Saturday, November 1, 2008


A small portion of the field was dug up and the crops were destroyed. An emergency meeting had been called to prepare for the impending danger. A war time effort was launched to secure the fields from the wild boars. Everyone in the village was working tirelessly to prevent a catastrophe. Everywhere in the village people were discussing the incident that happened three years back when a sounder had destroyed the crops single-handedly.

A force had been assembled to make a preemptive strike. They had searched the forest for the entire day but returned empty handed. Every one was worried about what the night would bring. The memoirs of past were haunting the village.

I was accompanying one of the hunting parties consisting of two persons. I was too young to be there but I had managed to convinced them. It was thrill to be with them. Walking towards the field with them in the night and then climbing the tree and sit on the machan was an exhilarating experience. In the night sitting up on the tree and overlooking the below area was a dream come true.

It was late into the night and it all hush. The initial thrill had died down and I was bored. All the dreams of a tiger turning up were shattered. In the night the only sound that could be heard was me coughing out of boredom and then the ssshhh sound from the others asking me to keep quiet. I wanted to go home but no one was willing to accompany me. So I stayed there looking at the sky and waiting for the the time to fly by. But there were no shooting stars. I was ruing my luck. And then there was a strange noise.

Out had come a wild boar. The hunter in our group had in a flash lifted the riffle and aimed at the wild boar and we were eagerly waiting for him to fire. He had the reputation of never missing any target. But the bullet would not leave the gun. And then we realized what was going through his mind. It was a lone boar with three piglets. The boar looked right into our eyes and then looked at the piglets. How could he fire the bullet? Then the boar and the piglets were gone. They did not return the next day and the day after.

The hunter had killed an enemy soldier in his younger days. They said the enemy soldier had said something to the hunter on the death bed. Perhaps this was his remorse or perhaps his reprieve.

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