To begin with I lost a very dear friend, so my condolences to the great man. A person who despite the tremendous age gap between us managed to keep me glued with his magniloquence. I think he was in his late 60s . The senior most person in my office Phuleshwar Nath Jha. He was a champion in thumb fight. I could never beat him at that. Our characteristic hand shake was known to the entire office and everybody wanted to learn the way we did it. But we enjoyed the little attention we got out of it.
Once I was in a horrendous mood and not my chirpy usual self. So, he came to me and said "gussa kerne se kuch kaam nahin hota. tum hasti reha kero bitiya kaam hojayega" (anger never solves a problem. You should always smile and the difficulties will fade away)
when he got to know that i will leave office he used to say "aapke bina toh office suna legta hai" (The office does not seem lively without u..)
Now the office, the mail box... seriously reminds me of his presence.
He was a storehouse of interesting anecdotes from his previous workplaces all this while. I remember how surprising it sounded when he said he worked for 25 years at a stretch in the same organisation with no work issues. Phew, for me 25 days are enough. Like already my track record is not so great. My first job never took off as I never joined it after signing the contract with them. the second one lasted for a month where I ended up wrapping up work for three months in that duration. The third one, lasted for 4 months 18 days. Then I opted out for studying. Again this June, I joined PCRF and now its been 3 months .... hmmm lets see...
We often used to walk a kilometer together to the auto stands and he would narrate me all his familial problems. His concerns about his daughter's teacher training... I seriously miss him a lot. The other day he hurt his foot while getting off the bus. The entire day in the office he could not work because of the severity of pain. I got an ointment from the chemist shop and applied a bit on his foot. I remember how overwhelmed he was. He kept his hand on my head and did not say a word.
He left really for home early that day. After a week or so I got a call and he said:
"riddhi bitiya mera poora parivar tumhara shukriya kerta hai. tum us din nahin aati toh bahut jyada hi pareshani hojati. abhi bhi mein haspatal ke chakkar kaat reha hun per tum ne jo kiya woh aafis mein toh meri beti bhi nahi ker pati. jeeti reho. khush reho"
(MY entire family is thankful to you for what you did that day. Your timely help avoided a major problem. i am still taking rounds of hospital but what you did was more than what is expected out of you. may you have a really long life. be happy.)
This is the last time I spoke to him. His last words for me. Hope he is fine up there. I seriously miss him a lot. Our lunch time talks, hand shakes, thumb fight and his ability to smile in the worst of times.
wish I could have got a last chance to say goodbye.. to say how much he meant to me... He reminded me of my grandpa.. both of them must have met each other by now...