Monday, 1 October 2018

part 43 : To Err is Human

ae zindagi tere bina jeena nahi hai mujhe
sajada karoon, rab se kahoon, de de dua mein tujhe
mehfoos rakhloon tujhe apne dil mein, mere dil ki hai yeh sada
woh bheege pal, woh bheegi yaadein…….
(from Manorma)


JAIPUR: NEXT MORNING


"Angad kisey dhoondh rahe ho?" Gayatri teased her would-be son-in-law as his gaze wandered around at the breakfast table. Kripa had not joined them from breakfast as she caught up with her bhabhis, cousins, nieces and nephews on the other side of the courtyard.



"Wo…kuch nahin…wo…aise hi," Angad lowered his eyes from embarrassment as Kripa's relatives were busy stuffing hot jalebis and creamy rabri into their new guest from Mumbai.





"Lagta hai kunwar saheb ko hamari rabri aur jalebi pasand nahin aayi," Kripa's chachi complained.


"Nahin…nahin chachi….aisi baat nahin hai," he replied awkwardly; he had never been so pampered in his life and felt guilty about getting so much attention after he had abandoned the daughter of the family for almost two years. Moreover, he was dying to see Kripa all morning. She had disappeared last night with the women and had not re appeared since then.



"Blood reports aayi kya?" an anxious Suryabhan asked.


"Nahin papa….main bas naashta karke hospital hi jaa raha tha…..soch raha tha jaane se pehle…" he paused.



Suryabhan chuckled, "Kripa se mil loon? Haan….bhaiyya koi Kripa ko bulana," he yelled, "waise Angad….Kripa ko bhi saath le jao….achcha hai tum dono is bahaane kuch waqt guzaar loge."



Angad was stunned and a little embarrassed, as if his father-in-law-to-be had read his thoughts. He just nodded with a faint smile and thought, "yeh dono baap-beti se kuch chupana mushkil hai."




"Papa…aapne bulaaya," Kripa walked in a white and blue churidaar with one of her baby nephew's in her arms. Angad was struck by the glow on her face as she played with the infant in her arms. The recent dialysis session and blood transfusion at the hospital had helped her feel more energized and full of life like before. Of course, Gayatri and Suryabhan would argue that it was Angad's presence reflecting on their daughter's vivacity. They still remembered how lifeless she looked that day in Kishangarh when they had rushed to her clinic after Dr Mani's call. The sight of Kripa cuddling with the baby was very heartening for Angad; he was more determined than ever to see her one day with their child in her arms.




"Haan beta….jao Angad ke saath hospital chali jao…..aaj saari reports bhi aa gayi hongi."



Kripa turned red as her cousins gave her teasing glances. She handed over her nephew to her mom and glanced at Angad, "haan papa….reports shayad aa gayi ho….chalo Angad." She said softly, aware of her cousin's eyes on them. With a faint smile, Angad took leave of the family and led the way to the door as fast as he could. They rushed out the door as Kripa's bhabhis and Harshini giggled at Angad's desperation to be with Kripa, and admired the good looking couple.



"Baap re…tumse baat karne ko taras gaya tha main," Angad grabbed her hand in the backseat as the driver took off towards the hospital.



"Zyaada betaabi dikhaoge tho mere bhai aur bhabhiyan tumhari khoob mazaak udhaayenge," she laughed heartily.


Angad placed his arm around her and gazed into her eyes, "kitni pyaari lagti ho jab aise muskura ti ho……never stop smiling Kripa." As always, his penetrating gaze had quivering effect on her heart. Overwhelmed by his warmth and proximity to her body; her crimson expression reflected the somersaults her heart was experiencing. She held his hand in hers and caressed it with her fingers. With her voice choking with emotions, she let out her innermost feelings for the first time since she had seen him yesterday, "I missed you Angad……apne aap ko bahut samjhaaya maine ki tumhare bina reh sakti hoon…..par jitna tumhein bhulaana chaaha, utna hi tum mere andar samaa gaye……shayad hamare pyaar ki gehraayi tumse judaa hoke hi samajh paayi main."




She could not hold her tears anymore; a guilt-ridden Angad held her close and then tried to lighten up her mood, "waise mujhey tumhari yaad bilkul nahin aayi."

She lifted her face from his shoulder and gave him a curious look, "jaante ho na…mujhey jhooth se sakht nafrat hai…phir jhooth kyun bol rahe ho?"


