Aug 1, 2011

My student

The story I am telling is about an eight year old Sikh boy. His name was Noor . He was tall and thin, his rosy face had a glaze, over shining the sun rays and his golden eyes penetrated deep to the bottom of heart of anybody when he raised his face. The mount of hair over his head was daily tied by his mother with a black apron which he called his ‘Juri’ .
I was appointed as a tutor for this rosy boy with golden eyes. I was myself a sixteen year old girl but pretended to look much older in order to convince Noor’s mother about my experience in teaching. For this I used to wear Churidar and Kameez with loose-fitting and lied to her that I was already an M.Sc. Mathematics, whereas in reality was a first year student in my college.
The tuition bureau through which I had got this tuition had given me all the instructions I followed to impress the child’s mother. When I entered their house for the first time, I was stopped by to big dogs, barking terribly and almost ready to kill me.
I was about to scream, when two servants of the house came to my risk. The dogs were taken away but I was still panting with exhaustion.
Inside the house I witnessed such a display of wealth which made me nervous. In the drawing-room, where I was made to sit there were huge sofas decorated with silver coated designs and the roof was full of beautiful bulbs. They were so many and I was so curious about the number that I really counted them while waiting for the host. They were 128 altogether!! The front wall was glorified with a big statue of Vishwakarma, the god of architect, which was either of gold or covered with gold plates.
The child Noor was studying in class four. His mother was a giant lady with same beautiful golden eyes. She instructed me in details about how to teach her special child and I wondered why she wanted a tutor for a child who was already too brilliant.
His mother herself seemed to be well-educated but perhaps it was not seen good for the people of their status to teach their own children. Later on I realized that this was one of the wealthiest families in Delhi, in which number of servants in the house and tutors for their children were counted as status symbol!!
Yet she agreed to pay me only eleven hundred rupees for teaching one hour daily. I hesitated for a moment but the boy was so cute and looking at me curiously that I fell in love with him.
Those were the days when I had a lot of problems at home front. My father was yet not convinced with my decision of studying in Delhi and I had left trying any more. I used to stay in private hostels but they were pretty expensive. Almost every next month I had to think before paying rent and many a times a shifted to my friend’s place when I was unable to manage next month’s rent. In this situation, having a reliable income no matter how small it was, was not less than an achievement.
I tried to teach Noor with utmost attention. Initially he rebelled against the work load I gave him,saying he already had a lot of home work from school and expected me to help in that. But gradually my patience won over his moods and soon he started loving the fact that he was studying chapters in advance before his school teacher taught it.
During his unit tests Noor’s mother told me to give him extra hours, but it was difficult for me. I had not told them that I was in college and I too had lot of assignments everyday.
After 2-3 months Noor’s mother became a little friendly with me or better to say concerned about me. She used to ask about my parents and studies. Even Noor talked a lot about his friends and cousins but only when the study room was closed and his mother was not there. He used to blink his golden eyes when talking about “girls’’ and also shared with me his future plans for dating when he would be allowed for doing so.
He also shared his chocolates with me insisting to listen to all his innocent fantasies. Gradually I became so attached with him that I spent all my leisure hours with him even after we were done with his homework.
Seasons changed…it was time for exams and I needed to work hard, yet I did not want to escape those beautiful moments with Noor. I continued teaching him during my exams too, though I was not happy with the meager fees his mother gave. Overall my concern was Noor, and his mother knew this. She in fact said once that she would not pay for those extra hours I spent teaching his son as she thought I was teaching out of love and not for getting paid..
After the exams, it was my summer break and I went to my hometown. I missed him a lot and just wished to get back as soon as possible. [continued...]

No comments: