Thursday, 10 July 2014

SUITCASE LOVE....


There are certain bonds that secretly exist. A relationship that surpasses all human understanding. One such bonding is between an Indian man and his suitcase. A suitcase must be an inanimate object, worth a few hundreds, but this lifeless entity is seen as a treasure chest by his Indian owner, only empty.

Like many fellow Indians, we have more suitcases than people in our house. Hard suitcase, trolley suitcase, duffel bags, a smaller hard suitcase and an even smaller one for hand luggage, we have it all. We also have a few airbags, of all available and possible sizes. We keep them neatly covered in old lungis and dupattas, to be unveiled only prior to a scheduled journey. My father is very particular about such stately treatment of the suitcases. We don’t understand, he mocks.

Airline travel is not the preferred means of transport for us. More than the reason that for a family which decides to go on a vacation quite instantly, air charges are a bit off budget, it’s the fact that we cannot carry luggage beyond a certain limit that prevents us from choosing flights over trains. You cannot expect a Malayalee settled in Bhopal to visit his Kerala without a few cartons of Atta and a suitcase filled with 20 kilos of apples. That is just not us. So train it mostly is and this is where you can see my father’s boundless love for his mute suitcases. Even before his family can occupy the vacant seats that he booked on Tatkal, he brings out old newspapers and places them below each lower berth. Once this paper protection has been provided, the suitcases are gently placed on top of them, care taken that not even the handle touches the filthy place that is the Indian railway coach. Once they are all tucked in, every piece of luggage is tied to the next one with the help of metal chains so thick that no thief would ever consider stealing the treasure of petticoat and assorted pickles that is inside.

Our place is still abode to a grey suitcase that is as old as me. Bruised with time and covered in an army print suitcase cover, it sits above one of our wardrobes, watching as new additions are made to the family in the form of new suitcases. A glossy black American Tourister is our newest member . My father's love for suitcases goes so deep that he once bought two bottles of Johnnie Walker from the duty free shop at the Dubai airport only for the medium sized trolley suitcase that they were providing for free with it.  There should be a soap opera on this subject.

So why am I writing about all this? Well, let’s just say that last week, during a short rail journey to a nearby city, I inadvertently started placing newspapers below the seat to place my humble VIP suitcase.

Turns out, suitcase love is a hereditary disease passed on to me. Thank you Dad. Thank you. 





P.S- I missed regular blogging. Also, did you guys participate in the giveaway? It ends this 20th.           CLICK HERE TO PARTICIPATE. 

102 comments:

  1. hahaha. We all have a suitcase love. My dad makes sure that whenever i buy new luggage, a cover should be made to protect it and and my aunt refuses to share her luggage even though she is the nicest person ever.

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    1. hehehe Hi5 to ur Dad. I am sure he is adorable!!!

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  2. Oh my! This is so true. My dad is the same and like you I am rewarded with this habit in hereditary too.

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    1. Well...hahahha I mock and then we follow :P

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  3. Lol, so finally your granny convinced you to visit her back home eh...;)
    :P

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    1. yes yes yessssssssssssssssssssssss :D

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  4. Hehehe like father, like daughter!
    My Mum does this too...same routine.
    I think it's a little something in us Malayalee's. ;)

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    1. Maybe...we Malayalees are big time cleanliness freaks. SIGH!!!! We even carry a TORTH MUNDU even for a one day trip

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  5. "Army colored suitcase cover" - made me smile when I read that. I have seen so many of those. So Indian! :)

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    1. hehe I am so glad u could relate.

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  6. Back at my place, all the suitcases are packed in lovely new plastic covers which are changed every three months or so, and we have a closet full of suitcases of all shapes, sizes, colors and ages

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    1. Wow...you guys take it to the next level. RESPECT!

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  7. lol, .the newspapers under the suitcases..yes, I do it too.

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  8. We go a step further. We all have our favorite suitcases and bags and no one else is allowed to use them :-) > And I do remember those sturdy suitcases with army colored cover - gosh you guys still have them !

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    1. hahah yes..they that suitcase is like an antique piece now!!! I am so glad you read!

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  9. The love for suitcases is universal and they are looked after well in every Indian home , I guess:)

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    1. True that! Thank you so much for reading.

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  10. Lol ! I so know this ! I am also victim to the 'acquired through heredity' habits. Those are the habits I used to laugh at my parents for and I am doing it now ! :-/

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    1. Sigh..now one day our kids will blog about how funny our acts are...and then realization will dawn upon them too. I am everything I promised I wouldnt be :P

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  11. "petticoat and assorted pickles" ROFLMAO!!

