by Pushpa Raghuram
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As return gifts she was presented with Mysore silk scarves, trinkets from choodi bazaar, and idols of the elephant headed god ‘Ganesha’. Every time she went back to Germany, her farewell greeting was “Auf Wiedersehen” (Till we meet again!).
When Inge came to know that my biological mother had passed away after a brief illness, she could not come to Bangalore. Nevertheless she was as inconsolable as we were. When we siblings opened our mother’s cupboard after a couple of months, we saw how carefully she had preserved every present she had received from Inge. Each Greeting and Birthday card she had gotten by post had been safe guarded, as if they had been received just a couple of weeks ago. It was very touching. We found ourselves sitting speechless, opening the cards and presents all over again and going down the memory lane.
She stopped coming to India only, when she turned ninety plus and could not walk without a stick or travel on her own any more. She however continued to write to us very often – as much as her shaking fingers allowed her to pen her thoughts. India, our family circle and I remained green in her memories. She had come eleven times to India. But she travelled in her dreams to “Incredible India” till she reached the final travel destination of her life three years ago, in 2009.
I am still travelling carrying her memories, sharing them with my near and dear ones, and whoever is interested to hear this real story of Love between Inge and me. I hope that my future journey will be without much travail, being ‘twice blessed’ by two mothers. God bless them both, wherever they are in Heaven.