Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thangachamy - a story

Along with my friends came out of the college campus , walking , as is the nature of the Pre-degree girls, we were talking on actors,actresses,boys, our houses and studies too.My friends belong to all disciplines in college like arts, science aspiring Medicine, engineering and some degree for some job and some only getting prepared to have some qualification for marriage.
While walking my slipper's toe ring torn off and I took both the slippers in my hand and trying to find out a cobbler .The slipper is a costly one , I can not leave behind which we normally do if it is too worn out or a cheaper one not worth of carrying.I bought this despite my mother's protest this costly one , so I have to keep it after getting repaired and polished.
After about 5 minutes walk I could see a cobbler sitting on a sack cloth with his tools like needle , small hammer,thread , glue ,and an iron thick plate which they use for tapping and make the slipper malleable and wearable .
He is sitting hunched wearing a crumbled lungi,an old shirt of synthetic make not suitable for the heat,a towel around his neck,looking for a customer for doing some repair work of old shoes ,slippers etc.,His eyes are red ,unshaven face,mustache untrimmed for months,feeble in build and cheek bones hight ,who normally everyone may opine dirty.But I could make out some spark of humane nature twinkling like a distant star doing its duty without expecting any response from any passer by.
I gave my slippers to him , he never even looked up and neither said how much I had to give,but continued stitching the torn off ring by adding a small piece of leather to extend the ring length so that could be inserted and stitched properly ,giving strength to the ring and slippers.And looked the another slipper of the pair and put few stitches to safeguard that other slipper would not torn in the near future.
'How much'
He simply smiled and again I asked , no reply.
I paid him 10Rs and tried to move but he motioned his hand and said ' child'
He lifted the sack cloth below his knee and I could see some coins inside , he gave me Rs.5 back to me.My inner mind spoke , this man was different, but I did not know.
Days rolled by , and when we went back home everyday , I used to see him sitting and doing his job.But my used to feel as if a father figure who is suffering for daily living but once crossed his place as usual mind goes on its galloping path,imagining the way any teenager imagination goes.
Slowly if any of my classmate or friends have slippers with problems, I use to take them to him and now my initial aversion to the cobbler of being ugly became normal as if one of my grand father's who is not concerned about the real world,skulking somewhere in his thinking.
As we frequented often to his place for repairs we came to talking terms , like my friends talking to him along with me about the customers and how long he worked a day.
One of the days when I was with my friend for fixing up her slipper , a girl of around 14 or 15 years old came with tea in a disposable cup brought from a nearby tea stall.Thangachami,that is his name I came to know during our visits,is a Tamilian who talks tamil interspersed with malayalam which we could understand,asked the girl to hand over the tea to me.
The girl was good looking , round face,neat sculptural nose ,bright eyes showing intelligence and above all better complexioned despite her poorness and shaggy dress.
I asked him 'Is she your grand daughter?'
'No child'
'Then who is this girl?'
'She is the daughter of a woman nearby,her mother sitting and begging about thousand yards from here'
I refused tea since I never used to take tea like this in a street although I could perceive the love of offering tea to me.But somehow I could not accept owing to the surroundings and circumstances we came though in life.I felt also bad for not accepting the tea.Little girl smiled at me and handed over the tea to Thangachami telling him to take it fast , otherwise it would become cold.
In my home when studying in the room I was talking to my elder brother about the Thangachami , his condition and his hard work etc.,My brother said,'you are going to be a writer or what , either study or sleep ,in this way you would fail in the exam and get married early.That is all..........'
My brother made fun of me to my mother, saying as if I am trying to be a writer and in her own imaginative world.
My mother advised me 'Concentrate in studies, try to gain rank in the college...blah blah ..blah'
A week passed in between and we were coming back home ,nearing the corner where Thangasamy usually sat was empty and his shop ,ransacked things were thrown all around and a group of people closing down and looking at someone ; who I could not see and out of curiosity , we asked '
what happened , where is Thangachamy'
'Thankachamy is there sitting ,he stabbed one local gunda and murdered'
We were shocked and went running to see Thangachamy ,he was sitting calm with a knife and blood dripping nearby, another crowd circling around a body in a pool of blood , whom we came to know is a local goonda , tried to molest the little girl whom we had seen bringing tea to Thangachamy.Her name is Marry ,who was seen crying .
One danger from the path of Marry has been weeded out.Now the girl is safe
Police van came and this goonda was removed to hospital.
Why someone thinks a girl is like a thing rather than a life with feelings? Why men behave so as if sitting before a non vegetarian food salivating even by looking? Don't these love ,passion belong to something more than eating ,drinking and defecating?
Even if one starved of sex,can't this be converted into positive energy which has been shown by good males,seers and saints alike?
Can't men realise the fact that man becomes really manly once he starts respecting females? It does not need something etc., it needs only delving deep into oneself.
The mind denies love and without love there is no chastity; it is because there is no love that you make sex into a problem.
It is only when there is love that all our problems can be solved and then we shall know its bliss and its happiness.
My mind started praying for the survival of the goonda,simply because her only godfather is sentenced and sent to prison , who will take care of her safety?At least Thangachami should be alive till Marry is married to someone.
Will it happen at least for someone who is almost a destitute?

God Will you listen to my prayer? Please........!!!!!!!!!!!

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