A MORNING WALK IN THE MUSEUM GARDEN…

Posted: August 4, 2009 in Short stories
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

It wasn’t an unfamiliar place or time for Raghav. Besides, he had been following that same routine for years; to be precise, since he was 16. But that day, it was different. He felt that there was something strange about the day! He walked slowly to the nearby bench and sat there, clutching his hands firmly on the metal bar. He sensed a strange pain inside his body, which was like never before. It felt as if someone invisible was trying to overpower him completely…

Museum Palace is one of the most beautiful and fabulous historical fortresses in the city. Located at the heart of the city, it’s a favorite spot among visitors too. The beautiful garden inside is a wonderful place to hang around… There was one more attraction in there – the zoo, the biggest in the south Kerala.

Inside the palace compound, surrounding the fort is a beautiful garden and a nice pathway. The health conscious people reigned that track during mornings and evenings. Some people jogged, some sprinted and others just did a brisk walk… In a way, it is one of the most happening places in Trivandrum.

It was early morning and Raghav hardly had completed his second round of brisk walk when he suddenly felt a strange pain in his chest and decided to relax for some time. He sat there clutching his left arm on the metal handle and the right one on his chest for some time. He slowly raised his head and looked towards the other people who were engaged in their morning exercises. They were too busy to notice that old man…

Slowly his vision began to blur…

It was 59 years ago when one of his neighbors suggested the idea of ‘jogging’ in the Museum compound. That time Raghav was young and fit and wondered why he should be ‘jogging’. As far as he knew, only old or middle aged people jogged there. Yet, upon his neighbor’s insistence, he decided to try that out. The following day he went with his neighbor and walked a few rounds there…

The morning sun, the fresh air, the beautiful garden and everything… everything there was marvelous … He wondered why he hadn’t started it earlier…

He had met several people and made lots of friends from there… But none of them continued the ‘morning exercises’ for long, not even his neighbor. The reasons were several – getting old, increasing job responsibilities, relocating, health issues… and list goes on… But nothing stopped Raghav… Not even the two mild heart attacks that he had encountered with very recently… 

Life was always fun and mysterious… When he was a teenager he used to chat with his companions about sports and other girls who walked there. As time progressed the topic started circling around their future and job. Then the main topic became the family issues and responsibilities and when he crossed forty, he used to discuss nothing, with his companions, but about his children and their future…  

However, for the last few months he had been more or less alone there. The young had always paired up with the young and it was difficult for Raghav to find people of ‘his age’ there. But occasionally, he had company and their talks mainly circled around their ‘good old days’ and ‘after life’….

It was on a winter morning when he first met Radha… She came there to walk with her dad. Raghav, who was 23 then, was completely charmed by her beauty. But he didn’t have the guts to talk to her then, also it wasn’t a good idea considering the fact that she was with her dad. So he just followed her at a safe distance all the way in that Museum track, just like the Vodaphone dog…

He repeated it for the next 8 days praying to God for a chance to talk with her. But nothing happened; except for his world getting filled with her and her thoughts… soon he realized that he was in love… for the first time in his life.

From the 9th day onwards, he couldn’t find her! However, her father came everyday to continue his routine… Later, through a mutual friend, Raghav came to know that Radha’s father was a government employee and got transferred to Secretariat during that winter. So he shifted to Trivandrum with his family. However, that mutual friend had no clues about Radha. Raghav felt that he couldn’t live even a single moment without seeing her. The pain of not seeing her was growing sturdily with each passing day! He became uneasy and disturbed… Finally he made a plan, to escape from all those pain…

He got acquainted with her dad and started giving him company. Fortunately, her dad found Raghav to be a good kid. Also, his knowledge on politics and current affairs had impressed that government employee immensely…

Gradually, they became companions and during their long jogging sessions, they enjoyed debating over various socio political issues. Soon Radha’s father realized that he had started admiring that gentleman for the deep knowledge he had possessed…

Even though Raghav had started talking with him for a different reason, he realized, with time, that he was enjoying that old man’s company…

Through her father, he came to know that she was his only daughter and she was doing her graduation in another district, the place where he worked previously. During her vacations she came home and stayed with her family. He also told Raghav that she was coming home that summer and would stay with her family for one month…

From that day onwards Raghav felt that he was breathing just to see that summer vacation…

Radha’s father introduced her to Raghav on that summer morning. Radha was 21 then and was slim and tall. She smiled graciously at him. Raghav stood froze in his steps. He had waited all this time just to see her again and now she was standing in front of him with a mesmerizing smile. He felt a chilling breeze passing by… He had just met the most beautiful woman in the planet…

Radha, on the other hand, felt that she had just met a ‘cute stupid’… She noticed the ‘joy’ and sparkle in his eyes.   

Days passed… All three were enjoying each other’s company… especially Raghav!

Raghav soon understood that she had inherited her father’s wisdom and elegance. Radha too, like her father, was quite impressed by the way he talked and behaved. He was no longer a ‘cute stupid’ for her. She understood that he was a little genius. Moreover, her father used to talk highly about him all the time… and gradually, they started sharing a special bond…

They continued to meet every morning in the museum and by the time summer vacation was over, Raghav had completely occupied Radha’s little heart…

It was just a beginning… Inlands soon became an integral part of their life. Initially Radha bought 1 or 2 inlands in a week… but as time passed she felt that she could better start an inland making factory!

