A Shepherd’s son

Sunita Giri 10:45 PM |

 Manju didi, is not sister by age but we call her that way anyway, because this is some what; kind of culture to call anyone, who is woman and older than us, when I was child. In fact, she has many children, who were older than me, except her last one and perhaps the sixth one. She lives with her family just outside the gate of Bal Mandir, worked in the school where I went as a child, which of course, is inside the Bal Mandir premises, as an admin assistant and took, part time job in the Bal Mandir as the lady who grew vegetables for us.

One day, about a couple of months ago, when I visited my friend, she also had dropped by to see her. I had not met her since I had left Bal Mandir in ‘88, so naturally the talk went back to the time, when we were small and that undoubted the memory lane of Bal Mandir, staff, children and all  other things that surrounded our life there.

To my amusement, it turned out that, she has a lot to share making her kind of story teller. Its not that she did not cover many other issues but that day, she mainly talked about Bharat dai in her talk. Because, once he was my crush, so my ear perked up to know more about the guy of my dream once. Naturally, I wanted to know more about him. “I knew his father” when she started.

“You knew his father, how come ?” I asked her. “His father was a shepherd in a house there at Gyaneshwor, and my sasu [mother-in-law] put tika to his father during tihar, before Bharat was admitted to Bal Mandir.” she went on. When some people get more closer then they choose to lock some unknown relations in family relations. Putting tika on somebody’s forehead means that the person is like a brother to her.”

“... and his mother ?” I wanted to know more. “I don't know about his mother, she was never there [ in the picture ]”, she responded.

“was she dead, when you knew him or she vanished ?” I was curious. “ I really don't know about all that I just don't know anything about her”. Its bit strange for me to believe her what she said. Like all other ladies she too was good to dig information and then get it. How come she did not know about the mans wife who was so close to her family ? but I have no option to dig more. It turned out that they had helped Bharat dai to get admitted in the Bal Mandir also.

“That teacher from the Budhanilkantha School must be very smart to choose Bharat dai for her daughter. its good for her,” I remarked.

“No, thats not true, it was the neighbour’s daughter of ‘Rawal Dijju’”, she washed my earlier knowledge about him on this side. Rawal Dijju was the manager in Bal Mandir when I was there.

“Really, but until now, I thought he got married with his school teacher’s daughter; and it was love marriage.” I wanted to be sure what I have just heard.

“No. No. It was arranged and I knew all this arranged things” she cleared my little bit of remaining part also, which I thought for so many years that was the truth, and whole truth for so many years, but at the same time she did not tell me; in details of what all she knew about all this also. But its okay.

“Bharat dai is the only person who became doctor from Bal Mandir, and no one till date, had broken that record”, I said again hoping more from her.

We were having all this conversation in an apartment of a friends of mine,  Junkiri, who was also listening all my queries. we were sitting on her bed. A friend was in between us and keeping her loud silence and I could see from the corner of my eyes, that Junkiri was trying to stop Manju didi, not to tell me anything, as I was digging all this informations. It sure will go on my blog . She is smart, her doubt was correct.  She knows that Bharat dai, does not like anyone in his life who were not part of his childhood to know that he was raised in Bal Mandir. I snapped to junkiry for what she was doing and turned to Manju didi for more info about him. It confused her what to do, but she did not see any harm, to tell me what she knew, specially when she knew it first hand. Beside, Bharat dai was very close to her family also.

“Oh, I remember recommending his name to Narayan Bhakta [Shrestha] sir, to get the scholarship seat in Budhanilkantha school, because he was the one who was selecting a student to get that seat, when Budhanilkantha school wanted one name from our school.”  she went  in her  memory lane to tell me the incident.

As I mentioned here in the beginning of my post, she was the admin assistant and knew all the teachers and it seemed that her personal recommendation did work in favour of Bharat Dai. Besides she is kind of weepy lady and tears comes to her eyes faster than words falls from her mouth, even though she is very talkative person. So, sometimes she lets her tears do the talk, at times when need be. I am quite not sure, she may have cried at this point but I bet, she must have begged to Narayan sir, to give that seat to Bharat dai.

Budhanilkantha School used to select one brightest student from many school, perhaps nationwide and give scholarship seat to the brightest student from many school in that school. It sure has a lot to do with Bharat dai becoming a doctor today; a good school background, a good foundation. He may have moved to that school when when he was studying on fourth grade.

That recommendation which Manju didi, did for Bharat dai, may be purely due the family like feelings her family shared with his father, seemed small gesture but until it changed the real face of reality and made a shepherd's son to a doctor one day.

Still I can't understand why Bharat Dai does not want the people in his life know that he is raised in Bal Mandir. What good in the education if it does not give us some common sense and some kind of understanding that, people will not insult you without your consent.

Last time when I know about Bharat dai, he has moved in Ireland and living there with his family.


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