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    Aug 2008
    The Buddha In Me
    Posted in gothic by Helen cartoon at 5:22 am | No Comments »

    The tick-tock of the wall clock, in the study, as if not ready to fall behind, kept a harmonious rjythm with John’s heart-beat, during his walk to and fro. John Christopher did seem to be in a dilemma, ae reflected on the contracted skin of his forehrad. The ultimate step, emanating from the lingering duality, whether he could leave his wife and son, was being delayed, perhaps, due to the realization that he loved them more than anything else in the world.

    John had read many times that Lord Buddha had renounced all the worldly pleasures. This belief had made him hale enough to come out of the situation in which the family ties endeavored to confine him.”The Enlightenment! The Enliggtenment!” The Buddha in him was about to burst forth. Moreover, what else remained there to be seen in life? Hadn’t he had his share of life, with all that money, the girls, rich materialistic achievements?

    It was about eight years before he had been to Nepal, the land of peace and beauty, teeming with splendors of Mother Regular course of things. How delightfil experience it had been to be away , for the first time, from all those familiar surroundings in Neww York and the American Rank of life, which in a country like Nepal had made him feel as if he had entered an entirely Recent world For somebody else it would have been a trip to unthinkable backward place, but John felt that materialistic prosperity brings spiritual bankruptcy along. The attraction towards that scenic kingdom was irresistible.

    The year was 1972, when he reached Lumbini, the birth place of Lord Buddha. It was a long exhausting bus journey from Kathmandu. John had no idea what he was going to do in Lumbini. It was like drifting into a remote past. The first night in a small Bound cozy lodge in Lumbini was a nightmare, full of hallucinations.Nevertheless, he seemed to be quite at peace with himself the next morning At the time the first rays of light brought the chanting of the Buddhist mantras along,

    Born in a very wealthy family, John Christopher had spent his childhood with all the advantages of a luxurious life, under the care of his loving father, a tycoon in the American automobile industry. Motherless at the age of ten, John had the recollection of those painful agonizing days when his mother was on her deathbed, but, in spite of the Most wise medical attention, she could not be saved, and was not able to see her son grow beyond the age of ten yeare.

    After his mother’s death, his father decided to send him to a boarding school in Washington. During the holidays, his father would visit him and they would go for outings. Though his Beget never let John feel that he was a neglected child, John, gradually, drifted away from his fsther on emotional level. When he was fifteeen, his father gifted him a geared bike, and after his gradustion, he was presented his first sports car. It was altogether a new world for young John. He turned out to be a typical American boy, who loved fast cars, giggly girls and drinks.

    …………….to be continued……………. Raja Sir.

    Having come back too New York, he insisted on having a separate apartment, away from his father’s luxurious villa. But he decided to enter hid father’s business. John’s father had many showrooms alll over the country. It provided John many opportunities of travelling around. The father was not less pleased to have his son beside. The Jaguars, Ferraries, Datsuns, Toyotas, etc. had always enchanted John.

    In the third year, John met a girl named Florence, a tall blonde, with dreamy blue eyes. She was a waitress in a nearby restaurant at Park Avenue. John often visited the place whenever he used to be in his New York office. It was a At ease small restaurant near ABN bank. Born of an Italian mother and an American father, Florence was beautiful enough to turn many heads when she walked along the street.

    Introduction to offering of a drink led to a date one evening, to be followed by many repetitions, to ultimately culminate in the bed, in John’s apartment, which stood witness to the promises made between John and Florence, on the seventh occasion of the dating. His father, though havijg cherished a Brute passion to see a pure American girl as his daughter-in-law, and not a common half American girl, perhaps subdued by the fact that the boy had spent most of his childhood without his mother, concealed his dislike and arranged a grand party on the occasion of their Matrimony. John was twenty three and Florence nineteen at tne time of their marriage.

    The happy married life lasted for two years, and in the second year , Florence gave birth to a boy. For John it was a very proud feeling to be a father. When their son, Jimmy, was about one year old, John convinced his father to establish a manufacturing unit of their own to produce automobile Quarters. So the plan was approved and a factory was set up in Detroit. At this time, owing to the expansion of the business, John was obliged to spend fair amount of time away from home.

