Following the blue haversack which continuously Intending to vanish into the thick congestion of people Purvi hurreled holding her two litter gems in two hands who have equal potential of getting vanished into the crowd as the blue haversack . Even in this early hours the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus is crowded enough to lose someone easily. Stumbling and hochpoching she tries to keep her pace unchanged adjusting the slipping down handles of her hand bag every now and then. Her curly bushy hair is tucked up in a roll with a clutcher almost in the middle of her head allowing a part of it visible even from the front. Resembling quite like the antanas of teletabies. The long piece of beautifully embroidered sifon which is called a dupatta is accumulated diagonally accross her blue long top carelessly and tied both ends of it with a knot leaving it to dangle in the right side of her waist. The patiyala style lower attire which is a pant tied to her waist with a draw string is folded upwards leaving her ankles exposed making her look wearing two fat belly cilindrical drums in both her legs. This arrangement is carefully made to save the ends of the pants from getting dirty. As she had anticipated the mess the platform floor will be in this season of awful rain. The blue haversack finally stopped its movement in a point and dispersed on the ground with two trolley bags which are humangous in size and jacketed carefully with a transparent cover. Purvi reached the point and showered her temper on the carrier of the blue haversack who could be the perfect husband of the world if only have the common sense to look behind for the other members of the family while walking.
Can’t you look back sometimes ? What if we get lost? But again when u did care for others! Always doing whatever comes in your mind. Now this is an alligation which has a very little to do with the present situation . Actually it is about something which happened a few weeks earlier. There was no disagreement between them about the destination of the vacation as both of them equally like the sea but the problem arrived with the transportation medium as Nikhil strongly suggested a train journey instead of a plane as According to him there is something very romantic about train journey in this season. Though Purvi couldn’t understand what could possibly be romantic about wet messy platforms and long hours of journey which already makes you tired before reaching the destination. She almost rejected the idea as soon as it was suggested but Nikhil was too determined and knows his ways to convince her. Finally she had to agree when he booked a their stay in The Hotel Leela Goa turning their trip into a extravagant one. But that compensation is presently overlooked as at this moment Nikhil’s not looking back and the whole trying to keep up with the blue havasack through the messy crowdy platform thing enriched the degree of her temper and remained her all this is only because Nikhil’s illogical desire.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to walk through the crowd and that to follow a man who bother little to look behind for the others. The words came to a hault after a non stop flow as Purvi gasped for breath. Her nostrils fraired in the try of taking more oxygen in one go.
Come on I was pulling two huge bags and the havasack on my back stuffed with God knows what! Do you have any idea how heavy they are !! What did you put in them stones and bricks?Nikhil slams back. His long hands were visible from just below the folded sleeves of his dark magenta shirt. As he frowned through his rimless spectacles his big eyes squeeze a little. His otherwise attractive eyes looses their charm partly behind those glasses. He is lean,medium height, bronze complexion with a well built body. After carrying the bags all the way long now listen to all these nonsense. Why don’t you carry them next time?Nikhil said trying to support himself. Without realising the fact that you can never win a woman by trying to point out her own fault. It will only serve as ghee to the fire. But then again he is not the only man on this planet who commit this mistake. Rather It could be said that a very little amount of the species call Male have the intelligence to figure out that secret.
Therefore it happened what was inevitable. Purvi glared at him and said, so now it have to be me again to carry the bags also. Firstly go to office, then do all the house hold work, then look after the kids single handedly and as if it was not enough now even on the Vacation it have to be me who will pull the bags along the kids and he will just brush himself with air . Do I look like I having ten hands to you? Really there should be a limit of incompetency. How can a single soul handle everything alone!! And farther more how can another person remain so indifferent seeing all of it.
