“Well, it all depends on how you look at things.
It makes no sense on complaining…
It is a fact that you won’t get what you wish.
You get what you deserve…
…and you have to live with that…”
Siva closed the book he was reading and removed his specs. His eyes were dry. And he felt the pain…
The train stopped at a small village station. It was raining outside. Neon lights formed several silver lines dropping from the sky. The station looked deserted. Siva opened the window and put his right hand out to feel the rain. The first rain drop on his hand showed a reflection. He looked at it carefully. It was exciting… Memories went back to the childhood days.
As usual, the first week of June demands rain. The village school reopens after the summer vacation in the first week of June in Kerala. The smell of wet soil, the dripping sound of raindrops… all these makes life beautiful for the small one’s get ready for their first day in school. Getting ready with new uniforms and textbooks…
“Siva, are you ready…?”
Nandu was always on the dot. He is known as the perfect planner of the team. One year older than Siva. A friend, philosopher and guide to everyone.
“Amma, Nandu has come… Shall I go now?” Siva asked his mother.
“Don’t get wet in rain… be careful. Nandu…, please help him find his new class room…” Siva’s mother Sharmila came out with a stainless steel lunchbox. She looked tired.
They had to walk exactly four kilometers to reach their school. Four kilometers in half an hour…sometimes, it extends to forty minutes. But it had never been of botheration for any of them… rather they enjoyed it! They walked in groups of four or five…discussed anything and everything under the Sun…debated on issues…formed strong opinions. And it was raining all the time. Nobody sang “rain rain go away come again another day…”
Half way to the school there is an old building where the Communist party office functions. Lots of red flags hung here and there. It was the only meeting point of the so called ‘intellectuals’ of the village. Nandu always spent some time at the Communist party office. Nobody knew what he does there… But when he comes back… there used to be a smile on his face. A kind of satisfaction!
The Guard of the train whistled. Train started moving slowly. Siva sat on his seat. He kept his book aside. Put his hand into his pants pocket to take out his mobile phone. It was vibrating.
“Hello…Yah… I will reach in two three hours. Hope everything is fine at home… Yes…yes… will call you as soon as I reach there.”
After three and a half hours journey the trained stopped at Gaya. Siva took his bags and got down. It was early morning. The station was deserted. He entered to the Station Masters room. It was empty… After some time the Station Master came in… He looked at Siva and asked.
“Sir… Are you Mr. Siva? We got the message last evening… So was waiting for you at the platform. They gave me the wrong boggy number…Well… Sir, everything is being arranged for you. Have a nice stay at Gaya. At any time, you need any help from my side; please don’t hesitate… My mobile number is here…”
Siva thanked the Station Master and got out. A white Ambassador car was waiting for him. The driver opened the door.
“Saab aap bhitiye…” (Sir, you please get in..)
The driver was a young man in his twenties… He wore a white uniform and a cap.
Siva got in. The car moved… After few seconds the driver started talking… He gave a small description about Gaya.
“Yaham se dus minute our…” (Ten minutes more from here…). Ye sub Ashram ka hi hai… Aap kissi se milne jaaraha hai? (All these area belongs to the Ashram… Are you going to meet someone there?).
The car stopped at the Ashram main gate. Driver got down and went to the security counter. He arranged the gate pass and came back…
When they moved in Siva looked around. He was so impressed… Calm and quite and natural…What more you need for salvation!
Ashram’s reception counter was crowded at that early hours too. Siva waited for his turn to come. He made a call on his mobile.
“I have reached Ashram. Waiting at the reception now. May take some time… Will call you later…”