Saturday, September 19, 2009

Ruksana Part IV - The Beauty of the Unseen.

The sun cast its effect though the glass panes at the passenger lounge, Trivandrum airport leaving me scurrying for some shade and quiet. A wave of sadness cringed into my mind as I was about to finish the 15 days holiday that had been a much awaited fun filled jamboree and carefree life at my hometown.

Another eventful year awaits me at work in New Delhi with new horizons to explore and career hurdles to cross.

Holidays meant
- Meeting up family, showing elders that I care, seeing the cousins grow, getting accustomed to new nephews and nieces.
- Soaking the sun at the beaches
- Those rides through the countryside in the Royal Enfield ‘beautiful’ Bullet
- Swimming in the river
- Boat rides into the sea
- Going to the paddy fields and trying to catch crabs and do fishing
- Playing the church organ at the family church
- Watching the sun rise at the Kanyakumari
- Watching the sun set from atop the Marunthuval malai
- Playing blaring music in the Amby and driving through the estates at 5 AM in the morning.
- Bathing in the water falls
- Eating piping hot milagai bhajji (chilly bhajji) after the shower in the water falls.
- Riding through the chilly wind on the highway
- Visiting my teachers of junior school
- Sleeping very little



I did all that. This hometown holiday is my favourite stress management tool. It transcends me across epochs of my destructive personal growth and fading innocence. It makes me feel young, harmless, innocent and good. It also reminds me of my roots to reiterate my identity.

My silent lamenting at the lounge was disrupted when a child that was running about had a fall on the floor. This child had captivated some passengers including me with its histrionics. I admired her energy and cuteness for a while. I also noticed the mother who kept the child entertained by playing child like games. I appreciated the beauty of that mother-offspring relationship.

The mother was using a toy bell to create a beat to which the child responded by thumping her foot that had an anklet.

After enjoying this beautiful scene, I returned to my fatigue driven soliloquy to be rudely awakened by a squeal from the child. She had fallen to the ground and was sobbing uncontrollably. The parents were doing many things to appease the child.

I noticed the mother clad in a black burqa was showering the child with kisses to calm her. This irritated me as I don’t endorse this kind of parenting where the child is tended to with God like religiousness. I believed children should learn from their own mistakes.

My mind knew that something was amiss and that intruded my sanity. I wriggled my mind and exercised my eyelids to clarify my surroundings.

Isn’t this lady known to me? I thought.

Who is she? Is she someone I know? No. I don’t have burqa clad contacts, no friends, Then? Is she a television actress? Or a social activist?

I tried hard to not teach myself that it was her. She was Ruksana, after 20 years since I last saw her.

I was startled. I went near her and smiled. She smiled back and said ‘Jay’.

I was sheepish. It felt funny. I have never felt so humbled but it felt good. I had momentarily changed into a 9 year old boy again. How the hell did she know my name? I asked her that and she said she remembered my very well.

She introduced me to her husband, Sajjid. He was a bearded man who smelt like a Gulf malayalee Muslim. He seemed happy to meet his wife’s friend. I couldn’t imagine that Ruksana ever had a friend. I gathered my composure.

She said she remembered my bicycle, my car and my gate-keeping habits. She also remembered my parents. Achanum ammaiyum sugam thane? (Are your parents well?). I said they are fine. I was shaking my head in disbelief.

I was startled by this confident and affectionate lady. She asked me if I was married and wanted to know why I wasn’t. She then said that she imagined that you would have been married by now.

I wondered why she had to think about me. I often remembered her.

She asked me about my brother. She wanted to know what I do to earn my daily bread.

She was happy to see me and she made sure that I knew it. I believed that she was happy.

Throughout this rendezvous, I noticed a pair of tiny, beautiful eyes looking at me from near Ruksana. I bent down to say hello to this now calm child. I was greeted with glee and was pecked on my cheek.

Those young eyes that I saw exuded power, power enough to pierce my existence and levitate me. I fought hard and asked her name.



‘Farzana’

She had those eyes, the eyes that I so liked to see from varying angles when I was a child. Those lost pair of rubies that failed to understand my offer and yearning for friendship and company, the eyes that defined pleasure when I was young and innocent.

‘No’ I thought. These eyes are different. Farnaza’s eyes were happy and willing to give love.

Ruksana used to have the same eyes, strong, healthy but without happiness and uninterested to give love.

Farzana is a sweet child.

I then quizzed Ruksana about her life. She said she was adopted by Sajjid’s uncle from mallapuram who then educated her to class X. It was then that Sajjid fell in love with her and his uncle decided to get them married. Sajjid owns two restaurants in Dubai.