    How awesome are you Red! This was hilarious and very very true!

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  12. hahaha nice one! Well like books, I never lend a suitcase to anyone who asks for a short trip or long.. that is how possessive I am about mine :P

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    1. Hhahaha more power to you! I have a maroon suitcase that I never share.

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  13. God! Using newspapers in trains to protect the suitcases from getting soiled is hilarious! I can relate to the love for suitcases but never heard of them being treated with so much care.
    Funny post :)

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    1. hehehe so the next time you see someone do it...remember I TOLD YOU SO! :p

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  14. I have never placed any newspapers to protect the suitcase. The dirtier the suitcase, the more you have traveled ;p
    But now when I think about it, our dear suitcases do need some respect in trains. Don't know how the airlines treats them.

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    1. wow..I must tell Dad this. A new perspective!!! He hasnt used paper on airlines but trains...well its a custom now!

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  15. We all have a pet suitcase story! I am finicky about my travel bags and take special care to keep them clean. LOL about the newspaper thing ...

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    1. next time use newspaper...TRUST ME :P

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  16. haha...I remember all the suitcases kpet in one corner covered by bed sheets and table cloths when we lived in Shillong..We too had one with a army print colour and even now when we end up carrying the suitcase through the muddy basement instead of using the trolley because the suitcase shouldn't get dirty no? :D

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    1. hahahahahahahaha now how ccould I forget that! I lift the heavy suitcase everytime I hit the dirty gravel :P

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  17. Heheheh Red... ours used to be covered with old bedsheets. I gave a modern twist to it by covering it with thick plastic sheets. :P
    Oh and placing it under the berths on newspaper and then chaining to those little handles, before we settle down, is so "the suitcase love". I think my affair with it is little more than my dad's or anybody for that matter, I place make sure the floor is clean enough to even place the newspaper :P

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    1. goddamn! That is down right OCD now :P
      I wouldnt tell my dad about this..lest he begins this trend.

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  18. I love my suitcase too...
    You know.. I cant use trolley on pathways that is bad...
    All my suitcases are appropriately dressed, oops! covered...
    And guess what!? Tomorrow I am going to buy a big suitcase...
    Coincidental! :P

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    1. hahahahah well..now you know what to do!!!

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  19. I'm also possessive over my suitcases :) And there is definitely something with us Mallus, who haven't heard of the idea travelling light. We have to prepared, as always, for contingencies which may or may not occur.

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    1. we believe in prevention is better than cure...think about the vicks, saradon, strepsils, loosemotion tablets, gelusil and the little medical store that we carry while we travel.

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  20. hahahhah!! ohfooo.. it reminds me of my mother's obsession to collect extraaaa bags whenever she visits a store. Me and my brother always wondered the theory behind it and prayed to god with a strong hope that we don't do the same when we grow up.

    And guess what, hereditary happened and subconsciously I've started doing the same. Though, I still haven't found a good reason behind it. xD

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    1. hahaha extra bags? Now that is something cute and new :P
      Thanks for reading babe

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  21. Hahaha :) yeah, I cover my suitacases too before keeping them on the loft but with plastic bags :) And lets just say that's more out of laziness keeping in mind that I would be the one to dust it when needed.

    A hilarious post, classic Red!

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    1. heheh....now thats a good reason..
      Thank you for reading Kerithana!

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  22. It has been a long time since we have been on an Indian train. Your post brought me nostalgic memories.

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  23. ROFL! Red you are hilarious! It just gets better with every new post! Petticoat and pickles! I am dying with laughter! :D

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    1. You are kind my love. very kind!!!
      Thanks for reading!

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  24. I must say Red, your posts have amazing titles...amazing enough to inspire the reader to read more :)

    Keep sharing such wonderful stuff.. I had my name's initials pasted on my father's suitcase :)

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    1. haha I keep them titles catchy and the post superdull. That's how I survive :P
      In all seriousness, Thank you so much for reading!

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    2. Haha..The posts are even more interesting than the titles... :) KEEP sharing such good stuff...

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  25. hahaha. your hilarity at its best :D . metal chain is a proof that the suitcase is not filled with bomb :P btw nothing can substitute aluminium sheets suitcase locked with big godrej Locks :P :P

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    1. hehehehehe....giant locks are used instead of 5 rupee cheap china locks.

