Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Black Sheep in the herd

I suppose that all will carry some pleasant memories, mostly the unforgettable childhood days, that is quite refreshing while you are alone and disturbingly keeping idle and never find anything occupying or keep you busy and get you tired....The irony of life is such that at every stage in life people whom we consider very dear and near.. worthy to confide.. would become quite obsolete...at the present situation... at times it would rather appear.. a complete act of stupidity... What ever the situation is if we happen to meet together and get a chance to talk about the circumstances... i would be hilarious and at times embarrassing..
It was one of those vacations while I happened to visit my Granny at our village just with my Mom.. My brothers and sisters had stayed back at my Aunts place..It was nevertheless, equally interesting.. My cousins who were equally excited because of the if the vacations that coincided with our vacation..
Yes , I would rather mention their names.. They were quite handful as the group got split some at Granny's place and some in Aunty's place..The group that were at my Granny's place were, Kumar, and his two younger brother, - Anand & Ramesh. Then, we had few of the village kids, Veera, Rajendran, Ravi, Kannan, Babu, Muthu and few whom I could recognise but names evades my memory..!
The house where another Aunt whose kids I mntioned -Kuar, Anand & Ramesh is, very huge, in the compound we have a courtyard where normally we used have the place used for drying things like, Rice grain , Coconut, Mango, , all the sesonal stuffs, at the back there is this shed with tile roofing.This shelters a huge place, where the fuel( Dried cow dung cakes with hay & husk) for burning the stove to prepare " Hot water bath" for we kids while we visit and on regular basis for all at home there.. and a kitchen for preparing food for workers who work in our fields.. There was a tank on the side where water is stored that comes from the municipality tap.. (A cement water tank)The drain used i=o be open. and along that a cemented floor runs along to the backyard of the house...which gets up to a elevated.. mound then you reach into to the kitchen of the house.. It used to have so many open space that tenders natural su light.. and fresh air..The backyard, used to be having beautiful flowers, like Hibiscus, Rose, Jasmin,many other species that I am not able to recollect.
Now apart from such rustic village beauty.. we always tend to steal an occasion to take bath in the pond that is adjoining the Rice Mill. We all would wait for the sun to rise and just have a bite of of the breakfast and head to the pond discreetly.. as it was not permitted to go there without any supervision.. ( as one of my cousin had got drowned in a pond while playing ..)Well it is also frustrating when we find that there would be none to accompany us as our guards..
It was one such occasion.. where we split to two teams and we jumped into the pond and we were having some joyous times.. eventually.. the time slot for various group(The Gents, Kids, Ladies, cattle and finally the farm workers) was an unwritten rule there and we as kids and me particularly from urban place.. it was overlooked by favoritism and also .. being one of the adored kids in the family... we were playing hide and seek in the pond... Kumar and me were tagged and Ramesh was sitting on the shore and Rajendran, Azeez and Anand were the opponent, Kumar used to be daring, and also local boy, used to swim the length of the pond ... you should also remember that pond will have clay and water lilies all over, which we have to avoid while swimming.. I being new to the place.. was playing it safe by not getting to the depth..as it went by only Anand was left and Kumar was closing in on him.. Anand passed some insulting comments.. stating that I was naive and wont be able to catch him even siting on the shore.. this drove me little hard..
As he was nearing underwater.. something.. happened and instinctively, i grabbed him by this neck and laughingly called on Kumar to finish it off... I suppose I had held Anand under water for little more than required.. he had gulped in a mouthful of water and he started kicking his legs and waving his hands.. as I was absorbed in claiming my victory by spotting and catching Anand,He had turned red and got angry with me..and so furious.. by kicking me on my stomack he freed himself.. got up and gave a slap on my back in anger.. as Kumar was just behind me.. he caught hold of him from his back and rolled him over to the water and and again.. dumped him into the water..
Meanwhile.. Azeez, Rajendran came by and pulled out them apart and Anand ran home crying and complaining.. as we were nearing home ... the whole episode had got out of our hands and .. all were piercingly looking at me as if I had committed a big crime.. singling me out from the group game..Kumar was in for some severe scolding and I was not said.. being the guest...To come over this and put it behind , later we had waved white flag and became normal for the rest of the vacation I was spared by not mentioning it to my Dad and my Mom knew about this but never resurfaced...!
I had completed my colleging and having succeeded in obtaining job in my campus interview in a 5 star hotel...I undertook my journey to my Nanny's place.. to get the blessings of elders over there as advised by Mom..
My sister Jaya resides there and other relatives in the near by village.. the busthe goes into the village passes by my Sisters house and they were by heart with the time schedules.. I had my breakfast and said to my Sister that I would make a trip to the village to see all over there.. meanwhile Jaya said, " You know Azeez is the conductor in the bus that runs to the village and it is due to come.. you better hurry so that you can meet him too on your way..!" I was so pleased and excited to meet a guy whom I had met in my childhood days say about almost after 12-15 years..
The bus was slowing down and I was amazed to see that bus service had begun to the village.. meanwhile.. I got into the bus through the front near the driver.. and somebody from the back.. in shrillest voice in full volume shouting his heart out..!" Oye how are you..!? I was thrilled that someone is acknowledging me in that crowded bus and every single persons' attention was on him.. I was bit elated and with my head held up smilingly looked towards him and it was Azeez...and he continued.."Oye.. you remember, the day you tried drowning.. Anand in the pond....my God he is living his second life...!!!" The whole bus went silent and I was squirming not knowing how to react for that kind of comment..and above all it took some time time to dawn on me which incident he was referring to as I had never been to the village for almost 12-15 years....Like adding fuel to the fire.. he kept lamenting about the scene.. how Anand slapped me and how Kumar pulled him to the pond and subsequent brawl.. and following falling out of events at my Aunts place... by the time.. I reached to the back of the bus so that I could.. calm down Azeez and put an end to the embarasement.. I bought the ticket meanwhile the place where I had to get down had come and with heart felt with wryness's.. I got down.. yet braving the situation I waved at Azeez and promising to catchup later.. the whole bus was staring at me.. ...It was such an odd experience.. quite difficult to put in words..
I saw to that I never get into the bus in which Azeez was conductor..and the charm of the trip was almost charred.. when I related to my cousin Sister... Nirmala she laughed her heart out and was stating how innocent was Azeez ..rather consoling me for the embarrassment..,
Even today .. If i think of this incident.. it makes me laugh...!

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