Gone with the wind

“Nina, wake up”. Ammachi was shaking me.
I got up irritated and then I remembered my dad.
“What is it Ammachi?” I sat down on the bed trying to read her face.
“Get ready and go to the junction and buy the newspaper. If Mathaichettan is there ask him, if he heard anything about your father and go to Kutten’s house and tell him to rent a bicycle and come fast”.
I got ready quickly and ran all the way to the junction. Shankaran Chettan was just opening his corner shop shutters.
“Chetta do you have today’s newspaper?”
“What is it Nina, Why do you want the paper?”
“Appa didn’t come home last night.”
He gave me Malayala Manorama newspaper and I read the headline
Kairaleeye kandu. Pidikkan kazhinjilla.(saw the ship Kairalee, but couldn’t catch)
Shankaran Chettan was laughing and I looked at him trying to find out why is he laughing. All those who came to the shop to buy the morning beedi and pan also started to laugh.
“Nina, it isn’t kairaleeye kandu. Pidikkan kazhinjilla.
It is kairaleeye kandu-pidikkan kazhinjilla.” (we searched but we couldn’t find the ship)I felt myself shrinking and I wanted to disappear from the face of earth. I slowly retracted back. Now the news of my malayalam reading is spreading across to all the citizens of Chengannur town. I could see people waiting for the bus is looking at me and laughing. One of the school boys waiting for the bus shouted
kairalee, ente thene”(kairalee my honey!!).
The bus came at that moment and I saw my mother getting down.
I rushed to her and asked
“Where is Appa? Is he ok? Why didn’t he come yesterday?”
My mother looked tired and upset
“He is gone Nina”
“Gone? Where?”
“Don’t know”
“What do you mean, don’t know?”
“He packed his bags and left”
“Why and when?”
“Nina, I don’t know”
My mother was about to cry and people were still watching us. I pulled her hand and started to walk towards Chengannur house.
“Amma tell me what happend?”
“Maria got admission to do Engineering and Medicine. Your father wanted her to do medicine and she wanted to do engineering. They fought and then it became a big fight and he went inside the room, took the money and his passport and left.”
“Where could he go Amma?”
“Anywhere Nina, he is a Malaysian citizen, he can go anywhere”
My mother was crying and I felt I had to grow up and take responsibility.
I squeezed her palm and told her
“Don’t cry Amma, you have ME. We will survive.”
“How Nina?, How can I raise four daughters on my own?”
“We will Amma, we will survive”.

July 16, 1979 was a monday.
The ship Kairalee has been missing since 1979

16 thoughts on “Gone with the wind

  1. i read u’r stories whenever i get chance…
    u should consider making this into a book…

    wow…another truely touching piece.. very well done

    like thanu said….u guys made it through, i’m sure it wasn’t easy!

    w/ Sneham

  2. Oh! Sarah….for that? Just for that,he left? Just like that?

    I dont know why, but we both think and do things at the same time.
    Very very strange! I posted a Malayalam story in my naalukettu just 15 minutes ago and came here and saw your post! I wrote the story about something like this.!!

    This is quite strange..!

  3. I’m so sorry. That must have been devastating. It seems like a pretty drastic reaction on your father’s part. Did it change your mom?

  4. What a difficult situation for your mom – and for you as well! How old were you at that time? You made it … that’s the main thing. I am sure that made you strong … inevtiably! GREAT post!!

  5. You are so strong.Even as a kid.I bet at that moment to hear something like that from you must have given your mom strength no matter.Trust in a child’s word because it is so pure and innocent.
    I know what it feels like when someone leaves you alone.It’s numbing in the beginning but then later we have to find our own.

  6. Q8techdrive:!!

    Thanu: hmmm.. survival was a need then


    mallu outlaw:who will read all these sad stories?


    lg: it is odd. we did the kalan post same time and now this!!

    Sujit:I still don’t know.. I gues my money is only for those who listen


    ann_am:yes it changed her.. she became even more difficult to live with.

    I Love Munich:I was 11

    Maya: It was hard…

    Dew Drops: !!

    Suemamma: Thank you..

  7. Oh my god…I cant even dream something like this..! I can imagine ur mom’s pain!!!
    One always fight but that doesnt mean end of the world but for a moment that fighting partner is gone or left makes so much difference!
    I am sure you did a great job by trying ur best to give courage to ur mom ..kudos to u

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