I have always believed that home was a feeling more than a place, where ever my mother was , home will be. But as I got to spend some six months with my mother during this lockdown and Covid-19 self isolation, I realized. Home is a place along with a feeling. I lived with her through three different spaces and only one truly rang as home. It was the wind that I could feel on my face or the faintest aroma of our kitchen garden or even the chair I sat on all day, every day. It was Gwalior, my home town for almost 27 years and I live here and inside it hold a special place.

Those who are familiar with Gwalior, would know that D.D. Nagar, where I live is on the outskirts of the city and for the last 14 years these outskirts have been my home. The first thirteen year a blur of new houses and places that I have forgotten in my childhood memory. But some aromas, some people remind you of places that you have been to, have lived your life. Gwalior as a whole remains close to my heart. I have seen the same places in the dead of the night to the morning hours and scorching afternoons.

It is a place like no other. Also a place where in this lockdown I finally was able to translate a project pending since long. Titled, “Shiva” in Hindi, my mother has bribed me, she has cajoled me, she had threatened me but “The Grief of Others” came into being when the solitude outweighed my tendency to be distracted. The story of a young girl and her parents who go through the most traumatic event as parents they could go through, death of their child.

It is a story that was topical and forever. A story you hear every board exam, every competitive test, or even during the times when you should not. A story of suicide brought on by kids who are growing up, trying to understand their mind and body and also dealing with pressure of getting it right. In my mother’s own words, “this was a story meant to be written by me.” The gloom and doom enticing me to the depth of it. This story did rang true, when we saw cases after cases in this forced self isolation. If I say so myself, mum had intentions of letting those who lost hope, get some hope. That all the dark times, were somehow going to end and we were going to end up in a better place.

And for me, that better place is that chair, that has a charging point on top of it with my laptop, and phone and my mum with morning tea. Just two people discussing from inner peace to world peace. All at our house, that is my home. And a place that is in my blood, Gwalior.

The novel is published on Kindle by the author duo. Buy the book here.

The Grief of Others is published on Kindle by Alokita Sharma and Sandhya Bohre. Dr. Sandhya Bohre is a professor at MLB Excellence College and HOB of Economics department along with writer of “Nayi Sanjh”. Alokita Sharma is an HR by profession and writer of “Dying at 19” and “The Broken Sun”. 


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