Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Ashraf, you're in my thoughts...

I'd to go across to the town this morning and had called for an auto rickshaw. As we're going towards the eastern entrance of the temple, I'd asked the driver about Ashraf, his colleague, whom I'd not seen for quite a while. The last I'd met him was on the 28th of February, when he'd ferried me to the road transport corporation bus stand, for my onward journey to Thiruvananthapuram.

I remember his face being swollen and on my query, he'd told me that his kidneys had a problem and that he was undergoing treatment. I'd felt guilty then because I realised that he'd made the trip because of three things viz.:-

         (a) It was early in the morning and getting another auto rickshaw would have been difficult.
         (b) Secondly, I'd called him and he felt that it was his duty to fulfill my requirement and
         (c) He reiterated that he liked taking me around and enjoyed the conversations! 

His colleague's answer put me in deep anguish and I quote him, "Ashraf is in trouble. Cancer, that had begun with his left kidney, has spread across his body and he's bedridden as of now. He goes for the requisite chemos at the Amala Institute of Medical Sciences, about 15 kms from here".

Life has been cruel to Ashraf, the diminutive gentleman around 50 years of age, who was always available for me whenever I needed him.

Am praying for you and asking Him to give you the strength to tide over this crisis and being the optimist that I am, I hope a miracle would come by! Looking forward to see your smiling face all over again!!

         *                                    *                                       *

Sathi chechi had called up this morning. Radhan chettan continues to be pulling on with his aches and the pains. I'd been following the news that the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation is finding it difficult to make both ends meet and the pay and allowances of its workers was being distributed piecemeal against heavy governmental borrowings. The pensioners haven't been paid for almost three months!

She was asking for money on loan. Without much ado, I'd asked her to collect the amount anytime during the day, when she came to town, on one of her errands.

I didn't have the heart to remind her that there was already a loan that was pending repayment because:-

          (a) When a person seeks help, he's on his knees and has suppressed his pride.
          (b) If you've to help somebody, you must do so without making that someone feel small.
          (c) Hope that things will improve and that you'll receive what you're giving.


The caretaker had called up to say that there was a break in the rain and that the coconut trees - in our compound - needed clearance of the wild undergrowth around it, to be followed with the administration of a combination of rock salt, charcoal and potash. Moreover, four new saplings will have to be planted in lieu of the ones that had withered away during the harsh summer! The work will begin tomorrow and I shall park some money in his account, for the purpose. 

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