For those who are reading first time, the link goes to: Eternal Love (Part-1).
While standing in front of the small house in the by lane several random thoughts were coming into Hari’s mind. Is it GOD’s justice or injustice? Suddenly he realized that he knows this house, yes, this is the house of Parvati amma, the flower vendor in front of the Lion’s Gate of the temple. He knows her, in fact several times he has refused her invitation to come to her house. So with hesitation, he entered the house calling Parvati Amma’s name. Amma came out of the house and was some what surprised to see Hari, but she was happy for his coming. Amma then offered him a seat on the cot and after asking for water she told, “so, finally you could find some time to visit me”. But Hari was in a different world you can say. His eyes were searching for the girl and hesitantly he asked amma about the girl who just entered the house. Amma said, so you have not come to see me, but to see ‘Radha’.
Hari pondered again, so her name is ‘Radha’, wow this is a good sign, Hari and Radha, best possible combination.
Amma called for Radha and continued to say, yesterday only she has come from the village, she is my niece. Poor chap lost her mother last month; I am the only guardian now. Radha came to that place, seeing her; Hari stood up from his seat and looked upon her face. She is so beautiful, Hari thought to himself. As if he was dreaming, amma interrupted, "I told her not to do anything, but she did not listen. She is making aggarbathis now and selling them on the hospital square market".
Hari told, you please don’t worry amma, give me those I will give them to the big dealers and fetch you good price, this brought a smile on Radha’s face. Amma also told, ok, then tomorrow you come early and take these agarbathis.
Hari was very happy that day; he thought - today is my best day. Indeed God is not merciless; he has given something for everyone. The next day Hari was at amma’s place at sharp 6.00am, Radha was ready with the agarbathis. Radha told, ‘how much these will fetch’? These words were like nectar to Hari’s ears. He had not heard a more sweet voice than this in these years. For a moment he was speechless, after coming to consciousness he told, don’t worry Radha, I will not let your efforts go for cheap, I will return with a handsome amount.
Hari gave those incense sticks to one of the biggest dealers in the market and could get hundred rupees, after that he went on with his regular rickshaw. There was a spring on his feet that day, he was murmuring few lines of his favorite romantic film song. He was waiting for the day to end quickly so that he can meet Radha, but the day seemed to be the longest. Every hour was like a day itself on that occasion for him.
Finally he attended the evening Cuttack-Puri shuttle and came back to amma’s place. Both amma and Radha were very happy at the price of the sticks. Radha told, next week please bring me some marigold flowers, I will make their essence and put in the incense sticks, it will be a rare fragrance. Hari liked the idea and the presence of mind of Radha. She will be very good life partner-Hari thought to himself. Like these days passed and Hari became an integral part of Radha and amma’s family. One evening when all the three were sitting on the veranda, Radha said, I want to see GOD, I want to see this world, creation of the almighty, must be very beautiful, very colorful, for me there is only one color-black-but I want to see all the colors. Why god has done this injustice to me. She sat silently there after saying this. Amma also did not say anything but looked at Hari. By that time Amma had decided that, after her, Hari will take care of Radha. But Hari was thinking something different, he wanted to see Radha always happy.
The next morning, Hari came to the house and told Radha, "get ready we are going to the eye specialist today, the best one in town, you shall see again". There was firmness in his voice. Radha was very happy and got dressed. She was sitting on the rickshaw and Hari was pulling it. They went to Dr Kar’s clinic which was one of the best eye hospitals of the city. Dr Kar also knew Hari well as a good rickshaw walla. After examining her, the doctor told Hari that, she was curable. On hearing this Hari’s joy was compounded like anything. But-said the doctor this operation will be a costly affair. Hari gave assurance to the doctor not to worry about the money and go ahead with the operation.
Radha on hearing this was against the operation but Hari insisted on this and assured Radha that money will not come in the path of her happiness. Hari went to his home and broke all his savings. He sold his bread earner rickshaw for a good sum and managed to get some money on borrow basis from the big dealer in the market. That evening Hari returned to amma’s place with a feeling of victory and said money has been arranged for the operation.
Amma asked Hari on his arrival, "what happened where your rickshaw is today"? Hari told that –I have sold it, amma was furious, then how will you survive, you fool. Hari showed her a box; a small black box, ‘this will be my bread earner now’, what is this-amma asked, a alladin’s chirag or what it will give you? Hari opened the box- there were brushes of different sizes, polish of different color. See amma I will be a shoe polisher at the station. On hearing this amma had tears on her eyes. Radha was listening to all these conversations and she also cried silently.
The next morning amma Radha nad Hari went to the doctor’s place and got Radha admitted. Hari deposited the money in advance so that the treatment is smooth. After half an hour, Dr Kar cameout of the OT and announced that the operation is successful and if everything goes well Radha can see after a week. Hari was very happy on hearing this, at last god has answered his prayers and the person who he loves most can see now. But wait, there was an inner voice coming from him as if prohibiting him from celebrating. As if, he wants to fly, but someone or some feeling has tied his wings. He thought to himself, Radha is so beautiful, I am so ugly. She will not like me as soon as she sees me, she may pity on me and stay with me, but she will always hate me and my face. She deserves the very best, she does not deserve me, Hari thought to himself. But he was thankful to god that his savings, his good wills at least helped his loved one to see this world. He stopped going to see Radha in the hospital and sent medicines and fruits for her via the nurse only. Amma understood his feelings but could not do anything as she was also not aware of Radha’s feelings. Finally the day came when Radha’s eyes were to be opened to the world. Hari was there at the counter of the hospital to see that every thing is ok with Radha or not.
On opening the bandage from her eyes, Dr Kar asked Radha, whom she wants to see first? Radha told for me, there is only one, my GOD. Ok, said Dr Kar and asked the nurse to bring a photo of lord Jagannath. Radha opened her eyes slowly as if waking up from deep slumber. Saw a card board depicting some random figure, an old fragile lady, and a suave looking man in front. Dr Kar told, see Radha, I am Dr Kar-your doctor who treated you, this is your aunt-Parvati Amma; and here is the photo of lord Jagannath, the lord of the universe, you wanted to see him first na? Radha did not say anything; she was silent, speechless, and motionless. Suddenly few drops of tear fell from her eyes. On observing this, the doctor was very worried, what happened Radha? are you able to see or not? are you crying? Oh My God, please don’t cry, that is not good for your eyes, please please, let me know what happened.
Radha asked where is he? Dr Kar told, who-he? Amma understood everything and immediately told the nurse to inform Hari that Radha needs him. Amma hugged Radha and said-oh my poor child, what a fool I am, could not understand your feelings for him, in the mean time Hari came rushing to the ward and looked at Radha. Hari said, please forgive me Radha, I thought you will not like me, because I am ugly. Radha said, I don’t know what is ugly, I have not seen anything. I have only heard and felt and those feelings are far superior than seeing something. For me you are the most beautiful person, you are my GOD.
My love for you does not have boundaries of ugliness, it is eternal like a perennial river, like the smile of a child, like the sun shine, like days and nights. You are my life and I am only your's.
Ok, folks, that’s the story for you. Hope you liked it.