Growing up as a Malayalee or in short most of our north Indian friends used to call us mallus – Kerala has always been our vacation home.
Every summer vacation it used to be at granny’s place in Kerala and have enjoyed the love of not only our relatives but also the neighbors and the people who used to visit home probably to help plucking coconuts from the tree or so. Everyone used to love us and would pamper us just because we were not from there. For us everything was a surprise or a miracle. When my Mom used to make ball to play cricket with the help of coconut leaves, initially we used to make fun saying you can’t play with it but when you really have nothing else to do we used to play cricket – that same ball made out of coconut leaves and the bat used to be the dried thick stem from the coconut tree and life was beautiful.
You climb the nature made steps to go from one layer of land to the other on this hills and you will see cashew trees, jack-fruit trees and just greenery everywhere. Mother nature has been kind in this part of the south and probably that’s the reason people call it’s God’s Own Country.
Believe me when I used to visit my Mom’s side in Tiruvalla its a mix of Hindu and Christian population and they live happily. I have never heard anytime people discriminating anyone. In fact, most of my Christian malayalee neighbors whenever they made beef, biriyani, or rice cake they have always shared with us, even though they know my Mom won’t eat meat they knew kids and Dad would eat.
Similarly on the north of Kerala my Dad’s side Malaparam district where the population is a mix of Hindu and Muslim and they live happily. I have always heard from my Dad great things about his Muslim friends as how true they are to their words.
I have learned one thing people love each other and spread love through food and what’s wrong if it’s beef or chicken or fish? If one likes it they eat it and if they don’t then they don’t. There is nothing that religion comes in picture and even then everyone with different faiths in religion would go to their respective temples, church and mosques and pray.
“Love the world as your own self; then you can truly care for all things” ~ Lao Tzu
All this beautiful things I was enjoying this summer too. I was in Kerala visiting my parents and the heavy rains in Guruvayur was like a music to me. I remember I used to enjoy heavy rain at night because then you can sleep well – it was like music to the ears and same thing when it rained during the day, all I could do was record the music of rain drops falling fast one after the other and made some paper boats and sailed in the puddle in front of the gate. When I was leaving the place I felt it is raining as always like in the monsoon season but never thought of this disaster that would cause so many lives of people stranded across the state.
The best of our character comes out in difficult times and it is true during this natural calamity every Keralite was united in the name of humanity and was helping each other in every possible way. It was not only about human but every life was precious and were tried to save. I feel so proud to see how everyone came together whether it was Army, Navy, Air-force, Government, Fishermen, Movie star, Common Man, yes everyone was united in helping and saving each other. Shopkeepers kept their shop open and said take what you want! That is humanity where you don’t think of any selfishness but pure heart to help and save humanity.
About 800,000 people got stranded and relocated, so many of them are missing and so many lost their lives – my heart goes out to those who have lost their loved ones and might be some in hopes to find them in some camps. It’s the time when every Keralite celebrates Onam the harvesting festival and look this natural calamity brought everyone together if not to celebrate Onam but to celebrate humanity and love.
Being from Kerala I always felt special because if you look at it Kerala is always in news with 100% literacy, with Transgenders being recruited in the government jobs and LGBTQA supportive activities and what not and all this tells us nothing keeps us apart whether its sexual orientation, religion, caste, food habits what not all that is later and one’s personal choices but what comes first is Humanity and hence everyone tried their best to overcome this crisis, but whats going to take time is to rebuild.
“Destruction, hence, like creation, is one of nature’s mandates.” ~ Marquis de Sade
Everything takes time and this will too take time but with little support and help it will be easier for those who have lost their homes. Building a house could be a dream to many and imagine losing something that you have made out of all your earned money which you just lost one day due to heavy rain… where will one go back for shelter?
“How much wreckage and destruction justifies the creation of a better world?”
Let’s think of ourselves in that situation and imagine what would we do? What would be a big relief for us at such time? If some monetary help we get then isnt that the need of the moment?
Let’s all chip in small portion of our money, something that we daily spend on buying coffee, cigarette, tobacco, chewing gums and what not if one week we skip that and give that money to help rebuild Kerala once again, we will not only give a life to those people in need but we can also visit God’s own country and enjoy vacation and see those people smile again!
I will request through my this post to every individual please give generously through Amazon for relief camps and through Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund to rebuild Kerala.
Natural calamity can happen to any country any state but all we need to do is be prepared for any such disaster.
Let’s leave all our differences and be one to help each other and rebuild Kerala.
This natural disaster has brought humanity together and this tells us united we stand and rebuild and progress.
“When we destroy something created by Man, we call it Vandalism, but when we destroy something by nature we call it progress” ~ Ed Begley Jr.