Simple StoryLike any other child, I was born and came ,touched the earth.,My mom told me I was a chubby baby above average weight when born and everyone in the family was happy.,When I was around three years old, I do remember [ memories never fade away easily ] my mum called me and told me ' you were not like any other normal child , you know '
I was standing before her simply blinking like any other child who does so at that age.
By then I was wearing a frock , I remember , with a ship's drawing or picture on it and went near her looking at her face.
'What ?' I asked .
'You are a baby of little mischief, having four teeth , two upper and two lower'
' And what you did you know by then, whenever suckling my breast, you bit me with your four teeth'
I kept laughing, and mom said she not even complained with anyone this because no one would believe this . and now I understand , my mother informed about having four teeth is not unnatural.
When I turned five years old , my father took me to a local school and the class teacher was a friend of my father.We three , my dad,my elder brother and I would go to school with food packets to school . I used to watch all the things while going to school ......... trees, flowers, people of different faces, children in their dresses, and even beggars not having left my vision. Sometimes I remember giving the food packet to the beggar who happened to come on the way when I went to school without even asking the father's permission, who might have thought anyway I would share my food from my brother , which was naturally more than we could eat in those days.
1 std:My class teacher was a friend of my father. Father used to take us to the school and go back home.The moment I saw my father going , I started crying like many other kids . Like any school of yesteryear's I was given a small chair and desk of my age .Next to me sitting a boy with a face of small pox marks, and the fear was he would protrude his tongue and showing his fingers as if he would eat me up. Being small and afraid I moved to the desk near to the class teacher.
Noon I did not take anything fearing the new atmosphere and tired by having cried for long time, how long I do not remember now.My father came and took me back home.In all the places I started seeing only faces....walls, ground,trees,sky, all looked like faces to me.Out of fear I started shivering by night and slept on my father's chest.I felt so comfortable that night ,feeling the secure feeling of sleeping on my father.Morning I was down with fever and could not attend school for one week.
When I became alright, my mom asked why I was afraid,having watched me for one week ,I told her I was afraid of faces.and showed her the faces , first time , I took a pencil and drew a face on a paper sitting on the cot, so my first drawing started thus.
So likewise on cot , I did draw faces of sorrow,happiness, crying,and all I felt like drawing at that age.
After started my first attempt with drawing faces , faces started fascinated me in many ways......... some faces hitherto unknown with unknown looks,some faces of deep affection or is it compassion?
When Mom observed this in me she complained to me saying ' Go , study well , that is the only good to your future'
Why moms always think only about the kids as if nothing else interests them in this mundane world.
One day our Dhobi came who used to come twice a week to our house either to collect clothes for washing or giving back the washed and neatly ironed clothes back to us. On that day while seeing me , he asked to give the frock I was wearing as it appeared dirtied and my mom forcibly removed my frock and handed over to him.
I said 'no' thinking how could I be without a frock if given to him ,usual child like thinking.But he took it away along with other clothes to be washed . That day was my first sad day in my life.Whole day I never talked to anyone in the house , neither eating nor drinking anything.I did wear only my inner wear and not any other frock.So angry I was ,if when remembered I think how childish it was to the elders of the house.
Dhobi came back after few days bringing all the clothes without my frock in the bundle, saying with a sad face , my frock was missing which he lost while washing..... dipping in the deep current of flowing water in the river it got washed away.
The first sadness in life increased many folds unbearable to me........... I was sad seamlessly.
No day seemed different from another to me and one day my aunt and uncle visited us after a long interval .My aunt was a beautiful lady with her own load of cosmetics, sarees, modern dresses of those days.My mom gave her a big room with furniture and furnishings. She brought with her a small radio without any connecting wire to the electrical plug. I thought how could this small radio worked without wire and connections and curious to know more about that small contraption.Morning when I was in bed music flowing from his room, I jumped down from the bed,rushed to her room to listen the song from that radio.
My mom came to me , asked ' Why ? you peeped into the keyhole , it is bad habit peeping............. why? , if I happen to see you doing it again I will punish you'
Hearing the commotion outside my uncle and aunt came out the room, opening the door.
They asked 'Why? What happened?'
I was terrified, wanting to say I wanted to hear the music from the radio, but could not open my mouth and started crying.Uncle having seen me crying , lifted me in his hands and told me ' you wanted this small radio, take it, be smart , don't cry, you know I was the first one who had seen you when you were born, brought out by the nurse and touched you .Your father went out of the hospital to buy medicines.' Then he laughed and gave me the little radio in my hands, I was happy carrying it to my room, listening.
That was the first time ever, a thing wanted by me was given to me without asking for it.That was the first gift in my life.
I started searching the unknown questions about how this kind of things happen in life without any answers.
My mom received a big house from her father [my grandpa],built up already in a land surrounding the house about one acre. When we moved into the new house I was studying 5th standard. The house having more than five self convenient big rooms, so every one had the privilege of having a separate room.
When I was six years old, school was changed , in the new school I had to wear new uniform, green frock and a green shirt like blouse. I was talking fluently and sometimes plunged into unfathomable silence , my mother used to say this often to me.
