Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Journey

  • The boy had a dream ! He used to gaze at the stars and count them, someday I shall do something big.He had a family, a big one.Poverty had been their companion ever since he was able to decipher what it means to have a life.The hungry and pale eyes of his brothers and sisters used to remind him of the fact that he has to be their mentor,he has to feed them, support them till they grow up. He was the eldest in the family.They were not orphans though.His father used to practice homoeopathic medecine in the village, but the income from his profession was too meagre to run such a big family.But he was an honest man, never to be deviated from the path of truth. The family having lost their ancestral lands during riots in East Bengal had their only survival path through honest struggle and sweat, a fact the eldest son realised at a very early age.The realization that he has to take the stewardship, he has to guide the family ship, was so overwhelming that it became the very essence of his life.So he struggled and dreamed..dreamed really big.He had someone though who would accompany him throughout his pain and loneliness...his little goat.He used to take it for grazing and share his sorrows and challenges with the creature.It sometimes used to shake it's head to get rid of the insect flying nearby...sort of an impression that the ideas shared with has been understood.His mother used to persevere in the darkness and hot sun to feed the family.Her stories used to lit up the faces of the hungry younger kids...the fairy tales used to give them a sense of hope ! The eldest son thus became the most responsible yet the most neglected of the lot.Years have passed by.The eldest son has become the oldest.The younger ones and all are well settled in cities.It has been a crusade to get the family up to what it is now. The storm of burden seems to have taken the life out of him...he has also raised his kids well.They work in good companies in big cities.Every other family member has evolved with time and accomodated the changes in them. But he does not seem to ! His life and soul has been metamorphosed into submission and much so that duty has become an irresistible force.He imparts his subject lessons to students now.He teaches Physics... probably he only would understand how each and every particle of his mind and soul has gone behind the family. He does not sweat any more...every single drop spent on his ship...which sails in the open sea without fear of sinking...braving the storm and wind. The seagulls too have found a habitat on the ship. They don't realize the efforts of a single man! Neither do others ..the humans ! He thinks alone of the small goat .He sold it for 10 rupees to the butcher to pay his exam fees....and hasn't it been an exam all his life long ! He is still in pain that he had to part with his dear friend just for the sake of money. Wish he had realized that his friend is the only creature whose soul bears testimony and proof of his sacrifice.He still looks up at the stars and counts them. But he does not dream any more !


Monday, May 08, 2006

Rang de Basanti !

Exactly one and a half years later got a chance to see my native again! It has been a long time since 2004, last visit to Agartala. As soon as the flight was descending, reflections of the past was going through my mind...the days of my youth..those happy days..things were so simple and peaceful here at Agartala...the innocent smiles, the caring and sharing, the lucid jokes , the close knit family ties, Bicycle sojourns enroute teacher's house for tution ... pretty nostalgic I was feeling!! The new airport has been architected really well ... Our Pune airport looks like a kid in front of the Agartala we were entering the city, one thing which did strike my attention was the change in the quality of the roads...not a single pot-hole!! The betterment of the roads in the entire city bears testimony to the fact that at least some effort is being taken by the CPI(M) Govt !! Lenin would have been happy indeed ! The next surprise was when I heard that our Tripura Engineering college has become a NIT.That should do the confidence of the aspiring engineers in Tripura a world of good. Another interesting observation was the mushrooming of Gyms in the streets of Agartala..good to see people going to Gym to shred some calories :) The only bad part of the stay was the summer heat at Agartala.It was terrible to say the least ! On board the Jet airways flight on my way back, I heard the hostesses saying .. "asha hain aap ke jatra sukhadh raha hain "... I thought ...yes ..both my stay at Agartala & the flight journey was "sukhadh" ... Bon jour till we meet next !