Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Pains of Separation

Some tortures are physical
And some are mental,
But the one that is both
Is dental.
~Ogden Nash

Manya was suffering from such pain and she was at the dentist along with colleague and her guru Preetham. Preetham recognised in the visitors lounge old man Mr seetharam and his grandson. Seetharam's son Ajay and Preetham were of the same batch. Mr Seetharam was back from a pilgrimage to Triveni sangama and other places and loved to speak about it, "I even dispersed my wife's ashes in the Triveni Sangama (place where three rivers meet). Now she is free from birth and death cycles"
Manya was confused, "I cant understand these traditional people when they marry they say I will be with you for saath saath janam and when the lady dies, the men quickly go and disperse her ashes such that she doesn't come back for their hand in the next life... "
The old man did hear this and was made to remain silent

Preetham quickly diverted the topic, "So your grandson has problems with the teeth?"
The young boy who had accompanied the old man said, "No... I know good dental care. I have come to extract grandpa's teeth. I am his guardian today.."
Preetham was surprised, "But why has your son not come with you? Where is Ajay?...."
The old man was silent for sometime and then said, "Ajay has gone to give his wife a DRY WASH"
Manya and preetham didn't get the point. they couldn't make sense of the old man's sentence. The young boy was quick to correct, "Sorry for my grandpa's English. He is not familiar with sum words. He meant divorce and not dry wash.. vivah vichedan"

The old man spoke with such anger that his voice was heard by all the visitors, "After living with him for nine years, my Daughter in law says she cant take it any more. Preeham, You know my son na!!!!... He is such a gentleman...."
Preetham answered in a rush of emotion, "Sure... he is a gem of a person... I don't know how anyone can have a complain living with him"
Manya didn't like her boss's answer and she tried to talk sense,"To Know the depth of the river you should put your feet deep into the waters and to know the worth of a person you should live with the human being. She has lived with him for nine years... she would definitely know more than you, Sir."

The old man adds further, "My daughter in law is also asking in the court for his whole money... she is such a ***** ", The old man started using profanities which irritated the young boy who again came to his grandpa's rescue
He spoke with calmness "Its alimony and not whole money, Grandpa. It means maintenance charges only...."
Again Preetham rushed to a conclusion, "Isn't she a working lady.... Why does she need alimony? If she doesn't want her husband... why does she want his money?"
Manya was rational in her thinking, "I believe she has to take care not only of herself but also her kid... She has to provide for future also.... Future is uncertain.... Sir!!! why are you speaking like this?"

The old man spoke again "She is right.... not only are my son and daughter in law separating, but they are also separating me from my grandson.... It seems the mother wants the custody of the child...."
The child said with a tinge of sadness, "Lucky grandpa... He gets to stay with Dad while i have to leave to a different place with mother..."
Preetham said, "Now this is not fair... Don't the couple have some responsibility to the people who have brought them to this earth and to the people whom they have brought to this earth. Can't they just eat the poison of bitterness and live together for the sake of the family..."
Manya took a holistic view "It can be done... its called compromising.... But when the life together becomes nonadjustable... then it becomes hell. Then the best thing they can do, instead of torturing themselves and others living with them,is to separate"

Then Manya's name was called out by the attender and as they entered the dentist's cabin, Manya had one last thing to say to her boss preetham, "Sir... this teeth may look beautiful for my face.... and to the external world... but if i keep it, it will destroy all other teeth. So its better to extract it and separate it for the sake of others..."


Priya Joyce said...

the example was good...really good..the way manya put it at the end was fabulous..
cos bahar se dekhne mei sab accha lagta hei..but when we experience a thing or go thru a thng or liv with a in this story only we know them actually..
tats was a very good message Suresh :)

Divya said...

i ve a Q for u before commenting... are these your life-time experiences which u r making as a fiction...or is it really fiction???

n abt the blog... its very well written in both the stances... rational one and emotional one... good one i must say!!!

Suresh Kumar said...

@ Divya
Some r from experiences.. But I try to build it up... so use imaginary characters...
I had met a old man at a function who told me about his last son who was divorced and living with him and he was questioning the generation... That was the inspiration for this the dental pain and the child are my creations :)

Tulika said...

Nicely put up...

There's so much expression in your words.
Enjoyed reading it.

Manya, though she's a bit dry bt exudes reality.

nands said...

Liked the last para!

Keshi said...

**Then the best thing they can do, instead of torturing themselves and others living with them,is to separate

very true in most life-situations. Some ppl r better apart than together.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to u too Suresh! :)


Prathima Bhat said...

Hmm... Manya's words at the end were too good...

But i have some mixed opinion abt the couple splitting up and the child being seperated from parents..

Asking the kid to choose either mom or dad is bad thing...But incase the child is of considerable age where he/she can decide on with whom they wanna live, i feel their choice should be considered...
Like in this current story, I feel the young boy is interested to stay back with his dad and grandpa but he is forced to accompany his mom...

In such a case, neither the dad nor the son would be happy..Infact, even the mom wouldnt be happy to here her son wailing abt his dad after seperation...

Divya said...

hmm... good creation... another RK Narayan's way of writing... Manya seems to be ur permanent character then :)

Arjun said...

It's a difficult question to answer... really a difficult one!

Suresh Kumar said...

@ Priya
Yes... pain that one experiences cant be easily known from their faces...

@ Tulika
Manya is not that dry... maybe the toothache has made her like that :)

@ Nands

@ Keshi
Merry christmas and happy new year to you...

@ Prathima
The children wud be really going through hell when they r forced to make a choice... na

@ Divya
R K Narayan way of writing! I feel i am nowhere near... But niways thanks a lot

@ Arjun
I didn't try to answer... but pondered over it....

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