Who said the village
school headmaster knew so many things? In fact, he knew about
almost everything under the sun. Or so did everyone believe in
the petite village of Pandam. Karuncheran did live-up to their
expectations. Most interestingly, he believed with no doubt that
he is worth all the praise.
Not a day goes without Karuncheran
helping someone or solving someone's problem. May it be as small
as taming the mischief mongers or something big like the missing
cattle. He enjoyed what he did. There had been occasions when
he had to serve as a quack to the ailing children of the village.
Once in a while even Karuncheran used to wonder how he was able
to prescribe remedies that indeed worked. But its still a mystery
why none of his remedies work for himself. Maybe he doesnt believe
in it so much as the villagers do. He could console himself saying
he is a headmaster and not a physician.
The villagers revered him as their
savior. They wonder whom they could possibly invite to inagurate
all major celebrations and festivals, if not for the headmaster.
He is so much the chief guest all the functions that sometimes
he would not care to know if he did receive the formal invitation.
After all what less can you expect when you are the only man to
have graduated from a University. The only time he wished he wasn't
that important was when people compared the gifts they received
from him and felt he considered them less important than the others.
Even the kids liked him. As a
kid, wouldn't you like the man who would pretend that he didn't
see you and your friends stealing mangoes from his backyard. The
most menacing ones liked him even more, for he never complained
their unruly behaviour to their parents and go them in trouble.
He had his own way of simmering their boyount spirits. He would
sometimes even ask them to watch other kids and report to him
any violent behavior in them. When the thief becomes the cop,
he knows where to go and what to do. It worked.
earn any grudges at all? Well, who wouldn't when being treated
so important. These are people who had all the wealth in the world,
but had neither the heart to help nor the wisdom to influence
others. They tried very hard to discredit him. Nothing worked
against Karuncheran's charisma. The villagers would buy no words
against him, after seeing his acts of selflessness time and again.
In fact Pandam got noticed by the urban world when Karuncheran's
initiatives made it the village that contributed the most to the
nation's cause, when a similar village in the other end of the
country was shattered by a devastating tremor.
a living encyclopedia, a part-time philosopher, an unbiased petty
judicial system, a good friend of the local law enforcement and
a loving father. He had the answers for all the questions in the
world - except for one. Why doesnt his wife think he is as great
a man as the villagers believe? Well, he hopes to find the answer
someday. Wish him good luck.