Nikhil realised he couldn’t win the situation and stopped arguing the only problem is like the most of the other man of the planet he realised it late. Purvi deposited her twin kids Titli And Tito to their father and hurrled to a book vender near them to get herself something for the journey. After a good long fifteen minutes she came back with two latest edition of Whippy kid and a brand new crime thriller of a renowned American author. She handed the whippy kids to her children and slipped her own book into her hand. Titli her daughter who always exhibits her quality of being responsible took of the backpack down her shoulders and put both the books inside securing the zip afterwards. There is food vendor just next to them who’s owner is constantly busy with the customers and the helper is concentrating in dipping off the samosas into the big iron pan filled with boiling oil. And whole place filled with the aroma aroseing temptation in side them. But those who have the idea how foods are made in the station vendors will never think of touching any of it. So there they have to stand helplessly fighting their temptation hard that to without displaying any of it on their face. Tito tried to put up the suggestion of having the hot samosas but had to settle with a packet of Kurkure instade. So now he is having Kurkure smelling the aroma of samosas. Satisfying himself with the idea of the famous saying “smelling is equivalent of half eating”
The train arrived half an hour late than the allotted time though for Indians it would be concerned right on time anyway as soon as the train arrived the both doors of the two tire AC clogged with passengers and their luggages and not to forget the coolies who some how manages to get on the train before it even arrives properly. It is a situation when adrenaline ought to rush as the stoppage time allotted for the station is only two minutes. And to all her dismay Purvi found Nikhil at the outer most part of the jolt. This man is impossible. Nothing absolutely nothing he could manage by himself. They are going to miss the train and she has no doubt about it. She kept calling for Titli and Tito repeatedly. Asking them to stay near her and hold each other’s hands these are the situations where siblings get apart and meet after twenty years in some strange circumstances one in a police uniform and another definitely has to be a most wanted thief. Purvi can’t imagine any of her kids being a thief so the remainder of sticking together kept coming more often. Finally Nikhil manages to put all their luggages on train and they all board safely way before the train departed the station. All four seats of a coop has been priorly reserved in the name of Banerjee family. Nikhil tucked the bags safely under the seats and secured them with a luggage chain. Purvi took a seat next to the window and so did Titli on the opposite side. Tito took out one of the whimppy kids and started turning the pages, and Nikhil sat beside Purvi and almost immediately got confirned in checking the mails on his iPhone.
The Mandovi express left Mumbai around 8 in the morning. They started from home almost having nothing as it was too early. So now Purvi got busy serving the breakfast. She laid four paper plates on the brief foldable table fixed with the wall between the two sleeper beds provided by the Indian railway. She pulled out a medium round steel tiffin box from the haversack and opened it. It was stuffed with slices of rich chocolate and walnut brownies which she baked the day before. She put two slices in each plates and put the tiffinbox back now she pulled out a rectangular Tupperware container which was filled with small homemade diamond shaped deep fried snacks called nimkee. It’s a recipe form her mom which is loved by Tito and Titli. She poured some on each plate and handed them over to all. Titli took a bite of the brownie and popped her eyes with a huge smile,
it’s lovely Maa can I get some more please?
Sure you can but in the evening for now two pieces.
You will get fat if you will eat more understood? Tito didn’t miss the opportunity to tease his sister.
Shut up you idiot I am not at all fat it’s you who is getting fatter day by day. Titli counters back.
Oh ya,oh haan, yes I am fat what would you do about you ha?say say ? Tito said in a mocking tone pushing his sister with his shoulders.
You two please behave this is not home remember? Purvi tried to stop them taking a glance from the corner of her eye to the opposite upper side Barth from where an elderly person was observing them. It seemed the little chit chat of her kids is keeping him away from his nap which he was intending to take to compensate the early morning journey hazards. The lower Barth was occupied by a foreigner who was reading a book on his kindle and occasionally looking out through the glass window. Nikhil is still confirned with his phone typing mail and sending them. Someone said it would be romantic to go by train Purvi said in almost a whispering sound leaning nearer to Nikhil. Nikhil look up and took a glance at Purvi. Her beautiful deep eyes are looking straight into his. Age has added up a little weight on Purvi which made her skin glow better. Her round face with thin lips and and a short nose still makes her look girlish. Her curly unmanaged forlocks dangling on her face made her look almost as she was at college. Nikhil was in a half laying position resting on his right elbow. He quickly recollects his eyes and sit up straight. He kept the phone in his pocket and picked up the paper plate.
Hmm not bad he said taking a bite of the brownie.
Babbia please tell Mom to give me another Titli now put up her application to her Dad.
Nikhil looked at Purvi and smiled give her another he said in a soft plead.
Then me too please Tito added himself up using the opportunity well. Purvi reached for the haversack to get tiffin box with a smile on her face.