Raghav got a job during that time and for him, everything was going well… Radha had accepted his proposal to marry him… His friendship with her dad was growing stronger and deeper… His parents were, then, happy and proud about their son…

Three years later, on a monsoon season, Raghav’s parents went to Radha’s house… Radha’s father was more than happy to give his daughter to Raghav…

After 6 months, they married and started living together. Since then it had been a different world for Raghav… It was beautiful and fascinating. They lived a great life in there… sharing and caring for each other. Their kids were bright and lovely. Raghav always made sure that they were happy and satisfied all the time. Later, when they grew up, they moved to UK and settled there with their families.

Raghav and Radha were leading a perfect retired life. They bought a farmhouse in the country side and spend their leisure time there. Occasionally they went to UK to meet their lovely grandchildren.

Everything was going fine and live was fun and beautiful, as always, to Raghav… One day, when they were planting some vegetables in their garden, Radha fainted all of a sudden… Raghav rushed her to the best hospital in the city… but…

His children flew down immediately. They were shocked to find their father in that devastated state… They insisted on taking him with them… but…

“We lived here from the beginning… we were always together here” tears rolled down through his cheeks… “She still lives here. I can’t go anywhere…”

“I always wanted to be with her… always… no matter where she goes… but…” Raghav sobbed like a 5 year old kid

“…may be God wants her more than I do…”

But HE can’t have her always… she is mine… only mine…

That was 5 months ago… Two weeks after her demise Raghav went to Museum again… He knew that she was walking beside him… He no longer needed any companions… His best friend was with him…  Yet, occasionally, the other old people joined him, to which he had no complaints…

Raghav shuddered abruptly. He can’t bear that pain any longer… The rising summer Sun stared straight at Raghav… He knew that it was the last light he would ever see… slowly, his grip on the metal bar loosened…

Suddenly he saw Radha at a distance… She was walking with her dad on that winter morning… She was hardly 20 years old and looked as beautiful and elegant as usual… Raghav stood up and quietly followed her… at a safe distance…

But this time she turned back and smiled at him… Her eyes were beckoning him dearly…

yes… Gods can’t have her for always…

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Comments
  1. Rose says:

    thats was really cute da……………………………… will i get a “raghav” in my life?………………………………..i liked that………………life and life partner……… romantic……………… happiness……………. sorrow……………………. CHILDREN…………but whatever u should have real love for ur companion

    • Amal says:

      There is a ‘R’ in ur name like in Radha… 🙂 🙂 So it seems u should 🙂 :)…
      And yes, one should be very lucky to find the ‘real’ companion… May u find urs soon Rose 🙂 🙂
      Hope u enjoyed reading it 🙂 ….

  2. Anupa says:

    Why??? All of a sudden…. a twist……… from XIME life. Is Raghav an orginal Character or a fictious one???
    But the story touched my heart………
    Good one

    • Amal says:

      Just for a change… when i went to Museum last saturday, i saw an old couple there…. the rest is my imagination 🙂 🙂 I was working on it when u came yesterday… r’ber.
      So happy to hear that u liked it 🙂 🙂 XIME will continue … 3 more parts to go… 🙂

  3. sumi says:

    ooh man.. this is a acute short story… ya love story…. so u believe in happily ever after… and perfect soul mate etc… great to hear tht.. so a different version of amal.. but great.. me enjoyed it…. hope to see ur XIME too

    • Amal says:

      🙂 🙂 well, thank u Sumi 🙂 🙂 Ya, i do believe in those… I never put limits to my dreams 😉
      Xime 14th part will come on thursday or friday…. 🙂

  4. Deepthi says:

    Cute one :))
    I dint know guys like love stories :)…..

    • Amal says:

      🙂 Ya, thats true Deepthi… we dont like to read love stories much….
      I am trying to do one novel… kinda mystery and love mix… So was practising 🙂 🙂
      Waiting for ur feed back…

  5. Manoj Vijayan says:

    Hi da, I read the story, as I said earlier your language has that flow required for a good writer.

    “Raghav shuddered abruptly. He can’t bear that pain any longer… The rising summer Sun stared straight at Raghav… He knew that it was the last light he would ever see… slowly, his grip on the metal bar loosened…”

    This is the best part, with four or five sentences; you were able to convey the strong emotions that went through Raghav’s mind at that last moment of his, to the readers very well.

    “So he just followed her at a safe distance all the way in that Museum track, just like the Vodaphone dog…”

    It is good to see that there are a few glimpses of humour too: D

    Even though this was your first attempt it really came up good. Keep up the good work dude! Shall we expect more short stories and novels from u ;D ?

    • Amal says:

      wow!!! that was a cute and lovely comment 🙂 Never expected from u… Thanks a million…
      Ya, i understood that i still have to do lots and lots of work to become a good writer and i’ll try 🙂
      and i am so glad to know that u enjoyed it….

  6. Aparna says:

    Hi Dear,

    Its nice to see U as a writer. I read ur story and it sounds good. All the best for ur future. Keep going dude…….

  7. Shemith says:

    Good one da…

    Kollam nice to know ninil oru kalakaran ollich irunu enn….

  8. Vivek says:

    Hi dear

    Well done buddy!!! You have a good future in story writing…..Keep it up and waiting for your new ones..

    Love
    Vivek

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