the bond I share with my First Lady. Few know of the bonding between Dad n me. This then is one of the many untold memories that have remained untold till today. And this is my attempt to express my gratitude towards the Creator for blessing me with a Dad like him. Dad n me, we may not speak as much as we should and Lord knows I’m running out of time. But I intend to make the most of the time, even if it means that I have to let go of a few of my wants and desires. After-all, he’s got some really big shoes for me to fill.
Love manifests in all relationships, at-least the ones where people are caring. But we are so busy looking for grandeur that we often look for it in the expensive, lavish gifts and other such fruitless pursuits. Truth is, there is loads of love in the smaller gestures. We only have to open our minds, to cherish and be grateful for it.