Om Namah Shivaya

Om Namah Shivaya

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Jul 19, 2010

YOGI BABA: A Story Untold - Beginning of 7th Chapter


Chapter 7

The village was sleeping after a long exhausting day in the field. The evening enveloped, within a few moments of sun surrendering itself to the western horizon, the mud houses, the tall Bunyan tree and the silently flowing river near by. In the eastern India, specially in the winters, sun prefers to go to sleep, before the chilly winds unleash their biting cold on the shivering masses huddled around the small fires in front of their huts. Within hour or so, most of the village folks have had their dinner of few rotis along with chilly, onion and garlic paste sprinkled with salt and lemon. Lucky few houses in the village also have some vegetable stew to go around with it or the affluent ones in the pucca houses savor Daal (pulses) and mutton or chicken curry. After an early dinner, the villagers tend to the live stock, ensured that there is enough of smoldering fire around them to fend off the mosquitoes by its smoke and give some relative warmth. Some of them are served the tender leaves of Corn Stalk to eat over the night. And after all this is done and every livestock is comfortable and happily chewing away the nightfall, the people hurry inside the house to sleep off their own exhaustion of the day. But the sleep has not taken the house of Vashudha, in her loving arms. There was a general excitement in the house as Vashudha’s father, Vaibhav Dutt Tiwari, was coming to the village after many years. As per the last report of Hariya, (the handy man in the house), he has already reached the train station - a whistle stop, 7 KMs away. Only few minutes back Hariya had come running with the news, who met the Bullock Cart to pick him up on the way back from the market. In most the villages in eastern India, Bullock cart is the most suitable transport system that can move through ditches, paddy fields and knee deep water left from the last flood, few months back.
In the house there was general sense of urgency and excitement in the house; the Grandma was personally supervising the dinner that is getting ready by one of the favorite friend of Vashudha’s, Lalita, among all the household workers. While she was lazing around the house with one of the few books she has brought from her house in Delhi and listening to the radio with a soft song in lilting voice of Lata Mangeshkar, voice of India, she could hear the buzz around the house. Many of the villagers have gathered around her Grandfather, sitting on a rocking chair in the verandah at the enterance of the house, as he was recounting how many houses, cars and factories his son Vaibhav has in Delhi. Vashudha’s house was the only brick and concrete house in the village with the privilege of having the electricity. At one point of time, this was the only house having electricity, besides the houses in the town, Mallaraj, 32 KM’s away. Her grandfather was a prominent Land lord of the area and was considered to be the political heir of his cousin brother, Brahma Dutt Maharaj, a member of parliament, who lived in the town.

Vashudha was not surprised that her mother is not coming along with her father, to take her back to home, as she knew that she never really had time for her. She was busy making a prominent life in the social circle of Delhi and had too many friends, lavish parties and travelling to exotic locales to actually spare time thinking of her. She had provided a battery of servants to take care of her, a good governace for her to be socially fit for rich life that she had planned in her mind and a good boarding school that used to take care of her most of the growing year. But still Vashudha always had to fend for herself, since the time she started going to the school and could tie her shoe laces. Slowly she was gotten more comfortable among the servants, Drivers and house maids than standing in front of her mother, trying to catch her one smile or one word or her one look. But her mother never had those moments for her as she was hoarding all that for her friends, her parties and her journeys. Vashudha always felt alone in the house, whenever she used to come on her holidays from the school. So in the last few years, the longer summer holidays she had fought with her parents and ensured that she visits her grandma’s house in the village. Slowly these visits to her grandma and the huge house in the village became the most interesting periods and parts of her growing up. She was sad this time to leave this house and not really very happy that her father is on the way to take her back to Delhi tomorrow.

As she started thinking about her days, she felt herself smiling. She has had the most amazing time in this visit. She was the life of the fun, she and few of her friends in the village had over the years on her regular two months vacations spend along with her grandpa and grandma. Her daily routine was a mix of fun, troubles, fights or making a mess in the groves etc. After waking up, she spent most of her morning time working out the details of her days exploits. By the middle of the morning her friends will start coming in, many of them, after delivering the lunch for their parents or brothers working in the field around the village. She loved roaming in the nearby mango grove and as usually she was there for the mango season, the trees will be loaded with mangos. So from one tree to another, the whole gang of her friends will scamper up and down. Leaning on the branches and shaking it to get the ripe mangos fall on the ground for a breakfast or plucking the raw mango for making a sweet and sour salad mixed with salt and red chilly, which was her favorite eat. Some of the times after generally compete with the monkeys, that were around the grove, in making a general mess, she would lead the party of her friends to the nearby river for a bath. This tributary to Gandak river was not deep so they have a natural swimming pool with few wooden boats tied on the bank. So, jumping from the bank into the river, in one long line of boys and girls, taking the boat out in the middle and shaking it by putting feets on the either sides edges of the boat, to almost capsizing it, or racing to reach other side of the river among themselves were the most enjoyable part of the bath. After the bath, she would usually join in one of the boy or girl to the house and have whatever is available to eat along with them, sitting on the floor. After the lunch, a trip to barn, where the whole gang will laze around the cows and animals. Some of the times, she would pick up the new born calf in her arms, and run around the field trying to catch the mother to feed them. By the end of the day, the whole village will be reeling under the gangs mischiefs and destruction. 
Amid all this, she had her 13th birthday, few weeks back, when her Grandfather allowed her to get all her friends from the village and generally made the mess of the whole house, by running all over and playing the whole day within the house as there were guests from town too. As confined to the house, she engaged herself and her gang in one of her favorite game – the Dark room. Her room in the house was a huge one and once you close all the doors and windows, it becomes quite dark, that you can not see anything. So in the game of dark room, one has to find all the persons hidden in the darkness, who usually move about, changing place to avoid getting caught. When one of her friend from the town, a boy few months older than her, took the turn to catch the people hidden, his fingers touched her. The touch felt like a sweet sensation, rising in her body. It opened her feelings in a different way, which she has not experienced ever before. After thinking and reliving that experience for few days and trying to realise that again with her friends around the village, she confided in her favorite friend in the house Lalita. She was a older than her by few years so she knew what it was and she explained Vashudha about this touch and why a touch from some one can bring one close to such a feeling of ecstasy, and how to sustain that feeling over long periods. Most of it Vashudha did not understand but from that day onwards she actively tried to find that happiness with her friends, unknown to them…

To be Continued…
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