Saturday, June 29, 2013


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A hectic day was in progress and temperatures were rising. Even as I battled to maintain cool, a young visitor emerged with a sunny smile. One look at the young boy led to a sea change in the atmospherics. I rose and in a couple of steps we were in each others arms. 

As I exchanged notes with him, my mind raced nostalgically to his younger encounters with me. But the memory of our last meeting kept resurfacing. The boy had lost his father which was a rude shock to us and we had gathered in a vain attempt to provide solace to the bereaved. Imagine this young tiny tot who was still in his single digits by age, taking me through the events of his father's demise even as he lay motionless. It was one of those rare occasions when the eyes of yours truly went moist and was rendered speechless. The only thing that was spoken to the young lad was a real hug more as a measure to control my emotions than to console him. Reprimanding the grieving and telling them to learn from the young lad, we left for our homes. The truth was those statements were in reality directed at yours truly but spoken out to others.

A couple of telephonic conversations were all we had exchanged in the interim period but there was no gaps in our communication. He instantly picked threads and we just left the rest of them speechless with our banter. The boy was giving me another lesson of life- "Move on". Glad for him and absorbing the subtle lessons he imparted to me, I bid goodbye to him extracting a word that he would drop in someday with the rest of his family.

His name spells winter but he has been an eternal spring for me. Gratitude for the lessons imparted being directed in the form of warm wishes and hugs for him, I look forward for this young teacher to initiate me in more ways than one.

Sunday, June 16, 2013


I was in search of an accomodation and a lady colleague had located one. After paying a visit and negotiating the terms with the landlord we stopped by at a restaurant for a breakfast. Locating a free table was in itself an arduous task. As I wondered whether we could give the breakfast a skip, we found a table which was occupied on one side by a lady and a young kid savouring poories. A quick decision was made to occupy the other side of the table.

Orders placed for the breakfast and being intimated that it would take some time, we exchanged notes. It did not take long for us to intervene in the discussion between the child and the lady. The kid initially warmed upto my colleague. Turning on my best charms, I invited the kid for a competition. The novel competition would ensure that the loser would end up at the kitchen of the hotel. The quick thinker in the kid was on display in a trice as he transferred a couple of poories to his mother's plate. Excitedly, merely shades below the Eureka act, I cried that he was cheating. Blissfully into the world of the child, the real world around was given a go by. The dishes arrived and the conversation warmed up. There was coaxing, cajoling and a display of fast consumption to drive the kid to finish his breakfast.

Instead, he slowly switched sides, manouvred to hold our hands and thereafter block us from rising to wash. Our other duties were put on hold as the primary task of ensuring that the kid had his fill. Soon the time for parting ways dawned. But the kid had other plans. He tagged on to us and left his mother in a dilemma. He took my number on to his mother's cell and clung on. Even as I tried to shift him onto the Bolero his mother had brought, he clambered out and rushed to the two wheeler parked by my friend. After a couple of trips, we achieved the goal of parting with tears in the eyes of the kid and our minds heavy with thoughts. Were we right in denying the kid the warmth he desired innocently? Were we hypocrites in not reciprocating undiluted warmth ? The kid had given us everything he could - the unparalleled affection with no strings attached and as adults who lay claim to maturity and reason, we unceremoniously disconnected ourselves and distanced ourselves for eternity. 

It was in one of those mystical books maybe the Monk who sold the Ferrari or the Alchemist that I had read about time and connections which have an internal meaning. Was this the connection the author referred to? One thing is certain, I did not understand the mystical connection nor utilised the window of opportunity given to establish the connection. Another occasion that will keep me ruminating for years to come. 

A couple of days later I was journeying on a train and had a gurkha and his family for company. His wife, a son aged two years and another aged 8 months were with him. Even as they were trying to rein the elder one in , the younger one attempted to chew into a ripped up portion of the window pane and started bleeding. I immediately asked whether anyone had cold water with them. The father pulled out one cold water bottle and poured the chilled contents into the lid. The numbing effect was great and the kid pulled the bottle and rested it on its lips. The sensibility displayed by the kid could be passed off as a survival instinct but it did marvel me. Connecting the two, I patted the kid on its cheeks to elicit a bright smile - minutes after it was hurt. A lesson was learnt- put the bitter things behind yourself to savour the joys of life. 

The meaning of the first connection still befuddles me. Any answers???