Note: This is an expanded version of the article that appeared in the Fall 2009 issue of FEZANA. It is available online for a limited time only.
By Roy Wadia
I clearly remember the day my brother Riyad, barely a week old, came home from Breach Candy Hospital on a hot and wet September day in Bombay. The monsoon had lingered late in 1967, and the Arabian Sea waves still washed over the parapet on the Worli Sea Face promenade across from the bungalow that my grandfather the filmmaker Jamshed “JBH” Wadia had built in the 1940s. I had anticipated Riyad’s arrival for many months, from the time he protruded steadily from our mother Nargis’ once razor-thin waist to the tiny creature swaddled in white at the hospital nursery, wailing noiselessly behind the thick glass I stuck my face against in an attempt to fathom how it was that I had a new baby brother. The miracle of birth made an impact even then on a five-year-old, and I viewed the new arrival at first with awe, and then, upon closer inspection, with a surge of protective love tinged with the realization that I no longer had the roost to myself, that a new chick had hatched, breaking the shell that I had constructed around my hitherto unchallenged dominion. (more…)