Thoughts & Ideas

Monday, October 21, 2013

Kursela Days 15 – I Am Visited by Friends



About a year after I shifted to Kursela, my friends decided that they wanted to check out how I was living and managing there. Normally, I used to go down to Purnea at least a couple of times a month or oftener to catch up with them. As such, on one of my visits to Purnea I was informed that the next Sunday I would be visited by a few of my friends and I was to make arrangements for their lunch and other entertainment.

I spent the previous Saturday sprucing up my room and trying to figure out where I could take them for site-seeing or for lunch. I finally decided that a trip to the confluence of the Kosi and the Ganges would be an interesting experience, with maybe a boat ride thrown in. For lunch, I planned to take them to the Line Hotel (a dhaba) located a couple of miles up the highway. I knew the owner well and was confident that he would arrange a good meal.

The D day arrived and I got ready and dressed and went down to the Highway to await my friends’ arrival. I was soon greeted by the sight of KN Roy on his motorcycle (TVS Suzuki) with his wife Mitali sitting pillion and his daughter Jhumi sitting on the petrol tank leading the way with a light blue Bajaj in its wake carrying Bijay Sinha (Score kya hai sir) and Mohit. We first went to the Line Hotel and ordered our lunch. There was a request for chicken curry, so that was the special order of the day. The owner informed that he would get a chicken specially slaughtered and cooked and suggested that we come back in an hour’s time. We then proceeded to the Kosi-Ganges sangam which was about 4 kms away. Me on my bicycle and the others on their scooter and the motorcycle. We spent a pleasant couple of hours walking along the river-side and generally pulling each other’s legs, but could not go boating since no boat was available by that time (11 am – all the fishing boats had already left for the day).  By one o’clock everyone was pleasantly hungry and looking forward to the feast which was hopefully being prepared specially for us at the Line Hotel.

A lovely spread was put before us, but the chicken dish was missing. The explanation given was that the chicken escaped while being brought out from the pen to be slaughtered, and vanished in the rice fields, and could not be found inspite of strenuous efforts by the Line Hotel owner and his helpers (Ka karin malik, murgiya bhaag gail aur dhaan ke khet mein chup gail. Bahut khojwaini par na milal – this was a Bhojpuri speaking man in an area where people generally spoke Angika – a vernacular of Maithili). My friends were just not willing to buy this story. I was the only vegetarian in the group, and they felt that it was my ploy to prevent them from feasting on chicken. After a lot of ribbing, we sat down for lunch, which everyone enjoyed. By then it was 3 pm and my friends started off on their return journey to Purnea. I waived them off, and suddenly, Kursela felt very lonely.

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