"Ok baba…aati thi," he chuckled and brushed his cheek against her soft hair, "lekin sirf raat ko….jab akela hota tha….tho sochta tha tum mere kareeb hoti tho kitni achchi neend aati."


"Apni badmaashi nahin chhodi abhi tak!" She chided, "Aur din mein?"


"I had no time to think about anyone…..shayad tumhein bhulaane ka bahana tha wo," he said huskily.


"Shaadi ke baad tho aisa nahin karoge na?" she smiled dreamily, her head leaning on his shoulder. Angad was ecstatic to hear her talk about their marriage. He was happy that she was thinking positively and like any other woman, had aspirations for a happy married life. He knew, this hope could help her fight her illness better.


"Shaadi ke baad kaam chhod doonga main….sirf tumhare saath rahoonga raat-din….aur tumhari seva karoonga," he humored her.



'Na baba," she sat up, "kaamchor pati nahin chaahiye mujhey……pagal kardoge mujhey agar har waqt ghar par rahe….." She sniffed, wiped her tears and gave him a big smile, 'aur waise bhi……kaam nahin karoge tho khaayenge kya…..aur bachche….." she went on and on…



With a silent gaze, he admired her lit up face and enthusiasm as she blabbered on about their future life as a married couple. In the past, he had always wanted to fast forward his life to the point when he would be a very successful, wealthy and powerful man, but today he wanted to freeze these tender moments with Kripa on their way to the hospital.




The future was still a mystery, but the present was a reality and he pledged to make every moment of their present moments, memorable forever.




AT THE HOSPITAL:


Angad and Kripa anxiously awaited the reports as Prithvi left the office. Kripa chewed her nails nervously, a part of her was anxious to live and belong to Angad, hoping for a tissue match between their blood samples. On the other hand, her conscience reprimanded her for her selfish desires-how could she want Angad to undergo such a painful and potentially threatening procedure to save her life?



"Kripa…stop chewing your nails," Angad pulled her fingers away from her lips, "sab theek ho jaayega….tumhara bhagwan hai na…..wo zaroor hamara match karwaa dega."



"Angad yeh baat nahin hai…..mujhey lagta hai agar match ho gaya tho …tho tumhein kitni ….." he covered her mouth and scolded, "taqleef hogi? Aaj ke baad aisi baat bhi nahin karna! Samjhi! Aur apne bhagwan se puja mat karna ki hamare tissue match na ho."



"Sorry," she murmured against his hand, "lekin yeh mere bhagwan kab se ho gaye? Tumhare bhi tho hain."



He clenched his teeth and muttered, resting his elbows on his knees, "mere bhagwan tho tab honge Kripa jab wo mujhse mera pyaar cheen na bandh kar denge!"



She placed her hand on his shoulder, 'aisa nahin kehte Angad….jo bhagwan karta hai….achche ke liye karta hai." He looked back and nodded with a smile.



Prithvi returned shortly with a sullen expression. The way he shuffled through Kripa's chart and lab reports portend an ominous report. Kripa and Angad exchanged glances and knew in their hearts that their HLA types did not match.




"How bad is the match?" Angad mustered the courage to ask.



"Only 2 out of 6 HLA types match Angad…..but you know these days with strong immunosuppressive medicines (medicines which suppress the body's natural immunity and reduce chances of rejection), we could try," Prithvi suggested. Kripa's heart sank as she saw the pain on Angad's face. In a way, she was relieved that Angad would not have to go through the pain and risk for her, but the woman in her who loved him immensely, was disappointed and disheartened. Once again, all those dreams about their wedding and kids seemed inaccessible and far-flung. The ray of hope that her heart had selfishly cherished was dim and distant once again.




"Not acceptable!" Angad replied vehemently, "I cannot let Kripa suffer anymore than she already is…..yes there might be a chance the transplant might work with my mis-matched kidney…..but at what cost Prithvi? A lifelong dependency on those strong medicines with horrendous side effects? Yes, she might survive…but will not be able to live…..and I want Kripa to live a normal and healthy life like anyone else…..I am sure we have other options Prithvi! Mujhey vishwas hai Kripa ko uske match ki kidney zaroor milegi!"



Kripa and Prithvi were taken aback by Angad's viewpoint and positive stance.



