A Companion

A Companion

When he dusted the old books, he could smell in their pale brittle pages, tattered by the edges, a scent of happiness. Aarav took a book out of the shelf and dug his nose deep in it. It took his mind far away from the world he was normally living in. Such old articles from his grandpa’s cabinet entangled him into an amazing web. Aarav has come to meet his grandpa after a long time. Despite his eagerness to see more of him, rarely he could come to his house.  His grandpa always saw him tugging his face in his books.

But Aarav did not ever lose any opportunity to meet his grandpa. His study room was more interesting than any other living place on earth. Whenever Aarav came to his studies, his eyes fell upon something he didn’t notice earlier.

While walking alone Aarav found another item this time that perhaps he had never seen. It was a black flat ugly radio set with a hump. With apprehensive steps, he moved close to it and took it out from the back of the shelf. He tried to sniff it too expecting the same feeling he had with old books. But the dust filled his nostril and eyes instead. 

“Daddu what have you kept here? Why is it lying in your study?”

His grandpa, Mohan, rushed to his study and chuckled to see Aarav holding the radio. 

“This is Radio. Have you not seen a radio?”

“No Daddu. What is a Radio?”


Switching it on, grandpa looked back at him. An old song started playing. RJ of that channel greeted the listeners with beautiful poetry. 

“Many years ago, the king of gods, Indra, wanted to spend time with beautiful music but his singer was sick. Then, another god, Vishwakarma, built him a sort of instrument that could play music without a singer. Do you know Vishwakarma? The god of machines?

This is how we had radio, a friend that mellows our mind whenever we are in distress.” Mohan narrated Aarav a self-made story that had a spellbound effect on him.

The whole day Aarav did not leave the radio because he was too excited to let go of it, changing the channel, one after other.  Then, in the evening, the radio broke a big news in. The PM imposed on the entire nation a lockdown for 21 days and no one could venture out of their home. The news ran shockwave across the nation. Aarav was still fidgeting with his newfound love when his father called up Mohan to ask him about his son. It was also not possible for Mohan to send Aarav back to his parents. 

Out of all this trouble, if someone was very happy to enjoy his time with grandpa and an old fat ugly transistor radio, it was Aarav. He went to the terrace with his grandpa and switched the radio on. The speaker melted into his ear a bengali song from Rabindranath Tagore.  


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Pritam Sen
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