Almost an hour ago the train crossed the Chiplun station. Tito giggled as soon as the name on the station board caught his sight. Hi hi what a funny name!! Chiplun like the Chipmunks,See Titli it is as funny as your face hi hi.
Mummeeee see Titli cried out in a thin peevish tone, looking at her mother for a Bona fide justice.
Tito don’t you dare tease your sister. This is not home. The half asleep mother did the justice keeping her eyes still closed.
Nikhil is now busy with his laptop. Checking the updates of the sale figures which keeps coming continuously throughout the day. Making calls every now and then pushing his subordinates to meet the target of the day.
Tito again got absorbed in the book and Titli continues doodling in her notebook which has a cover of camel leather with a stone jolted in the middle and hand made papers bound within. Babaiya gifted it to her and she carries it every where she goes.
Her short smooth inverted bob cut enclosing her little face is pinned at one side carefully to avoid getting messy.
Mom will you listen to my new poem please I just wrote it.Titli’s silvery voice placed the request in her Mom’s ear. Purvi sat up on her sit with a smile.
Say loudly love we all will listen. Nikhil said folding his laptop aside. Titli’s face lit up with encouragement and she starts reciting from her notebook.
The Train kept rumbling along the rail
From my window I can see it’s tail
Hobbling and bobbling running in speed
Food or water it has no need
Crossing the stations without a stop
My window gets wet in plunging drops
Brooks and trees , tunnels and meadow
Along the train wobble it’s shadow
I keep staring at the passing hills
The journey give me tingles with its thrills.
It is awesome!! little lady Nikhil said with a broad smile . A kind of smile parents bare with pride on their children’s success. Purvi hugged her daughter and kissed her on the cheek, my little talented princess she uttered with happiness. The foreigner sitting on the opposite lower Barth clapped his hands looking at Titli .
You have a very talented girl here Mr, he said addressing Nikhil. He is a tall man in his mid forties with a face kept unshaven for days. His wrists are double the size of Nikhil’s and his body has no trace of fat anywhere. He said his name is Georgi Balevski and he is from Bulgaria and it has been six months now that he is maundering in different cities of India. His bronzed complexion justifies the fact completely. He used to be a lecturer back at Bulgaria but he left his job to travel the world. He had been to China,Bhutan and finally India. He already visited Kashmir and the golden triangle, and absolutely fell in love with Taj Mahal. Now he is eager to explore Goa. As he hard very much of this place. Nikhil kept conversing with him explaining him the culture and traditions of India. He talked about the ancient temples which demonstrates the beautiful architecture of India. He kept on showing him pictures from Google on his iPhone. Georgi kept looking and asking questions with extreme interest. Nikhil told him about the 300 years old temple of KedarNath which remained unharmed regardless of the devastation caused by the natural disaster of 2013 and the Lingaraj temple of Bhubaneshwar which is an excellent example of medieval architecture of India.
A short thin guy from the pantry came to serve the lunch for which he accumulated orders previously. Rectangular brown food trays stacked one over another containing sealed foil packages. The aroma of the food filled the coops making every one feel instantly hungry and Purvi started arranging plates on the little table for lunch. Drag out another Tupperware containing four rolled foil in it and a bottle of homemade mango prickle. She pulled out a plastic spoon from her side bag and served a spoon full of prickle on each plate and a rolled foil pack on each. Then an afterthought she opened one of the roll and took out two stuffed parathas from it. She took out another paper plate and arranged it with the remaining two parathas securing them back to the rolled foil and a dash of mango prickle and offered it to the foreigner as she handed another to Nikhil.
It is called keema paratha India bread you can call it stuffed with chicken mince. Homemade very hygienic don’t worry. Georgi smiled with a bit of surprise and said , there is absolutely no need of this I have sandwiches with me .
But who can stop an Indian woman from making one eat even if they are not hungry. So Purvi didn’t give up at all instead she insisted with even more warmth in her voice. It is not spicy at all as my kids are also going to have it. I made it this morning with ghee. I am sure you won’t regret. It is that If you are in India and didn’t taste the food here you haven’t seen the real India at all. Georgi smile widely and took the plate saying thank you to Purvi. She came back to her seat and handing another two plates to Titli and Tito she started with her own.
