From those cosy winter mornings of my childhood when I would wake up to a staid voice clearly declaring “ye Srilanka broadcasting corporation ka videsh vibhag hai…” ( This is the foreign section of the Srilanka broadcasting corporation), to the same faint declaration making its way out of the same crackling radio(!) eons of years later, even now!
My mother’s love, adulation and addiction for the Srilankan Radio on Short Wave just refuses to diminish. This particular station played her favourite songs, lilting Hindi songs of the days of yore… Half an hour in the morning, from her old Philips radio was enough to keep her on an upswing, reverberating with life and energy throughout the day!
The Radio, has its own story of pride and valour. Bought four decades ago, with the prize money that my father received for excelling at his job with the government, it is more in the face than the gold medal that came with the prize money! Now all three adorn the living room vying for her attention.😁
Just last year, when mummy was in her short finals to Srilanka, I had assumed that Ravana’s gold abode and Sita’s Ashok Vatika was the big draw for her, but to my amazement… she grinned and proclaimed- I am going to see Ceylon, finally!
Her Radio broke down during the recent Covid lockdown. It was a pathos filled news conveyed to me over the phone by mom, as repair and replacement both were next to impossible… Something had to be done for her wilting spirit. I asked her to try with the other pocket radio, but that didn’t give Short Wave… only FM channels of the Medium wave. No chutzpah in that! Friends came up with a solution. After all, its Purnea! An appliances shop owner lived in the annexe to his shop and was able to provide a suitable replacement, and got it hand delivered with special permission from the administration…
Grand old Radio has been reverently sent for treatment as lockdown got relaxed n the new babe in the meantime has been belting out the same old favourites – a bit uppity and immature in looks though, but still bringing Ceylon airwaves into our household.