My father world, like thousands of Govt employees, was his office and only aim seemed working for increment, which is so in our country, a man's life is consumed in the fight of making both ends meet till one meets his own end. I can remember on salary day my pa would bring sweets and a sweet preparation called kesary which i liked very much. his love for is eternal.
In my school my friends' list is endless, Vimala and Kamala [twin sister ], Sherly Mary, Shina Beevi. In every festival celebrated in any religion I used to get sweets and other eatables from my friends.
One day when I came back from school ,saw my mother talking to a soft spoken lady very politely , on seeing me she called me near and said 'Sree, she is your music teacher, from tomorrow going to teach you '
I went inside my room throwing my school bag and sat silently listening my little radio and the radio seemed to say " Sree one day you will become a singer and dancer '
I went stood before the full size mirror on the wardrobe ,looked at myself. Something sad I could perceive in my face,lips, my eyes. I thought, I would never fail in my life,whatever I wanted would be given to me in life.
I changed my uniforms and went out to see my mom, mom was dusting off a new Veena,and said ' This new Veena is for you only, one day you will be famous, watch ..... you are going to see one day.......... I am certain'
Again she narrated the incident of my four teeth when I was born , the suckling with a chuckle.
On coming back from school , one day I had indescribable pain and cramps feeling inside the abdomen , but I took bath as usual and went to the hall to take the tuition of my music lessons . My teacher found something odd in my body language and asked me whether I was alright ..
Midnight paint shooting up inside,extreme pain, I sat sometime on the bed crying ,looking up in front of me a painting in which the girl was crying and the tear drops also quite visible like the morning sun reflecting on the dew drops of the flowers. I slept owing to tiredness and in my dreams I was running along on many roads without knowing the directions of where to arrive, my memory slipped and I did not know where to go but kept running , running .........
Sweating profusely I got up , hearing my door was banged and I stood up and shocked to look my legs with blood and on the floor , opened the door of my room , teacher and my mom standing with anxiety writ large on the faces of them , inquiring what happened , why I was late and looked around.
For few minutes teacher and mother looked around and slowly smiled at me and my teacher put her hands on my head and said nothing to worry .Both my mother and teacher exchanged glances and smiled, took me out and gave me a bath.
Teacher said 'You are a big girl now, nothing to worry.'
I felt relieved and thought ' oh nothing serious , I am not going to die.'
Next day on wards for about a week my music teacher came with sweets and other Indian delicacies to eat for me.And few months passed , during the time, my music teacher and me became almost friends despite the age difference.
Teacher told me about her family and the marriage she was expecting with a boy , who was jobless, so the delay of the marriage. One evening she took out a small plastic cover from the inner side of the blouse and showed me a photo of a young man who was beautiful to look at and said this was the boy she going to marry. That day my mind was much worried about the teacher , when this man would get a job and when they would marry as if that had become my personal problem , but I became an adult I understood that was nothing but empathy which all management books talk about.
I had a dream the same night , when a prince was carried in a palanquin by so many people and the Prince got down from the palanquin ,wearing costumes befitting a royal family with jeweleries of gold,diamonds,pearls, golden embroidered dresses, turban with a sword in a sheath made of gold.He came near to me , was surprised to see he was none other than the teacher's lover and he asked me ' Will you marry me?'
I started excited and in profuse sweating I came out of the dream and sat on the bed .Oh no prince , no palanquin , no retinue , nothing......... oh but what kind of feeling it was , being happy seeing an young man and that too he asking me that question
My mind wavered from one extreme of happiness to other extreme of sadness ever since I got up from bed like seeing through a kaleidoscope , having been so I talked to myself ' Why to get married and suffer through from one problem to next problem till the end of this life, why not remain unmarried and be a spinster, become either a musician or artist and continue the life without many hassles.'
One new teacher who recently joined in our school , she is so beautiful and all girls look at her when she passes nearby and even a bit jealous of her beauty although none of us are any where near her age.She is around 25 years of age and everyone is fascinated by her beauty as if we are boys in a girls' school.The complexion and the style of her is something special to us girls , she is the star of our school among all the teachers we have'
During lunch time I have seen her talking with someone under one umbrella and the way they talked seemed to me like lovers, their body movements, gesticulations and the very way they react to each other while talking.Then something struck me , 'oh this man I have seen already, yes in the photo shown by my music teacher.'
' My God, how ... how this is happening, one moment I think of going to him and ask him directly'. Then controlled myself and kept quiet.
Next day when music teacher came , our conversation , either guided or naturally went about her family, her parents and one brother entirely depend on my music teacher's earning and no other go than waiting for the marriage.I was about to blurt out the scene I witnessed yesterday about her lover but kept quiet thinking I was small enough to talk about this kind of things with her.
Besides, the way my music teacher whenever talked about her lover, from her face I could make out as if she is already a wife or gone though what a husband and wife would have been though after marriage.Or may be I am wrong in my perception thinking the way the girls of my age think about such things.Well, I am not a small girl now I know.
