Wednesday, August 22, 2007


I know I have not done enough justice to Ponnappa in this blog as whatever reminiscences I have recorded herein are from my childhood memories, which are fading, as all these happened in the early and mid 60s, more than 45 years back and I have only posted what I could recollect. Our visits to Aluva abruptly ended in 1970 after my grandmother Chithammai’s death, and after that although I have made a few more trips to Aluva, these were not the same except to rekindle some nostalgic memories of the past.


After reading my Blog, my wife Manju and daughters Shilpa and Madhu, the three ladies who rule my life, were quite surprised by the way I have chronicled my childhood - the sights, smells and sounds and the extent of affinity I have shown for Aluva. The appreciation from my family triggered a brainwave in me and I said I will buy one or two acres of land in a residential locality in Aluva and construct a house, replicating Ponnappa’s Bank road home in every detail. I thought this will sort of preserve some of my memories associated with Ponnappa and Chithammai and my days in Aluva. But Manju, Shilpa and Madhu were not quite enthusiastic about this and naturally so. To them, Aluva is some obscure town in some part of Kerala, a place they have no intention to visit even for a brief stopover.


I pondered on this a good deal. Replicating Ponnappa’s Bank Road home in Aluva, seems to be a good idea to me but it's not fair to force my clichéd fascination for a hackneyed construction on my family, to relive my childhood memories. Suddenly the balloon was pricked and I realized it will not be the same.


A replicated Aluva home without Chithammai & Ponnappa, without Bhasi, Ammommai, Milkman Sankaran & Paperboy Mohideen and last but not the least an Aluva without Pankajam Cinema!!! No way!!


It’s impossible to recreate our childhood memories by constructing another house as revisiting one’s childhood is something money cannot buy. Further, Aluva itself has faded into further oblivion, what with Nedumbaserry airport having suddenly brought Angamali into limelight and the rapid development of Kochi on one side and Thrissur on the other with the influx of Gulf remittances in the 80s and 90s haves left Aluva in the lurch without any development to boast about except for a surge in real-estate prices.


I think, this Blog will remain as a standing testimony to the life of a great and unique person Ponnappa, and Chithammai our sweet grandmother and their abundant love for their grandchildren, which I was fortunate to savour in good measures that made Ponnappa’s Bank Road Home a haven of unadulterated joy for us. I think it is best to leave things as they are!!!



Ajithbharathannoor said...

hello sir

excellant work..., that collection of your old songs.. yes i know it's from youtube.., ut you spend much time to collect those videos and present it to us . and thanks to memories those golden songs

Ajith Kumar

harimohan said...

dear Ram
i read the full post today only it was very intresting ,the hindi songs specially tere mere sapne took me back to the past ,what great music !
past will never be recreated as a whole it shouldnt be for it is preserved as it is but we can renew the past in our future no harm
maybe you both shud retire in Aluva in the banks of Periyar when the time comes .
all the best

rajuvish said...

kannan, aluva totally (rightly!) superseded parur, it seems! i came across this blog accidentally, looking for "anathalayolam..." and to my delight found "sastrigal" family in part here! and, some excellent writing, reminding me of r k narayan style&quality, befitting parur, befitting g'son of t r ramakrishna-mama, (uncle of rajendran, kuttan, meesai-mani mama etc --not that they were known for this kind of prowess with "pen"). now in b'lore, occasionally when i visit kerala, i get in touch with siva(vaidyanathan)&prema, we talk of some close family ties, talk of parur (and, of course, peirce&leslie-ramanathan&ammini-mami, and, mattancheri). very nice reading all this, thank you v much, kannan. regards, best: raju (son of kolathu-mama, the other side of mookambi temple, closer to that tennis court, badminton court&kacherippadi cricket!)

Kannan said...

Dear Rajuvish,

Extremely delighted to read your comments. Your comparison of my writing style with Greats like R.K. Narayanan, made me feel quite heady (and intoxicated!!)although I know that your compliment is far far more than what I actually deserve, still I couldn't help feeling elated.

Your reference to Rajendran Mama, Kuttan Mama and (Meesai) Mani Mama brought back nostalgic memories of the past. Mani Mama's nephew(my second cousin Prakash)is the current flag bearer for the Meesai tradition and sports a luxurious growth!!

I have heard a lot about Kolathu-Mama and family through Ponnappa, Chithammai and my mother Doraiamma.

Thank you once again for visiting my blog and your kind words of encouragement.