An Old Man And A Frog In Rural Udaipur

by | Sep 21, 2018

Age is just a number!

After the last few days as described in the previous blog post, she woke up in haste that morning. It was her last day in Nayawaas but she was already marking her calendar, planning her second visit. Children hung from every possible corner of the room asking her to extend her visit by one more night. As she multi-tasked her way out, she heard an over-excited kid making his way through the crowd dangling at the door.

‘’Didiii! You’re coming to the wedding, right?’’
‘’Perhaps not, dear. I cannot wait till the night. I have to leave soon.’’
‘’Oho! Didi, we have our weddings in the daytime. In fact the Baraat will leave in 10-15 minutes.’’

She checked her phone; it was 9:45 am. She thought to herself, ‘’Really! At 10 in the morning? Is it not going to be hot? Have some shame, people are taking life-decisions early in the morning and here you are with your half-opened eyes! Don’t I have another blog to write?’’. She sat there contemplating while the boy noticed her change of expressions every four seconds.
‘’I won’t be able to accompany you; however I would love to see the groom. Where is the Baraat?’’

The vehicles had lined up, stuffed with people, so many of them that only the wheels of the vehicle would make one believe how many of them were sitting inside (on, around, under) each one. While she looked around for a horse (mare!?), the boy pointed towards the groom. There he was, clad in all-white attire with hints of gold, a red turban over his head and a sword in his hand, making him stand out from the congregation.

He was the only one walking under an umbrella and seemed to be about 65 years of age, or that’s what she guessed. ‘’It is just a formality. He has been living with that lady for the past 35 years and has children who are now eligible to marry. He is doing it for his kids because children can marry only if the parents are married.’’

People do strange things for the sake of their children (or for society?). Who knows how he must be feeling!
Perhaps like any other groom, on the day of his wedding, longing to see his blushing bride. Or like an old man who wants to get done with the Societal Customs. She slid back a little, with a lot on her mind, and joined other spectators.

The frog and the (K)night…

‘’What an eventful day!’’ she thought, after finishing her day’s activities. She was now planning for the next day with kids in the village. Staring at the screen on her lap, she wondered if she was interesting enough for kids.
‘’Will they choose to come and dance with me? What if no one picks to do that?’’, she fidgeted.
‘’They will, I know. Who doesn’t like shaking a leg or two!’’, she sat by the wall thinking, over-thinking and jumping to conclusions, one after another.

Slowly and eventually, her body moved away from the wall to come in closer contact with the floor. Now, her head was between the screen and the wall.
‘’What will be my Group’s Name? What would be the logo, the song and the actions? I should be ready with some suggestions to help the kids understand better‘’. Just when she thought of exploring her cerebral matter, it gave a low battery indication and within two minutes, her body lay discharged on the floor.
‘’Didi we have thought of our logo!‘’
‘’Really? Tell me about it, I am so proud of you people. You didn’t even ask for my help ‘’
‘’It would be a frog.’’
‘’A frog! Ummm okay. Say more?’’
A kid held out his hand in front of her and laid a living Frog who sprung as soon as it saw her but stopped mid-air.

‘’It was a dream!‘’ she jerked with her eyes half open, and continued lying on the floor while recalling the dream. Suddenly, she felt a wet, slimy touch on her left cheek. She reached out to her phone to light the torch in order to reveal this moisture mystery.

And there it was, in all its sliminess, the hero of her dream. He had come to meet her, to complete that leap. Their eyes met, and the rest was…A LOUD SHRIEK!

Learning festival at Kshamtalya was an experience of a lifetime for me, with a lot of firsts, and I look forward to more such times.

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1 Comment

  1. Peppy

    The article is so good that I could imagine the whole scenario! 🙂


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