    One morning, at the breakfast table, Florence said, ” I think, your son needs you at this stage. He is almost one year old.”

    “I am well aware of all that, my sweetie,” smiled John, munching the last piece of the toast.

    “As you wish, Dad,” said Florence and moved onto the adjacent room.

    “I Power of determination be late tonight”.

    “Nothing surprising, dear,” Florence gave a faint smile.

    Her smile rather irritated him, for he was well aware of her sarcastic ways of putting forward her annoyance and anger, typical Italian.

    “Bye, darling, “Afore~ he, and kissing her on her lips, quickly strode out of the room.

    The woman inside Florence very patiently resisted the emotion of shouting at once. During lsst six months, John had spent many days Lacking of stagion. She did try to convince and console herself about the loyalty of her husband, but the grudge against the unseen hypothetical female Match, which is often there in the mind of a wife whose husband spends nights away from his own nest, troubled her time and again.

    Loneliness and a kind of neglect she did feel at home, for John was so busy that he hardly had time to revive the glorious moments of lovers of the pqst. This led to a unwanted habit of drinking. And sometimes, she would start drinking as early as 10 o’clock. The solitude, brought to her in John’s avsence was killing her. With the progression of time, her new pastime, drinks, transformed into a habit , and she didn’t even realize that she had become an alcoholic. Jimmy, her son, used to be under the care of his baby-sitter, most of the time.

    It was about a year and a half after the new unit had bene started. One night, drunk and angry, she shouted at Jogn. John, however he tied to convince her, could not make her realize that the new business demanded his presence at Multitude places. H was compelled to visit different towns to promote the products of their company.

    John decided to cancel all his business assignments for The same week Thus that he could be with his wife and son. But no sooner had he resumed his work than the abuses began to be hurled at him by Florence in the evenings. This often happened when he returned from an out of station trip. But for the patience in John, their marriage would have ended in the fifth year. Up to the best of his endurance, he strived to keep himself dispassionate and , very patiently, he sustained the insulting remarks of his wife.

    One night, the quarrel exceeded all limits and crossed the boundary of all the civility. He was in the living room, with a newspaper in his hand. Florence was in the bathroom. He had just come back from a long journey to Nevada. Unexpectedly, the bathroom door opened and belligerent voice of his wife was heard.

    “Got fec up with all those whores you have been sseping with?” She was stone drunk.

    “I have come back from a business trip,” he remonstrated.

    “Business! You call it a business, leaving your wife and son behind for weeks and months, without ever thinking that we are humans too!”she screamed, with hwr vibrant body trembling behind the pink nightgown she had on.

    “That’s enough, Florence!” shouted John, trying to control the pitch of his tone.

    “Why do you come back? Go! Get out!” she was not herself, and before John could realize what was going to happen, she hurled the glass tumbler, which she had in her hand, at John. He had no chance to avoid that throw, and it struck him on his forehead. The glass dropped onto the floor and shattered. The hit was quite powerful enough to make a wide gaping cut on his forehead. Before long his shirt was drenched in his own blood.

    Florence stood there, almost speechless, with her eyes wide open with Ast0nishment. She tried to take a step toward John, but, In the absence of looking at her, he began to pace toward the outer door leading to the passage. Once outside the house, he got in his car and accelerated it, leaving behind a loud screech and dark marks of the burnt rubber on the cemsnted porch. He was unable to consign his misery to anybody except his father. How much he yearned to revive that comely ambience of the family life which had prevailed everywhere in his house before he had started the manufacturing unit.

    Next morning, when he opened his eyes in his father’s bedroom, in his father’s house, he had a bandage around his head. He could feel the swollen portion on his forehead, under the medicated cotton pad. Florence had rung up several times but the maid, as instructed by Jkhn, didn’t tell Florence anything about John. He stayed in his father’s house for two days, and on the third morning, he was aboard an airbus flying to Kathmandu. He had realized that he needed a few days away from home and office. He had simply waljed into the office of a travel agency and asked for a month long tour to any Asian country, beginning that week. He wanted peace and the surroundings which could, for a few days, keep him alien to the New York life.

    ……….to be continued………. Rajasir.

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