Memories of Manjula

There are just so many….. photos everywhere (Manjula would complain that there were too many but I never believed her)

These are in prominent positions in the house.

This one with lots of her things as part of the pooja on specific days, they’re not always there!

The logo created by Punith.

videos ….

Article in the Guardian (photo is taken from the article)

The river Kaveri where Manjula said a prayer after our wedding celebration in the field on Srirangaptnam. A tender memory.

Facebook and blog postings, meals at the Ashram for the elderly residents ……. remembered happenings, and most importantly the piece of her that’s in my heart that will always make me smile, ( the T-shirt I gave her in recognition of this and the rosette I made awarding her best maid in Mysore after working for her for one year…. early signs of my love?)

the jokes, the giggles, bossing me around, the hair (she was losing it) I still find in nooks and crannies.

And what about this from Kate who came to stay with us years ago?

A lovely gesture, trees planted by treesthatcount.co.nz in New Zealand in memory of Manjula.

Thanks Kate, love it!

Missing Manjula 1

Thank you all for your kind thoughts, precious memories of Manjula and wonderful photographs. There are so many I can’t keep up but please do send more and we’ll create a virtual book.

Here’s some examples.

Dear Stephen
I’m so very sorry to hear about Manjula – she gave joy not just to you but to many others too. I just wanted to share with you some of the photos I took of her. I especially like the one of the two of you that I took while you were still claiming that you weren’t a couple’. 
Sending much love – Anna
………..

Thank you for getting to know a little bit of you, from Dana and her family.

……….

Dear Stephen,

We have just received your news and are just so very very sad to hear of Manjula’s death. it is hard for us to take in and must be so for you. She was such a one-off, we were so happy to meet her, loved her humour, her cooking, the way she had your measure! She also had courage. What a great couple you were. We are so glad that you had your time together, short though it turned out to be and we have such joyful memories of staying with you. Sunday night curry – how she glowed sitting at that table in her beautiful saris, take away pizzas, and fruit salad without papaya for me (against the rules!)! We have many very fond memories. We are so sorry that her life has been cut short but I imagine her years with you must have exceeded anything she had expected in her life! I’m sure tears are being shed across many countries, so many people did she connect with.

We also are just so sad for you in your loss. It must be very very tough. Thankfully you are surrounded by people who also loved and appreciated her uniqueness and hope this offers some comfort in your sadness. Much love to you.

Ros and Paul xx

Thank you

It is with untold sadness we celebrate my beautiful Manjula. She came into my life just nine years ago…..Worried that there was no electric mixer/grinder in the kitchen.

You might never imagine from meeting and experiencing her and the spark she created the trail of positiveness she left, how difficult her life had been from the very first second after birth.

Not only has she been able to blossom and grow she has had an impressive lasting impact on all she met and especially on the gruff Yorkshireman.

Manjula’s spark, her warm and welcoming personality, her openess, the richness that she brought to her relationships with everyone, the connectedness she created with people around the world is of course one part of this rich picture.

She transformed my life and now I have an immeasurable gap.

It’s not that I haven’t known this was coming, we’ve known for years that it might be touch and go and her life might be tragically cut short.

She would often joke that nine years ago she came as my maid and now I’m her maid, so true in so many ways. In particular in these last few months when she lost so much weight and had to deal with one problem after another.

She’s not only learned English, non of it from me, she’d hasten to add, she also took on her own brand of English humour. A joker yes, quick witted but warm caringly connecting.

Good things don’t always last but me and the many many people here and around the world we’re touched by this extraordinary woman and celebrate her intensity.

For that I’m blessed I will forever cherish the time, our experiences, the lessons I’ve learned and the love we shared.

Thank you my darling, my precious, my love.

Your husband Stephen

I relayed this during Pooja at our house with Manjula resting outside. Immediately afterwards Manjula was taken to the crematorium.

It was an important statement to celebrate Manjula and our relationship.

Team briefing

As per usual. The girls are completely ignoring me. I’ve offered Manjula a new job and here’s the detail of the tasks and targets!

Ok so I’m not the worlds best artist 🙃 it’s how I communicated her job when she first came to work for me….

Here’s a photo of the original job description!

yes, there was a day when Manjula actually worked for me. Now we know that the tables have turned.

This is just my way to help support her and to focus on what’s important such as eating well, putting on weight, exercising, not being in bed too long, welcoming and chatting with guests, taking meds on time. Above all fun things and seeing the world through a glass half full

Here’s Manjula summarising how her jobs changed over time. A week or so before she died.

Caring

Just a week ago today…

Kamala arrives for the night shift. The system here assumes that someone will stay with you all day to be there for all non-nursing care roles. Whatever that means!

I’ve been at the hospital all day and will return in the morning.

We’re being a bit posh with private room (good decision) which includes a bed for the ‘carer.’ As you can see below.

It reminds me of thirty years ago. I was the manager of services for Disabled people for a UK council: Kirklees. We had a group visiting Greece as one of those exchange visits (up the EU!). One of the disabled people needed to go into hospital and all our available professional carers were required to cover all the non nursing care. The other disabled people had to be supported by other members (non of them being care staff!) of the group. Two of us decided to hire a car and together with another member of the group who needed our support as he had significant care needs (help for bathing, getting in and out of bed, going to the toilet, getting around in his wheelchair.) It was all new to us but an incredibly valuable experience to see things from our colleagues and the disabled persons’ perspective).

Well we don’t have to do all those things For Manj but similarly we have to have someone at hospital all the time. The other similarity is I’ve swopped roles now with Manjula as I’ve had guests at the BnB while the boss was in the hospital.

It’s helped me realise how much Manjula does.

Now she’s back home there’s the whole new experience of being ‘the maid’…. do this, do that, bring the tv downstairs, reorganise the ground floor, cooking (any suggestions gratefully received), set up the machinery and mask her up (much more complex than the one in the pic) for the night then get up to get it off her! …. more and more 😉

Its quite a new valuable experience.

Manjula’s

 

DSC02622

Its been a very difficult few months for Manjula culminating in a week in hospital and most of that in intensive care. The immediate infection has been eliminated but her chronic condition, her chest complaint is COPD and it will not go away. We have to be vigilant about possible infections and work out what implications this has for her and our life style.

 

 

 

 

DSC02627She’s such a hero, deals with new and challenging things, like BnB guests 😉 her illnesses and that awkward man from Yorkshire with gentle gusto, her usual happy go lucky energy, incredible fortitude and all whilst creating an open, friendly wonderful home.

That will not change.

She’s’s supposed to be resting now and spending time on her oxygen machine but she’s hanging out the back door supervising the guys cleaning out our sump tank!

DSC02632     Manjula wishes me to thank you for all you kind thoughts and insisted  that I bring you up to date with her current situation. She sends her radiant smile to you….