Nanda Baba and his elder brother Abhinanda
Most certainly, Arjun (known as बूढा दादा) is more familiar with our pets than we ourselves are. He is the most experienced in gathering cows. Though he maintains calm and repose and speaks less, not just cows and bull, but calves too listen to him. There is no need to visit Taujji and Taiji at their residence. In fact you don’t need to visit anybody. They by themselves come and stay in close proximity with Nanda Baba and Yashoda Maiya, day and night. Nanda baba calls Chote Tauji “Chote Dada”. Some people call Chote Dada “Abhinanda” while others call him “Mahananda”. His name must be Abhinanda but due to his most cheerful and sunny nature, they might have started calling him Mahananda.
Jolly Nature of Krishna’s Chote Tau
It is a common sight to see him laugh uncontrollably. Not just on slight matters but even causelessly. You can never imagine Chote Tauji organize an event. He loves to be seated. Ask him once “Tauji, how many cows are there in your barn?” He will first let out a laughter on this question and then say “You know, there are only cows in my barn!” There are some bulls and calves, but they want to keep increasing their numbers. There is no other animal.” If someone asks it out, “But how many?” He will say: If you are that keen, go count them. They wouldn’t cooperate in a queue nor let you do the counting. If you count 4, 10 will add in, and those 4 will run and enter the herds of 400. You will grow tired laying the cow dung dot on them.” Chote Tauji is also fair like his eldest brother. He has Rosy-fair complexion, but is fat. His tummy is larger than Nanda Baba’s and he adorns a yellow dhoti and rose hued upper cloth. You will find tints of black on his hair and moustache. In the barns of other Gopas, Chote tau will either sit quietly or make a commentary on someone’s point, which makes everyone laugh causelessly. For instance, ask him- “Where will the cows go to graze?” He will laugh “Is this a matter of worry- Don’t drive them into my mansion. Will you graze them in yours? It is obvious, they will go to the forest. Goad them to the forest and follow along, they will graze where their mind pleases.” Madhumangal also jokes with Chote Tauji, “Why should I follow the cows?” Madhumangal is such that he can even joke with Maharishi Shandilya. Chote Tauji neither takes others’ words to heart nor gets affected by anybody’s speech. He told Madhumangal- Little sage, (छोटे पंडितजी) If you follow the cows, they will causelessly donate their cow-dung (गोबर) and sometimes with their tails drenched in their Urine गोमूत्र conduct your bathing ceremony without expecting alms. You are well-versed that Gangaji resides in Cow-urine (गोमूत्र). If you lead the cows, who knows, on following you, they might alter their direction, in disobedience. They can even scratch your back with their horns.
Krishna plays on his Chote Tau
When Krishna meets Chote Tauji (छोटे ताऊजी in his barn, he often lays him down and simply sits on his tummy. Tauji is ever pleased to have him on his stomach. Ordinarily, Tauji sleeps towards his stomach and invites children to jump on his back and feet. Don’t know how such peculiar questions enter Krishna’s mind and all puzzling questions, he will ask only Chote Tauji. “Dauji if an elephant enters a narrow road and the path is hindered by a roadblock, then what will happen?” Krishna calls Tau, Dau only. Tauji is blessed with a fine sense of repartee. “Then what? He will sit and think of his next move. Or like a crow leap a flight in the airs.” Krishna will clap hands and laugh. “How will an elephant fly? It doesn’t even have wings!” Tauji answers like this only to make Krishna laugh. “Oh yes, It doesn’t have wings. Then, he will call out to the son of Brother Nanda, Please take me out of here!” Tauji will giggle such that Krishna sitting on his stomach will start riding a swing.
The wife of Chote Tau- Pivari Tai
Choti Tai’s (Chote Tau’s wife) name is just not kept “Pivari” (which means cow). She is fat and plump. Like Tauji, she is rosy-fair complexioned, and while blooming with laughter, her face grows pinker. Like Tauji, she doesn’t take others’ words to heart. She would laugh and say- All My sisters-in-law (देवरानी और जेठानी) are also thin and slim. I am the nurse of all their kids. Neelamani (Krishna) and all his brothers together too couldn’t exhaust my breast milk. Choti Tai irked would often say- “I have to find your Tauji. I get distressed searching for him, all the while” Krishna widens his hands and says- “Tauji is so fat. Is he thin, a small kid or a kitten to hide?” “You are naughty”- Saying this, Taiji would lift Krishna on her lap- “Your Tauji is neither worried about food nor drink. In whosevers circle he settles down, he will wholeheartedly accept his hospitality. He will end up sleeping in your father’s barn if I don’t fetch him home at night.”
Children of Chote Tau
Choti Tai has two sons. Of which Vishal being younger to Balaram (दाऊ दादा) by 3 weeks is taller than him. Since he is tall and slightly fat, all call him Vishal (which mean huge). But the Gopis call him the “horse of Vrajarajkumar (Krishna)”. Vishal doesn’t keep laughing like his parents, but even doesn’t feel bad at other’s words, and not the least on being called a horse. Krishna would make Vishal bend to his knees and climb his back whenever. Vishal too carrying Krishna on his back would roam about happily for long hours. If Krishna were to pluck a far-lying fruit or flower, then kneeling vishal down, he would climb his shoulders and direct him to that place. Younger to Vishala and Krishna is Vishal’s younger brother Devaprastha. We all call him Deva. Truly like a Deva’s son, handsome and tender, is our Deva. We all seat him in our midst and enjoy beautifying him. Krishna with great passion does his beatification (shringar). Anyone might ask Deva- You are a demigod. “Yes”, Deva never denies it. Whose demigod? On asking Deva, he would run holding the hands of Balaram, Krishna or the nearest person and lean against him. His sisters-in-law would tell him- Sweetie (लालजी), you are a demigod! Bless us. His sisters-in-law are no less in pulling his leg. Deva in his innocence says- “I am Young. I am a young demigod. Elder is Balaram Dada, Krishna Dada and Bhadra Dada. You ask them. They will load you with blessings.” Elder to Deva, is his real sister Nandira, our Nandira Jiji. She is younger to Tejasvi’s sister Mandira Jiji, but always tags along with her. It looks like both are the daughters of the same mother.
Madhumangala and Chote Tau
Chote Tau is even oblivious of his breakfast and lunch time. Choti tai tells us all- Atleast eat a little. All are thin. You all keep coming to my place and eat as much curds and butter you want. Choti Tai says- “Deva is like a tiny insect, and Vishal, just eating a single morsel runs off.” Krishna keeps feeding Vishal and if fed by the lotus-like tender hands of Krishna, why would he sit to eat his mother’s food. To accept food from Krishna’s hands, even Madhumangala opens his mouth wide and says “Host (यजमान), Fire god lives in a Brahmana’s mouth. It is Punya to offer oblations in fire with one’s very hands. Why do you trouble the Brahmin to move his hands?” Madhumangala would say- In honey (sweet), curds and ghee, leftovers is not an offence. Chote Tauji repeating these words of Madhumangala would often immerse himself in laughter.