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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Ripples.......what might have been............

Yet another vacation, an escape from the world I never belonged…
When I was not here, I always felt I was stung with an impulse to batter down the door and run, run, run away from the fear, the implications of evil, the vulgarity of the stranger and the massive frustrating boredom. I wanted to leave all this unfamiliarity, and somehow, (although logic indicated I was nowhere near my own world) find my way home……….

A cold evening, We returned after visiting the temple, My kids were happy, hardly do they get to see those brightly lit temples and enjoy the serenity, Amma was happy, only once a year did she get an opportunity to be so busy with people around her, ……
“Go with Ammamma, I feel like sitting here for a while” , watched them walk with Amma …… “That’s where she always sits, ever since she was of your age” I heard Amma’s soft voice from a distance…………..Did it drizzle or was it the tears from my eyes, I couldn’t really place….. I felt the bruises on my hand….felt the pain….
living not as me, that ached more than those bruises ……….That night as I sat under the tree facing the pond …..I saw the yellow light twinkling on the other end…I could smell the food …..Sheejedathi…… she would be still cooking something there…Will he be there……..Has he come for his vacation too……………


I ran with my little red car to Sheejedthi’s kitchen, Achan bought me that car last year when we went to see pooram, “Stop running around, he is near the pond” she smiled….
we always played snake and ladder under that tree facing his house near the pond…..and when he was about to lose, I would stop the game, I could never see him lose, I did not like it…. “if you don’t complete the game, I win” he would say and I would smile and say “okay” …..
“So what do you want loser”…….
“Sunflowers” I yelled and ran to the other side of the pond…... he could never run, metal foot steps, that’s how I would know he is around………

He would shout back, “Ill get you one when you come next time”…

He never got me sunflower; never all these years………..Would he remember the count of sunflowers he owes me…..

He got new metal foot, it helped him walk faster, we still met under the tree near the pond facing his house, “I have got admission for journalism, ill be leaving next week”…I said……he smiled…...
I knew he would leave before me to Ahemedabad, he deserved it, his hard work paid off finally…….…… He showed me the play board, the same snake and ladder board……..we once played with. We opened the board and lay it on the green grass, I asked,
“What do I get if I lose?”
He smiled , stroke on my forehead and said “Sunflowers, Budhu”…





I lost again….we sat on that green grass talking about everything under the sun…and a thousand unspoken words ………….Till the sun left us we were together…………….He left the next day.........

He became a memory after few years, Few letters and a New Year card and a Birthday wish and after some time it was words about Northern Europe and his achievements from Amma and Sheejedathi when I visited home for my vacations……….
still I never wanted to “Win” against him.
I kept wondering why I enjoyed losing to him, did I pity him, or as I pitied him, I pitied myself, for my sympathy now tied me to him more effectively than any possible dedication……………………

Metal foot steps, I could hear them again, I still could recognise those foot steps…. “Manuetta”…..I whispered ………as I turned back
A little girl stood next to him holding his fingers…"Pappa can I play with Meenu and Ajuettan", the kid ran towards my house…….
He sat next to me…..A few grays, a few extra pounds and a spectacle…did anything else change………a different metal on his leg …it looked much closer to a normal leg now.

“How is every one at home?” he asked
“Fine”
“How long are you here?”
“Two more weeks…… when are you leaving?"
“Next week”……… ……. You look the same…..” he pushed aside my flying hair………………. “It's been some time since we………….” He did not complete………….

…….quite some TIME …. … Or he couldn’t know, I have been never taught to tell the time of his world nor understand the names of days and months. ……..
Silence spoke aloud that evening …….
Occasionally he would glance at me, curiously smiling to reassure me. Once or twice after some thought struck him, he inhaled as if to speak, caught himself and compressed his lips impatiently….
He took my hand in his….
“Raaji, I could never get you your sunflowers……………..33 sunflowers…………” he whispered looking at the horizon………
I clutched at him and nearly wept for the unexpected comfort of his first rational words. A deep feeling of joy, gratitude, respect and love flooded me.
I had been too long denied a normal society, The bruises abruptly lost their aches ………………




I look back on that bizarre evening of ours as one of the happiest moments of life…..To have found a friend, again, to be companionable with another human………

12 Comments:

Anonymous Sandeep Unnimadhavan said...

the words unspoken are the most beautiful ... and i see those here!

9:45 AM GMT+5:30  
Blogger Jyothi Sanjeev : said...

The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.... u seem to know ur role very well.
lovely writing........ waiting for more.

10:04 AM GMT+5:30  
Blogger Smitha Nair said...

Hmmmmm good one deee...
lot of unsaid words...some half said... but then adds on a lot of meaning as we progrees towards the end.

good job... :)

11:18 AM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous JK said...

achzgkuam wondering what to comment on this post...

"I look back on that bizarre evening of ours as one of the happiest moments of life…..To have found a friend, again, to be companionable with another human………"

beautifully written.....

JK

3:28 AM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous Mridul said...

Compassion..........
why does your writing always reflect isolation .............a loner....

Touching post...keep writing

3:32 AM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

engaging! What happens after..?

Pooja

9:38 PM GMT+5:30  
Blogger Preetha Nair said...

San: I knew you would ....:) :)
Jo:Pongi pongi ennde tala muttaraayi....:)
Smi: Thanks bacha :)...Shhhhhhhhh U speak better than my words :)
JK:Thanks for stopping by :)
Mridul: I try to make things happy ..but.....
next time :)
Poo: :)........Ripples...they die after sometime...dont they ???

11:46 AM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous Kashyap said...

good one...

always felt I was stung with an impulse to batter down the door and run, run, run away from the fear........

this is how I always feel..

Wish I could put it in words as easily as you do.

Kashyap

3:36 AM GMT+5:30  
Blogger Smitha said...

Beautiffully written!!!

7:26 PM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous Suja said...

misery of living and loving ...isnt that what makes life interesting....

Good one

Suja

7:17 AM GMT+5:30  
Blogger BaKfIrE said...

Brilliant! nice narration.....

3:59 PM GMT+5:30  
Blogger ekalavya said...

thanks for sharing ...This indeed is your best....no wonder it is the closest to ur heart...

12:14 AM GMT+5:30  

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