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  26. LOL...most of us must have done it...at some point or the other...let me revel a secret here. I got a coach hand bag couple of years back. I didn't realise the light color would get dirty. So, when I take it to work, I just don't put it in the drawer..I have couple of tissue papers underneath :P We Indians....hehehe

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    1. hehehehe...seriously? Like seriously?
      hahahahahaahhah

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  27. We missed your regular blogging too, Red. This one brought back some lovely memories. Thanks

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  28. Hahahaa! :D
    So awesome! There are so many of these quirks which we pick up from our parents! :D

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    1. You said it..we mock and then we do the same.

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  29. Suitcases...hmm.. I think we are more of an "airbag" family. Because we don't carry pillows and that bag serves as one in the train journeys :D :D

    But I have one suitcase and it is my love. It fits in all that I ever want to carry for my travel, it is always just under 15 kgs and its a shiny bright red! :D It's been a while since I have traveled in a train, but I would love to get back to those train-journey days.. Only if my home was closer :(

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    1. hahaha we carry the inflatable pillow...Hate them actually. by the time you wake up, the air is all gone.
      My bags are never under 15 kilos :(

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  30. You missed the expandable ones, they take the cake:) I love your dad. A man who cares for his family suitcase collection is a man who can take care of his family as well ;)

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    1. oh we only buy the expandable ones...:P
      He is a great Dad. Thank you!

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  31. hahah! that cracked me up esp the 'treasure of petticoat' and the duty free gift thing!! We too have many suitcases that are taken care of really well!

    :)

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  32. ha ha haha My regards to your dad.. NOw that is indeed like me.. I have bought Johny walker bottles just for the suitcase and I use it for my hand luggage now often .. and this time in march when i was coming from india . at dubai they had this offer with Chivas regal the suitcase is WOW.. with steel corners and all ..

    I too have a few now in my loft , because each time i go to india I have nothing much to take so i carry just the hand luggage but on way back i buy so much so have to buy a suitcase .. I got all varities now Hard cases, soft casee red green blue.. even an orange , silver

    and now they are being used as storage in the Loft :)

    awesome post ... made me smile


    Bikram's

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    1. My Dad has the Chivas one too...but he like the Johnnie one better :P
      Chivas I use...
      You are an Indian afterall!

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  33. Awesome this is. True to the core. The summer vacations and the Mangla Express journey could never be complete without 2-3 suitcases. And yes the paper placing is indeed a Mallu trait. :-)

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    1. heheh I am so glad u could relate!

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  34. Hahahahaha! Red you are awesome! This one was hilarious :-D

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  35. haha :D we don't even know how the airlines treat them. Atleast, in trains, we can place newspapers... btw, my dad does it too.

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  36. Red! I've shared an award with you. Check it out on my blog here http://callitatale.blogspot.in/2014/07/the-quintet-of-radiance-award.html :D

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    1. Thank you soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much!!!!!

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  37. Suitcase LOVE :D

    I had bought this new amazing purple suit case, locked it up nicely. But when I reached my house, I forgot the code to open it ! I had two options in front of me -either to try each and every combination or to get a guy to cut my suitcase and change the locks . And obviously I tried each and every combination because I couldnt afford to see my new suitcase broked :|

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    1. hahahahaah You make any Indian proud :P
      what was the outcome?

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  38. Is the Johnnie Walker still begging for a consumer? :P

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  39. They are as precious as our memories. They deserve all this reverence.

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    1. Indeed. Thank you so much for reading.

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  40. LOL. I have seen the chaining but not the papers placement underneath. :) This is super funny. :)

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    1. haha well now you will think of me when u see one!

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  41. Hehe.. my wife use to cover our suitcases with big polythene bags :)

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  42. We all are attached to our suitcases ... after all, they are our constant companions on journeys :-)

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    1. True that. Thank you for reading!

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  43. hahaha :) this attachment will always be there :) After all its our constant companion :)

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  44. So true, Red! Even I used to place newspaper below my trolley previously. That time it was new :)

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  45. Uff suitcase tales :). My dad luckily never cared for old bags. He has the trendiest luggage in the family :).

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    1. wah...my Father uses antique suitcases...sigh!

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  46. OMG! The suitcase love isn't uncommon after all. And seriously Red, our family's should meet up. They'll just love each other :)

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    1. Yes indeed! lots of suitcase love to share :*

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  47. Hehehe.. My grandfather and your father must be connected in some way. They should meet up for sharing their common love :P

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    1. hahahaha now I think I should write a poem about this :P

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  48. I have a room full..yeah call it dedication or what.. They're pretty neat. Shall post pic someday :p

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  49. I think this is one of those inexplainable things we indians do :D

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  50. I wont mind abt petticoat,but i would second your father fir the pickles.Beautifully written.

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  51. Ha ha ha..your dad is super cool! I like the idea of placing newspapers below the suitcases! :D

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