He got up very late on that morning. It was quite unusual of him. He had the regular habit of getting up early. Something happened in the last night which made him sleep till late morning hours. He tried to recollect. He was sure he had gone to bed at the usual time.
Yes, he had a nice dream. She had appeared in his dreams after a long time. It must have been an early morning dream which prolonged his sleep. He suddenly remembered his mother telling him often that the early morning dreams always turn in to reality. If only his mother’s words were to come true!
He now recollected the dream in full. He was sitting in a garden quite forlorn. Suddenly the whole place seemed to brighten up. He heard a melodious singing originating from a distance far away. He could see somebody moving slowly towards him. Was she an Apsara? He had heard about the singing and dancing Apsaras (Celestial Maiden). This Apsara was not dancing, but surely the melodious singing was from her only. She came up to him and stood right in front of him. Her face was covered by a thin veil. He was simply mesmerized! He tried to unveil her face. Yes! He did it and felt he was in a trance. She gave him that most beautiful smile on earth! Suddenly he could understand why a thousand ships had sailed from
to bring back one single beautiful lady from ! True! Homer was fully justified in
writing that great epic! Troy
But alas! His dream was cut short by a knock on the door!
Rahul was quite a young boy when he saw her for the first time. He was on a visit to his relative’s house for attending a family function. He could not take off his eyes from this young bubbling beauty! She appeared to be shy, but still very talkative! She was quite unlike any village girl. Their eyes met once or twice. But there was nobody to introduce them and remove the strangeness between them. He was curious to know all about her. But kept his inquisitive nature on hold!
On his way back, Rahul spoke to his mother about this sweet girl. She made fun of him and asked him to explain the reasons for his undue interest! He felt quite shy, but still pressed his mother for details. The girl’s name was Vydehi and she was the beloved daughter of a gentleman called Anantha. This gentleman hailed from their village, but had shifted his residence to the city for doing business. He still had his lands in the village and would visit it occasionally during the year. He was said to be well-off and Vydehi was his only daughter.
Rahul was an intelligent boy. He always stood first in his class. None of the girls in his school interested him. But for the first time he found himself longing for this sweet girl. He was simply smitten by Vydehi! But she was in the far away city. He had to wait for her next visit.
The Dasara holidays arrived as usual. Rahul and his family were to attend the Navarathri festival in their relative’s house. It was the same house where Rahul had met Vydehi last year. As he was entering the house, Rahul’s heart started beating fast! And Lo! It even stopped beating suddenly! She was indeed there! The playful and bubbling Vydehi!
This time he had to act. He asked one of his classmates who knew her to introduce him to her. This done, he could speak to her without any inhibitions. Rahul found Vydehi equally reciprocative. They had some interesting conversations. Being brought up in the city atmosphere she was quite outspoken. They got to know each other and shared a lot of information between them. They loved each other’s company.
In the evening Rahul had to leave the place along with his mother. Rahul told her that he wanted to inform Vydehi before leaving. He searched for her everywhere. But she was not to be seen. Somebody told him that she had already left with her parents. Rahul was very much disappointed. His mother could make out his discomfiture. Even though she wanted to make fun of him again she did not. She knew he would be hurt.
That night Rahul could not sleep well. The fact that Vydehi had left the place without informing had hurt him very much. Even though they were together only for a short duration, he thought they had become very close. While he was quite sure of it from his side, did Vydehi develop same feelings towards him? He did think so. But the fact that she left the place without informing him proved it otherwise! But something deep in his heart was telling him that she was definitely interested in him. He had to wait for her next visit.
Vydehi was standing outside the house. Her parents had suddenly decided to visit another house in the village. They searched for her and found her standing outside. They asked her to accompany them. It was a surprise for her as she did not expect them to leave at that time. She wanted to inform Rahul before leaving. But being a girl, she felt shy to tell her parents so. Finding her hesitant to leave with them, her parents told her that they would be back in the place for the evening. She hoped against hope that Rahul would not leave till she came back.
She did come back to the place in the evening. But she could not find Rahul. She was hugely disappointed. While she regretted leaving without telling him, what worried her more was that Rahul might have mistaken her.
She had a dream that night. She saw Rahul sitting in a garden alone. As she was approaching him, she found him suddenly moving away! She shouted for him in despair. But he never turned back. He simply disappeared in the far away blue skies!
Vydehi’s father took a decision to sell all his lands in the village. He wanted to invest more money in his business in the city. Having sold the property entirely he had no interest in visiting the village often. In fact he almost cut off his links with the village. Rahul was not aware of it. He was waiting for the next occasion to meet Vydehi. He was sure that he could definitely meet her at least during the Navarathri festival.