My music teacher has a lover, Gopi, he belongs to a family with his father and mother and no one else. Gopi remembers his father would go to the work , whatever it was and come back always in his four legs!!!!!!!!! . Yes reach home completely drunk and his earnings major part was used for his alcohol or country made liquor sometimes spurious.
The moment he undressed and hung his pants and shirt on the string tied from one wall to another wall of the house , his mother would tempt him to see what his father left behind in his pocket which became a regular affair in his life.
Once his mother asked him to take whatever remained in his father's pocket, he went inside and meanwhile their neighbor came calling mother's name and he instead of watching my work , lifting from my own father , he decided on that day that he could keep something for his smoking and other activities a part of the loot . So everyday it became so he was comfortable pursuing his activities.
So his mother made him do whatever he thought in young days as his smartness.
In his school he developed friends; the school was something for poor people run for poor sections of society.
Somehow he scraped through his school final . That is another story.
When final exam was going on in school he asked the answer sheet of the bench mate to copy which he refused .he took out a pocket knife from his pocket and showed below the desk, if he did not give , he would do the proper way when he came out.
Being afraid he handed over the main sheet when he went for additional sheets, and that is how I passed school final .I know I cannot continue studies since studying is not my forte.
Few years of loitering with the school drop outs and some who just passed out became my friends. He learnt what were thought to be not good in general, and bad in particular. He started smoking ganja which is easily available anywhere in the city.
Ansar is one who became friendly with him , and he said he is learning spoken English taught by one Lucy , an Anglo Indian and one day he saw him with a girl. She is Lucy, good looking, speaking English with him which he did nott understand fully but blurted in his native language.
She is very beautiful with long hair, good complexion, as he already tasted some girls who came for money .This Lucy's face and style, the way she speaks, particularly her boobs which she is proud to have it displayed by her inner garment , He has become almost instantaneous lover although though one side. May be one sided, but he has intense feeling towards her,he did not know why.
She is Lucy, I told you know Gopi , my spoken English teacher' Ansar said.
'Hello ' she said.
He said he wanted to learn spoken English.
she said' you can come now to my home .Let us start today'
He was damn happy going with Ansar and Lucy to her home but on that first day they were chatting , she in English, he in his native tongue.
He kept going her home regularly and became a fan of her in due course.
One evening he went to her house and talked to her .
'Lucy, I want to talk to you something..... Personal..?
'I like you and would like to marry you '
'Could you say yes as your answer?'
She looked at him for some time then asked me ' What happened? Why suddenly you ask?'
' No the very first day I saw you I became mad about your beauty'
'Now I decided to marry you , please consider me'
'I can ....... but seeing your condition, I mean your earning condition , how can we lead a life'
'I will do whatever you want me to do'
'Then you wait for sometime'
'No right now I feel like taking you home as my wife'
'Then we can do one thing, coming friday , we will go to your house and introduce me as your wife. ok'
Then after few months I will see to that you will go abroad and rest of the things you leave it to me'
'ok Lucy whatever you say'
'First I will ask Ansari to come to your home as a student hereafter'
'Then we will see and plan'
'So next week to your mother and father I become daughter in law'
'See that your parents dont disturb our plan'
Gopi mind worked very fast, right this is a stepping stone to go abroad and besides, money may not be a problem to go abroad if I listen whatever she says.Ansari is a rich man married with his family and to extent he could smell what is the plan.
Next Friday Gopi introduced Lucy as his wife to his parents. She bought with her some presents to Gopi's mother and a costly liquor bottle to his father. She gave some thousands to his mother .Everyone felt happy and the only room of the family became the room for Gopi and Lucy.
After a few days , Ansari came to Gopi's family and Gopi nodded , he went inside the room.
He brought some parcel containing something to be taken inside and chicken and other eatables to his mother.She prepared the chicken and asked the son Gopi to take it inside.
He took it inside the room and came out seen him sitting next to Lucy very close. Already he knew the plan so smiled and came out .He heard the room locked inside.
He came outside the house , sat in the verandah and smoked a cigarette brought by Ansari.
His habits did not stand on his way of knowing to peep in through some means.He went behind the house and he knew there is a small hole in the window facing the few trees .
He went near the window looked inside through the hole.
'Oh what a beauty she is , her figure must be 35,30, 36 ,I know these things since I started this when I turned 17 and with some of my friends I played with whores.
He could see, Ansar sitting very close to Lucy, she sitting with one glass in hand with hot drink, already her gown and top removed.Oh I forgot to tell you, she is an Anglo-Indian .
She is in two pieces and one hand of Ansar is on her shoulder .
I felt very hot , I heard them talking,
'Did you say Lucy our connection and affair?
'Did you say Lucy our connection and affair?
‘He knows and his family is poor, I will marry him ‘
‘Only he needs money for him and his family, so I will send him to the Middle East for some menial job’
‘Ok, that is not a problem’
‘Can you help getting him a job?
‘Don’t worry, I will take care of that and pack him off .Have you given the perfumes,drinks, and money to his parents?”
