The bookseller who thought otherwise
The bookseller who thought otherwise3 mins 278 3 mins 278
Standing there, it was pouring rather heavily, and underneath my umbrella I decided to light up a cigarette. Going through puffs, I realized that there was someone speaking just behind me, "Son, get yourself a nice read." he said. I ignored him the first time, but then again the voice fought it's way back into my ears, "Buy a nice and cozy kitaab. It will help in the weather.", I stamped the cigarette underneath my shoes and turned to him. "I don't want one old man, why don't you wait for some other customer. Besides, you're spoiling my mood and it's getting late. I need to get somewhere.", The bookseller added, "Buying one book will do you no harm, but for me it will be my whole day's meal." , "So, why don't you just beg! You're doing it already under the cover of being a bookseller. Trying to impose lure me into buying a book." I was a bit uncomfortable at his remark. " Do you think I don't earn for a living, son?" his voice sounded a bit weak. "Don't you beg your boss for a personal holiday every now and then?" he added. "Uh, it's different with me. I am an employee two blocks away. I work for the firm run by my boss." I was a bit unsure as to what sort of conversation I had got myself into. "I provide my services to the firm and it is my right to ask for a holiday from the authority i work under." I added. "Well son, I am the boss here and I am offering you the service of a book that can provide you with thrill, romance, excitement and pleasure!" The bookseller looked interested in taking the conversation further. "You know what? I will just buy one. The cheapest one." , "Son, this one A Beautiful Night is a compilation of many poetries written by eminent and emerging writers in India, take this one." He added his tone a bit soft. "Okay! How much?" I asked. "You don't have to pay me! Just have lunch with me. I'll close the shutter and we can have Idli Sambar across the street." the bookseller said and got down getting ready to leave with me. "But baba, I insulted you! Why do you want to eat with me?" I enquired. "If I had a son just like you, he would have treated me the same way if I had bugged him about anything or got to his nerves. So, it is alright." the bookseller smiled for the first time, a gentle one pushing his lips through. "Okay. Get under the umbrella!" and we started walking to the other end of the street.