The weather had cleared a bit and so I felt like going out for a walk. I was stirring out after many months. Those of you who follow my blog, know that the Devil has taken up permanent residency with me and has been my companion for quite some time now.
I did not notice him slip out of the house with me.
The Arabian Sea being just next door, it did not take me long to reach my favorite spot and soon, I was sitting on a boulder and enjoying nature.
It was then that the Devil started getting ideas. As per our agreement, he was not supposed to ply his trade elsewhere and though he was now old and tired, he was feeling quite bored just sitting at home and twiddling his thumbs. Moreover, he was now scared he might lose his grip on the trade totally. No, he had to keep honing his skills. So, who better than this old fool for a scapegoat!
The wind seemed to be unusually naughty that day. It was tickling the sea, which in turn was throwing out huge waves as if to catch it. Unknown to me, the Devil had already started playing his game. It appeared to me as if the wind was touching the sea inappropriately! What’s more, it was simultaneously playing Casanova, stealing kisses from the sky, which blushed pink! God, I never knew that the elements too indulged in romance!
In my late eighties, something had started stirring inside me! I was gradually getting entangled in the web cast by the Devil. A couple of young maidens appeared on the scene, asking me if they could also share the rock I was sitting on? Of course they could. I would not opine if they were pretty or not but an old saying came to mind that at sixteen years even a female donkey looks beautiful! So there you are! In the Garden of Eden, it was the forbidden apple that brought about the downfall of Adam and Eve but where would you find one here, on the shores of the Arabian Sea? The quick-witted Devil found a replacement in the form of a coconut, and lo, a vendor had to appear on the scene! And how I love coconut water! After I had downed a couple of them, the Devil thought that I would now be fairly under his control. Far from it. Having been raised in a puritanical family, I had high regards for moral values and was least interested in seducing young girls at my ripe age. Now, the Devil changed his tactics. He started taunting me about my virility and even cited the example of Charlie Chaplin having fathered a child in his eighties! Now, this was too much for me. I picked up the gauntlet thrown by him. Just when I had contemplated my next move and was about to act, then…
Enter the villain!
Yes, a villain in the form of a dark rain cloud! Now I knew that in that great poet Kalidasa’s classic Meghdoot, a lovelorn Yaksha pleads with the rain cloud to carry his message to his beloved, however this particular cloud seemed to be quite a spoilsport. Was it jealousy at my being able to woo the young damsels, I do not know, but the cloud literally poured cold water over my plans! The intensity of rain was so much and the visibility became so poor that the girls were out of sight in no time! Poor me!
A fully drenched and shivering old man reached home, shivering not because of the cold but at the prospect of the reception he would receive from his wife, call her calamity if you please! Well, he somehow survived the holocaust!
I was hopping mad with the Devil and wanted to expel him forthwith.
Cool as a cucumber, he faced me.
“Mr. Thakore, you, a descendant of Lord Ramchandra, a shining star in the lineage of Raghu, would break the solemn promise given to me which you were to uphold even at the cost of your life?”
“Wwwhat?” I was thrown totally off guard. Yes, as a child I had heard from my mother that our clan had descended from Lord Ramachandra but did not have the foggiest idea that this rascal would google my lineage!
Frankly, I wasn’t even sure whether my father or grandfather or for that matter any of the ancestors had ever practiced or upheld all the noble virtues attributed to the descendants of Raghu .
“But you can be the harbinger of change… revive that glorious tradition,” and winking knowingly at me added, “and all this at no harm to your life!”
Now I certainly did not know anything about his lineage, but the guy had kept his part of the deal by staying put with me. All I had to do was to let him continue stay with me.
In the bargain, I was being instrumental in reviving the glorious tradition of Raghu and being given full credit for it… at no harm to my life! Generations to come will remember me for this!!! Great, what?
“Good Morning, Mr. Thakore!” a beaming Devil, with that ever present smirking smile on his face, greeted me the next day at the breakfast table… as if to mark his presence in the register!