I don't remember the book making me feel or think any of the following: that we might never know people as well as we think we do, that we might never be as close as we want to be; that things and people and bonds disappear with no notice; that parts of the world are closer than we thought, maybe; that the Gangulis' house looks so much like the split-level on my block growing up that was the fun house, where the 8-bottle packs of strawberry Crush were, where we could set up the Matchbox car tracks all over the basement, where we safety-pinned towels around our necks and leaped down the stairs like superheroes, where before I was even in high school the parents had divorced and the fun house wasn't safe anymore; that saying "no big deal" can be restorative and hopeful; that the older you get the more you can hurt; that something moving and meaningful and a little amazing happened the day I went to the Taj Mahal (and what Gogol experienced there is what my own beloved father experienced at Coliseum, at nearly the same age, and then decades later he took me there, and I too began to understand something that has remained important to me), but when I don't necessarily want to be reminded of that day, the Taj Mahal is everywhere, I'd never noticed how ubiquitous it is.
And speaking of the ubiquitousness of the Taj Mahal, I think its a shame there aren't Lego versions of it - or the leaning tower of Pisa, or The Great Wall or the Sphinx and Pyramids or the Empire State Building. There are only so many spaceships a little boy can make! And even my sons are bored.
I love this post. I've been looking forward to The Namesake ever since I saw the beautiful poster last year. I don't think it'll make it to the cinemas here (although *gasp* we are getting My Bollywood Bride at the end of the month!! I bet it's only because it's got some guy from Sex & the City in it), but hopefully I can at least get the DVD.
But I bet you mean the kits, and I would love one too!
Thank you to all for the kind words about this post. This movie knocked me flat on my emotional arse, which I was not at all expecting, and I am still trying to come to terms with all of it. It's amazing.
The bit where Maxine refers to Ashoke and Ashima by their first names - every desi in the theatre gasped audibly (and then chuckled).