The Navarathri festival arrived as usual. Rahul’s mother was quite sure that he would be particular to visit his relative’s house for the Navarathri function. She just wanted to avoid taking him there. She was aware that Vydehi’s father had sold his lands and may not visit the village anymore. She did not want her beloved son to get disappointed. At the same time she did not want to disappoint him more by telling him the fact.
As expected Rahul told his mother that he would accompany her for the function as usual. She was helpless. As he was entering the house Rahul’s eyes were searching for his beloved. But she was not to be seen. After some time he could make out that her family was absent. He also could gather the information that her father had no more interest left in the village to visit it. He suddenly felt a big vacuum in his life! All these days he was eagerly waiting to meet Vydehi and convey his feelings for her. He was totally dejected. His mother could understand his feelings. She simply kept quiet.
Rahul had a dream that night. He was sitting in a garden. He saw his beloved Vydehi coming towards him. She came very close to him. He wanted to touch her. But she suddenly moved away. He tried to follow her. But she just disappeared in the far away blue skies!
Years passed by. Vydehi had finished her graduation and was into her final year post-graduation now. The bubbly girl had grown up to be a young beauty. One could not take his eyes off on seeing her! She was not only brilliant in her studies, but was well trained in music. Her parents were looking for a suitable groom for their sweet daughter. Whenever they raised this issue with her, her face would turn red! She was not revealing her mind. But her eyes were always in search for somebody. So far they had not rested on the person they were eagerly awaiting for!
Rahul was working for a multinational company in the city. He had come a long way from his boyhood days in his village. He had grown up as a handsome young man. He had a big friends-circle and was liked by one and all. He had developed interest in music and art. He had made it a point to attend all important music programmes in the city. But his ears were hungry to hear the music from one unknown artist! He was always eager to hear that ‘unheard melody’! But it remained just ‘unheard’ so far!
He used to visit his village often to meet his parents. They were very happy for their son’s achievements. Rahul had never disappointed them in his performances during his brilliant student career. Now that he was employed and settled down in his life, they were looking for the next obvious move in his life. But he was not revealing his mind. As he was very close to his mother, his father had left it to her to bring up the matter.
Rahul was very particular in visiting his village on one special occasion. That was during the Navarathri festival. He also used to visit the relative’s house for the usual function. It was there that he had met her for the first time. It was also there that he had seen her last!
Like every year Rahul reached his village during the Navarathri festival this time. The function at his relative’s house was always held on the ninth (Navami) day of the festival. On the previous (Ashtami) day Rahul could not sleep well. In the early morning hours he had that beautiful dream! He had just unveiled her and saw her beautiful face! But the dream was cut off by knocking of his room door by his beloved mother. She asked him to get ready early for visiting his relative’s house.
As they were entering the house they could hear the sweet music. The Navarathri function used to have such programmes from different artists. But for Rahul’s ears the music appeared to be quite familiar. He could not believe his ears. It was the same music he had heard in his dreams on the previous night! He looked at his mother curiously. He thought she had a smile on her face which she was trying to hide!
He slowly approached the podium. The voice of the singer appeared to get louder and louder! At the same time he could get a full view of the singer better and better! Yes! It was the same face he had unveiled in his dreams! Rahul could not make out what he was seeing now was another dream or for real! He simply froze and stood there like a statue without moving any further!
He was shaken by his mother who asked him to take a seat. He woke up now to the reality and understood that what he was seeing and hearing now was for real. He sat down and heard the melodious music. It was indeed the heavenly music he had heard from the most beautiful person of his dreams!
As the music came to an end the singer was being introduced to the audience. When the turn of Rahul came, his mother told him that she was Vydehi who was visiting the village after such a long time with her parents. Their eyes met after such a long time and they could not have enough of it! They were searching for each others since ages!
However much he tried Rahul could not meet Vydehi in privacy. There was absolutely no scope for it in that crowded function. Unlike in their childhood, they could not meet without attracting the attention of others. As he was leaving with his mother, he felt disappointed. His mother told him that there would be some guests at their house and they should reach home early. He left the place reluctantly.
Back in the house Rahul asked his mother who the guests were going to be. But his mother was not forthcoming. She told him to wait. He sat with his parents and was discussing his life at the city when the sound of a vehicle stopping in front of their house was heard. A senior couple walked in with their daughter in tow. It was none other than Vydehi and her parents! They had come with a proposal for Rahul at the invitation of his mother! The hungry eyes had another joyous union!
The parents asked Rahul and Vydehi to sit together and give their consent after mutual discussion. They proceeded to the garden together. The parents were not to wait for long. They saw the pair coming back within a short time holding their hands! Their dreams had come true!
A V Krishnamurthy
30th July 2008