Hey… so sorry…
As I was typing the last entry in my college library, I ran out of time and had to go. Didn’t get a chance to come back since then. And, as I left Davangere and reached back home, things just kept me busy and I totally forgot about this unfinished story. Besides, in my absence this ol’ ‘puter of mine took quite a beating from the trojan horses, worms and viruses roaming out there.
Anyway, back to business (Thanks threeiceys for reminding by the way… and a happy new year to you!)-
I’ll start from the beginning.
Once upon a time, there lived a town… a living, breathing town. A small town with little guile, tact or cunning. A town which knew only the language of simplicity and charm. The seasons seemed to be pleased with the town. Summer was optimum just to give the autumn leaves enough contrast against the golden brown soil. Winter just prepared the environment to welcome spring. And rain? Rain was a close friend of this town. Never did it fall uninvited. Never did the clouds dare roar on the denizens. Politely, they would shower it so that everyone takes his own sweet time to reach home, take out the umbrellas and take guard. The rain would then soak the city in its freshness. The green would go greener and the pink would go lavender. It was all orderly and planned. God’s perfect plan. Mishaps did occur from time to time, where don’t they? But, the town recovered in a heartbeat as no one was guilty… just hard luck… so, life would smile at itself and go on.
There lived a single mother with her young boy. The son was any working mother’s dream. Early to bed, early to rise. Charming, polite, assiduous… respectful and all. The mother and son put up in a small cottage with a passive fence all around. Passive because it didn’t give an impression of intending to prohibit encroachment. On the contrary, it seemed to invite it. The low lying barbed wires and beds of beautiful flowers all around were an open invitation to stray goats in the vicinity, but the outdoorsy nature of the mother made her ears so prone to any movement outside that the goats et al would ignore the open invitation, after so many failed attempts. When the mother and son won’t be at home, the harmony of the town was such, that there won’t be any cattle around. In short, everything was in order.
One day, as you had begun to expect, the order broke! The son who’d be back home before the evening showers started hadn’t come back from school even after it started coming down heavily and even eventually stopped. Mom was worried but, so used to the order, she wasn’t much perturbed. Only when it started getting really dark she went out in search. Something, somewhere was wrong- she could sense it.
She inquired at school, met his friends… as she was tracing the path back, anxiously- she stopped to see the crowd collected around something which she had ignored in hurry while her way up. Disappointment leads us to deeper places but, this one was an ugly one. A pool of blood, a body, same fuzzy hair, same eyes, same… she fainted.
Her child was dead. Her reason for living. Why would she want to carry on? The rest of her years would be devoid of happiness. The smile from her lips was snatched away. That night, it didn’t rain. It just thundered. The clouds mourned the death at the top of their lungs.
The spirit of the town was bigger than the grief of a lonesome mother. It dawned. Life went on as usual. The colours were everywhere. They did offer everyone their share of joy, their share of life. Only that the mother didn’t accept their offer. The neighbours, friends, friends of friends- all came and went but she was inconsolable. Well, not exactly. Actually, no one was able to answer a simple “Now, what?”. The same old “meaning of life” question.
One evening, as she was sitting under the verandah staring at the zeroness, a goat passed by the side of the fence. She sat motionless. Usually, her eyes would go alert and ears as pointing in direction of a prey. But, she sat blank. Goat noticed this and cautiously looked back. Na-ah, she wasn’t feigning it, dear! The goat, out of instinct, hesitatingly waited and slowly hopped inside. The mother still stared- right into the goat but as if it was a transparent object. The goat slowly started eating into one of the plants. The flowers were marred. The yellow and the orange started disappearing into the white of the goat.
The lady suddenly sprang from her chair. The goat, too timid to react, turned back and ran with all the force it had, never to look back; except once maybe, to have a last look at the garden of pink tulips, roses and what-nots. This timidity seemed to amuse the lady.
She took a walk in her garden, noticed the changes and smiled.