THE DAY I CRIED LIKE A KID WHO DIDN’T WANT TO GO TO BOARDING SCHOOL
by Allwin Bright
All my bags were packed. I was ready to leave.
“Chaai piyogey? “ (Will you like to have some tea?) Maa asked.
“Haan Maa” (Yes Maa) I replied nodding my head.
She served us tea. We took a few snaps.
It was my time to say Good-bye to Guwahati, the city I had fallen in love with. I took blessings from Maa and Baba.
Maa blessed me and said. “Phir se aana” (Come back again).
“Agli baar Family ko bhi saath laana” (Bring your family along with you the next time) Baba added.
I was on the brink of tears. With a heavy heart I said good-bye to them. Subh waited for me outside with a Rickshaw. It was a long ride to the Railway station. At least it felt like it. We arrived at the station entrance. The electronic display board flashed my booking status – PRAVEEN P S6 71. I avoided any eye contact with Subh. I didn’t want him to know that I was leaving the place teary eyed. I prayed God to give me strength to hold my tears just a little longer, just until he sees me off. But it was not to be. I broke down in tears while we waited for the train to arrive at the platform. Subh tried everything he could to cheer me up.
“This is only the beginning. We’ll be visiting each others place every now and then. My visit to Madurai is due. I’ll come soon. And whenever you get a chance pack your bags and come to Guwahati again.” He said
That didn’t stop my tears.
“Shall we miss the train so that you can stay here for couple more days?” He asked
”How can we? We’ve come to the station an hour early.” I replied sobbing
“Shall I call Mitali? Would you like to talk to her if that could make you feel any better?”
“No, don’t. I’ll cry more if I talk to her.”
I rummaged through my bag looking for a hand kerchief.
“Shall I give you mine?” He asked
“No, I have one.”
But, Subh wasn’t going to give up. One way or another, he was going to make me cheer.
At last he did. I had to smile when he mimicked Nana Patekar.
The train arrived. I got onto the train. Subh helped me with the bags. I found my berth, put one of my bags on the upper berth and then I got down. I wanted to talk to him for one last time. I wanted to tell him that I’ll be coming to Guwahati once again. I wanted to tell him to take care of Mitali. I wanted to tell him that I was completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and affection by Maa and Baba towards me. I wanted to thank him from the bottom of my heart for making this trip such a memorable one. But the words just didn’t come out as I was choking back my tears.
The guard signaled the green flag by waving it. I got back onto the train. He asked me to be brave and strong as he bid good-bye. I wished I was. The train moved agonizingly slowly away. His face slowly grew smaller and smaller and, eventually, disappeared in the crowd. I looked on with teardrops.
I went back to my berth with an emptiness of the heart. I stared at the distant landscape. It triggered those nostalgic memories. Rickshaw rides, home that was full of warmth, love, and good food, Guitar, Music, the walk by the riverside, movie, shopping, Coffee and so on.
What had I done to Subh that his parents treated me like their son? I was just a blogger friend who had come to visit his place.
Mitali whom I barely knew before coming to Guwahati became my sister. Such a thing had never happened to me before. How did such a strong brother-sister bond develop in such a short span of time?
Five days? Was it only for five days I stayed in Guwahati? I was finding it hard to believe. It surely felt like it was a lifetime. It felt surreal.
Thank you Subh. You are amazing. I’m glad our paths crossed!