Father’s Day: Memories make me nostalgic
As far as I remember the good old days, I was smaller in calibre and size, a very simple young man with an open look at the future. I had a wonderful opportunity to visit my father's working place, especially during school holidays, during summer vacation. He was like a prince to me who would come and take me to his empire for a few days then again, I will be alone.
Early eighties were full of fantasies. Those days the journey was full of enthusiasm, I used to look forward; either it started from searched by Rocket steamer or a bus journey crossing the mighty Padma in ferry. I used to wait for those glittering momentums for the whole year. I could smell the mesmerizing fragrance of those beautiful gardens full of flora and fauna, mixed with a very earthy smell especially after a drizzle, it was an experience of a lifetime.
Abba is no more there but still I can remember his very soothing, calm, guiding voice which always gives me that pleasure I search for. With the advent of the summer season, it used to start everything from scratch. After a whole day journey when we used to reach our heavenly spot, I remember I used to run to that place to take full blown glimpse of those adorable gardens. After a long journey it used to be dark. I could not wait for the next morning, to add to the beauty was river "Rupsha".
Abba was there beside me as always telling me not to go close to the river banks. Those memories are contagious, once you think time and again become nostalgic, home away from home, like a dream which never ends. It revitalizes those lasting memories of how much my father used to love me! My only solace is love flows downwards, so there was no paying back total one-way traffic. Lush green garden full of blooming flowers, watered, nurtured, washed by river water, it welcomed us with its virgin freshness every time anew.
It was a lovely month for gardening as the temperature is barely tolerable and there is much preparation to be done for the blistering heat of summer which. With the help of a gardener, Abba used to take a look at some of the gorgeous flowers you can grow to make it an extra-special place to retreat to and lock the outside world firmly away for precious hours on end. There was a small pond in father's official residence which was full of fish. During June and December fishing nets were used, the catch was obviously mammoth in my eyes. White, glittering scale of fishes still baffles me.
In corners of the house, were the tall coconut trees, the way the coconuts were plucked always gave me goosebumps. We used to give others different types of flowers as gifts. Marigold plants are a very prolific, easy to grow annual flower. Marigold flowers are available in a variety of colours, including white, yellow, orange, red and mixed colours. It is ideal for cutting flowers specially for making garlands. Palash is lovingly called "The Flame of the forest".
Still I remember the angry look of the Palash flower. When in full bloom in the spring, the whole forest really looks as if in flames. Gardenia is a night flower that blooms at night. It has a very attractive fragrance. It is mainly used for making soaps, cosmetics, perfumes and so on. Krishnachura trees were grown on both sides of the house on roads, and are graced with scenic beauty in the district town.
This fragrance Kath-golap flowers make is very popular and they have been part of the culture in Bangladesh from time immemorial. They are used in religious offerings. Kath-golap flowers are used to make the world's most expensive perfume 'Joy' in America. Jasmine is a very popular flower around the world, especially in tropics because of its unique fragrance. The Jasmine is native to tropical and warm temperate regions of the old world. The Shiuli are the flowers of autumn. It is small in size with bright white petals. The trees with thick branches fully bloom from the month of March every year.
I enjoyed our garden to the fullest. I still can't figure out after all those hefty works how my father could manage time. He used to spend time with us when could. As far as I remember he got several prizes for best kitchen gardening, which he was fully worthy for. Those days are never going to come back, but in my memory lane that is only yesterday, I still can feel and touch them.
My father has gone from this world, but he will always be remembered by me for those caring moments, love and they way he guided me. He always taught me to do only right things, in my dreams; still I can feel and touch him. It seems he is always there in between the stars watching me as always used to be. Abba had stood there for me like a tree full of every kinds of fruits.
I still feel I am gradually growing up under his passionate guidance. Like a tree we cannot payback to our parents--only can take and can be happy. A father's love cannot be compared to anything, yet I live every day with his memory.
Dr Zubair Khaled Huq
Family Medicine, Gerontologist, Public Health Specialist