He was all of 16 when he decided to leave home and enroll himself at the Royal British Navy. A Camp was on at the the ‘Parade Grounds’ in the neighbourhood, and he stood in line.
What do you want to be, thundered the British Officer. The candidate before him said “Seaman”. He knew no English.Yet he too screamed “Seaman” when asked.Before all knew, he was on board the Royal British Navy. As he left home, his mother wept and asked what future this career held for him. He replied “Mum, Let’s see when tomorrow comes“.
1942 the country was in turmoil.A call for the British to ‘Quit India’. Mutiny Time. All Indians on board dived into the cold dark waters at Karachi.He was there swimming with the rest as they parted on touching shore.
In hiding until 1947, when the country got Freedom. The past 5 years he would constantly be asked by friends “What if he gets arrested?”. He would smile and say, ” Let’s see when tomorrow comes“.
Time passed by. Came 16th March 2003. More than a decade since he he had survived a coma. He now thought his time had come.The night before he insisted that no one should bathe him should he pass into the other world. He wanted his daughter to pray for a peaceful death, while she insisted she would pray for a healthy life. He had told his Daughter-in-Law, that when she would turn around, he would be no more. To lighten the mood, his son got him a refreshing drink, which he refused saying “Will have twice should tomorrow come“.
On the day at the 11th hour, he went for his ablutions, helped by his young daughter. As he got back to his bed, he was gasping. His daughter wept and asked a candle be lit in prayer. He was in his son’s arms, while his daughter in law was busy lighting the candle as he breathed his last.
His son still has a glass waiting…..
“What if Tomorrow Comes”.