Morning of June 18th 1991 was very special to me as I woke up with a dream of my Dadu (Paternal Grand Father) waving me goodbye. We had just returned to Pune from his place, Giridih, the previous evening accomplishing a mammoth journey of three days and two nights. Mom deciphered that my dream implied, I had been missing him. I was promised that I would be speaking to him the next weekend on trunk-call and the six year old kid inside me was beaming with joy at the raajma-chawal or the hope to speak to her Dadu, I hardly can remember today. By noon Dad walked home with a telegram which said “Father Expired Come Immediately”.
I had heard medicines expiring but people, I was unaware what it meant and yet Dad, for the first time I had seen was in tears. I guessed I would not see Dadu again. I wished I had waved him back in my dreams yet I felt special, I was the last person he met before going away.
The next moment we were at Bombay VT, then Victoria Terminus, but had no mode to travel any further. The platform was swarming with travellers, tourists and beggars. It was as if the whole world was stopping here en route. Dad ran from pillar to post for at least one berth in any class whatsoever but in vain. Amidst this tumultuous multitude a hobo walked up to us. Mom reached out for the 20paise coin but he walked past her and interrupted Dad’s conversation with one of the eager co-travellers and asked us if we were Bengali. The passenger ridiculed him but the haggard continued with his eyes set on Dad. As Mom joined in, the man and pointed to an office at the other end of the vast boundless platform and said “wo sahib bhi bangali hai, wo kar denge aapko” (the man sitting there is a Bengali, he might help you). Dad was sure it would not help but he would do anything that day for his ticket home. Mom carried me this time to make a rush to the closed door. Mysteriously everything got sorted. We got two tickets in AC first class on special railway quota. Dad walked out to pay the Man, but there was no trace of him ever.
A few years later I was put into a convent school and every time I have look at Jesus or sung the carols, I have seen that miracle man. This story tells me a lot of things but above all it reminds me He is in all of Us.
By: Hoimee Dey