In Mumbai, it never gets too chilly. Located close to the seashore, the mercury dips only slightly during winter. And what we term ‘winter’ is met with snide comments from people from the North, who experience much colder climates.
And yet as a Mumbaiite, I do feel extremely cold during the winters here. The last two winters have been the coldest I have ever experienced. I don’t think the mercury dipped phenomenally during that span. It’s perhaps the cold, clinical events that happened over that period in the past, that tipped the temperature scales in my mind.
Spending two successive winters in a hospital and then observing mourning rituals in the cold waters of a creek might have something to do with how I perceive the season now.
Winters were much more warmer in my memories of the past, much more bearable. Perhaps it was because of the warmth emanating from my mother’s body, as we slept side by side in the night, making the cold seem insignificant. Now, it seems biting, for both me and dad, her absence chilling us to our very souls.