Tuesday, February 1, 2011

winter vacations

      It has been few years without winter vacations, but  it is only for me . The students in Bhutan get the vacation as it used to be.  I remember those moments of immense happiness when a holiday about two months have been granted after a year stay in the school. I am melancholic now. 
      I fear, I may not get any more winter vacations. I envy my friends and juniors when they do get chance. Vacations are lovely, refreshing and challenging. People spend vacations in many ways. Some just pass away the free time uselessly. Fortunate ones read books, watch movies, surf net and explore knowledge. Unfortunate ones have to labour hard in the field and elsewhere.
     'the girls look beautiful' commented my friend. I saw him looking so impatiently as they pass by. The trees around, were dancing and our hairs were waving along with comforting wind. We were sitting by the roadside and nature seemed to be in love with us. I was lost for some time. Then, I realized that I had to commune with him. I asked him about his well being and whereabouts, the usual thing we do when we meet friends after long time.  It didn't take me long to ask him, whether he had girl friend or not. No wonder, we Bhutanese are accustomed to  such talks.  Not surprisingly,  the answer was positive. We didn't talk much of it.
   I asked him about his winter vacations. No sooner did I ask, then he looked excited and smiles spread over his face.  'you must be having lots of funs and experiences to share'  I asked.  I saw him drooping his head. I noticed a peculiar expression over his face, probably a sad expression. Then, he started telling me. This is his short story. ' I had undergone lots of challenges. My parents had hard time affording me to school. Being farmers, it used to be so hard for them to earn money. They have sacrificed their precious life to sweats and hard labour for my sake. They are really grateful to me. It is beyond words to describe how much I owe them'. 
         In the midst, I consoled  him that every farmers undergo the same process. He continued with some solace. 'I didn't want to see my parents suffer. So, I volunteered myself to work under some contractors. I had to earn money. I went to about a day's journey from my village. I got into job. It was so exciting for me because I would be paid in the due course. It was so cold. I began to work with some other fellow men. We had to cut firewoods and pile them until it resulted in an amount that would fill a truck.'  I listened to him with much attention.  It was fortunate for me because, flies didn't go via mouth as I was startled. I wished if all people were born  equally rich and  happy.
   'That is not an end' he continued without a pause.  I saw him became emotional and spontaneous in speech. 'My palms of hands were full of blisters. It was quite painful and aggravated when in contact with chilli during meal times.  Jungle was our home. We slept under a big tree. Thanks to the tree, he comforted us with warmth and  love amidst freezing winter. We worked so hard in the snow. But the most important beauty about it was, getting money. It was happiness for me because I could help my parents'.    
       He concluded with a sigh of relief. I saw his eyes burdened with tears. I was deeply saddened but it was a good lesson for me. I became a fan of him, a person who worked so hard to fulfill his dreams and parents.