Sunday, 19 July 2009

To be blind is not miserable; not to be able to bear blindness, that is miserable

Hi All!
I write this with a twinge in my feelings, as I just heard about my cousin who passed away.....!
To mention about struggles... each has their own experience.. it is only a story or a narration while we hear it or read it... but the experience as Kannan's who was enjoying every thing in life as a 7 year old suddenly the whole world goes dark... he lost his sight just like that.. while returning from school.. it is quite heartening while one can imagine how comfortable you are in your place and suddenly you are there amidst all this and yet you can't see anything... the thought of it sends a chillness to your back...
I would say , well, but the reality in life is that what we do not want to relive the worst of the situation.. but for him he was living for 40 years .. in the world he saw for 7 years.. who, just began to formulate some sense .. and above that to make him come to terms , my aunt's family.. ( Aunt- Rajam, Uncle - Somu, my cousins- Sumathi, Bhanu and Lakshmi and Mr. Ganesh Uncle and his family) who had been Kannan's vision all these years ( 40 years) one can imagine the struggles for Kannan and sacrifice by all the concerned people around him.. from day to day chore - to compromise, any family events that would happen be it either good or bad..
I had taken this much time to realize this but for them it was ... I have no words to write...
I should express my, one of those moments that I cherished with Kannan and family... to date !!!!

The vacations that I had spent in my childhood were of mixed bag of experience...As me being the last kid and favorite child for my Mom.. and never I had opportunities to venture alone !!!This was until Bala my elder brother left out to do his colleg to my Aunts place.. The compulsion of Raja and me taking on the responsibility of going to market and getting the monthly provision for the house as the members had almost halved.. the frequency had almost reduced and also.. the movement of other members had become more casual so on and off. Some of us, would fill up the requirements I was in my 5th standard.. My Aunt, Rajam-( Father's youngest sister.. She lived in a village - Ammapet , in Thanjavur District and Uncle - Somasundaram,he was the caretaker of a Rice Mill in that village apart from farming , he was taking care of the farms that was owned by my other family members ( excluding my Parents.). They had 3 daughters and a son - who after an inccident lost his eyesight while he was 7 years old..)
She requested my parents to take me to her place as I was on vacation.. Jolly good.. I was permitted to go... and all I was aware was, a bag packed and thrusted to my hands which my loving Aunt carried by herself..we walked our way to the railway station - PONMALAI. one of the most remarkable and landmark place in my life... !!! Though I was accustomed to travelling by train( First Class since my Dad been a railway officer I had that privilege till I was 21 years..!)The travel was little uneasy for not being used to travel in 3rd class compartment where the benches were of sleeper planks and hard surface, yet I humbly laughed away my back aches despite my Aunt & Uncle enquired the obvious.. uneasiness.. I was also lucky to have first hand experience about the staff who work under my Dad where also the regular travellers on that train, relating the incidents and the shrewdness of my Dad in tackling the issues.My Aunt & Uncle were so proud listening to the narration of the fellow passengers ( My Dads sub ordinates..)not realising who I was.. this made the suffering a bit bearable...!
We reached the place late evening.. and subsequently, their house was also adjoining the railway station.. and since it was raining.. we had the adventurous journey - walk around the puddle in the dark holding my Aunt's hand. It was thrilling with frogs croaking and my Uncle warning me of the possible snakes lying along the fences.. for which he was chided by my Aunt,.Though the walk just took about 10 Min's in the dark.. I felt as if it was ages..! with assortment of feelings and sticky wet muddy path to the house.. There was no electricity.. and the house was illuminated with lanterns and my cousins ( Sumathi, Bhanu, Lakshmi and Kannan.. were all in for surprise as they did not expect to come to their house without my parents.. )
Well the to start the vaccation ... while I was portrayed... someone unique, for English being a foreign language and at the villages... It is something very great.. even if you utter---" GOOD MORNING " to passer by... and My Unle's brother who was Head Master for the school in that village... paraded me in the school assembly... and joyfully proclaimed to all - literally postering my " BIO - DATA" It was little too much for me.. I was spell bound and shy... completely drawn into my shell... ( Obviously being a cancerian!)though I inwardly cherished every moment of that occassion..!...
The house with typical village flavour... the doors aligned from entrance to back in one straight line... that ran from one street to another street.. the start of electricity revolution.. and radio revolution.. I was quite amazed with Kannan's instinct.. guiding me to the field , to near by stream where we would take bath.. the irony being I was holding Kannan's hand and Kannan was guiding me to destinations.. but now to know that he is no more the emotions chokes me.. with mixed feekings..
Well I was little aware of my Grand Parents farming trade and my Grand Dad - Mr. Thiruvengadam who had been abroad in those days for trade & Commerce to far off countries.. and my Grand Dad's brother was administering the business back home at our village ... one can say the whole village was under them... but while I was paraded all over the farmland and the to new horizon to me - my relation s- paternal side.. it was aweful.. when as such with my acquainted cousins who were in immediate contacts were almost around 60.. and adding to that another.. say a couple of dozens.. it was amazing to find my roots... the family structure was a real " BANIYAN TREE!"..
THE MOST ASTONISHING PART WAS THE WAS WAY I WAS TAKEN AROUND... and at each of our relative s' house we had to have a meal or it would be DISRESPECT.. and they would get offended.. sightiong as though my Grand Dad... " MUTHU PILLAI" had refused to have a meal at their place... It was quite punihing all the more I carried with on with my Uncle ( Head master) and we completed our tour.. I was really astonished and spell bound to know the next vortex of my relations it was certainly heartening .. while I had never seen them or come across them yet they were all head over heals to treat me... ( I was representing My whole-Muthu Pillai ? Thiruvengadam Pillai clan)and quoting very special incidents in our family.. I was.. DUMPSTRUCK!!!!
You know.. this prompted me to document the names...( may be more details about the family tree.. in that I began quite recently....)
With all concern and regrets , for life has driven me to so many tough phases .. I admire the compromises and sacrifices that were done to Kannan for his span of life of 40 years that came to a still ..
This is truth and certainity that we all ignore ...

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