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The Sun Will Rise Again


(It’s a story about a girl who has been abandoned by her lover. She wanders
in the hill stations of the Himalayas. She has no purpose in life & hence she
wants to commit suicide. She finally comes across an event which changes
the true meaning of love for her & she obtains a goal for her life. )

Originally written by: Kundnika Kapdia (A well-known Gujarati


novelist)

Translated by: myself (Forgive me if there happens to be any grammatical


mistakes!)

After travelling a lot I finally reached at the valley of “Kulu”, which is known
by “The valley of Gods” by the people. The landscape is beautiful here which
is surrounded by snowcapped mountains. If it would have been some other
time, then I would have enjoyed its beauty & I might have absorbed some of
its beauty in my own self. But at this time I didn’t have those eyes with the
help of which I could see this ocean of beauty nor did I have that heart in
which I can put the images of those sparkling mountains. I arrived here by
chance in the voyage started in order to forget my pains. And I knew that I
would wander here for more & more in order to reach at that rigid & frozen
island beyond these mountains & valleys, but still I knew that those feeling
pain would come along with me wherever I went.

I used to wander just without any purpose. I didn’t have any


destination, nor any goals to be fulfilled. Yet, I used to sit in the bus asking
about one ticket to “Jogendarnagar” or “Mandi”. But I wouldn’t have any clue
about what to do after reaching at “Jogendarnagar”. There is a good facility
of government guesthouse at the valley of “Kangda-Kulu”. If you go there in
off season then you don’t have to reserve in advance and food is also cheap.
So I never faced any problem regarding food or housing. Really speaking, my
consciousness about my physique was decreasing day by day. I didn’t have
any attention towards my sleep, my food & how much I walked. I started
thinking of death frequently. It is better to die if you don’t have anyone to
love you. If you are a woman & if you have loved someone & if your loved
one has broken your faith, then the first idea which comes to your mind if of
death. I prayed day & night for death but I didn’t have that courage. I used to
watch the waters of the Biyas(a river near Kulu valley in the Himalayas)
speeding nearby, but I didn’t like the thought of drowning in it. I, the lover of
open sky & air can’t die of suffocation.
Then I had another option- to think of accident in the bus I was
travelling in. But in the bus, there were passengers who were fresh in their
lives & they had family members to wait for their arrival at their homes &
hence there was no need to die for themselves unlike myself. Moreover
broken legs, body immersed in blood were not my cup of tea, might be
because of some hidden desire of beauty inside myself. I did wish death, but
under the open sky & in the pond of night & watching the clusters of stars &
sailing in a little boat. Even though sun rises the next day, my closed eyes
won’t open ever again.

Then sometimes I thought that these all were just the excuses of
escaping from death! There had to be some desire inside my heart for life.
Some residue might have left even after an intense fire. In this large
earthquake, a small house of wish must have survived. Otherwise at that day
of disaster, my heart must have stopped.

I used to laugh over myself sometimes. I thought that I was drowning


in the flow of illusion & just after sometime my eyes would open & I would
find that these all were dreams only & at that time I would be in the garden
of mine along with the person I loved. But every morning when my eyes
opened I saw the same jungle of “Cheed”(name of a tree) & the same high
mountains & I realized that what I thought of illusion was the only reality.

I remained in a guesthouse in “Jogendarnagar”. I arrived there at dusk


& the sentry opened room no.8 for me. And in order to give consolation he
said that some days ago a foreigner madam came alone & rested in this
room only. I arranged my luggage & washed my face. Then I told sentry to
bring tea & toast & came out in verandah.

There was a small garden & flowers of Florex were blooming. Suddenly
my concentration was distracted by a foreigner man reading something on
the left wing from the guesthouse at some height. I was surprised by
watching that the man was wearing a dress made up of cotton reminding me
of Mahatma Gandhi who changed the fate of India by his weapons non-
violence & truth. When I once again saw at his face- I could make up that this
man was living in great deepness. The face was very simple. Have you ever
seen the pictures of male made by Amruta Shergil? There was an element of
mystery in all of her male pictures. I can’t say that they were great in the
field of drawing. I also didn’t have much knowledge about art. But I have
always been attracted by that element of mystery.
And now here, far away from my native place, in a cold town’s
guesthouse, in the cold breeze flowing at the time of dusk, I could see a face
of a known person which was unknown to me.