"Angad….Kripa ke relatives ke samples bhi test kiye the….there is either a mismatch in the blood or in the tissue…perfect match kahin nahin mila," Prithvi sighed.



'Mere relatives? Kya unhone bhi?" Kripa was shocked.



"Haan Kripa…kal raat ko hi sabke samples collect kiye the maine," Prithvi nodded, "they all love you Kripa….they want you to live." Angad smiled for a change and squeezed Kripa's hand, "and you were hiding from all of them?"




"Angad….I just can't expect anyone to go through with such a big sacrifice," she looked away to hide her tears.



"I guess….we don't have too many live donor options then," Angad stated matter-of-factly.


Prithvi pursed his lips and nodded, "the problem is that we really don't have a good registry for cadaver or brain dead donors in Jaipur area…..Mumbai, Delhi, Gujarat would be better."


"Phir hum Mumbai jaayenge." Angad declared.



"Nahin…main nahin jaaoongi!" Kripa stood up and replied firmly, "agar Mumbai hi jaana hota tho wahan se aati kyun? Jaisa chal raha hai chalne do Angad…..dialysis is working for me."



Angad sighed; he did not want to get into an argument with Kripa. He was aware how sensitive she was about being close to her home and her dream.



Angad placed his arm around her and took her aside, "Kripa tum jaanti ho dialysis is just a temporary solution……it's just buying time before a transplant…..poori zindagi thode hi aise jee sakti ho?"



"Angad….agar meri kismat mein  choti zindagi likhi hai…tho main kya kar sakti hoon?" she asked, feeling a bit stifled in the hospital surroundings.




" chalo…thodi der baahar chalte hain Kripa…..let's get some fresh air," he read her mind.




Prithvi waved a solemn goodbye to them and then turned around to make a call,
"Hello….is this Dr Amit Kumar's clinic from Gurgaon? Yes….I am Dr Prithvi Bose…..can I send a sample in for a potential match? Yes…yes…I am pretty sure….this client will pay anything for a transplant…..theek hai main aaj hi sample courier kar deta hoon."

………………………………………………



"Driver….yahan ke sab se achche bazaar le chalo," Angad helped Kripa into the car and ordered.


"Bazaar kyun?" she asked. The smiles and glow from her face had vanished since they had walked out of Prithvi's office. Angad cursed the lab report and his fate, but was determined to keep a positive outlook and instill the desire to live a long and happy life in Kripa.


"Mujhey shopping karni hai baba!" He retorted.


"Phir driver Johri bazaar le chaliye," she instructed the driver.


The car ride back from the hospital was the most tedious and depressing fifteen minutes they had spent since they had reunited yesterday. Kripa tried her best to block any thoughts about their future together; Angad thought of ways to convince Kripa to move to Mumbai with him.


They strolled around the crowded bazaar after letting go of the driver, "hum wapas apne aap aa jaayenge bhaiyya," Angad said.



"Let's check out some jewelry," Angad clasped her hand and pulled her away.


"Angad…mujhey nahin chaahiye jewelry!" she protested.



"Mujhey chaahiye!" He grinned.



"Tum kab se jewelry pehen ne lage?"



He scrunched his nose playfully and winked, "jab se tere naina….mere naina se…laage re…." and hummed the popular song from 'saawariya.' Kripa could not help smiling at his jest. She knew he was trying to uplift her downcast spirits.


After checking out various pieces, Angad selected a beautiful antique silver bracelet with matching earrings for her.



"Angad…..please I don't want all this."



"Chup!" He placed his finger on his lips, "I want my wife to look pretty…..so you can't deprive me of this pleasure…samjhi?"


"Lekin….Angad….main…main…" her voice choked with emotions.



'Yeh pack kar do bhaiyya," he ordered, "aur haan ab ek ring bhi dikhaaiye bhaiyya."



"Ring?" she asked.


Without replying, Angad slipped a beautiful diamond into her ring finger, "now this hand looks less barren." She was in a daze, too overwhelmed to protest or say anything. Perhaps, that was the best thing for her to do at that moment- if buying things for her gave him pleasure- she had no right to deny him that happiness.


"Angad…wo pehli waali ring ka kya hua?" she asked softly


"Wo Mumbai mein hai….and I hate seeing you without anything on your fingers…..shayad is bahaane tum mujhey yaad kar liya karogi kabhie kabhie," he teased her.



