Nandini, fondly addressed as ‘En’ amongst friends is a spirited, twenty seven year old, girl next door. A go-getter, and an achiever, she is a reminder to all of us, never letting us forget about the smaller joys and humble beginnings. In the fourth part from the series of ‘A day in the life of En’, watch her discover a new shade to herself as she realises the gift of a life and what are the possibilities that lie before us to make each moment worthy.
En was back in her hometown, Kolkata, to spend the long weekend with family. It had been eight long months since she was trying to keep the promise she had made to her mother to come home and help her, dye her hair. Weekends had passed by and months together. En had been busy increasing the profits of her company and fuelling an over hungry appetite for the material needs of a good life.
Now that En was engaged in covering salt and peppered streaks of the most adorable fifty five year old she knew, she looked around to find that missing someone. She was hoping to see the familiar face all of the last two days. Even though the person in question was annoying, she had warmed up to the idea of his presence constantly around her, through all her growing up years. With lanky hands and legs, he had troubled her all through her childhood, pulling on her pigtails and drawing funny faces on the outside wall. She had hated every minute she had spent with him and he enjoyed bullying her around as much as she despised it all.
He had ruined every great moment for her, including her first attempt at draping a saree, her first time baking a cake and also her first date with the boy from the army school. He was the omnipresent parasite in her life that she had never found a perfect cure for.
There were always more stories of disaster attached to him than sweet memories. But what she hated the most about him was, how much her parents adored him. This made her often wonder if they had a really weird side to them which only surfaced occasionally. She had never quite found an appropriate answer to that one, though she had explored every possibility there could be. And suddenly, as her mother shifted herself to the other side, En was broken from the chain of thoughts running rapidly inside her head. She was thrown back to the silence. The house seemed too quite to be comfortable.
En’s mother was getting tired of the stillness herself. She had looked forward to a time like this with her daughter for over months now. Not trying to maintain the quiet any more, she asked, “Nandini, you must be thinking of Ranjit.”
And before En could express surprise or think about diverting the subject, she was interrupted again. “He died last month in Saudi Arabia, working in an oil mine…”
As her mother continued narrating the incident in detail and about the trauma his family went through, Nandini could hear the words just as a distant sound, hard to comprehend. She was transported to a different time.
As she sat packing her suitcase to travel to the city of her dreams, Mumbai, she was constantly being irritated by the greatest pest she knew. He delayed every action of her, causing panic and annoyance, just before she was about to leave.
And in his trademark style, Ranjit had asked her then, “So moti, what would it take for you to marry me?”.
Not drawing any seriousness to his intention, she had retorted, “May be, if you went and worked in an oil mine in the Gulf.”
To which, he had said, “Is that all?… Aah that’s simple.”
En had laughed aloud and said, “Let’s see, if you come back alive from there.”
That was exactly eight months back. He was standing before her in flesh and blood. Alive. She could hit him if she had to. Now, she just stood in a pool of questions, not knowing what to feel worst about. Playing the fool on him and asking him to go and work in a place where he was almost certain to die or about not having the heart to understand his emotions or about not being nice to him for the last time she could ever see him. For not being nice to him ever.
moti ~ Hindi word for ‘fat’. In this context, lovingly/teasingly used to irritate the person.