‘Yes poor people , they are eager to receive anything “
Gopi's mind started thinking ,
'I know these things........... so walked away One thing I am certain she will be successful in life for sometime or at least till the time she is able to get someone big with money..Now he sure she will be able to send him abroad .If she uses him , let him use her for his going abroad.'
Gopi thought , 'One way I am in a sort feel thankful to her.......... I can leave this place for some job and I know after sometime she will leave my house and get someone bigger .Now I know her but she does not know me ; I have been brought up in gutters, I know all the underground ways in life.'
Gopi thought , 'One way I am in a sort feel thankful to her.......... I can leave this place for some job and I know after sometime she will leave my house and get someone bigger .Now I know her but she does not know me ; I have been brought up in gutters, I know all the underground ways in life.'
Ansar also gave money almost everyday so she was happy attending her daughter in law's work .Her mother in law also happy.
Lucy knows the society and how it works , so every evening when free, comes out and talks with neighbors so no one doubts her and thinks a tuition teacher , but her tuition as we know what it is.
My Music Teacher
One day someone told me my Music teacher went missing from her house and no one knows to where, I know the reason , her lover had deserted her and teacher's mother told me , she left behind a letter and handed over me the letter.
I have gone through the letter and that letter shows me how fragile she is , that is written as follows,
I will give the name to the kid growing in me the name you suggested to me, right now although I dont know , whether boy and girl, I remember fondly the time we had been together that evening.I did not know that you were using only my body by then and your mind was somewhere else thinking that you made another girl fell down physically to you; all this I come to know only now.May be , you had the notorious experience of saying 'love ' to innocent girls and using them for your physical pleasure.Now only I understand something wrong even in your birth.
The baby growing in my womb may be having your own traits also and hence I dont want to continue that in my womb , neither I want to continue my life. The greatest regret is I was foolish or innocent [ ?] enough to bear that result of having been together with you for few evenings thinking that was love and union of minds also. How wrong I have been in my life? My pain in heart is I did not know I was raped , when I thought that was fruit of love.The way you raped me will not leave you , natural law will not leave you .........
You think it is your smartness in playing with girls..... your birth you must question for being such a character.You might have been a product of such either illicit relationship or ......... I dont find words, so disgusting it is to me.
After your leaving me , the sufferings, mental trauma, pain in my heart , i can not put down on paper......... something however best tried can not be described by my pen..... this is why I think most write poetry at least to touch near the feelings one has .
Mind is so important to even etween husband and wife , otherwise even legal joining of the body is nothing but rape.
More than body one must have union of minds between the two, otherwise son like you will only be the result of two individuals.If at all someone shows this letter to you, if at all........ sit down one moment and think how a blind man loves his wife and soul and begetting children, although I know a beast like you who thinks girls are to be eaten like a mutton Biriyani
Still I remember the days I loved you, am I still loving you despite what all happened in between, although I know really it was not love that you had in your mind , but my body and curves I have , which you wanted to touch and enjoy yourself without thinking the finer aspects of human relationships and the bonding of minds.
I thought you were a protection like a clothe to me honoring my modesty and chastity, even what a cotton saree possesses to protect a lady is not with you .You are an animal who will walk on any girl's head and body to do what you think in your devil's mind.
You are a virus like many viruses live only to destroy, a final judgement comes when you will be wiped away from the earth like a cockroach crushed by an irritated human.
Neither I nor the fetus in me will live more than few days after I leave the house.Only regret is I am not able to support my parents.
The letter ended like this.
I felt sad after reading the letter by my music teacher, the music teacher's 'lover' is a killer, a murderer .People come and go in life.That letter made me think the world is so selfish .Teacher is like a goat in mutton market hooked in a mutton stall hanging upside down although goats heads are held separately by the seller, here my teacher hanging with her throat slit open ,blood dripping, where this bastard ate the body and without remorse.My bile I feel in my mouth, so bitter is the day I have read that letter.
Sorrowful faces always I felt looking down on me like the passing clouds among the crowd, where ever I go either a market place or a temple or any one when i walk in the street.I could watch faces very clearly when I sit in the rear seat of my car , so my mind always concentrates on the faces.These faces with suffering writ large without masks, make me suffer always .I am reminded of the face of Jesus whenever some one with either pain , or unexplainable sorrow in their face.
Sometimes I feel the picture of Jesus in my room smiles at me . Pain of any origin in my body never touches my mind.I am always empathetic with any human face with suffering .Every human face I come across is a Jesus, Bhagwan Narayanan, and Nabhi.
Whenever I sit for prayer and close my eyes, all images of Gods converge to become one and I see a formless misty ........ is it image or Power , I don't know.
Every body started watching me in home why I am always alone , but I look at the world to know some answer without a question .
I feel I am crying inside, and I hate those without minds reflecting God.
The names of Gods I had been taught when young by the elders of my family , when repeated silently make me happy always.The kind of ecstasy I derive by uttering the names of Gods is not coming through my pen, so I am not able to write.
