Parineeta’s family gundu at Tirumala
Since Malini aunty had approved Mangala’s desire for frequent gundu head, their family went to Tirumala in June 2015 and all got nice gundu heads. Mangala happily appeared as a smooth and fresh baldy in the school. From then on every alternate year, their family is getting a summer Tirumala gundu. And of course, nice clipper boy cuts for the two ladies in the intervening period.
My m-i-l retired from her service in 2017. I and she continue to have monthly boy cuts. As per our decision in 2013, we were supposed to get our family gundu in Tirumala this summer in 2019. So after the election heat and admission of Sneha to 11th standard, we went to Tirumala on Friday 17th May. For this purpose, both I and m-i-l stopped getting haircuts from Jan onwards and the hair had grown quite some length.
Yesterday 18th, all of us landed in Tirumala Kalyanakatta for our family gundu. Huge queues were there but then we were prepared for it. First the three kids were tonsured bald. The two girls were ecstatic in losing their long tresses. The two elderly gents – my f-i-l and Nag – were also tonsured smooth.
Both m-i-l and myself had about six inches of hair each – covering our ears fully and looking like an unkempt ear lobe level bob cut. First m-i-l sat for her gundu. The setting here was totally different from the gundu we had on the banks of Ganga in Prayag. The barbers here do a much smoother and faster job than in Prayag – understandable since the number here is vastly more. Her hair was wetted, massaged and because of the short length could not be banded together into two small ponies as they normally do for longer hair of females. The barber scraped a patch on her forehead sending tears of joy in her. Then, within four minutes she was rendered a baldy. A second wetting and one more play of the razor made her dome smooth like a que ball. She rose up with a broad smile and satisfaction.
Then it was my turn. Wetting my hair and massaging the hair roots was similar. The scraping started from my crown. The first scrape was such a joy that I also got tears of joy. It was five years ago that I had experienced a similar joy. As the scraping continued and the cool area was spreading, my joy also increased. And finally in three minutes I became a baldy for the second time in my life. He again wetted my head and reshaved it to make it smooth. I also rose up with joy and contentment caressing my smooth dome.
After darshan and prasad we returned to Hyderabad today, 19th. I am unable to stop giggling once in a while looking at my smooth dome in the mirror or Sneha’s bald head or my m-i-l’s fantastic smooth dome. My m-i-l affectionately caressed my smooth dome and said wearily “Should I wait for another five years to see you a baldy like this again?” I said brightly “Amma, if you like a gundu on my head so much, I will be happy to do it more often”. But after some discussion, it was decided we can go to Tirumala every summer and whoever wants to get a gundu can get one. But during the five yearly family tonsure everyone must get a gundu. All have happily agreed. Since m-i-l likes me in gundu more often, I have decided to do a gundu in alternate summers, of course not missing the five yearly gundu thing.
F-i-l has decided to keep his head regularly bald with a small tuft and is suggesting that I shave his head once a fortnight at home. He is also suggesting that I buy clippers, scissors etc. and learn to cut m-i-l’s hair at home. I have gladly accepted. I am looking forward to running clippers on her nape up, up and up and may be all over her dome once for a change. We have decided to keep Sneha’s head a clipper boy cut till the next round of family tonsure 5 years hence. As for Prema, we will give her the six month biweekly gundu treatment now and allow her to grow hair till she completes 10th standard. Then she will again be tonsured at Tirumala and will keep a boy cut from then on for quite some time – may be for six years with another family gundu in between. Prema is very happy to learn that she also would be kept a baldy by me for six months like her akka (elder sister) five years ago.
Sneha is very happy that she will also get clipper boy cuts like me from August onwards. I am also eagerly waiting to run the clippers on my m-i-l’s nape in August, and of course getting it run on my nape in the barbershop. I like my boy cut very much no doubt. But I like my m-i-l’s and Malini’s boy cuts more and they look so gracious and majestic in that hairstyle that I admire always. I wish all Indian ladies above 50 years of age keep only short clipper boy cuts and occasional gundu heads. And I thank Malini aunty who is the source of inspiration for our boy cut heads.
(To be continued in Sep 2019)