Monday, April 11, 2016

Nani at artist residence: Day 4

Chapter 1

Mango Wanderings

I started this post on the fourth day of my residence, almost two months ago. I never completed at the post, because the work and process became so intense that I decided to focus on it. 
Since then, the intensity grew even bigger. 
After my residence, I returned to Madrid but have flown 3 times to Morocco and back. The first trip was for work, the second was planned for work and pleasure, but Nani was taken ill and I spent most of the trip in the clinic visiting her. 
A few days after returning to Madrid, Nani passed away and I rushed back for the departing rituals. 

I only came back a few days ago and am still overwhelmed by the loss. At the same time, I feel so grateful for having had so many moments with my Nani. Since she left us 12 days ago, 
I have spent lots of time watching footage I taped of her over the years, both with family and on my own. 
Today, I decided to begin posting my process again. I am picking up where I left off, but adding and taking out 
bits and pieces as I see fit. 

On the 4th day of my residence at La Cala de Chodes, while working on the first chapter of the book, I had a wild craving for the taste of mango. Lucky for me there was one in the kitchen, waiting for me. 
The chapter is called Mango Wanderings, because mango is a symbol of love and fertility, and Nani's exile embodied exactly that. 
It is also something very present in Indian culture
that she could find in Ghana. The recipe for this chapter is Mango Lassi, which I prepared for the celebratory dinner at the residence.
This will be one of the longest chapters of the book.  
It goes through the first 2 or so decades of Nani's life, explains her childhood in Sindh, her migration to Ghana before the Partition of India and Pakistan and the birth of her 6 children. 

Below are some details of the process.