The Mathur household was known for ayurvedic remedies practised by the family. Their house bloomed in a heady mix of herbs, leaves, oils and powders. It was a must-visit place on my list. Insect bites were a common feature in Grandma’s home. I would not be satisfied with her prescription of smearing the holy ash on the swollen skin and insist on having one of those mystic oils from the Mathurs. Even after the family had diversified into other business interests of homemade papads and pickles, I would be the one going there to pick up Grandma’s order. No one else.

The last time I visited the village, I was told that they had shut down the home pharmacy. All that remained of the aromatic sojourns was the stout tree of night flowering jasmine in their compound.


prayer beads the scent of her skin