The Open Dosa

Consuming the Ordinary Differently


Mr. Sebastian, a balloon seller lives in a village named Kuruvinatham in Tuticorin district. He began his living all by himself from a very young age itself. Since he didn’t have the ability to study well, he left his study and started to take care of the goats as a shepherd. He experienced a lot of struggle from the beginning. Maybe he couldn’t continue studying because not much attention was given to him. Once he even got the licking from a snake as he slept in the forest areas. He overcame a lot of difficulty through God’s help.

Later he learnt to beat the drum, it was not easy. His hands hurt a lot but he joined the group anyway and went around to many places. Once when he went Madurai, he met a girl whom he thought was fitting for him, so he informed his parents. When the parents came to know they didn’t like it and wanted him to marry someone else but he was adamant to marry that girl only. So, he forced his parents and made them agree for the marriage. After all the struggle, he got married with the girl whom he liked, later parents didn’t want to accept the girl so they sent both of them out of the house.

He lived in a rented house for years, at that time he didn’t have a proper job too. He was looking for a job in that tension he had to look for a place, during the village festival. For the owner’s relatives had to stay there for a week. Since they didn’t get any place they lived in a shed. This man is not a stranger. He is my own father. It is the life story of him I am sharing, I am proud to say that I am his daughter for in the midst of all the struggles, he provided us with all the needed things.

My father started a new job selling vadas, and kesaribath. This work lasted for few years and became dull. Then he began to sell fruits by going from village to village — he continued this work for 7 years on the bicycle. He never stayed home whether sick or tired. He kept thinking of building a house. Slowly he collected money, borrowed, and kept the gold of his wife in the bag and built a home within two years.

The one thing which touched his heart was hearing his child talking first words in English mixed with a little Tamil “echu kuchu me, konjam vazhi vidurinkkala” (excuse me can you give place to move?)

All my family members laughed a lot especially because only I knew what he told.  The difficult thing he faced in his life was the blame of thief fell on him though he didn’t steal the things of others. He had to go police station many times but he was proved innocent by the panchayat leader. The happiest and the luckiest thing happened in a miraculous way when he met with an accident as he returned from erode. At that time, he got hurt especially back got injured but he felt as though someone holding and kept him down without getting his head hurt.

No one was on the road. In that situation he could get up by himself, catch the bus to Kovilpatti and from there to my home. When he reached collapsed on the floor until then God’s grace held on to him.

As the business was going on in full swing, slowly the interest for it and he couldn’t continue due to his sickness. He stopped that work for time being and started a side work, selling balloon not every day whenever there was feast in any places. He ties balloon and toys on a stick that he made stays in that place for three or four days. In the beginning it was loss for him, so got much scolding from wife, non-cooperation in the midst of this faced problems from the other balloon sellers too. He didn’t share the problems with his wife, since she was upset about starting side business, faced the problem alone. Still in between he was continuing to sell fruits for months then stopped that and gave full concentration in one job. He is running his life in difficult situation yet he has the ability to provide for the family needs and other things that come in suddenly. He said,” Living life and bringing up the children its hard but firm foundation on any work and using the ability to the full gives a sweet fruit.”

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Lourdhu Mary

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