Saturday, March 22, 2014

Incredible retreat – my cool summer holidays!

Place I originally belong to is famous for its magnificent green panorama – a small place in Assam – ‘Sibsagarh’ ! Full of greeneries, beautiful landscape, a place, where kids of all ages can pick their own fruits and vegetables, enjoy hayrides, navigate corn mazes, and generally have FUN!

Being Govt. Servant, my father used to get transfer to many places…But, we never used to miss our cool Summer Days at Sibsagarh, the tempting chance to play with flora and fauna!

I have two siblings – my brother and sister. I am the eldest one. The first or second day of the  summer holidays, we used to visit our grand parents at a small village of Sibsagarh. I could see the equal amount of happiness and excitement in the eyes of my grand parents and their neighbor’s children  as soon as we used to reach there.

Crossing the rivers in search of O’ Tenga (very mouth-watering lemon –which is only found in North East of India), searching the bird-nests, making small huts in the forest with banana leaf and bamboo were our planned activities. I remember and now also feel thrilled how I carried my little sister on my shoulders while crossing the deep water of river ‘Dishang’ which used to come till my neck.

There was a peddy field just opposite to our house which was surrounded by dense forest with luscious fruit trees like Mangoes, Guava, Papayas, Bananas, Lychi, Pineapple, Plum etc. 

My aunties along with some other people of the village used to go to the peddy field in the early morning with sickles to cut the ripen rice…And around 8 am , we –the children with our grand ma used to go there to give them breakfast and then grandma used to come back, but we never…! 

We used to go the forest to bring Rabab Tenga (Again another variety of lemons), Mangoes, Plums etc.…and putting on the banana leaf, we used have them mixing with chili and salt. How delicious they were!  

Around 11 am, we used to go the river to take bath with our aunts…I tried to learn swimming – but unfortunately I could not learn…!!

In the afternoon, we used to go for fishing at the fishpond, which was just behind our house getting on the banana boats…!

Grandpa used to tell us his real life experience with ghost in the noon time,  when we used to put one mattress at the Veranda trying to cool us with hand –fan. We used lay down on his lap…and listen to the stories very attentively. The children from neighborhood also used to join us after their lunch.

There was a boy – called Jijin - our next door neighbor. He was a very attentive listener. Almost 7 yrs old boy, his favourite TV serial was Ramayana and favourite hero was Hanuman. All the time, he used to talk about the bravery of Hanuman. 

After listening to grandpa’s story, when all elder members used to take nap, we all children used roam here and there at the backyard and the jungle nearby. My grand parents and my mom strictly used to say – “Don’t go to the ponds and rivers during the noon time. Ghosts come there in search of prey”.

Once such year, one day, we all were sitting under the bamboo trees, just near our fishpond, relaxing, enjoying the cool breeze and also talking about the ghosts… 

Suddenly we heard a huge sound in the pond. “Jai Sri Ram!!!!” and then a plunge into the water of the pond…..

We just ran towards the pond wondering what happend…..

O' my Goshhhhh!!!!.....

Jijin was drowning….!!!! All shouted…….All elder members came outside …..saved him somehow…..

Asked him why he did so…..he said…”Hunuman never drowns! Instead, he kills the monsters! I also want to be like Hanuman and kill the ghosts at this pond!”

Already published in Impetus Red Corner.

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