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A Fool and some relatives

Family, love, success, modern life

There was almost a big crowd waiting for him at the aerodrome. Then alone he felt himself to be a minister or a film celebrity, or anyone belonging to that stratum. He began to forget all the sorrows and self contempt he felt to himself, and also a wee bit proud of himself.
All the wandering in the sultrier sun is not wasted. Toiling hard in the melting desert, with little care for risking life to make money, traversing the long stretch of deserts, on the sleepless nights he found refuge in solitude and nothing is wasted. There is a throng to welcome him; brother in laws, and their wives---- ie his sisters, kiths of his grand father and the distant relatives. One or two neighbors as well.

Such a large crowd waits for a human like him.
Knowing that they came there renting three or more cars he queried with wonder:

“Why all you came suffering. Aren’t I coming there?”
The crowd felt abashed.
The grey old brother in laws yelled with emotion
“Oops, Chandrankuty!! It was five years since you left? And we didn’t have a wink of sleep since we knew your return. We are waiting burning midnight oil.”

All the relatives nodded heads to tell the statement was true.

Felt to be something big.
The crowd evidenced it
The young sister’s husband corroborated the statement
“……….perhaps Chandrankuty has no thirst to meet us all. But we are not so. Since your letter received Sarojini and kids are rollicking with mirth. They hardly slept and ate since . It is like the flag of the temple festivity hoisted.
He sidled his head to him.
This is one who asked five years ago on a dusk “if you can’t do any work, why can’t commit suicide, why live like this way?”
At that dusk.
Sarojini got inside the room: head dropped, and her husband after her….
That dusk.
His lips began to quiver.
“……..why chandrankuty, why are you staring? Let us go home and talk things later. Your mom and dad are pining to see you…”
He turned his face to his elder brother in law. Devayanichechi’s husband.

Seeing me walking all the way to post office to mail job application, he felt sympathy for me and advised.

Chandrankuty…don’t loiter like this….go abroad. At least try even by swimming across the sea or even a ticket less travel….” .
As he was about to take the luggage, the relatives said in unison
“Chandran you get in the car”They said.

“oh do get in “told Sarojini’s husband expressing love and care,” let us tell the tales later.”
With out responding he stared at the opened door.
“Hi, if there is no room in that car you can sit here” tells Devayani’s husband.
Saroijini intervened.

What on earth are you telling, what is wrong with his sitting here. Chandran is my brother even If he is gone to Persia.”
“Shut up you Sarojini.I meant no harm to you other than making you travel easy.

Listening to this he was exhausted ;he was tired like a dead meat. He badly longed to reach home, and then to have a fresh bath.
He cast his eyes on the airplanes that were soaring gently on their wings. They disappear like a smudgy dot.

Srojini is still in eloquent talk. she has not changed at all. Still as adamant as she has always been.

Hunger and exhaustion began to gnaw at him. He did not feel it then as he was preparing to come to kerala. he could not sleep in the night. The smell of the newly reaped stalks was there. somebody blow.

Sleep was a rare guest and each moment was like a century.
And in each moment he was preparing to go.
He tried to sit on the ground as except he all other passengers in plain have gone from the aerodrams.
“What is up chandran kutty”
“I would like to sit.”
These words helped him a lot.
The car began to move
He dreamed.

“Chandran Kutty we are at home.Dont you want to get down.
There was a small crowd in front of his house”.
Also began to dream .A lush landscape emerged. Fields saddle with green and , fragrant flowers…. The shy river.
….chandran kuty.. Don’t you want to get down?
Being exhausted, he sat in the car. sleep.

He sat exhausted in the car. Others were busy engaged in down loading the luggage.
The sign board Aswathi at the gate was dangling. A little away there was a house half finished.

“Come out chandran kuty”
He got inside the room and relatives were still out at the threshold
Getting close to him elder brother in law said.
… Work has been stopped for wanted of cement. It is costlier to buy in black .Burning price”.
He got in his room. Before him was the pile of luggage.
Mother began to tell.
…..what ever you sent home was not wasted. The promised money for Devanyani and Sarojini was given. Still they grumble. Should give a little more…. Baskaran want to start a business. Vasudevan want to buy a coconut grove. You know your father is always in hospital…. expensive.”
He sat hunkered and listened .The feeling of should-not- have- returned began to be deepened. Money draft could substitute him. Mind had not such a weight when he was in gulf.
“Why did you want to construct such a big house chandran kuty? You, dad and mom are there. Me and sarojini and all will leave sooner or later. You sent money, of course, but what of it for us ? The house will be for you alone”.
It was his sister Devaynai whom he fondly called Devayanic chechi
He said, when did you come sister?’ Her children stood around the luggage like sentinels.
He did not look at them.
One of them came forward and lisped, “Uncle.”
He raised head.
“He is my son”.
“What is your name?”
“Soman”
Which standard you study?
“Fourth”
He racked his brain for more questions. But there was none
“Uncle what is there inside these boxes” children asked as they could not withstand temptation any longer.
“What brats are you? There must be several things inside the boxes. What you want?”Devayanichechi blurted.
Saronjin intervened.” There must be several things inside the box that is why she clings at the box”
Sarojini came sat by him on the c0t and fondly began. “Tell me the truth chandran kutty how many saris you brought. I must get at least four, then only I can own one you I must get three sisters of my hubby each”.
Devayani became furious.
“Oh well said he worked hard in gulf to gift things to your sister-in-laws. If it is so must get my four brother-in-laws each.
He swallowed the lump, and the throat dried. Remained speechless. Where is mom? When does she go out? Doesn’t she want any thing?
Sarojini again asked almost in murmur. Did you bring the watch? You promise in your mail to bring a watch for my hubby. Didn’t you?
He was mute.
“….why are you sitting like being lost”
“If you are to give any thing to us , do it soon and don’t let us pine like this.”
He extended the keys.
“Open the luggage and take out what ever” There came several hands to grab the keys, then there followed a scuffle.
As though being wounded he fell on the bed out of exhaustion.
He was oblivious then.

In this state of oblivion he felt several hands groping to possess whatever on his person like watch on his wrist, shirt and the like. He laid there incapable of responding.
It was long while later that he opened eyes. The room was empty.
He felt cozy.
No one would come here for anything. Peaceful .
He tried to call out mom for some water.
None was there to respond. A clamor of people was retreating. He dosed again. When woke up again he moved his palm over his body. “No .nothing is lost. This physic and this skin that covers it have been left as legacy. None will claim to inherit it.
Published: 2009-01-28
Author: sreelesh vk

About the author or the publisher
Sreelesh is a freelance writer based in kerala, southern state of india.He writes articles, stories, and his first book about creativity is to be published soon.He writes mostly for local magazines and on internet he has already made a name for his writing contibuting to several web magazines.
www.sreelesh.sulekha.com

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