I wanted to go near him & talk with him. At the same moment I
thought that if I didn’t go there then the feeling of remorse would remain
forever in my mind. But, somehow I didn’t raise my legs to go there. I
returned to my room & started thinking of this weird emotion. The servant
had brought tea & toast. I ate & started wondering once again. I wished that I
would have more courage the next day morning when the sun would rise
again. I might talk with him at that time.

For the first time in my life, I thought of Amruta Shergil, instead of


suicide & death.

The next day when the sentry came, I asked him about the foreigner.
He replied that that man had departed this morning only. I wanted to ask
“where?” but thought that it was meaningless. I had only one direction which
lead me to death straightly without any turning footpaths.

I went to Mandi from Jogendarnagar & to Kulu from Mandi. If you might
had been there then you must be knowing the thrill of travel on the bank of
Biyas. I felt a sense of courage while sitting in a bus speeding near the bank
of Biyas. Many buses went on that route & the drivers were very
experienced. But, when you travel on this for the first time, you may not
have that much of faith in your driver. You can just experience the proximity
about the death & finally the wall separating us from the death would break
down. Whatever it might be, but you must travel on this way to enjoy the
beauty of Biyas & to have a new facet being added to your personality.

Kulu is a very wonderful village, very peaceful & picturesque. You


would find very tall pine trees standing at the border of big grounds.

I had decided to stay for three days in Kulu; but I didn’t know where to
go after it-may be Naggar or Manali or Koti- but no specific idea. I was
determined to leave Kulu at the fourth day.
An unprecedented event happened at the evening of third day.

After returning from the forest of pine trees, I was strolling in


grassland. The sun was about to set, the snowy peaks were reflecting orange
rays from the last sunlight. The trees were dancing in the wind & the air was
awesome. Suddenly I saw a multitude, gathered at the end of grassland,
near the main road. The life of mountains is monotonous. The people would
gather hastily even a small incident might have occurred! I too peeped into
the site to see what had happened & I was startled by seeing a woman of
nearly fifty years. Her cloth was torn from many places & blood was coming
out of bruises. That foreigner, which I saw in Jogendarnagar, was standing
near her head. He spoke to me as soon as he saw me ”Oh, you! It was good
that you came here. Would you give me support? I had to admit this woman
to the hospital.”

We, both, together lifted the woman. The foreigner said ,“You are very
healthy! You can lift very easily….”

The woman was half-conscious. I thought that she might be mad. The
people from the multitude saw us passing by, but none came to help.

While walking, the foreigner said,” The woman is somewhat insane.


Today, a boy threw a stone at him & she ran to beat in anger. Then people
gathered & beated the woman so much so that…… ” The foreigner
continued,” I remembered that tale of a woman being forcibly taken to the
Jesus Christ while people were throwing stones at her. Christ said that the
human who had never committed any sin in her/his life would throw the first
stone. Today, so many humans were there in the multitude. But was there
even a single man which didn’t have even a single bit of insanity?”

We admitted the woman in the infirmary. It seemed that the foreigner


was knowing the doctors. The doctors talked with him very respectfully. He
laid the woman in the bed heartily & placed a bed-sheet over her body very
compassionately. He told the doctor to take care of her & not to worry about
the money.

Finally after finishing some formalities about the case, when we moved
out of the hospital, night had fallen. The moon was shining brightly & was
spreading its moonlight over open grounds, houses & pine trees.
We both walked without uttering a single word for some time.

“Where do you want to go?” He asked me in a low voice.

“Tourist house. And what about you?” I asked.

“I am in guest house. But every night, before going there, I go to the


bank of Biyas. I sit there for sometime.” Then he paused.

“Would you come with me? I would like if you can.” He asked me
modestly.

I didn’t reply. I walked with him without saying anything. After some
time I told him that I had seen him in Jogendarnagar.

He smiled lightly. He said that he had also seen me. He told that he
realized at once after watching my face that my sun had set very early! He
continued that when he saw me observing the flowers Florex & touching the
air, he understood that even after a great pain if a person showed interest in
flowers & in mountains & in breeze, then there remained some hope for that
person.

