He suddenly stopped and looked up; the clouds are all rounding up. It never looked it would rain and so as usual his new umbrella should be lying in his room wrapped in cozily in the same pouch it came from the shop. Last year rains were not that heavy but he drenched through out the whole season, postponing the idea of buying one. And this year he was fast to act and bought one, ‘dolly’ that’s what they told this new brand of umbrellas were called.
He was a bit skeptical at first when the shopkeeper said that to him
“Is this one of those ladies umbrella, you know I don’t want to look dumb walking around with this”
“No Saab, it is not, everyone asks hearing the brand name. I assure you even the district collector Mr. Raj had bought one last week”
He thought “What if Raj had bought it for his wife or for his daughter. “
He dismissed the thought saying
“I wish the rains are not much this year and I would have to use less of her; also I should say she is a real beauty for this bargain price”
He had already started admiring it as he would a lady and started addressing it as her and she”
She came well dressed in a black gown with her name written on in golden letters. When unwrapped and released from her chains she had a majestic look that made every person under her look royal. As days went by he started admiring and getting attached to Dolly more like a partner, something that he has never experienced before.
He would sit with dolly on his door steps before he got out to go anywhere and carefully watch the motion of clouds and make a calculation as to whether he would take dolly to accompany him that day and he always went back home and wrapped her back and kept her in the same shopping bag she came with. While he always loved the thought of walking beneath dolly unscathed by the downpour, another part of him did not want Dolly to be exposed to anything even if it meant depriving her of the very reason for her existence. She had one of the most beautiful piece of fabric he had ever seen that elegantly stretched itself between the gleaming metallic spokes. Her handle was carved in wood with her name beautifully printed on it. She was a beautiful piece of art he proudly owned
And today there he stands without a tree or a shelter anywhere in the vicinity and the clouds thickening above him, all ready to pounce on him like a wild animal getting ready for its prey. If only he had dolly with him, if he had not for once sat outside and waited. If he had only just had dolly accompany him without a second thought.
May be he miscalculated or something went unnoticed when he sat with Dolly on the doorsteps today or did he calculate right but chose to get drenched as usual instead of exposing his beloved dolly to the piercing raindrops
The choice has always been his and so have been the consequences. May be he will find happiness in getting back home drenched to an untouched dolly than experiencing the warmth she could offer him.