Kripa stared at him and thought, "tumhein bhoolne se pehle shayad main apne aapko hi bhool jaaoongi Angad," and then smiled at him. Angad paid with his credit card and they walked out of the store.



"Kripa….yahan ek famous mandir hai na?"


"Haan…Hanuman mandir…..bachpan se hi hum yahan aate the….bahut maanyta hai is mandir ki……chaloge wahan?" her face lit up at the suggestion.


"Why not? Dekhein tumhare bhagwan kaise lagte hain."


She smacked him playfully, "hamare bhagwan! Mere ya tumhare nahin! Bolo…HAMARE!"



He placed his arm around her and kissed her forehead, "hamare bhagwan….ab khush?"


…………………………………….


INSIDE THE FAMOUS HANUMAN TEMPLE:



As they stood in front of the deity with folded hands, Kripa offered her prayers with her eyes shut, Angad gazed at her peaceful face and prayed silently, "bhagwan….aapne mere liye tho kabhie kuch kiya nahin hai…..lekin Kripa ke wo saare sapne sach ho jaayein jo usne dekhe hain."


A woman's voice interrupted his thoughts, "beta….yeh apni patni ko pehnaa do." A startled Angad looked up and saw an elderly, well dressed woman smiling at him. She held a red colored cloth in her hand, "yeh odhni hai….aaj meri poti ki mangni huyi hai…..tho mandir mein sabko yeh baant rahi hoon…..main chaahti hoon sab suhaagan auraton ka aashirwaad meri beti ko bhi mile."



Kripa opened her eyes and stared in disbelief as Angad accepted the red 'odhni' from the former Maharani of Jaipur. The Maharani smiled at Kripa and walked off with her entourage carrying boxes of sweets, more odhnis, puja thaalis towards the other devotes in the temple.




Angad unfolded the ornate red piece of cloth and placed it around her head, "lagta hai tumhare ….mera matlab hai hamare bhagwan ne bhi humein aashirwaad de diya….suna na unhone kya kaha? Tumhein suhaagan kaha….Kripa….yeh laal odhni khud bhagwan ke mandir mein tumhein mili hai…..kya abhi bhi tumhein shaq hai ki tum theek nahin hogi?"

Tears of joy rolled down her eyes; the ray of hope that had dimmed after the lab reports suddenly seemed brighter and closer. God himself had reinstated his faith in their love and their future together; it did not matter to her if she had no matching donors yet. If the odhni was symbolic of God's blessings, she would do her part in ensuring their happiness in future.


They walked out of the temple, hopeful and optimistic. As soon as they stepped out, they were greeted by the wrath of thunder and lightning.



"Angad!" Kripa clutched his arm, "lagta hai baarish aane waali hai."



"Yaad hai Kripa…..library ke bahar jab main aur tum baarish mein kaise bheege the?"



"Haan yaad hai," she smiled coyly as she recalled the first time she had felt a crush for Angad when their soaked bodies had accidently touched each other.


As they walked down the streets, the wind had picked up and things were flying all around them, almost like they were in the middle of a twister. Kripa held onto Angad as she lost her balance in the gusty winds, "Angad….looks like a dust storm is on it's way…..yeh bahut kum hota hai yahan….chalo jaldi se taxi karte hain…we could get caught in this storm."


Angad placed his arm around her as Kripa held the red odhni on her head firmly. If that piece of cloth was symbolic of her life and future, there was no way she was going to let go of it. As they treaded the dusty streets in search of a cab or a rickshaw, the clouds roared in the sky and let out a torrential downpour, a welcome relief to the hot and dry city of Jaipur.  The blinding rain made it difficult for them to spot any cabs or means of transport.


'ANGAD!" Kripa shrieked as her foot slipped on a ditch in the street. For a moment, she thought she had lost sight of Angad.


"KRIPA!" he yelled back and grabbed her hand. He pulled her up and firmly placed his strong arm around her tiny waist.


'Angad…I am scared! Mujhey laga tum door chale gaye." she cried, "Please don't leave me alone…….yeh bahut bura toofan hai…look all the streets are flooded…..how are we going to get home?" The water level was rising rapidly as the over used drainage system of the city was clogged with the downpour.