I just had looked at him occasionally so far. Now I looked at him


intently. He was foreigner, but seemed a creature of India. He knew local
language & was wearing a dress of this region. His face was long. He had
compassion like that of Jesus on his face. I couldn’t think of his age. I
understood that this man didn’t live in days & years but in his works
& love. And that’s why he didn’t have any relation with age.

He must have felt surprised because I remained silent for a long time,
but he didn’t say anything. Suddenly, startled by the silence growing
between us, I asked him ,comingout of my thoughts ,”What do you do
here?”

“I fill the empty places.”He replied smiling. He was spreading a very


humble smile in each of his talks. There was some weird protection in his
smile.

“What do you mean by filling empty places?”I questioned.

“Didn’t you see today? A woman wanted medical treatment & the
hospital was somewhat far, and there was a gap between them. It was
required to admit that woman in the hospital. It happens a lot- you have big
N.G.O.s, big medical clinics & on the other side humans in need. But a gap
lies between them. I fill that gap. I wander here & there. I do my best. I read
& sometimes I write. ”
I too, was wandering here & there, but my life purposeless. That man
had his own work, a work without having any boundaries of place, time &
circumstances.

I blurted ,”Do you live lonely? ” But then I repented a lot after having
asked such a foolish question. I had a very honest man in front of my eyes &
yet I couldn’t come out my shell.

He answered, “No, I have some friends. They all do the same work as
that of mine. One girl is also there. She was also broken just like you &
wanted to commit suicide. But, today she is proud of her work. ”

We reached at the bank of Biyas, walking under the shadows of Devdar


trees. A white edge of flowing water was sparkling in the moonlight & was
having a meeting with a stone. I sat on a round stone & he stood nearby,
watching the flowing waters of Biyas.

“Listen! Biyas (A river’s name) is saying!” He told & the deepness of


his face became deeper.

Biyas is saying! I used to think that Biyas speaks a soundless


symphony, but today I realized that Biyas indeed used to speak.She(Biyas)
has different voices for different stones, which only a stone can understand.
Their seems to be ‘dialogue’ going on between the water & the stone.

“Everything speaks, if you can hear.”He said,”Earth, trees,


flowers, air, sky-everything speaks. ”He paused for a moment or so and
resumed,” I don’t say these in the language of literature. They really speak,
just like you & me.”

I was reminded of my teacher’s words, ”Please listen…listen to


everything around you ”. That time, the words seemed very beautiful, but I
never realized its truthfulness. Now, I had a man, in front of me, who was
talking with the waters Biyas!

“There is a role which can help you to develop a complete relationship.


A very simple role. There are mediums beyond words. Have you ever
loved anyone?” He enquired.

I was taken aback. Have I loved anyone? Yes –and that’s why I had
come here in search of death. I loved & but never got love in return. Infinite
colors passed through my face.
But his attention wasn’t at that side. His sight was hovering over the
waters of Biyas. ”If you have loved, truly loved, then you must be
knowing that there is a communication beyond words, a
communication without any kind of mediums. The life itself, is a
communication. It may be with one person or with many persons.
It’s not a philosophy. This is a very simple fact.”

I suddenly interrupted, ”I don’t know about communication. Nobody


loves me.”

“I love you! ”He uttered in a tender voice & said, ”I wish you to love
me.”

“whom?” I asked in embarrassment.

“Someone or everyone! You may love that insane woman or her little
child, who has now become alone. That child needs love. You may give it……

Every bondage seemed to be breaking in just an instant. Walls


collapsed, a flood came in the waters of Biyas. I realized that love is a
thing to be given. If not to one person than a lot persons. To a
human going to commit suicide or a child without parents or a
woman whose husband has just demised.

I saw his face. A very soothing, peaceful face full of reliance. I told, ”I
was understanding!”

“Listen, listen to the song of darkness, listen to the aroma of


the pine trees, listen to the exhalation of the earth, listen to the
emptiness of the sky!”He told having closed his eyes.

I tried to listen & listened an everlasting song of love!

“It is very late by now.”He told in a cold voice. ”The sun will rise after a
short time.”

“Yes, the sun will rise again!”I replied.