I woke listening to baang from the old mosque across the street. “Goodbye Muscat”, I said in my mind. The flight was silent. I slept for most of the hours, resting my head on mother’s shoulder.
There is something enchanted with the roads of Peerumedu. The leaves on either side of the road were like little children drenched in rain. They moved on wind’s cadence. The path was muddy with tiny grasses extending their head out of the soil. The car moved to the old and fabled house of “Madathil”.
“There comes Janu and family. Its vacation.”, the family says.
“Janu, Shall we open the suit case.”, asks aunties expecting Yardley and Dove.
“Govindan Aliya, Scotch Whisky”, uncles consider my father as their imperishable source of foreign liquor.
“My kids are finally here.”, Grandparent’s wait is over..
For me, this is freedom. I can now run to the top of the mountain whose height cannot be measured. I can wait under the lemon tree until the cool breeze run chills down the trunk to make a fruit fall down. Kitkat, Toblerone, Cousins, Freedom; this is a remarkable blend.
Vacation at Madathil that year was different. We had an extra member. Towards the backyard of the house, under a roof made of hay was a long tailed, always merry, white cow.
“We call her Velumbi.”, said Vijayan Valiyachan.
I promise, my vacation had exceptionally transformed from that moment onwards. I forgot the mountain whose height cannot be measured, the lemon tree that gives fruits when cool breeze run chills down the trunks, kitkats and toblerons. It got shrunk to me and Velumbi. The good thing with her was that, she doesn’t dispute. All she wanted from me was an occasional feed of hay and water.
Every dawn and dusk, Kunjumon came to milk Velumbi. He splashes water over her breast and pulls it to the last drop of milk.
“Amma, why is Velumbi producing milk when she has no calf?” I asked mother one day. She said nothing. May be her calf was dead. Or could it be taken away from her?
Two months passed in quick time. I was sitting on the veranda with cousins. We saw a huge man entering the gates. We watched him approaching.
“Mothalaai, Im here”, he roared. He had a huge knife hanging on his shoulder.
“It’s standing inside the shed at backyard. I need the cash now.”, said Valiyachan
After five minutes, we saw Velumbi walking out the gates of the old and fabled house of “Madathil”.
Was Velumbi taken to her calf? Was she taken to another house like ours? I never knew.
Two days passed. I slept on my mother’s shoulder on our way back to Muscat.