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Kamala Sarup: My Peace Activist Friend Has Died

My Peace Activist Friend Has Died


By Kamala Sarup

My friend Kumar died on Jan. He was a peace activist. His helpful attitude has helped many children in Nepal. There are so many orphans in Nepal due to conflict and most of the children are neglected. What a wonderful job he has done, and that's something I am willing to remember him. I remember the time when my friend Kumar came to my house. I am sorry for his loss and I am writing to this article on him.

'Kam ! See who is knocking at the door.' My mother ordered me and she herself began to drink water from the pot and took a long breath ,.'How can I know who is at the door. I am cooking rice. I find no time to see as the wood is not burning because it is too wet .' I whispered. 'Perhaps they are maternal uncle and student cousin, who want to stay here for the night ', she said as she stepped down the stair with clothes smiling at me. A lovely Nepali song, was being broadcasted at that moment .

' It is the time of worship. Tomorrow being a fasting day , I have to anage a lot.' my mother said, coming down the balcony . I myself was busy preparing tea . When I came down , my uncle introduced me to the guests . ' She is kamala, the eldest daughter, expert in kitchen work, sewing, knitting, writing and studying and what not !

The boy was staring at me. I didn't dare to look at him. It was not a new matter. I was the daughter of my rich and educated father. So every young men or women would come to my house and have friendship with me directly or indirectly . While I served tea to the guest boy and my uncle, I dared to say, ' Actually I am not what my uncle said . I am a learner and now I am learning to do . Please don't believe my uncle. I have to learn a lot.'

' What a lovely tea?' , the boy said to me without hesitation. 'Growing age, with youthfulness , grownup eyes always want their appreciation from others. When the eyes stop in front of girls, they are ready to love them and dream to walk with them in the span of a whole life' . Uncle satirized me. My face shied in front of my image and my heart beat increased & felt like it stopped.

Without taking a breath, I went to my room by road, eastwardly directed how can you go to a room via a road? . The strange proposal by the boy shocked me in an unlimited way and could do nothing for a while.

I stared at the rising moon. The ky was as blue as the ocean. It was as infinite as my imagination. It made me romantic. The sky is beautiful.

"It will be better to shut exits and switch off lights while going to bed . Perhaps, you are managing drinking water for the guests . They may need it at night .' , the grandma of 75 years ordered me in sweet voice and went to bed. I didn't even mind the same order of my aunt .

'Kam! You are away from me, in different environment. So, I am trying to show my feelings in black and white which bear the cardinal struggle of life . It may not reflect my total feelings as I am doing it in a hurry . I wish you a happy new year as well as long and prosperous life . I send you a lot of peace. I had a little chance to chat with you and see you in full satisfaction due to your grandma , aunt and my uncle . On the way, your friendship, your style of talking, your smiling face lovely look make me almost mad. Don't think me weak . My inclination towards you is increasing . If you can , please write a few words . I am eager to read your letter.'

It was beyond my imagination that I got the above letter from an unknown boy who came to our home with my uncle. It shocked me. It was beyond our custom and social principles, and the strict discipline of my parents did not even allow me to keep the letters into my personal box .

'Kam! Now you are grown up ; it is time to work for the people.' , my sister said to me recently.

My mother too wished me to work for the children. From the day that I got my Master result, she repeats it like a parrot. I have no answer to respond.

'I will be going to Kathmandu for further study' , I could darely say to my father at the moment while he was going through a holy book.

'It is not so easy for a young and unmarried girl to go away from home and stay', he murmured. In saying so, my father was trying to reject my proposal . I did not care and challenged him. 'I will earn my own money for my study . Nothing can stop me from studying in Kathmandu. Please, don't say 'no' ', I prayed with tears in my eyes . My father stood dumb . Many times silence is the sign of permission.

The struggle in Kathmandu, study and the service were together helping me to acquire maturity . Sometimes how difficult it is for me to lead a quite busy life . I cannot imagine even . I could realize that it is not easy to attain full freedom and full satisfaction .

'I am still planning to have a good friendship with you . I am feeling new experiences while living a new life in every moment . I am feeling the life as canvas. I would like to lead life horizontally, not vertically. Kam,! Please imagine the blue sky and the sea, many children . I ensure the blue sea has driven away my slumber. The birds are flying freely , you are composing a poem and I am listening to it . Even I cannot imagine it .

' The second letter of Shiva is in my hand . I really cry when i see our Nepali children are suffering. I don't know how to cry after I look at them. I think, surrounded by a loving children is reason enough to celebrate and i still needed to work for them. I know today that it is a life of peace.

I did not wish to miss the intelligent , laborious and handsome friend. I stated in reply : ' You respect me. Please re-organize the respect in a well-to-do manner . In my view, everything cannot be true forever. I believe in humanism. I could not conclude the letter as the ink in my pen ran out. I am anxious to conclude the letter . I am out to throw the inkless pen and buy another new pen . At present I am walking in a mission to buy a new pen.

My friend Kumar had lost his life and become a martyr. All the days after that are almost vacant for me. I too had an ambition these days, dream to exchange pleasure and pain mutually with my friend, to smile and respect each other fully. But all my dreams are paralyzed. Like the pieces of glass broken and scattered badly, the imagination of my happy and joyful friend proved extremely momentary.

*************

A Nepali Journalist and Story Writer Kamala Sarup is specialising in in-depth reporting and writing on Peace,Anti War, Women, Terrorism, Anti Fascism, Democracy, and Development. Some of her publications are: Women's Empowerment (Booklet). Prevention of trafficking in women through media,(Book) Efforts to Prevent Trafficking in for Media Activism (Media research). Two Stories collections. Her interests include international conflict resolution, cross-cultural communication, philosophy, feminism, political, socio-economic and literature. Her current plans are to move on to humanitarian work in Nepal in the near future. She also is experienced in organizational and community development.

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