Monday, January 21, 2013

An Encounter

A short story, slightly long, will materialize into its full shape in four or five fractions.

Usually Kishore perceives himself out of bed at the mercy of alarm-clock,around 6 o’clock . After the hygiene procedures he comes out to the compound to observe the surroundings. It gives him pleasure ample to watch the morning scenes. He is much fond of  gazing at the tenderness of the toddling day, which grows to its youth at noon and old age at sundown. But of late the morning or evening views have no part to play in his routine, since the nightmare of his class-X exams does not invite them. So he relies upon the God to be endowed with a safe haven with regard to his rating in the exam.

 His fast approaching exam was vying him much. It was not that his grades were ghastly that he was vexed about, but he aspired to holding himself above all the fellow students. And so his legs never allowed him to set aside his body-figure without visiting the nearby place of worship. Unsurprisingly they carried him to the temple on the very day of commencing the exam and they continued the same till the last day.
That day Kishore was standing in close proximity to the Deity in the sanctum sanctorum. He stood there wholly immersed in the feel of Deity, laying the shutters of his eyes absolutely over the eye-balls. And naturally his lips chanted psalms and  mind pleaded for the Deity’s favour for the ensuing exam. The poojari(priest) provided him *theertham in his hand and then*prasadam in a piece of plantain leaf. With the sign of respect and reverence he received them and evicted himself from there to the precinct outside the temple.

A middle-aged man, say in mid-forties stood there, as if he was lying in wait for Kishore. He put his foot forward to announce his presence to Kishore. Kishore, while taking extensive fast paces, gaped at him, as that man’s figure fell into his eyes for the first time.

The man, a bit hefty in stature, was one Mr. Hariprasad. “Hello, what is your name? Where do you stay? Who are your parents?” Questions after questions from him flooded in the air.  Kishore unlocked his mouth to respond.
“Kishore,” and it was the only word that his lingual organ uttered and he hurried past heeding no attention further.

Reaching home everything other than the exam paper, evaporated solely from his mind. Yet again frequent and frequent, the lad had to meet him and he walked past the man, who in vain made  efforts to converse with the former. However he managed to pierce his name to Kishore’s mind saying “I’m Hariprasad”.  Kishore’s mind left everything overlooked., but the exam-thoughts.

Nevertheless the papers of all the disciplines travelled on smooth roads for him. And Kishore heaved a sigh of relief. “Now I should resume all the activities like watching T.V, playing my fvourite games with friends, from who I was aloof for a while,” thought he. He peacefully enjoyed the companionship of his bed. The following morning made the faded pictures of the temple episode florid in his mind.

“Hum and haw! How I could ignore and disregard that man, who wanted to make friends with me and he strove for it many times. ”Jumping out of the bed he yelled “Amma(mother),  o! Amma, I forgot to inform you one thing.”
“What is that, dear?”

He narrated the whole incidents to his mother including his unintentional ignoble action towards the man. “Oh! God that is fine. Don’t fall prey into unfamiliar person’s contact,” amma said in a voice with worries.“He may be a cheat or burglar to abduct you or snatch your chain. He can even be a militant to allure teens to their custody and later tame them to their contour. They may loiter in diverse costumes in disguise to achieve the goal. ” “Yet again if he looms in front of you, you pretend that you are in a hurry and walk off hastily. Cut short your outing for the time being, ”continued she.
The docile laddie solaced his mother, “Nothing would happen, amma. I know to stay secure and safe.”

*theertham –   a small quantity of holy water.
*prasadam –  sandal paste , a vermillion powder called kungum and flowers of tributes.

 Sarala                                                                                                                     [to be contd]