Updated: Sep 14
Yet to be updated.
“It’s vacation time!”
Instead of going for a normal picnic with friends this time, I have decided to spend time with my grandparents in their native village. I was overwhelmed about this trip, so I quickly booked the tickets and shared my trip details with them over the phone; while speaking, I could visualize the sense of joy in their voice. When I reached the village train station, regardless of their age, both of them visited the railway station to receive their beloved grandson with so much love and affection. Believe me, the elders’ love is priceless.
We returned back home from the railway station in a bullock cart. That was the first time I was transported in that vehicle. Though it was very hot during summer, it was an enjoyable experience throughout our ride and very comfortable as well. On the way back home, my grandparents narrated various events & activities happening around so that I can get a feel of the rural atmosphere and as an urbanite; it was very interesting for me to know the little things. Everywhere it was surrounded by tall trees, huge mountains & little plants with beautiful flowers, just mind-blowing to see Mother Nature. We saw a group of people engaged in pottery activities and prepared porcelain, mud, and ceramic pots.
When I entered home, a small cat jumped and welcomed us by saying, “Meow”, surely one of the cutest creatures that can give company to old people. My grandmother gave milk to that little one and gave a hi-fi for welcoming her!
When I went out to witness the greenery, a lot of birds in the backyard were chirping melodiously & squirrels squeaking in and around the house. I was very happy to see the old couple, with beautiful hearts, feed all these creatures and maintain the tranquillity of rural life.
My grandpa walked a mile to get groceries & food items for cooking. Markets had fresh vegetables & dairy products that were directly sold by farmers at nominal prices. At least for a day, I was happy that I could carry the purchased items and reduce the burden for him. A special food menu was prepared by my beloved grandma on that day just to make sure that my arrival is celebrated and my tummy is filled with good food. Home food was served hot in clean banana leaves and everyone sat together on the floor to enjoy our togetherness. I thought grandma wouldn’t remember my taste & the foods I like, but I was very surprised to see the food menu and immediately kissed her with love. I recollected the lines I read somewhere, “Grandparents will always remember us even if we forget in our busy lives.”
We took a long walk to enjoy the scenery in the evening breeze and visited the famous nearby temple to offer some puja. In return, my grandpa showed me the farm field which we own and explained to me the various items that we grow in our field.
The moment they saw me using a smartphone, they were very curious to know about the gadgets in general since they had a simple landline to speak to neighbours/relatives, which was sufficient for their daily communications. I taught them to use smartphones and how they can use them to monitor their health, communicate immediately and take pictures of their farms & houses. I also insisted on using it, because they were staying alone in the village and needed some moral support at this age.
One fine day, a knock on the door with a familiar voice calling out. Suddenly, all surrounding sounds drowned out making the heartbeat get seemingly louder. It was none other than my grandfather knocking on the door in the evening when he saw the farm field drowning in excessive water and surrounded by insects all over the field spoiling the crops grown. I couldn’t see him at this stage so immediately wanted to help him out using the little technology I learned in my life. I used a motor pump to clear out all the water quickly and used a drone to spray the pesticides all over the place to kill the insects instantly. We washed all the crops again to make sure that it is fresh and back to normal with sunshine.
I taught him simple tech tips & how technology can be used to monitor the farm fields & agriculture process and also installed an app on his new phone which I gifted recently, to monitor the weather regularly and control the crop irrigation systems. It was pure bliss to see the smile on his face after saving his crops & land! I was blown away to see his curiosity about technology at this age.
I wanted to have a happy memory on the last day of my stay, so we took a selfie together and played some traditional games like pallangozhi, thayam & watched a movie together to cherish the good memories.
Finally, I came back to Chennai with lots of memories, experiences & learnings in agriculture. My recent trip really gave food for thought to create a revolution in urban agriculture. I formed a small team and started exploring the soil around, crops to grow, and efficient ways to do agriculture in city lands. During weekends, we conducted training sessions with nearby professionals and educated them to join us in this initiative. We also took steps to create awareness to all the youngsters & future gen people to take up farming as their hobby and spend their valuable time to change the future of agriculture.
One fine day, joyful to see my grandparents using the technology they learned to do a video call to my number, and in return, I talked about my recent initiative and showed the farmlands to them, they were so happy to see all the youngsters in farm fields along with me and blessed us for the future farming.
This experience is available in a paperback & ebook.