He pulled her closer and gazed into her fearful eyes, "Kripa….main hoon na….tumhein kuch nahin hoga….don't worry I will get you home safely……and I promise I will never leave you." The storm had given vent to her innermost fears- of dying and of separation from Angad. For the first time, she realized that what she really wanted from her life.



Her frail body trembled as the sharp deluge from the sky pierced her delicate skin. She hugged his drenched body and did not let go of him, "Angad….Angad," she sobbed, "I want to live…..main jeena chaahti hoon…..apne liye nahin….tumhare liye nahin…..hamare liye jeena chaahti hoon…..please mujhey bacha lo Angad….take me to Mumbai with you….I want to get better…..for us Angad….I know I am being selfish….but I want US….that's all I want Angad…."



Angad looked up and thanked the rain gods. The rain had calmed down a bit, as the heavy torrents had been replaced by gentle, caressing drops. The wind had died down; people were back on the flooded streets, treading water with their pants and salwaars rolled up. Traffic had come to a standstill as the knee deep water made it impossible to drive.


He smiled and held her close to his warm and soaked body, "Kripa….yes….we will go to Mumbai….and you will live…for us….I promise." He picked her up in his arms and carried her through the flooded streets. With her arms around his neck, her red odhni on her wet hair, they strode along like a knight who had just rescued his princess from a dangerous storm.



Please enjoy this awesome new song by Atif and Alka from "Kismat konnection' as Angad and Kripa treaded back home with her in his arms on this wet afternoon with a new resolution and hope for their life together….

'bakhuda tum hi ho'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cx4Em-DkGbE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3CKIl_CyWP8&feature=related



Hoooo.. aaaa..
Tum hi ehsaason mein, tum hi jazbaaton mein
Tum hi lamhaton mein, tum hi din raaton mein
Bakhuda tum hi ho, har jagah tum hi ho
Haan main dekhun jahan jab
Us jagah tum hi ho, ye jahan tum hi ho
Wo jahan tum hi ho, is zameen se falak ke darmiyaan tumhi ho
Tum hi ho beshumaar, tum hi ho..
Tum hi ho mujh mein haan, tum hi ho
Tum hi ho
Hooo…
Kaise batayein tumhe aur kis tarah ye
Kitna tumhein hum chahte hai
Saaya bhi tera dikhe to paas jaake
Us mein simat hum jaate hain
Raasta tum hi ho, rehnuma tum hi ho
Jiski khwaahish hai humko
Wo panah tum hi ho
Tum hi ho beshumaar, tum hi ho
Tum hi ho mujh mein haan, tum hi ho
Tum hi ehsaason mein, tum hi jazbaaton mein
Tum hi lamhaton mein, tum hi din raaton mein
Kaise batayein tumhein
Shab mein tumhare
Khwaab haseen jo aate hain
Kaise batayein tumhein
Lavz wo saare
Jism ko jo mehkate hain
Iftida tumhi ho, intihaan tum hi ho
Tum ho jeene ka maksad, aur wajah tum hi ho
Bakhuda tum hi ho..
Har jagah tum hi ho, haan main dekhun jahan jab
Us jagah tum hi ho
Ye jahaan tum hi ho, wo jahaan tum hi ho
Is zameen se falak ke darmiyaan tum hi ho
Tum hi ho beshumaar, tum hi ho
Tum hi ho mujhe mein haan
Tum hi ho, tum hi ho
Ooooo…….



The family was relieved to see them back home safely. With a new vigor, Kripa ran to her room to change back into dry clothes. The wet journey back home had changed her life forever. Two years ago, the walk in the rain at Sanjeevani had changed her life and perception about Angad forever. Today, the rain had convinced her that what she wanted from her life foremost was Angad and his love…..yes Maya and her memories mattered to her, but her responsibility towards her deceased sister had to wait for now….first she had to survive and fight the enemy within her…..and live for her family….for herself…for Angad…..and above all for their love…….


Angad peeled off the wet clothes from his body; he had never felt so content and complete as he did after this soaked afternoon. He recalled Kripa's heart wrenching words….I want to be selfish….for us…..


"Nahin Kripa….apne liye khushi chaahna selfishness nahin hai…..I am glad you have started thinking about your own happiness now…."

He pulled out his damp cell phone from his pocket and noticed several missed calls, "yeh tho America ka number hai…..was Armaan trying to reach me?"


…………….to be contd………..

bheegi

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