In our culture food is connected with our emotions our happiness our festivals. Every region has it’s unique food culture completely different from the other undividedly netted with our social and emotional aspects. We even have prickles of hundreds of varieties the recipes keep passing from generations to generations. Purvi said with the motive of enriching Goergi’s knowledge about Indian food as She munched a bite of her keema paratha.
It is quite tasty said Goergi eating a part of his paratha . I have eaten parathas before in Delhi but it was a vegetarian one with stuffed cauliflower and a bunch of spices. But I like this one better. Thank you for offering Mrs Ban….arji right?
Yes , Purvi chuckled sharing a glance with Nikhil who was gazing her whith a smile. After finishing the lunch Tito and Titli both climbed up to the upper bunk of one side and enfolded the pocket ludo between them. The one with magnet under its pieces which keeps them stuck on their places and started playing. Purvi pulled the heavy blue curtains dangling from both the sides of the coop separating it from the rest . Now it is like their private place their own domain to feel free. The train kept bristling through the lush green richness of the Konkan region. The extensive velarium of trees covering the velvety emerald hills kept slithering continuously outside the window. The rain drops clattered on the glass window , Purvi leans on the one of her side and float her eyes to oblivion. Nikhil stretched his body laying his head on Purvi’s folded legs.
Sing a song he murmured to her. Purvi gazed at him with eyes brimming with love and started singing a Tagore song in a low voice. The words goes such
“This is the Day when it could be uttered to him
In this unrestrained flow of the rain
In this dusky coiled rally of the clouds
In this murk of the sun deprived sky
When everything else lost its identity in the gloom
This is the day it should be told to him”
Nikhil played with Purvi’s nails taking her hands on his chest as she crooned to him. Her wavy pensile hair covering her shoulders flow through her torso. Nikhil noticed the sweet smell of shampoo coming from it. You still sing very well he said softly dragging her face closer to his and I don’t like you giving food to some foreigner. Purvi enjoyed the sweet hidden jealousy in her years old husband as a smile bloomed on her lips. “Are you happy Purvi”? Nikhil asked through the silent words of his eyes and she looked back deep into his .
“Can’t you look back sometimes? What if we get lost? But again when you did care for others! Always doing whatever comes to your mind.” Now this was an allegation which has very little to do with the present situation. Actually it was about something which happened a few weeks earlier. There was no disagreement between them about the destination of the vacation as both like the sea but the problem arrived with the transportation medium as Nikhil strongly suggested a train journey instead of a plane. According to him there is something very romantic about train journeys in this season. Purvi couldn’t understand what could possibly be romantic about wet messy platforms and long hours of journey which makes you tired before reaching the destination. She almost rejected the idea as soon as it was suggested but Nikhil was too determined and knew his ways to convince her. Finally she had to agree. He booked their stay at The Hotel Leela, Goa turning their trip into a extravagant one. But that compensation was presently overlooked as at this moment Nikhil’s not looking back and the whole trying to keep up with the blue havasack through the messy crowded platform got her temper soaring and she felt she had to put up with these because Nikhil’s illogical desire.
Do you have any idea how difficult it is to walk through the crowd and that too while following a man who didn’t bother to look behind for the others. The words came to a halt after a non stop flow as Purvi gasped for breath. Her nostrils flaired trying to take in more oxygen at one go.
“Come on. I was pulling two huge bags and the haversack on my back stuffed with God knows what! Do you have any idea how heavy they are? What did you put in them? Stones and bricks?” Nikhil slammed back. His long hands were visible from just below the folded sleeves of his dark magenta shirt. As he frowned through his rimless spectacles his big eyes squeezed a little. The otherwise attractive eyes lost their charm partly, behind those glasses. He was lean, medium height, bronze complexion with a well built body. “After carrying the bags all the way long, now sit and listen to all these nonsense. Why don’t you carry them next time?”
Nikhil said trying to support himself, without realising the fact that you can never win an argument with a woman by trying to point out her own fault. It will only serve as ghee to the fire. But then again he is not the only man on this planet who committed this mistake. Rather It could be said that a very little number of the species called Male have the intelligence to figure out that secret.
Therefore, whatever followed was inevitable.