Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Bitter Sweet Birthday in Mumbai

On Saturday, November 20, 2010, I received the following e-mail:

Hi Vicente,
Just wanted to let you know that my aunt passed away very peacefully at 11.30 this morning. Thank you for helping make her last birthday so special.

Life is full of surprises!
As you may know, I was in India late August this year.

There I met a group of locals and one afternoon we went to Parvanas Noorani's apartment for her aunt Mumsoo 90th birthday. Parvana is a famous writer and cook in India. Her book "Catwalk Cuision" is a bestseller.  For us it was an opportunity to witness a authentic Indian birthday celebration. With my camera I recorded the ceremony, when the tow nieces paid homage to the woman that made a great difference in their lives. You can see it on this link: Birthday in Mumbai

It was a very touching moment for all of us. And so it was one of the most beautiful memories I brought back from this trip.

A few weeks ago, on November 14, Parvana e-mailed me:

Hi Vicente, I'm back in Bombay after a relaxing time in Australia. May I request you to please send me the photos you took at my aunt's birthday? I would love to see them especially since I didn't take any myself. Hope you are doing well. Love. Parvana.

And I sent her the pictures I took that day:

Sooner after the pictures, I sent my distant friend the video I shot during the celebration,
and soon she responded:

Thank you Vicente...these are lovely!
The whole family thoroughly enjoyed the video!


And then a week later, I got the e-mail saying that her aunt had passed away.
Without knowing at the time, we were part of her aunt's last birthday and I had the privilege to record that moment with my camera. I responded to Parvana after learning about her aunt's passing:

Parvana, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. The love you all share with her made that moment so special and it will remain forever in our thoughts.
Vicente Russo

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