Camp Nanowrimo Day 2

Day 2
Since last year, I have been sending my Super 8 home movies to be digitalised and saved onto a usb key. Three were returned today. These were filmed in 1975, 1986 and 1988, and since they are over thirty years old, they may be classed as historical documents. We were in Glasgow, Wolverhampton and India (a seven-week trip) during the filming.
While watching, I am struck by the number of family members who have died from three generations of family. My husband was the fifth of ten children. He filmed his parents picking chilly peppers in their fields. Dressed in white cotton, they sit low between the green bushes taking each ripe red chilly and placing it in a basket. Nearby their family play around the water gushing from the pipe at the electric well. It is a July evening in Punjab and the heat of the day has dissipated. The sun is setting, and the shadows are long. Wearing a lilac sari, which I have hitched up, I paddle my feet in the stream that takes the water to the fields. As well as the parents, eight of the second generation, six brothers and two sisters have passed on. Revisiting the past is not always a happy experience.


November 3rd

1770 words today.

I spent some time this morning in sending money to a family in India. The mother is my house cleaner. The father migrated from Uttar Pradesh to the wealthier Punjab to work as a farm labourer. He lived in our field hut and spent his days helping my brother-in-law. He married a girl from his home village and brought her to live in the cabin. When his family grew, my brother-in-law gave him his tractor shed to live in. Thirty years later he is still there with three sons, two daughters-in-law and five grandchildren under-aged eight. The elder daughter-in-law has a skin disorder which looks to me like shingles gone awry. It’s scaly now, and I think it’s on the mend, but she has had it for three months, and it’s all over her even on her hands. The medics in Chandigarh say she’ll need a series of injections and treatment at the cost of over £600 which this family don’t have. They’ve sold all they could for the (not so helpful) treatment so far. And, with Covid-19 work is scarce and no furlough system. We are not the same religion, but they are like family. Of course, I sent them more than medical fees.