Friday, May 05, 2017

Waiting for Rajnikanth

- by Deepa Krishnan

Today I am waiting for a guy named Rajnikanth to come home. No woman ever waited for a man so much :) He was supposed to come yesterday but did not. I have been trying to entice him to my house for 2 years now.

Who is Rajnikanth? He is a 5ft tall adivasi man who is going to paint a traditional Warli mural on my wall. He lives 4hrs away from Mumbai, in a small hamlet. Each time I visit the village, I ask him "ghari yeta ka?". Will you come home? Each time he looks down and smiles and says nothing. He has a smile that lights up his face.

What he will earn from one city visit is more than his annual income. I have explained that. But the adivasi mind is a strange thing. It works in its own way. Everything cannot be bought by money. He is willing to do carpentry work in nearby town but not come to Mumbai. But finally he seems to be relenting...after multiple visits and relationship building and egging on by the headmaster of the school.

Yesterday he went to the town bus stop but did not board the bus :) Here I was waiting all day long like a jilted lover. Late at night when asked why, he said he didn't have money for the bus. A little white lie :)

Today again I am hoping that at 8:30 am he will board the bus.