3 comments

Fiction

UBUNTU- words 1469

That was Kojagiri Paurnima night when the moon comes closer to earth and appears larger than the usual full moon. It usually is celebrated with great fun and fervor.

In his attempt to know various beaches of MAHARASHTRA, Satish was strolling on the beach of Nivati some hundred kilometers north of Goa. The moon was reflecting brightly on the calm seawaves. The cool light breeze was making the environment more romantic.

And unexpectedly, a piece of Beethoven’s symphony no.9 reached Satish. He was surprised that the 3-4 centuries old, wonderful piece of music was being played in such a remotely placed area such as the Beach of Nivati. Satish tried to locate the source of music. As he was proceeding, the intensity of the music started increasing. He realized he was moving in the right direction. After a walk for 4-5 minutes, he was in front of a deserted house. He was pretty sure that the sound was coming from this house. It was past midnight. He could not see any movement or any light inside the house. Wondering who must be playing the music, Satish entered the house. And all of a sudden, the music stopped. Confused, Satish hurriedly came out of the house. No trace of playing music. He waited for some more time. But music could not be heard anymore. Disappointed, he returned to his house where he had taken shelter.

He decided not to speak of his experience to anyone. At around 11 in the morning, Satish went on to the beach again. He went to that deserted house and entered the house. But he did not find signs of anyone playing orchestra of 18th century. Satish came back to his house.

After dinner, Satish went onto the beach again. The serene ocean displaying the reflection of the waxing gibbous moon was mesmerizing. Satish decided not to go near the deserted house. He squatted in the dry sand a little away from the abandoned house.

And slowly symphony started but this time it was Mozart being played. Satish was enjoying the music. After 10-15 minutes of the melodious symphony, the music seamlessly switched to playing Indian Raag Kirwani on Santoor. Satish was pleased to hear the Indian instrumental in that serene night. After 10-12 minutes the melody switched to clarinet leading the orchestra. A performance of 8-10 minutes and the rhythms of the African drum of djembe beats lead the concert. Indian tabla took over from there. Japanese Koto and Shakuhachi music carried forward to the calmness and serenity of the environment. Balalaika from Russia made its presence felt when it was used to play some Russian folk music.

Satish realized this was not just an orchestra but was the global fusion of music the world over. But who was playing that?

Satish decided to probe further. He approached the deserted bungalow. But this time instead of entering the bungalow, he waited outside the bungalow. Listening to the grand music pieces representing various countries.  

Suddenly a very old person appeared on the scene, approaching Satish. Satish got an alert. The shrivelled, white-skinned person came close to Satish.

"I see you visiting this place many a time during the last few days. You seem to be interested in music. You must be wondering how such an international musical orchestra is heard in this remote place? Don't get confused.

I will tell you the entire story if you promise me to carry forward our mission." The person spoke in broken Marathi dialect Malwani. Satish was baffled. The local language from this foreigner?

“Do not get perplexed. We came on this beach some 60-70 years ago when a shipwreck drowned a little more than 200 persons. Our undying spirits held us on together and we pulled our most cherished instruments along with us and reached this beach. To our surprise, we found this abandoned bungalow on this very rarely visited but the wonderful beach. We took shelter here.

To give you a little more background, we were a musical group “UBUNTU” from ZINTOVA, a small country near the African peninsula. When we created the group “UBUNTU” with like-minded persons to promote harmony and unity in the world through music, we decided to have a concert of music from various countries. We collected various instruments typical of different countries and experts from those countries contributed a piece that would seamlessly switch the instrument coherent to the theme of harmony.

The resultant composition turned out to be spellbinding and received accolades from many countries. We organized a world tour to perform live at various places. The president of ZINTOVA was thrilled by this response. He called the leader of our group and appreciated our activity.

But in the end, he said, ”We are happy over your achievement. But we want you to include one song promoting our ideology.”

To this our leader refused. He politely said, “But sir, we are promoting humanity, harmony through music. We do not wish to speak for any political opinion.”

Hearing this, the chief got annoyed. “See mister, either you agree to advance our thinking throughout the world or you face a ban on your activity right away.”

"But Sir, are not you happy that our efforts are appreciated over the entire world. That will earn goodwill which will get our country recognition and eventually that will benefit our country’s trade," our leader pleaded.

“Don’t try to teach me what is good for our country. Either you include the song or face a ban on your activity right away.”

“Give us some time to think over the matter. We will come back to you the day after tomorrow,” our leader said.

On returning after the discussion, the group had a meeting. Each member vehemently opposed the order. We decided to leave the country immediately that night itself to take shelter in any country where our freedom of expression would not be curtailed.

A ship, with the capacity of 400 persons, was organized and we got ready to leave the country. We loaded our instruments. The expert musicians got on to the ship. We sailed out in the darkness.

We passed a few nautical miles into the ocean when our leader got the telephone call from the president of our country. "So, you tried to dodge my idea. But friend, I know how to protect our country from traitors like you. We have loaded time bombs on your ship. And very soon, they will explode. We will get rid of traitors who had posed a threat to our country. Goodbye."

The leader told all the members of the group to pray to God to save us to enable us to protect the innocents of this world.

But before we could start our prayers, there were explosions one after another. And our entire ship was broken into pieces. We were thrown into the cold seawater. Our musical instruments were scattered on the sea waves. Instead of trying to save our own lives, we tried to save our instruments. Luckily some parts of the ship drifted our way and we took those as rafts. We held onto our instruments. Most of us were afloat on the raft. After passing two days without food and even water, one night, we touched this beach. Most of us were alive and happy that we got our instruments with us. Except for the piano, which could not be salvaged due to its weight, we were happy that we were emancipated from the clutches of the tyrant of our country.

Luckily, we got this abandoned bungalow. We checked and arranged our instruments. Somehow, we got what we wanted.

 No one came here to disturb us. We continued our practice. The person of Indian origin mingled with the locals. The supply of essentials was assured.   

Now we are looking for some person who would join our group and bring us to light. We are ready for all the legal formalities as being refugee to India."

Satish got convinced of their refugee status.

After completing all the formalities, a concert was organized in Ratnagiri first and then in Goa. The tremendous response from the public made the group extremely elated.

Slowly they had programs all over India. The seamless switchover between instruments of different countries was highly appreciated.

The unity of the world through music took over the minds of the

common-man.

Very soon, many a country invited the group irrespective of their political affinity. The funds collected for humanitarian causes such as floods, droughts, earthquakes, etc. had a deep impact. The effect of the fusion of musical expressions of various countries was profound. The word "my" was getting replaced by "our." The entire world was getting tenderly empathetic

The group won the epitome of the awards "THE NOBEL PRIZE FOR PEACE."

November 12, 2021 01:56

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.

3 comments

Rudra Sawant
04:20 Nov 14, 2021

It was very good story Sir. I understood the meaning of 'UBUNTU' and also I enspired from this beautiful story.

Reply

Show 0 replies
11:38 Nov 12, 2021

A few sufficient conditions for peace between two countries are mutual admiration for each other's culture , commonality of view points, a feeling of brotherhood, and mutual dependence. Great music, especially of the kind described here, can certainly bring about cultural integration and good will between the countries of the world. Hence its composers are eligible for the highest award for peace. A story with a message.

Reply

Vijay Likhite
15:37 Nov 12, 2021

Thank you, Prof.Rao.

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
RBE | Illustration — We made a writing app for you | 2023-02

We made a writing app for you

Yes, you! Write. Format. Export for ebook and print. 100% free, always.