“Grandmother, you can’t even walk. How are you going to carry a kavadi?” I had asked this same question countless times in the past, and each time I asked I always got a different answer. She looked at me blankly, as if she had just forgotten what she was about to say, then she started to speak.
“I want to carry a kavadi before I die. I feel in my heart that this might be the last Thaipusam I get to see. I have carried many milk pots, but I still feel unsatisfied. If I could just carry a kavadi just once, I will pass on with joy in my heart.”
Sighing deeply, Grandmother closed her eyes. She usually did this when she was in more pain than usual. Sometimes she was in so much pain that she would squeeze her eyes shut so tightly that tears rolled down from the corners, but she never complained. She opened her eyes and lifted her head as the domestic helper offered her some water to drink through a straw. As she drank, her gaze was fully on me.