The story that follows relates to me. Well not exactly the 6’1” me, but the 3’2” me. Confused!! Well it’s an event from the sweet little childhood of mine (yeah, those lovely days when even as a male child you had the freedom to wear pink, without any societal hue and cry!!).
As a matter of fact, instances from the earliest days of our life, mindless as they seem, inadvertently happen to be among the most interesting of reads. Well am not going to hurt my pride by going far back as to the days when I would wear diapers!! So lets fast forward a bit, at say 2x speed to a hot scorching summer noon some 18 years before today, that is, when I was, say two years young and still the centre of attraction of all girls in town. Dunno why these virtues wear off with age!
Anyway, lets focus now. It was a noon when I was left alone but for my fat sweet story-telling granny. But I would not forgive her, you know, in the whole five to six years of my childhood, never did she tell me one proper A rated story! All silly kiddish U/A story with fox that would steal the crow’s vadaai!! Anyway, as they say, to err is human but to forgive… divine! So grandma, may your soul up there, hopefully in heaven, rest in peace under my blessings! Though then, she was still a sweet walking talking cooking dear person.
That day, she was alone at home at that village of mine, where gobar-gas plants used to supply gas for stove and they used to milk cows under the palm-leaved sheds. I was there guarding her! Old as she may be, but she was one sweet hottie! So she was lying on the cot in the living room of that two roomed shack, and I was playing with tamarind-seeds. Throw one seed up, pat the floor, and catch the seeds as they are on their way back!! Demands exquisite knowledge of kinematics (for my medical friends, its that branch of physics that deals with study of moving objects!!).
Now coming to the matter, there was a hustle in the kitchen as a kitten was repeatedly stalking in and out. My granny got disturbed and asked me if I could remove the cat from there. I geared up. It was a small furry creature with a white coat and stripes of chocolate brown… tasty haan! But I had more reign on my senses then!! I searched around to take an account of the weapons I had and tried to gauge it against the given mission.
I thought of throwing utensils first, but it would create one heck of a noise. Then thought about the knife and spoon, but there was only one spoon, my dear plastic soup-stick and I wouldn’t part with that and as for knife, I fear it since it sliced my finger once while I tried chopping a raw mango. After much search, finally I settled on a gunny bag. In a farmers family, such things come handy. And I dashed behind the cat. It was a thrilling kid-kitten chase, believe me, still better than the cat-rat chase. And as always happens, the hero wins. Here if you are smart enough should be able to guess, the hero is… me! I got the kitten cornered and pounced did I over it, with the bag wide open.
Then its such a time that we don’t fear much. I did not care about its claws or teeth or even the hiss it made. It just made the whole duel more fun. And with it in the bag I beamed a big broad smile. I won! But now there remained one more task, to get rid of it. I conjured up all equations and formulae I knew and tried to feed in the available data, but no output could I gleam to this great grave problem. After much thought and debate with self, I thought, the wide open well beside, has straight walls. If I fall, I couldn’t climb up. Applying the same to the kitten, neither would it and thus problem optimally solved.
Thus down into the well did go the kitty and I returned home with the pride of a knight having saved the kingdom from the enemy army! Where’s my sweetheart with rose in hand awaiting my homecoming…! Oops wells that’s a different timeline. Well I returned back to home and told granny the works done. And in her half slumber, she nodded accent. No appreciations though. Well as kids we never needed one right. We did just for the thrill of it!
Thus I got busy again with my tamarind-seeds and other stuffs. And it was by eve that day that I got a big bad thrashing. The kitten, drowned as you may presume, was fished with a bucket by my uncle and I got such a bad scolding that I slept refusing food. If not appreciating, at least don’t scold me na! I just did what was told!! But when has the world of man been just!!
And the next day morning the whole of yesterday was just a dream. I ate enough to compensate for the night before and all fell back to routine. That incident did not seem at all to mean anything except that throwing cats into well brings real bad scolding. Days passed, I grew taller, more mature and more handsome (wish, so dearly I wished!!). And somewhere in my fifth or sixth grade, that incident all of a sudden came to my mind. The thought this time made me shudder. The kitten, drowned, dead, fetched out the well gleamed before my eyes and I felt my heart heavy with sadness. I felt sorry for the kitten. I felt guilty for having killed it. I cried alone. And it was a day I understood, never hurt a life, knowingly or unknowingly!
Really life is an awesome teacher, said some great man (funny all pithy wise sayings are said only by men!!). And well, I would rather make a correction in it. Though it teaches, we learn at our own proper time. And after having read this wonderful account from my dear childhood, if any girl wants to have coffee with me (sorry guys, am not gay!), you are always welcome!!