Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Monsoon memories

It was raining outside and the drops of water fell into the room through the open window. The raindrops falling on the leaves on the potted plants made them dance in joy. The moist soil was giving out a unique smell of the soil. The evening sun had just set with its amber coat of colour giving way to the nights blue and the moonlight was slowly getting wet in the rain which was pouring as drizzles as if nature was whispering something ... a secret. Kannan was looking out through the window since evening. He remembered rain has been a part of his life as a friend since childhood. 

The days when he tore a centre page from the Rough work notebook and folded it carefully as Raman mama had taught him. He made a small paper boat and sailed it in the collected water in the drain and see it drift swiftly as more rain water was flowing through the drain than it could hold. The night dinner which made his mouth water porridge (Kanji) with lentils and roast pappads. The leaves of jackfruit tree folded by appa to form spoons to drink the porridge. The dripping old tiled house and him and akka running with vessels to keep the water from making the floor slippery. He felt the Rickshaw ride to his school when the light became red inside Thomas's cycle rickshaw with its red rain screens down. The days when he would run out in the rain and take his bicycle and take a ride before amma would scold him for getting wet in the rain. The days when he would walk back from school getting wet in the rain. The wetness inside his shoes when the socks started getting damp and then wet with rain water. The bike rides to college when raindrops would feel like sharp needles falling on his skin. The sweet rain drops which trickle on the iron railings of the train compartment while travelling. 

His thoughts were dropped when amma called Kannan.

"What do you want for dinner Kanna"
"Kanji...payar... roasted papads... and coconut chammanthi" Kannan said.

Amma smiled as she had guessed as much. Appa opened the door and walked in with his umbrella folded, dripping with water. He had gone to the temple and the usual song was there in his lips. He called out

"kanna ..."
"Ooo ..." He answered and ran to the drawing room of the apartment. Seeing appa drenched Kannan quickly took the towel which was carelessly dropped on the dining chair. Handed it over to appa and looked at him.

Age had given him the grey hairs which came too early for himself. The smile was not moistened by the rain. He, his faith and routine was never stopped by any rain or sickness. It was another rainy season at home for Kannan, may be the last one for a long time and he kept looking outside while appa continued humming the song and dried his wet hair. Seeing Kannan stand there and staring outside in a fixed gaze appa turned to him and said:

"Take some rest, will go to the temple tomorrow morning... come have dinner"

Kannan silently nodded and went back to his room. The room was a mess with all the clothes folded and some here and there. Travel kits, books and packs of pickles and chips packed in cellophane covers. 

"The gossips about my wife leaving me and the sad plight for the family sympathies from the sadistic relatives would get over soon. The case is in the court and will take at least an year before everything would be over. Life just came to a standstill after four years of love in college four years of married life and separation" Kannans thoughts made him look like a robot designed for packing. His heart was out in the rain with the wetness still in his mind. The dessert heat and sands would be his again after three years. This time he would be alone. New place, new job, new environment. The rain was washing away the thoughts troubling him since the day Priya left. 

Amma walked to his room and said: "Cheer up Kanna... leave everything to God... everything would be alright... past is past and you will be happy again" 

Ammas words were like a caress on his heart, he smiled and locked the blue suitcase and went to the kitchen to see if some help was welcome. Dinner was over silently and the night silenced the house. The wake of the morning was the wake of a new chapter in Kannans life. A quick temple visit and the trip to the airport was also shrouded in silence. Farewells were just shared with the eyes. As he walked into the airport, he kept looking back at Appa and Amma like a bird looks back after having the grains dropped for him and about to fly for the day. The flight took off and Appa and amma were driving back home not talking to each other. Amma was silently pouring her heart out like the drizzle outside. 

"Don't worry... he can come for vacations or we can go to Dubai" Appa pacified Amma with his words. 

As the flight took off to a new horizon rain was pouring still. The next rains would be waiting for Kannan for sure. He will be back to enjoy it. And whenever he thinks of the rain by the side of his window and the moonlight he would smile. The rain would shower in his heart for years to come as happiness in his heart.

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