For whom the bell tolls?
Well, the bell tolls for us all, but there are only a few who find music in it. Distinctively different from the hoard of humanity, people like Pratima Devi, Sardar ji and Hanuman belong to this rare species.
In a profession which makes him see death too close for comfort (searching cadaver at the bottom of the Naini lake) Hanuman strums all the right notes to the melody that life can be. His family extends to the gentle giant Roxy, amiable Beti who knows how to shake hands, the friendly Chutki and the oldest of the pack aptly named Amma.
As he sees the sun sink into the green waters of the lake, the wisdom of silver beard lets conversation stir the dusk. Like a fable underlining the paradoxes that we live in; skirted by the canine quartet, sapience drips Hanuman’s words, ‘आदमी जेब से प्यार करता है, जानवर दिल से ‘.
As our little tea party of glucose biscuits and tea matured, the Mall road abuzz with tourists again. They didn’t see me. I didn’t see them.
The world is quiet here and yet it is not that hard to know for whom the bell tolls…