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Shaminder Kaur Oberoi September 16, 2009

Posted by simarprit in Uncategorized.
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My cousin called me three hours back and broke the news “Shaminder Maami is no more”

Maami Ji, or Shaminder Maami as we all fondly called her, has left behind her fair share of memories for all of us.

I would miss her “Simar puttar” with Puttar said in her acquired Punjabi accent. Shaminder Maami’s  mother tongue was Bangla,  after her marriage to my late Mother’s brother she embraced Sikhism as her faith and Punjabi as her language.

I remember how on my insistence she took to teaching me Bangla, I was 5 when she taught me to tell my name in Bangla, ask “What is your name” in Bangla and say “I don’t know Bangla”  – She taught me so well and with so much interest I remember that session with her as if it was just yesterday.

I remember her story telling sessions – she introduced me to Bikram and Baital, and I particularly remember her reading me a story from Chandamama.

Whatever she got to doing she did with a zeal unmatched by her contemporaries, be it daily paath or keeping busy or cooking delicious Punjabi food. Her Punjabi food was amongst the best home cooked Punjabi food I have ever had, no shortcuts be it fish curry, roasted chicken, daal or her salad trays. My first memories of  artistically cut tomatoes on salad plates are of dinners organized by her. Each dinner was an event and she celebrated it as much while cooking as she did in joining on the table.

I remember the face she made when, in my childhood pranks,  I disturbed her while she was making Karah Parshaad, she was good at it and her parshaad would exactly taste the way it should. I can see those eyes looking at me as I pen down that memory.

Once when we (cousins) broke the sofa at our grandparents home, she collaborated with us to ensure that we were not in deep trouble. I remember her sitting in her white salwar kammez on the floor with the Punjabi Belna from kitchen in her one hand and nails in the other, she did manage to fix it but we were caught and received our share of slaps and scolding.

She was good to me and I value her love.

Shaminder Kaur Oberoi died on September 16 in Kolkata India at 3:45 PM


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