First Posted online on October 8th 2018

Dates matter in life but events are more indelible on human psyche. For me Deepawali, Holi have connotations same as actual dates like Birthdays, because events bring back memories from the past.

I had one of the best commutes to work this morning, door to door in an hour and 10 minutes. The schools are closed for Columbus Day holiday, kids are home, many parents took the day-off from work, some working from home, the roads have less traffic and trains running smoothly.

Yesterday was Hindu Calendar day of my father’s passing 11 years ago and tomorrow 9th October is the Calendar day when he left us.

Today, Columbus Day Monday is the day that resonates the most with me and when I experienced it. It was a quiet Columbus Day Monday morning when I came to work in the city, knowing my sister had taken my father to the hospital and he was feeling very weak. I did not know all the details but could imagine he was not doing well then, just a few weeks after I went to see him in August and then brought him home from the hospital. She had called that he was weak, his heart’s refraction fraction was very low, beating very slowly while his body and organs gasping for oxygen and energy.

As that Columbus day went by and silence at work grew louder inside my head, the phones from sister start coming in at regular intervals. I emailed managers working from home about my plans of time-off from next day and took another quiet train early in the evening.

The 8 to 10 hours on that Columbus Day 11 years ago were the most harrowing and as the sun set on that Columbus day in US, that early Tuesday morning in India changed my life forever.