I was enjoying a V.S. Naipaul novel, sitting in the open balcony along with the breeze which blew from the north. The clouds changed shape and position randomly and the frogs continued to cry, however there were no signs of rain. Last night was unusually silent and a long one and I was preparing to sleep in my newly purchased 2 bedroom apartment a little away from Royal Meenakshi Mall, off Bannerghatta road. The night was darker than usual as it was just a day away to the new moon.
After a while I locked all the doors and shifted my base to the bedroom and slipped myself under the blanket which was cosy and warm. Flipping through the pages of “A house for Mr Biswas”, I gradually slumbered into my dreams. My dreams continued to ponder Mr Biswas and his yearning to build a house for himself in Trinidad. Mr. Biswas’s wife screamed at about 3: 45 in the morning. I neglected her scream and continued the cosy sleep under the blanket. At about 4, which is 15 minutes later somebody rings the calling bell and I lethargically lifts myself up and makes it to the restroom. By then my wife had already opened the door to find our neighbour Mr. Gupta and two police constables at the entrance.
Half asleep, her senses were not receptive to the words uttered by Mr. Gupta. I successfully manage to arrive at the scene only to learn that there was a theft at his home and he wanted to ensure that we were safe.
Yes, Mr. Gupta we are safe no one entered our home. The very next moment after I uttered these words; my wife discovered an aching reality.
Our Television, where is our TV? It was gone.
The balcony doors and the front door remained closed until we opened it. While I was enjoying my little stay with Mr. Biswas at Trinidad someone had managed to creep into my little private space and nick my television away from me. My brand new Sony Bravia was gone.
Had it got a heart and soul; I am sure it would have resisted and cried for an aid. An empty plot on the east of the balcony cemented a good path for the burglar’s to climb up the car park; right below my balcony and enter my house without my permission. I was flabbergasted when the reality struck at 4 in the morning.
Mr. Gupta’s daughter had a very close encounter with the thief, who dared to enter her bedroom. She was disturbed when he was trying to open a faulty cupboard in her room, which made a creepy noise. Our gated community member’s recovered three sacks of shoes next day morning from the neighbouring plot, all were nicked from various houses in the apartment.
Cops refused to register a complaint the next day morning, because once if they open a file they need to close it. They were unfriendly and canny towards the common man who is in need. After the initial hesitation when we insisted, they cooperated with us and gave us an FIR copy. However, I lost my Bravia forever. By now it would have been separated into various parts and would have been sold in the “chor bazaar”.
My neighbours paid their homage to the brave heart. Obituary Bravia!
The only thing that I could do is to close my open balcony with iron fencing to ensure safety of my family. More or less I look like the monkey in the cage now. The more we try to control nature the more it will control us. As we grow more civilized; as we grow richer; we grow farther from co-existing.