Sunday, 12 October 2014

Sasi's, Kavya's and Redipa's cycles

The school is 3km away, and it was a long walk for the children. As they were already undernourished,  they used to come with leg pains daily. When friends offered to sponser cycles, cycles happened !

Sasi, Eashwaramma's grandson, made a flurry of phonecalls when I was away. When I called back, he shouted down the phone that he had a 'green' cycle, his sister Kavya had a 'blue and golden' cycle, and Redipa, the Madiga boy in the next hamlet, had a 'red' cycle.
Unable to let a chance go, I made him promise that every morning he would drink his milk and ashwagandhadhi at Varalu's, lying that the cycle gift had been made conditional to that. He needs that milk very badly - and may we be forgiven for our untruths.
Eashwaramma had gone to Piler with Balaji, Annapurna's brother, and got these finally. It must be a small celebration in the small home.

 Sasi called me up a few days later with an urgent, 'Madam, no money in the cell, call back'. Two days back I had confisicated his new cycle after a few warnings. He was to have his milk and ashwagandhadhi at Varalu's daily with the other children, and attend 'tution' with Varalu every night. All my sweeness and charm failed, and I reverted to my stick. I told Varalu to lock up the cycle at my home.

Today I had a fair idea what the call was for. I called up and after a 'Baaunnaava madam' and exchange of mutual courtesies we were both silent. Then I asked him if he had attended tution the pervious days and he gave a thumping 'yes'. Then after some more silences, I asked him if he wanted the cycle, and he shouted down the phone 'Yes'. After a few more moralizing statements I permitted it, and putting down the phone could just see him cartwheeling home to get his cycle.

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