Ah! Another pleasant day! Thank you oh Lord for everything healthy that you have provided me – the roots, the trunk, the branches, the leaves and this very scenic place – to live with. You have been very kind to me all this long and I pray with all my heart to stay blessed this way. Thank you once again and have a good day.
Hello friends, it’s a great pleasure to share with you the happenings of a day in my life. For starters, let me introduce myself to you all. My name is Byan and I’m a Banyan tree. I was named so incidentally, is what I was told later by the very lady who had planted me when she was a little girl. She could manage to pronounce Banyan as just Byan and the rest as they say, is history.
Well then, to begin with I start off my day with a prayer to thank the almighty above for providing me with yet another opportunity to enjoy the sunrise and the early morning breeze. An early doze of CO2 does a great deal of good to my entire system and simply makes my day. I’m in this place called Ramgarh and I’ve been around this road bend for about half a century now. With the sunrise, one by one come in the women folk and pray to the Sun God as they go in circles around my trunk. They even apply vermillion to my trunk as well as tie sacred threads to my aerial roots. It makes me feel loved and I wait for these moments every morning. As the sun rises way up the sky, my only pastime is to watch the zooming vehicles which inevitably slow down near my place, thanks to the steep curve that the road takes. However I look forward to and take pleasure in welcoming any of the traveler guests to take rest and cool-off under the shade that my branches provide.
The time before dusk is my favorite as I enjoy the company of kids playing near and under my branches. The little games that the children play around – by hiding behind my trunk or by hanging and swinging on to my aerial roots – bring out the kid in me. Every kid is unique in its own way and I’m a standing proof for such a statement.
Love brings along with it, a lot of pain and if I’m allowed to say it loud, IT HURTS. The numerous names of couples carved within the hearts on my trunk are testimony to this. I’m delighted to play host to the young love birds who get cozy underneath my shade at twilight, but many a times I’m left scratched and bleeding.
With the nightfall arrives the moon and so does the group of old men with their well trimmed and shaped moustaches, well armed with lanterns and their pack of cards. They gamble till well past midnight before they let me go to sleep.
The only sad thing about being what and where I am is the loneliness that accompanies along. It wasn’t all the same till about a decade ago. My dad is a part of Bollywood history, infamous for having acted in the blockbuster movie of my generation “Sholay”! So were a few of my uncles and aunts who acted as side stumps as the actors of the movie danced and sang around them. And it was all over 8-9 years ago when they were all chopped down in the name of development. How did I escape was a mystery to me until I heard two villagers talk about the same. It isn’t something to be proud of but rather is an embarrassing fact to know that the place I’m standing at is not of any significant value. In their own words, “This tree being very close to the road could any day be chopped down by the government labors in the name of road widening. So why bother?” and I was like “Hello! I can hear you old man….and I have feelings too.”
Ever since I heard them speak so, my every moment seemed precious enough to be wasted. The rumors about the road being widened and my grandeur self being an obstacle in their way, haven’t been a soothing feel but then I’ve stopped worrying about the same, for I don’t want to feel dead before I actually am. Hoping for the best, I live on, in the best possible way I can. For I never expect to get anything but I give as much as I can – fresh air, shade, playground, love nest, gambling den and probably my own self in THE END.
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