I loved the glint in her eyes when she explained to me her fairy tale life.



I saw Sajjid and my face was gleaming with respect and adoration for this man. Subconsciously I offered a handshake to this gentleman who brought happiness into Ruksana’s life.

I knew Ruksana was happy.



I was happy to see her.

I never prayed seriously as a child. I never prayed for Ruksana but I often questioned her existence with God, who I believed was her creator. I asked him the reasons for her miserability.

The 9 year old with whom I wanted to play with was away in a world that I didn’t understand and despised.

The 9 year old evoking affection with the aura of a beautiful soul but could not give it out to the people who wanted to share it.

She may have prayed hard asking God to relieve her of her misery or perhaps God just relented to answer my many questions.

When the final call for my flight to Delhi was made, I bade my good byes. Sajjid hugged me and called me Jay bhai. I took a picture of the family in my camera. I was happy.

I sat at 40, 000 feet looking out and trying to come to terms with the beauty of the unseen.

31 comments:

Neha said...

I was enjoying the whole journey so much that I am feeling sad now that i has come to an end...pretty neat story, very well narrated, very gripping plot...all in all, awesome :)

Ri said...

Perfect ending, nothing could have prepared me for this but no other ending could suit this story as much encore !!!

Ria said...

I just dint want it to end...it was beautiful.

Lakshmi said...

OMG.. Tht was lovely... n those beautiful pics added to the beauty of the work... awesome..I loved it.. I ve always loved happy endings :D

Rahul said...

perfect plot..perfect ending..and quite realistic ..it was awesome dude!

aria said...

It was really lovely .. in fact glistened my eyes.. I like happy endings with a solemn touch..

ranjieni said...

When you told me that the story ended in part4, i ws wondering if it was too soon. But I guess the continuation of the story was narrated so well that no other ending could have been perfect!Well done!

Gayathri said...

It was really touching..read all the 4 parts in one sitting..child labour is definitely ridiculous,and even more frustrating is to know that it's beyond our control..
and im really happy to know that god made the poor beautiful servant who never gave away a smile, smile forever in life..and kudos to that man,who adopted her and married her to his son..seldom do people have that kind of broadness at heart..

archana said...

"trying to come to terms with the beauty of the unseen. "

-Well Said:) Glad I read the entire collection:)

anushree said...

wow awesome Judy
I loved it....!!!!

ORANGUTAN said...

i simply loved the entire story.
Wonderful.
The script has been gripping, yet written in Simple English language.
Keep writing :)

Zephyr said...

wow, tht was an absolutely BEAUTIFUL story!! as i'm sure u've been told before, but it can't be said enough! :)

Rakesh Vanamali said...

Wow! This is a twist, you took us 20 years ahead and 40000 ft upwards!

Nonetheless, very well narrated! Superb!

Quite a way of how life plays up its surprises!

Aparna said...

Read all the four parts. Extremely touching.
You made Ruksana a part of us. Did not feel it was fiction at all. Felt like this was something that really happened. I am glad the story had a positive ending.

Swatantra said...

This is beautiful.. Very nice story...

sm said...

good narration
like the story

SG said...

Super. I did not want it to end, but it ended. Perfect ending.

buckingfastard said...

my xams were goin on...so now i read all of dem in one go...and i grew up wid jay

happy ending...dint expected and was glad to find it

luvd it :)

c'est la vie - bhargav said...

wow...wat a description ma'am. initially i found it good. so read it. later, i found, god, you can write so much. and then man dammn good. love.
ma'am do pay a visit to my blog as well.

Elithraniel Arawion said...

wow :) that was beautiful.. and why'd you change your name!!! i thot it was someone else :P

Antarman said...

Tis was a story? amazed !

Rashmi said...

Speechless is the emotion i am gripped with right at this moment.
I read all 4 series in one go and i have no words to describe the feeling i am going through right now inside of me...all i can say is that it touched my heart.
Loved it!
Cheers!

Science Bloggers Association said...

Nice Blog. Congrats.
-Zakir Ali ‘Rajnish’
{ Secretary-TSALIIM & SBAI }
[Editor- Children’s Poem & Adult’s Poem]

R. Ramesh said...

thanks buddy

EM said...

TAS became TUA :)!

Nice stories!! I really enjoyed reading them...I loved PArt 4. So much love!! You write well :). Kudos!

-em-

R. Ramesh said...

thanks ya..

Raghav said...

like coming back home

destressing

nice work you have

Destiny's child... said...

Simple, without any frills whatsoever, yet gripping. Loved it! :)

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