Chaman Lal Bhardwaj, my maternal grandfather, passed away on Monday, December 28th. With that, it seems an entire era has gone us by. He was a man who saw most all important moments of the 20th century, and also the not so great moments of the still very young 21st century. At 92, he had seen that many summers, springs, fall and winter. Of course being Indian, monsoon should be added to the mix.
Above he sits flanked on either side of him by two others who shared his birthday, Charlie and Shobha. All three were born on March 25th, and here, they are seen toasting to their special date. The photograph was taken in early December of 2009, as Charlie and I were visiting New Delhi, and my parents home, where he lived.
Above, you see him enjoying morning tea. He would drink several cup fulls (and I really mean cup fulls, filled with tea to the brim) each morning, as the rest of us ate breakfast. And he would always be the last one to finish, any meal. But he ate well, and lived well. He was a grand man. One everyone that loved him, will remember to their own last day.
In his memory, and to celebrate his life, Charlie and I called of our annual New Year's Eve bash. Last year over 70 people came to our farm. This year, it was a solemn and special celebration. As much in honor of his passing, as also to stop, take a few deep breaths, and to remember him, and savor all that he left us with. Amazing memories, very special conversations and a very uplifting legacy.
Nana, wherever you are, I wish you a great journey in your new life. It is also my hope that Nani (Shanti Bhardwaj) and you are able to share many more memorable moments together. And that you continue to inspire people with your very special persona. You may have left us on this earth in your physical capacity, but your legacy, your words, your wisdom, your charm, your special way about doing everything, and your very elegant and classy mannerisms, shall always inspire every life you touched. Thanks for being you. And thanks for sharing yourself so fully and honestly - always!
Below you can scroll through some black and white photographs of him with various family members.