FORTIETH WEDDING ANNIVERSARY
The World celebrates United Nations Day every October 24th. My wife and I celebrate our wedding anniversary.And this October 24th it is our Fortieth wedding aniversary.We got married in Poona on October 24, 1968. This is as good a time as any to look back on four decades of wedded life.On the whole it has been a happy one. Both of us--Lakshmy and I hail from huge familes--I am from a family of eight children and she is from a family of six.We have had our privations and suffering typical of large families with modest incomes but undeniably the joys overwhelmed the sorrows.
The highwatermark of our family lives was the tremendous flow of affection and both of us have happy memories of childhood.
Marriage altered our way of living and endowed us with more responsibility. My Father had told Lakshmy as went to approve her,"My son's first wife is 'Books'.You will be the second wife". I must confess that Lakshmy has always welcomed my first wife and tolerated my deep involvement with the world of books. One of the persons whom I hold in great respect--Dr Meenakshi Tyagarajan" inscribed two of her books to "Pustaka Puzhu Ramachandran"!.
A truer and more accurate description is difficult to contemplate. I have accumulated over 3000 books, am closely tied up with book selection for Libraries, including for two decades the prestigious Asiatic Library.
We have two daughters and no sons but never felt the absence of a son. Both the daughters were academically 'achievers' thanks chiefly to their mother.We are lucky to have two highly competent sons-in-law, one magnificent and the other child-like and they keep our daughters happy.We have two grandchildren--Ashwini (11)-the Apple of my eye and Ashish( 9 ) --the Appoos of my eye. The granddaughter is 'Charm Incarnate' and the grandson a Mischievous Imp.
While my wife is deeply religious I have kept religion at an arm's length and require no religious relief. Of course, I believe in some cosmic force which ensures that the revolving planets do not collide and we muddle along in this planet. I do not believe in 'Godmen' but have abundant faith in 'Good men'.
I try to enlarge the sum-total of joy and as a great teacher's son spread what little I know among a vast circle of good and well-meaning friends who have tolerated my idiosyncracies with a smile.
It is a matter of great luck that I joined the Reserve Bank and served there for 40 long years.It is an institution whose culture is abounding and from whose staff I got intellectual fare of a high quality. Despite two reverses in R B I ,my ardour for that institution has not abated nor my regard for my intellectual colleagues diminished all these long years. For me it is a matter of pride that I was part of the great R B I family.
During this period I have had correspondence with a galaxy of personalities.I wrote to Abdul Kalam, asking him to have a hair-cut ( he replied! ),to revered Rajaji requesting him to surrender Bharat Ratna ( he rejected the request in his own handwriting ), pointed out a wrong argument to the Philosopher Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan ( he stuck to his statement ).Many other eminent persons have kindly answered me.
I remain in debt of my brothers and sisters and my host of invaluable friends. And I say to all of you.