“Suki’s Maa…move your hands fast, my son is getting late for office and yes…, after preparing those chapatis, come here….do not sit there with a desire of having those…” an authenticated voice of an old woman made Suki’s Maa aware about time and she started moving her hands fast, forgetting the pain she was getting in her arms…. Myself, a small child of age 10, was quietly observing and helping her by making the chapatti dough round, so that it will be easy for her to complete the chapatis.
Suki’s Maa was first of all very tired by completing many works since morning, started preparing Chapati with the hope that she may get one or two after everyone’s breakfast, had made those very soft, so that those will be very tasteful. Resisting her mouth watered desire, she came quietly and as ordered before she sat for cutting down vegetables to prepare lunch. After an hour of wait, in her small cottage, which was outside the complete house, the lady of the house came and gave her two hard rotis of previous day’s night. By looking at them, Suki’s Maa said “Gopal’s Maa, can I have a piece of Chapati that I had prepared…those were prepared very tasty…you know Suki’s Papa used to like my handmade food a lot…I will also prepare so many varieties of food here, as per everyone’s choice….”. Before letting her allowed to complete her sentence, Gopal’s Maa started saying “Suki’s Maa…see your age…this food is suitable for your age…yesterday night only you had so much of Khichdi and now again you want to have breakfast…I was so merciful that I gave you these two rotis and I am surprised that your stomach is able to digest everything…its like a pond…how come you are able to eat so much…without doing anything” and threw those two rotis on the broken bed where Suki’s Maa was sitting and left that place hurriedly….
I being a small kid was sitting beside her and told gently that “Kakki Mama…how come you will be able to eat so hard rotis…my Mama is not eating this kind of food…shall I bring milk for you from my house….?” By listening about milk, Kakki Mama became happy and told me to bring malai also with that milk…I ran away, brought a glass full of milk covered with thick malai, gave her through the small broken window of her cottage, so that no-one can see this with me, if I enter carrying this in my hand and enter her cottage.
"Hummm…very nice malai…Please bring some more for me in the evening also….See, how your mother is taking care of your Mama and Baba…whenever she comes here, used to cook nice food for them and yes, sometimes she sends for me also, if I would have any son….then my daughter-in-law also would have cooked for me so nice food…But I didn’t have any and one day I had to see this day that my own daughter is not taking care of me even though I gave all my property to her husband and his family….instead of that I should have given all my property to the Ghanshyam temple of my village where that Pujari could have given me three times nice food…" she started murmuring herself and enjoyed the milk.
Being a small child I was not able to understand why everyone used to get angry with Kakki Mama in her house…. I had met her first time, when last time I had come to my grand parents house during the last summer. One day, my grandmother, whom I used to call Mama, took me to her after getting tired by playing with me. My mother, introduced me that she was the mother of my Kakki…a long distance aunty, so she became my Kakki Mama since that day and I started visiting to her regularly and started playing with her whenever I was getting bored in my house. I could not understand why everyone in that house used to love me and give me nice and tasty food but they don’t give any to Kakki Mama. I have seen many times, that Kakki does not say anything to anyone when her mother misbehaves with her , keeps quite and does her work.
During the lunch hour, I jumped near her with a plate full of fish curry, that my mother had sent for her….suddenly she came out from her emotion by seeing me there, took me near to her and told me “Wait for few minutes…we will have lunch together….” Lunch came but she got only rice and watery dal…she had nothing to say, as she had fish curry. She fed me affectionately and I slept with her. When I got up, she was ready and told me to visit temple, where a small festival was going on…I went with her. Completed all the Pujas with her and telling me to stand outside, Kakki Mama went into the inside room of the God to put Sakhayat Pranam in front of the God…. By seeing her not coming out from there for a long time…Pujari Kakka started telling her from behind “Aare…Kakki…come out if you have finished up your pranam there….”. By responding him, Kakki Mama came out from the temple and we started back to our home… On the way, Kakki Mama took out two big ladoos from her Sarees’s Pallu, which she had stolen from the Prasad plate kept in front of the God and offered me one… I denied to accept it by saying that God will get angry if we steal something from his plate…then she said “Noone will curse you if you are doing something to fulfill your hunger” and then started enjoying both the ladoos….
When we passed in front of my house, Kakki Mama asked me what would be prepared in my house for today’s dinner…After thinking for sometime, I said “Its Vada for sure…because Anghthi’s Maa was taking all the recipes to grind and told that she may take four hours to come back, besides that Maa was boiling a good amount of milk and was telling Baba (My grandfather) to bring Vinegar, when he goes out to bring mutton, that means she will be preparing paneer and mutton curry also. And Baba was telling Maa to prepare Luchi, as my Papa likes Luchi with mutton curry, besides that something more might be…I don’t know” and kept quite. “Hummm, will you bring paneer curry and Luchi for me….” Kakki Mama asked me….I said “Yes…”. Then she told “I will not tell you to bring anything for me again, as there will be a huge party the day after tomorrow, on the occasion of first birthday of Gopal’s son and I will have all the food… I will enjoy a lot….”.
On the same day of ceremony, still she was lying on her broken bed in her broken small cottage…she was not allowed to see the ceremony happening in her house as she was a widow and waiting for someone to bring food for her. The ceremony got over and no-one came with food for her. She was very hungry, didn’t have anything what I had brought for her, hoping that she will get more delicious food from the party, so why she would lose that appetite by having an ordinary food. It was late night…I was sitting with her…without waiting any more, she started rushing towards the backyard of the house where people had thrown away their left over after having their food…she started collecting all the left over foods and started having had one by one. She was so happy and there was no guilt in her face or eyes of having other’s left over. Tears came in my eyes and I left that place.
After few days, as the summer vacation was getting over, we had to come back to my Papa’s workplace. When we went to see off Kakki Mama with my Maa and take her blessings, she started crying a lot, holding me firmly and told me quietly near my ears that there will be no-one to take care of her…who knew she might not be there during my next visit to her! By giving her hope that we would come back soon, we left that place.
After one year, when we were preparing to go our grandparents place, again during in that summer vacation, I was very much excited that I would do something good for Kakki Mama this time ,as this time I had grown up a little. On the same day, we got the news that Kakki Mama had expired and everyone came to know about her death, only 3 days after her death, as she did not come out from her old, small and broken cottage.
Kaki Mama belonged to an affluent family, where she had all the liberty to live her life. She only had one daughter, born at a late age of her life. After her husband’s death, she spent few years alone in her house and when she became older, her daughter, Suki and son-in-law, Gopal, started telling her to come to their house and stay with them, as there was no one to take care of her. During that time, Gopal’s mother was running behind Kakki Mama to bring to her house and stay with them. After seeing everyone’s eagerness, Kakki Mama agreed to stay with all of them and she could not stay in her daughter’s house without giving her anything! So she had registered all of her property in Gopal's name. But, after getting all the property, those people got changed. They didn’t even give her proper two times meals, leave behind giving her rest and taking care of her health. Kakki Mama was running behind everyone with hope that she could get any food from anyone.
Does it only happen, if someone is not having SON or it also happens with someone who is having a SON !!!