An obstinate old man and an obstinate tiger (Part-I)He had received birthday wishes in the morning. His younger brother and his wife had called him from New Delhi. His friends had called him from various parts of the country. His son, a computer engineer settled in the USA, daughter-in-law and his grand-daughter had called and wished him. Now again he was alone. Sitting on a chair he looked towards the framed photo of his departed wife. His mind travelled backwards when he was recuperating in the Srinagar Field Hospital after the 1971 war. He met his future wife in that hospital. Against the wish of the family members and the family members of his would-be wife in Goa, he married her.
After spending blissful conjugal life with his wife in various parts of the country as an Army Officer and later as the security supervisor of a cement factory in the vicinity of the forest of Madhya Pradesh, he lost his wife two years before. His son had already left for the USA.
After performing the last rites of his wife in a small church at Mhapusa in Goa fulfilling her last wish, he returned to lead his retired life in his home at Raipur. He lived there with a young Gond boy named Mongru. He had no problem in life – and that was his biggest problem. He was slowly being killed by the boredom.
By noon he finally decided. He brought out his old and trusted Mannlicher–Schönauer rifle and cleaned it. In the afternoon, he packed his rifle, live bullets, a portable tent and some essential belongings in his old Studebaker car. Along with his companion Mongru, he started his journey. Before leaving, he sent the keys of his house to his younger brother in Delhi by courier.
He started his journey to complete his last pending work.
(......To be continued: An obstinate old man and an obstinate old tiger (Part-II))