On my very first visit to India I had been introduced by a Punjabi doctor in Texas to a Sikh family in Chandigarh. We have since become great friends. I love them dearly.
When I arrived at their home I got a very warm welcome. They accepted me into the household and before long I was part of the extended family! The family included a father and mother, their three grown daughters, one son-in-law, an uncle, and a young grandson.
I’ve had a lot of fun with this family throughout the years. One night I remember Uncle Dassa suggesting we go see the mango farm. It was way after dark but we went anyway. Dassa hooked a trailer to his tractor and we all piled into the trailer. This was the first time I had been to the mango farm and due to the mode of transportation I assumed it was right around the corner. Was I ever wrong! We traveled about 15 miles, or at least it seemed that far in the cold night breeze.
As the tractor pulled into the mango farm at midnight I could see someone lighting a fire. The family that lived there and took care of the place was woken up the sound of our tractor.
The woman at the farm lit the fire and began cooking roti on an open fire pit. We enjoyed our visit there and arrived back home after 2 am.
The next morning Dassa asked if I liked their mango farm and I said “I didn’t see one mango tree. Why did you take me there in the dark?” He laughed and said so you would have to go back in the daylight…lol.
I may not have seen a mango tree that night, but I sure had a lot of fun! These Punjabi people are the most happy-go-lucky people I have ever met. They’re always laughing, singing, and dancing the bhangra!
I remember once, when I was leaving, and the cab was waiting for me. My friend Harpreet turned on the music and said “Let him wait. Let’s have one more bhangra!” I laughed and started dancing my way out the door!