What we have lost
I think I'm not that old but when I grew up we had family gatherings which were about well, gathering... Most vivid and cherished memories of my younger years are the family get togethers we used to have at our house, sometimes paaye party and sometimes it would be a BBQ and sometimes just Halwa Puri with channas.
The food was exquisite but the memories are not about the food or the venue, they are about the happiness and joy that was felt to be surrounded by loved ones. The elders would sit in the veranda on charpois and talk about stuff, family, politics, and life, one uncle would share a joke and another would tell about some funny moments in their lives. Not once would the price of something would come up or what the set decoration of the venue was or how big the cake was. No show, no competition.
Fast forward to current times we have birthday planners now, extravagant halls are being booked for what used to be simple religious or family events and everything is for show, everything is about one's self. The thing that's missing is love, the feeling of being wanted and valued. We invite others to come and see how good we are at accumulating wealth and surround our selves with useless vanity. How shallow we have become.
When guests would come to someone's house, they would accept the hospitality of the host, they would be grateful and accept whatever was offered with grace but now its a norm not hardly eating at the host's house for a single day, always going out for food, not realizing how insulting this is, why go to someone's house then, better to book a hotel. This makes me sad cause this breaks the host's heart and they feel like they are just there to run errands for people who don't even care enough or have a bit of common decency to share a meal with them. Almost all the time they are there for some need and once that need is meet they are off to somewhere else or to "better" places. In my life I've seen only a few exceptions to this. Only a few.
We are all self indulgent, we all have bucket lists to satiate our inner narcissist. We don't have decency and regard for each other anymore, fittingly. nor do we have memories that could be cherished.