Larger than life, Uncle Teddy or Teddy Sahib as he is rather universally called, is a legend on mountain roads and trekking routes in Lahaul & other parts of Himachal. Those, who rally, drive off road and live the good life salute him.
He knew the best dhabas and the dhaba wala’s knew him. He had trekked many a route in the mountains, and the moment a new road opened we had to go test both the cars and our mettle. He taught us how to camp and cook out, fish and hunt and make pickle – which it seems now – that no one learnt.
How to manage the brake and accelerator together while releasing the clutch. Go up a dune and down without overturning your jeep. Drive through a river in spate and change a tyre.
He was blunt and forthright and often misunderstood, but his heart was in the right place and he told the truth… most times, and many a good story aswell. He was a laugh a minute and the life of a party. When his turban turned – it meant a successful evening!
He was the go to person in a crisis and a comfort for all ills, physical or emotional.
He left a legacy of largesse and open heartedness which I hope we as a family and I in particular may carry forward.
May the fish keep jumping and the ducks fly overhead and your pickling jars be ready. Phupharji, may your dancing shoes never wear.