Whenever I look at the picture of Lord Rama and Seetha, I use to admire Him for the virtues He possesses and the Mother Seetha, how lucky She is in getting Rama as Her husband.When I became grown up I imagined one day I will get one like Lord Rama who is sincere to his only wife.He is a God.May I see one like Lord Rama, if so how he would look like...........
So whenever alone .......... shall I also get an husband like Rama, I am always praying I need, no , I want some one like Rama.
When ever I look at the mirror I feel happy about me......I am beautiful in my half saree , with face,good little fat body, and like a statue I see in the temple , with good youthfulness all over my body.I am proud even the way I look at myself in the mirror.
Now I can understand the way people look at me , they all like me some even love me , i know , but no one I am attracted , may be I was in my young days carrying the impression that all males are cheats, like the one who cheated my music teacher. so due to that experience I felt as if the word love is awkward .
I could feel love slowly starts coming towards me ..... what is the reason I don't know...........what is the reason , I don't know.
I will tell you latter
RespectLove as its nature touches everyone in life.It also left some questions with me when I crossed that age in my life . It touched me and went away without much disturbing me , since I always carry with me the clarity of friendship and love and the differences between these two.Now I have grown older with deserving wisdom , able to see the compassion one has towards the humans, other life forms, even with those lifeless things which we think so wrongly.
Love I could say was hiding in me till a point of time in my life when I finally saw my husband.But friendship has been with me all along , that smiled at me.........laughed at me .....criticized me.......sometimes cheated me.........sometimes chased me......... but with me forever despite the bitterness created by some people in my life.I have always been friendly with people but in return why I am not shown respect. Do people think friendship is one way path , where they can only receive not being reciprocal .The kind of friendship can happen with anyone at any time at any age. Nothing stops the friendship. With this kind of friendship we can look around and be friendly with everyone with devotion, duty and through this ladder of friendship we can evolve ourselves into the domain of compassion.Of course this path is sometimes strewn with thorns and thistles making deep wounds in the minds, reason is some misuse the word of friendship to enter into the domain of love.Love as such used in western concept is not understood here in our country.Rather in our country this has to be given a different foot note to make even the educated understand this word better.
We can be compassionate with everyone , if tried deeply , we can be so with inanimate and animate beings like even trees,plants,utensils,furniture, house we live in, cars we travel, pictures,ants and even with tigers and lions.
Sometimes we feel friendship arising out of respect, thankfulness, gratitude; but love is different something special ....... this is where many go wrong.
But the difference between the two was quite clear in my mind even when I was in my adolescence .We can be friendly even with enemies but loving is different ..... this I write in our own pure Indian concept.I have always questioned myself why I have been friendly indiscriminately but don't get in return sort of pure friendship from others,
Sometimes never I believe , has anyone been truly friendly with me ever. Many smile at me , leering at me with ulterior motives of coming closer in the garb of friendship .
When young I went to college with books neatly arranged held close to my bosom,with long hair tied with flowers hanging to my youthful bottom; many boys of college were jealous of the books and notebooks since held by my hands.I used to walk with eyes looking down only the ground I walk although I know the sighs boys feel looking at my beauty. I used to wonder..... is it love or infatuation boys go through at that age , even my friendly girls looked to my wide eyes whether I had any dreams touching upon love. My mind was searching only the ideal man like Lord Rama in my life , so despite the age of our group , never ever the thought of love entered into me.
I knew I was walking through the age of fragrance of love, flowers,dreams,emotions,tender feelings, friendships.......... Time was running out very fast for me , I did not realize then.
Suddenly one fine day , in an auspicious day , I was dressed in a silk 'saree' with garland around my neck and perfume sprayed , led to the place of sanctity and I was married to my husband. A girl suddenly became a wife.
My father handed over me to the secure hands of my husband.
Now he is lover,friend,husband all rolled into one.I got up in the middle of the night and looked at him , he was sleeping , still my mind and the body was having the ecstasy of having been together in the bed ......... with the same feeling I went to sleep again in the other half of the bed.
So this is how my love happened and I realized this is true love , if at all love has the meaning , it is true meaning, this is it.
Now everything happened seem to have been in a duration of just a few minutes, as though a passing dream fast forwarded.
Suddenly I became a wife, marriage approached fast enough in my very young age, I started adjusting and adapting to the new house and relatives, in-laws, finding myself ways of getting used in the new atmosphere.
Something indescribable like a cracker waiting to be lighted kept me always at toes, not knowing exactly what , neither find words to describe that comfortable or uncomfortable feelings .
May be I thought when going in a flashy ,and costly car with my husband, hair flowing in the wind blowing through the windows , people would have thought how lucky this girl to have a husband.......... a husband from a rich family. My age being very young at the time of marriage I had not had the mature feeling for being adjustable to the new family and such uneasiness was incomprehensible to me , not being able to put down in words now.
I know every girl who was known to me might have thought , how lucky I had been to being married into such a rich family, though I would not use the word jealous by my friends since it was the normal expectation of any girl of my age to have a groom rich enough to enjoy the luxury of life.
