The extent to which I am deeply connected to Amritsar is just not easy for me to explain. I thought, my heart can feel that depth so why not try to put it into words..and share it with the world!
After my birth, till the time I got married, I visited Amritsar about 22 times because my grandfather and grandmother(Nanajee-Nanijee)lived there. It was a big huge ancestral house built before partition and bought by my Great grandfather.
So almost every year we use to spend our summer vacations, along with my brother and Mom. My father came when the trip was about to end and then ‘Four of us’, we got back to my hometown together. We enjoyed every bit of that place and also our long train journeys of two and a half days.. so much!!
Our house(mean to say my grandmas) was not very far from Darbar Sahib(Golden temple). The place was surrounded by so many gurudwaras that when I use to get up..there was so much purity in the air because of the 'shabads'(In Sikhism, a shabad is a sacred song or hymn selected from Sikhism's scripture Guru Granth Sahiib).
We were able to hear them from a great distance too. Not very loudly, but always the air was filled with hymns and songs from distant gurudwaras and it gave me a great sense of peacefulness and divinity, which I can never forget and miss so much.
My grandma and grandfather followed a strict routine. They use to get up by 5:00 in the morning. They took baths and, recited their 'Paath' religiously.I remember so vividly sometimes when I use to get up very early in the morning, I was able to hear my grandfather reciting ‘Paath’ (which was completely memorized by him)while taking bath and then afterward till the time he left for the gurdwara. My Grandmother(Nanijee) also followed the same routine but to my amazement, both of them visited different gurudwaras!
Nanijee visited ‘Darbar Sahib’ daily, and returned by 8:30 am, before breakfast to do the preparations..Nanajee visited ‘Shaheeda’ (the name of gurudwara) and came back at the same time. By the time they returned we were awake. Mom always ensured that we got up early and took bath before breakfast so that Nanajee doesn’t get angry! But never, it happened that our grandfather was kept waiting because of us. He was very strict and always emphasized that elders should not be kept waiting by the children for any meals.
In a way, it was very good because very early we were induced with that sense of time and discipline..which later helped us in many ways in our lives. The effect of the place along with the perception of my grandparents towards life both were spellbinding on me! I wish that magic could be recreated.
Our soul stirring conversations will continue...Happy Reading!