90-Yr-Old Kerala Granny Climbs Down Wells to Retrieve Coconuts
Sreedevi Amma, the “viral ammoomma” at the centre of it all, doesn’t see what the fuss is all about.
With just a rope for support, an old woman dressed in a white blouse and mundu climbs down a well with practiced ease. Perching precariously on a narrow ledge at the bottom, she leans down to pick up something from the water, a good foot below her feet.
In no time, she’s put two coconuts into a bucket lowered down to her, and then climbs back out with complete nonchalance.
While this video of a Kerala granny has gone viral on social media and Whatsapp, giving young Keralites a serious inferiority complex about their fitness, the “viral ammoomma” at the centre of it all, doesn’t see what the fuss is all about.
After all, Sreedevi Amma, a resident of Kunjimangalam in Kannur district, tells TNM that she doesn’t think of herself as all that old.
"I am all of 90 years," she declares, adding: "But I am not old, you see. I bet I don't look 90!"
She’s heard about how the video is going viral online, she says, because she’s heard kids in the neighbourhood talking about her. But she still doesn’t know why people are going crazy over it.
“I just went down to pick up the coconuts that fell into the well,” says Sreedevi Amma, adding that she can’t see what’s so unusual about her doing something she’s done regularly since she was 20 years old.
"Things keep falling into the well. If its coconuts today, then it might be something else tomorrow. There's no one in this house who can climb down the well like I can and get things done," she adds with conviction.
Besides, she adds, this is the well she has been seeing since her childhood, and whose waters she has literally tested several times. And so when people ask her whether climbing down the well at the age of 90 scares her, Sreedevi Amma can only laugh.
I have worked in the field all my life and am completely healthy. Even now, I work around the house and take care of the trees in the compound everyday.
Her daughter-in-law Sreelekha chimes in: "She is the person who cleans the compound every morning. That's been her duty for years together and despite being this old, she has never stopped doing it."
Sreedevi Amma adds that before the video, many people have tried to dissuade her from climbing into the well, afraid that she’ll fall in. But that has never stopped her.
With the video going viral, she says, these people might finally stop worrying about her. "Now, people may recognise me as the kenaru ammoomma (well grandma)," she jokes.
(This article was originally published in The News Minute)
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