The man I knew…
We were walking for almost two hours now , the busy camac street of Calcutta was unknown to us and it being summers, almost made me hate my own idea of getting admitted to a collage in the big city.
Baba ,I am tired of walking lets drink a cola ,reply as I was use to of hearing was sure ; don’t be tired we are close ,while you enjoy your drink I shall conform the address with some more people. An address which he would have searched till he could keep standing on his feet as it was for my bright future. Baba, there’s a sale going on and I can see a lot of good cloths, why don’t we check them out, am sure they won’t be much costly, thou exhausted the mid aged man never could refuse to any of my demands, expectedly agreed pushing his anxiety on the outcome of our visit to the institute we were visiting for my admission, which was perhaps one of the desperate efforts to shape up my career, which I was never serious about then and neither I was during my schooling ,but never deprived him of such anxieties . It was usual to see my parents thinking, helplessly deep on my future for almost all the years I remember of my school days.
I bought a red t-shirt and was eager to wear it and finally we reached the institute. After a little wait, I was called in for the aptitude test ,or should I say an effort to establish the seriousness of the courses offered by the institute ,for the kind of parents who undyingly believed in miracles . An hour more, I remember that I had to think of means to entertain myself ,as the aptitude test had got over in just ten minutes or so ,I was made to wait for the results ,which now I understand was obvious .Restless enough ,anxious to know the result and waiting for me outside the main gate ,the man had forgot that his back ache had been worse ,since morning when we started from home. All he waited for is the smile of achievement on my face, thou not knowing the amount of effort I’d put in. It was also the phone call for which his wife was eagerly awaiting, back home.
And finally, I came out like a hero, a soldier who won the battle, without fighting and to my best expressed how difficult it had been and the way I managed to get selected. Expected enough I enjoyed being the hero of the moment, getting treated with my favorite Chinese food. It was a way too high for him to afford the luxury of my demand, wrapped with the sense of eagerness I had shown for the education, I wanted to peruse in the big city, but the shine of my bright future made it all convincing enough for them to manage it or rather sacrifice on one more of their basic humble luxury, maybe avoiding hiring rickshaw for local travel saving on a few rupees that might be of well use on shaping my bright future or maybe limiting their food habits ,eating fish a day or at the most twice a week, a sacrifice indeed being a Bengali….Miss you Baba !