Friday, 20th April, 2018

Rahul Gandhi cometh home

28, Aug 2014 By Aniruddha Phatak

Rahul Gandhi doesn’t belong to this woebegone wretched world. So where exactly is his home?

Rahul Gandhi

In Larktown, a dingy work town by a large river—whose name is a misnomer, since it was decidedly the last place on earth where larks and for that matter all those avian creations which inspire gaiety in a man’s heart, would ever dare to venture—so in Larktown, there existed a fisherman by the name of Rahul G. Existed, for he hardly lived—if that is what you are supposed to do with life. It was not an remarkable state of affairs, however. It was a town, where men slouched around to work, women spent a lot of time in front of the mirror, all ate, all drank, all slept and did nothing else. A lot of flesh traded hands—dead and otherwise, for there was not much money to go around in the town. And so in this despondent atmosphere, fisherman Rahul–supposedly a leader of his community– existed and plied his humble trade.

He had a habit of sitting on the banks of the river by the moonlight for hours at end, contemplating his predicament—absentmindedly tossing dull blue pebbles into the water—pebbles he took great pains to dig out from beneath the wet sand. Why do they ask me to stand up to the mighty Moody—the Achillesque warrior who stands knee deep in the thundering 20-feet deep water upriver with his mouth wide open and gobbles up all the fish? Why do they always send my boat first in the water to gauge the current?  In not quite so infrequent forlorn and lonely moments, he would beseech the gurgling water to carry him away—far away from his present banal and wretched existence.

One day as he went fishing in his small wooden boat, he got caught in unusually strong current, and soon found himself far downstream than he ever dared to venture. He rowed hard against the raging waters, but the current was unrelenting, and Joe’s tiny boat was swept along.

It is not uncommon that when in your house, Old Father Time and Even Older Stepmother Death—this is not to malign any particular gender—are having a tiff, thoughts thunder through your mind, tripping over one other, as if each anxious to have his two moments under the spotlight before the curtain falls. A similar experience soon consumed poor Rahul. His folk, foolish as they were, needed his guidance—he rowed hard—and he had promised his sister he would play the dolls with her that night—he rowed harder—his investment in the property upriver —he rowed till he could no longer feel his forearms—and of course, his poor old Mother—he now had the inclination to try rowing with his legs as well—but however hard he tried and whichever body parts he employed in rowing, it was obvious to him that the aforementioned aged female had delivered the deciding punch.  His boat soon crashed against one of the jutting rocks, and Joe was left at the mercy of the monstrous swells.

When he came around, RG found himself on solid ground, which was, curiously, very hard and shiny. As he gradually found the strength to sit up, after coughing out a barrel of water, he discovered that he was lying on a stones, shiny blue stones. They stretched along the bank as far as he could see on both sides. They invoked a certain sense of trepidation in his heart and it was with great apprehension that he raised his eyes to the land. It would be doing the sight which he beheld a great injustice, if RG was merely amazed. He was knocked off his feet in awe. Though he was not a man of commitment—and yielded a lot to uncertainty and indecision—he knew that this was it. It what? He could not say. But there are times when words, as mere summarizers of sight, sound and smell, are pathetically inefficient at conveying the true essence of feelings and convictions. RG was home.

Fear now replaced by joy, he turned to the river once more, and started laughing loudly—on future reflections he had no idea why—but he laughed nonetheless. He laughed so hard that a little squirrel with a nut in her hand stopped her incessant chirping and gracefully cocked her head to observe this new phenomenon. Soon he was also crying, though he didn’t know whether they were tears of ecstasy, gratitude or repentance, but they were tears he did not mind. He bent down and scooped some water in his cupped hands and said,” Oh, I knew you would bring me home—my real home! All the while I was sitting and crying on that dirty bank—always cowering under the gaze of that fearful giant…little did I know that all I needed to do was surrender to your force and let myself be taken and consumed. Yet I feared the plunge—for God knows what puny attractions—the flattery of my fellow men! And finally I was forced to flow along and, God forgive this ignorant idiot if he ever raised even a wretched fingernail in protest!” The water in his cupped hands had curiously, not diminished in quantity—not even a single drop—as if they were all too busy in attending to his epiphany, and Old RG, supposedly of Larktown, put the sweet blessed water to his lips.