Sometimes I could feel the sharpness of words like arrows hitting me and wounding me by the people around me .
Never I know whether it is right to find fault with fate or to love the fate in its natural course of events. Even why should we curse the fate when things are done by humans........... what role fate had in things done by humans.
My mother taught me in life how to be tolerant , never showing emotions,always smiling as though everything was well in my life. But sometimes I felt I was not able to be tolerant and patient with all the people or the comments they made at me, because in reality although my name is Devi , I am not Goddess Devi with only Godly qualities .
My mother was proud enough and esteem enough of her daughter's beauty, I overheard many a time telling her friends ," I will not give my Devi to anyone with dowry, she is so beautiful or I would ask money from groom's side . My daughter is wealth personified and the guy going to marry her is lucky "
I know I was not that much beautiful as my mother thought , I could say with modesty that I was a simple beauty with all my dreams and thinking befitting my age of 16.
But one boy asked her hand for marriage without asking for dowry , who could say 'no' to him , that too from a rich family known to all.After all beauty is a factor of mind, to the eyes of the beholder. That concept I believed myself at my tender age.
Fate....... that only destroys every one's dreams, dreams of youthfulness, freedom of being a girl with all her feelings in her own world, her pranks, childishness, aspirations. Fate always plays its role .......... correctly or not we are not able to judge.May be all these happenings have been already programmed by God before even we are born into this world.Who are we to judge the happenings at the time of happening whether it was for good or something else. Certain things we are not able to delve deep and find answers in our life time . Life is very short a period during which absolutely impossible to reason out everything.We just travel , that is all.
To understand the fate , we have to realize God , and to realitse the God we have to leave behind our past experience or what we heard as experiences of others, leave behind the happenings in the past, live every moment , observing everyone including ourselves, many a Saint raised themselves from human level to their ultimate status only through this path.So it is not easy......... I know , but possible , sure I am on that.May be we need to take so many births simultaneously .
The same fate only pushed me in the world of new house, into the kitchen with rice bags,frying pans,pans for making dosas, spoons, ladles, groceries and some house maids and servants.
I think fate also like some people ,plucking away the dreams, innocence,making fun of me always by others,........... sometimes felt deeply and wept silently alone.Then slowly ..... only slowly that loneliness became a friend of mine and we are friends still in our own world , imagining,dreaming, travelling to the other worlds, seeing things. Loneliness has become a part of me like God Arthanareeswara..
To understand fully the fate , one needs to take simultaneously 10 or 15 births, I mean 15 Devees must be born , one a story teller, one musician, one philosopher, one temple priest,one pandit of vedas, one painted, one sculptor etc etc ..... so even then only a fraction of this cosmic programming and software may be understood..
Am I a Goddess or what .......... oh no.
12 th Chapter
The car we were traveling stopped in front of a big house, really abig bungalow , where lot of people waiting for our arrival.I stepped down from the car with my husband.I was surprised to see such a big crowd, all relatives, servants, maids and all known people from nearby.The big pandal in front of the house was arranged with flowers,coconut leaves plaited and tied around the pandal legs, bunch of coconuts,cardamom, different flowers of different hues,banana tress with plantain bunches......... so nice to look at with traditional ornamentation.One lady with dignified face and respect handed over to me a lighted lamp and asked me to step into the house through the threshold puttingmy right foot first which I know already , this is the tradition .I could see the grandeur in her face and movement typical of traditional rich class .All of them led me inside the house ........my husband watching everything with a smile on his face.I did not knowwhat to do there and i stood silently.One by one everyone came and looked at my face, some watched my jewelery , some my saree, some touched and felt the saree, some just looked at me as though not concerned about me.Among them I came to know, friends' families, servants, maids, my sisters in law, alltogether.I was hungry but never opened my mouth........ I was afraid so kept quiet.One lady came forward took me to a big room asking me to relax there saying ' This is your room and can be here'
I went inside the room , being fully tired did not even strike my mind to change my dress , and closed my eyes and laid down on the cot, went to sleep .By morning when I opened my eyes I saw one, my husband sitting near me, smiled at me and said 'When I came here you were fast asleep, itis ok , you are very much tired, if you want to sleep , go ahead , I will ask the servant to bring tea '
''No, I will go and take' I said.
He opened a door and showed me the bathroom saying ' Take bath and come '
I went inside the bath room timidly and looked myself in the mirror , smiling .
When I poured water over my head, I felt relaxed and at the same time, hundreds of thoughts came rushing to me.......How would I adjust myself in so big a house, looked like a big hotelwith lot of people and employees?
