Sakhaon ka Kanhaiya- Story 8
Tok said- “My Pavitra is going to deliver a kid.” “How did you get to know?”- Kanhai looked at Tok with a surprise. Tok is afterall younger to Him- He is the youngest of all Sakhas, He got to know and Shyam didn’t. Tok said- “Maiya was saying. This is why baba doesn’t allow Pavitra to go for grazing.” The children have returned after grazing the cows. All have bathed. Evening baths during summers is pleasing for all. Some Sakhas bathe and come to Nanda bhavan and eat something only with Kanhai. Tok often does this. As for Bhadra he stays here. Currently, there are neither flowers nor feathers on their hair. There are also no forest paintings on their bodies. Their curls are wet after bathing. All have clean bodies, and Maiya has not yet done shringar for Ram (Balaram) and Shyam (Krishna). The all-day wandering kids, tired after grazing cows in the forest wanted to eat first. Hence after bathing them, they are made to sit for food. There is Kachni (Dhoti) on their waists, Patuka (Upper cloth) on their shoulders. Anklets, tinkling bells, bangles, armlets, pearl necklaces, earrings as always adorn their parts. There is no flower garland on anybody’s neck.
Children don’t sit in a queue and eat food. Where do they have to eat full meals now? Maiya has served them rice mixed with Mishri milk in a golden bowl. Everybody talking mutually sit clipped in circles. White drops of milk are spilled on many parts of Kanhai’s stomach. His right hand and lips shine white in milk. Ram, Bhadra, Tok and Subala are in the same state. Nandan chacha’s aged servant came all of a sudden, so Shyam asked him- “When will Pavitra deliver a baby?” The servant said- “She has just now delivered. Calf as white as milk.” Tok, Shyam, Subal, Bhadra, Dau all stood up startled- “Aree!” Leaving the bowl there itself, all ran. Maiya kept on calling- “Stop! Atleast eat your food. Son Ram! Wash your hands and mouth! You shouldn’t go without washing your mouth.” But where do these kids listen. These kid as it is smearing their mouths with rice and milk are running with brightened lips. The servant has bent his head. He feels he has committed an offence-“Should have told the children after they ate their food. Mohan has gone running empty stomach.”
Maiya went running behind the children till the doorstep and even after they disappeared she stands gazing the pathway. The servant said with great humility- “I will go get them. Or else your Devarani may feed them there, I will go tell her that.” Maiya pleadingly told the servant- “Now they won’t return fast. Tell Atula that all have gone hungry and to stubbornly feed them there. Before the servant could tell her, Tok’s mother has reached her barn to stubbornly feed the kids. But these don’t even glance at the bowls. All are busy watching the new born calf.
Pavitra- Nandan chacha’s whitest excellent-bred cow has delivered a calf white like her. The new born calf hasn’t managed to get up. The cow was engrossed in licking it when these children came running. Now Pavitra keeps on mooing and smelling Kanhai! This Sukumar cannot be licked with her coarse tongue, this the cow understands. She continuously removes her tongue and then moves her face away. She has completely forgotten her new-born calf. “You lick him”-Dau and Bhadra holding the cow’s face with their tiny hands repeatedly turn it towards her calf. The cow licks her calf two-three times and then once again moos and smells Shyam. The calf is now secondary for her. The calf too peeps, moves, and tries to stand. Kanhai is busy lifting it up- “Stand! Get up.” The calf smells Shyam and somehow staggering stands up spreading its legs. It again falls while trying to walk and after staying still for two moments, it once again tries to stand up. Even the calf doesn’t want to find its mother or her udders. He wants to stand clipped to this Nanda tanaya. Krishna Chandra holding the calf’s face in both his hands is busy fondling and caressing him. The calf has stood up. If Shyam lifts someone, then who won’t stand tall.
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