When came out , there stood my mother in law showing me a set mundu, atraditional attire in our part of the country, arranged neatly on atable and said ' You wear this dress in the house, you are no longer agirl wearing ordinary dress with half saree, now a housewife anddaughter in law of this house"
I tried wearing the mundu set but was not able to do it properly........... I was so small in age, not being comfortable in the traditional dress. My husband came in , dressed in Dhothi and jibba. He smiled at me.'You look great in this dress, you are beautiful'
He touched my chin and took me inside holding my hand.There my mother in law sisters in law, servants all waiting for me to come. My mother in law presented me a necklace, touched my lower jaw, rubbed it with affection and love saying ' Good girl , beautiful you are '
I smiled and stood still .
chapter 13In that big house I could see all my relatives who were good to me and lovable, my husband treated me like a child with love and affection. Oh!! I have forgotten to tell my husband's name, Raviyettan. I met many of my relatives in the dining room, my husband was always busy with workers and I felt how everyone being busy in that house,altogether that house was like a factory with busy people always. One day my mum and dad came to see us and took part in the feast,feeling happy about the daughter, they left the same day. They were happy to see daughter being married into a rich family. so happy they were.I could see my mother in law only one in a day, that too in the Pooja room, where she would be there and she would just smile at me - that was only interaction between us.
Once my mother in law asked me' Devi. are happy here ? Any problem you face? If you any any troubleyou can tell me.'
I simply stood there smiling.
I saw a man standing near the store room , he was in charge of the house management and a lady also whom i came to know, was my sister in law , though I did not know the name, but seen her in he group photo. I did not know the name of herbut smiled at them.Ravi Menon was the name of the man standing among ladies,who was called as Raviyettan by all.One of my sisters in law ,who wasof the same age group of mine told me , since everyone called him as'Raviyettan'.,
I could also call him so.But I did not know the relationship then , I simply walked off smiling at them.
The servant said there were something unused in the store that couldbe handed over to the servant maid, for I did not reply , thinking why should I, since that was not my belonging.
Some times I went into kitchen although no one expected me there , itwas world of its own, with many people coming and going, eating andeveryone working.But sometimes i went into the kitchen , I was not expected or required to do any work in the kitchen, all taken care of by the servants and cooks.When night arrived, Raviyettan arrived there, [ oh I did not tell the name of my husband ] but this is how I was asked to address him and everyone addressed him so--- Raviyettan.
When I was alone , I used to think ' is this the life I liked andwanted? How could I call someone very much senior to me in age ?'
Even then I called him so.He came and rested himself on the cot. A man who never disturbed mefor anything. Still I felt a sort of sadness or emptiness........something missing in the wholeness of marriage.Respect was the word that came to my mind when I thought of him.......or whenever thought of him.
I thought God had given meThis business of all the people around me in the house and my silence coupled with stillness enabled me to look everything very keenly,everything around me, not only people, inanimate things, sometimes trees of various kinds, flowers, coconuts, ultimately I started observing me myself as though a third person from distance looking atDevi. Was I abnormal or subnormal or noramal ?
When everyone was talking about my luck, I looked into the 'luck' as an observer........Is this the luck a girl expects or aspires in life? I never say anything about this to anyone.... just my mind only thinking.......... mind needs to be calm to observe, so I tried my best to maintain calmness.
Without knowing what to do, my mind was not happy as though a child rolling or the floor.......... wanting something despite having all othr things in life.
If start saying, some thing is lacking and at the same moment not knowing what it is.
I always overhear Paruvamma , doing house work in the kitchen, saying to another lady ' something is missing'.
The same sentence came to my mind also,.The helper lady to Paruvamma used to take lunch, then took a siesta , but while leaving the house would say ' something is missing and missing ' but she meant the cooking and the food served everyday.
Evening time Paruvamma came with the lighted lamp bringing it inside when I stretched my hand to receive the lamp, she smiled and took it inside.
Paruvamma came near to me and I asked her to sit down , but out of respect to me she stood still not sitting in front of me.They were looking at me when I garlanded the lamp , but while looking up I noticed they smiled at me and said ' Daughter,what a tress of hair you have, so beautiful up to your knees....... I will comb it for you and do the hair-do."
I thought I had a grandma in Paruvamma , but they were only servants there in that big house.
When she was completing her work I asked Paruvamma ' Grandma,don't you have children, where do you live, where is your home? "
They smiled at me told ' Your are the children of me, " then they stood in silence , I understood in this house everyone had some indescribable problems.
Some voice inside me said ' you look after your business , what you have got to do with others' lives ?'
I went out ,looked at the sea coast and the vast blue sky, and the sea.......... so refreshing for the mind whenever happened to see the sea and the immediate communion I had with it. It was like a conversation always between me and the sea............ Raviyettan would come very late and I felt lonely but this conversation with the sea was totally very energizing and absorbing, always nature comes to those people to fill their vacuum but how many realize this is very rare.I used to tell all to my friendly see which I would not write in my diary.Even diary might be seen by someone by accident but sea is confidential friend who never reveals your secrets to anyone .So friendly I am with sea in this world .
Even in my bedroom when I was with my Raviyettan would see only stars and moon and ventured into the place of my imagination, love and affection and be happy in that world.
Even then awake i the bed going through imaginations , Raviyettan was sleeping happily.
Till morning I would be awake like this, so to avoid I tried to sleep, closed my eyes
I prayed to God.
We used three rooms in the first floor, two big bed rooms and another room with a sit-out ; Raviyettan office is near that room.
He used to work in his office room, sometimes slept there, I never asked anything about his work and he would leave for office morning sometimes without breakfast.
Sometimes he would go show his hand in my direction while entering the car. Some days passed even without talking to me and we were silent.I used to wonder, 'What I am to him......... a wife............. well.......... still I used to do my work, never even thinking anything else'
One day Raviyettan came home with an young man, when I looked at him Raviyettan smiled at me and said 'He is a lecturer in a college, a friend of your elder brother.He will arrange a seat in the local college. Be ready to join the next week. '
Now I could recollect this lecturer also a student of my father, I could understand my Raviyettan only then, he wanted me to continue my studies and he never liked me to stop studies just because this mariage happened.My brother informed through this lecturer friend that I could study further to my Raviyettan and I felt happy and emotional knowing the fact how much my brother loved me and how much care he wanted to take for my studies.
By then my brother was studying Medicine and would be back home in a year's time after completing his course..
I felt very happy as though some mental block had been removed owing to my early marriage..... losing my studies,leaving behind my dreams and aspirations.
I knew I could not attend college like other girls since I got married and I had to go in saree and could not wear half saree like the rest of my friends.
I could not close my eyes a minute during the previous night of my college admission, I was happy with anxiety.I prayed to God for the luck given to me to study further and closed my eyes and in my dreams I felt all happiness of going to college and be with my friends.
Next day morning when went to get permission from my mother in law , she said ' Oh Devi , you are going to college, good....... but who will ...'
Raviyettan intervened his mother and said ' Amma , don't worry , let her study, she is a child, I will take care of myself'
Narayanayettan, an old driver in our home was given the responsibility of taking me to college and bringing back home. An Ambassador was the car used by me then and Narayanayettan was the driver.
I went in the car and car entered into the campus of the college where many of my friends looked at me and the Ramu sir also standing in the veranda [ oh, that is the name of the lecturer friend of my brother ] to take me to the class room.
I was walking behind him silently to go to my class room.
I feel I remember back some of the lessons I learnt long back and really feel so, when not concentrating on studies this is running in my mind as if watching a CD in my digital player. I feel to move with girls studying with me but something prevented me doing so with them........but somewhere some feeling of something inexplicable. I think I have become timid in my mindset.Evening car came and Ramu master came up to the car to see me off from college.
That night Raviyettan came and sat near me in the bed, took the book in my hands and looked at it for sometime , then gave me back the book.I looked at his face and felt he wanted to ask something to me , but kept quiet waiting for him to open his mouth.
After a few moments he asked me ' Devi, have you ever loved anyone in your life?"
That question shocked me, put me off my feet, might be, he thought so since I started going to college at this young age immediately after marriage.
I shook my head conveying ' no' to him for he told " I know , but I asked you, that is all"
He stroked my head and told me " you have college tomorrow , so take rest. I want to tell my wife something which I never told anyone . I will tell you OK. I start telling you from tomorrow onwards"
I had some feeling, for this only he came and sat near me. I felt for sometime and continued to be in that mood of sadness for some more time.
I was thinking what he wanted to say to me , despite my thinking I could not find out a clue of what would be that in his mind.
My mind never slept the whole night thinking the same and morning I got up walked inside the room , veranda, and started seeing people outside the compound and inside the compound, but no one could see me watching there.
Only Raviyettan's words kept ringing in my ears when stood there watching people.
i know what is love although no one I loved in my life but could imagine how beautiful and powerful the feeling would be if some one loves , or a girl loves a boy provided the boy is good and decent.But if one is wrong among the two , the loss would be only to the girl. That much knowledge only I had at that age.Rest of the things involved in love was not known to me at that age.
I was waiting for someone to talk to , even an employee , or the house maintenance staff; otherwise what would I do in this kind of jail where you got to be alone always. No one to talk to neither anyone came to talk to me. All employees and servant.
How long I could be like this without talking or seeing anyone in this house?
What is love and how it comes seems a mystery still for me ? How that comes to one, my Maira auntie and her daughter came from U.S and and they are loving me like anything. Is this the only love or some other kinds there in this world ?
If there is no love, sometimes boring the whole life...Something eluding comprehension always when at tender age.
When someone looks at you for the beauty of yours and the body-- does it mean love ' Is that not lust for the shapely body and the desire to enjoy the physical part? where is love in that ? Or is there love at all.
If someone looks at you for the properties and wealth, does it mean love?
My dad used to say , I have Ayishwaryam ' - if loosely translated the luck, wealth and stars in the horoscope decide the wealthy living of the person.
Does love comes out of the fact that what Astrologer says, I have that luck , and if married to someone he becomes rich and propertied man in this world ?
When comes home I close my eyes and close the windows, so no outer world connection and no connection of anything outside of the house.
This is my private world and remember the Doc said to me when went for some ailment ' you are a beauty , a brownie beauty ' my dad was smiling ... just smiling .
Hmm beauty in all beings is the truth. And no one knows they use empty words to make someone happy while saying someone is beautiful.............