Did Grandpa Save Our House?

I remember sharing with you the last story about my Deceased Grandpa’s spirit and the way he had saved my mom and her family, in the story “the warning – A Brush with Fate”. The story I’m about to narrate today is something on similar lines. Through this I will relate yet another instance when Grandpa called on our Family from beyond.

The incident, which my mother shared with me only a few weeks ago, dates back to 1981, the year my mother had graduated with her Bachelors degree from College. My grandfather’s death had brought on a great deal of financial difficulties that my Grandma had to work a great deal to cope with, and thus my mother’s sailing through her college was a great relief to the family, which was wading through troubled waters to finance the education of all the four kids in the family.

After my mother’s results were out, it appeared that she had passed with flying colours in her tests. In the resulting celebratory mood, my Grandma decided to take a short break to a holiday spot, to unwind from the dust and grind. They chose Digha, a nearby Beach in the South 24 Parganas, and a popular tourist destination favoured by people looking to unwind for a cheap price. On their last night at Digha, mom had a dream.

She dreamt of a very dark, listless night. The stars were almost missing, save a few stray, gleaming ones. She stood in front of her home at Budge Budge (Budge Budge was the name of the place my Moms family lived in, by the way) and, in front of her, before the wooden gates, stood the tall, slightly blurred outline of my Deceased Grandfather. My mom said she saw him standing tall, with a bamboo staff in his hand. As if earnestly guarding it. The next day, they headed back home. In case I forgot to mention it, while they were away.

They had assigned the task of looking after the house to a neighbour in their absence (they were away for two nights and three days) The neighbour, Malati, was a kind, motherly soul who had been one of the greatest supports to Grandma and her children in the strayed times. She had kept the keys with her while the family was away, and had stayed for one night there. While returning the keys to Grandma that day, she told them of a very strange occurrence that had happened the last night.

Malati narrated that the night before, she had gone to bed early, and after some TV. She switched off all lights and T.V and had just lain down on the bed. She had drifted off to sleep when she heard a loud scream come from the Hall. She rushed in to spot the outline of a man running jumping out of the large window and running down the street. She looked at the hallway and saw that a few pieces of furniture were lying sprawled on the floor.

And the open Grill-less hall window gave her the impression that someone, possibly a thief, had tried to break in, but someone, or something, had scared him away. She stood there for a while, shaking in the confusing impact of what had happened. After a while, she gathered back her nerves and started back for the Bedroom. When she suddenly felt unnerved. She, for some reason, felt somebody around her.

She felt the air grow icy and cold, and felt someone staring. This was only for 3-5 minutes, then everything grew back to normal and she went to bed. But with a distinct feeling of uneasiness. After narrating this, she stopped a while, and added, hesitatingly. “Ma’am (addressing my grandma) I don’t know why, but I feel that yesterday’s incidents have something to do with Pancha-da. I felt his presence” (Pancha was my Grandfather’s pet name).

My grandma and her children were amazed, not knowing what to say to this treatise of the friendly neighbour. She was not the kind of person to be making up such stories for fun, and she wouldn’t. Plus, above all, the flustered expressions on her face, and her red, weary eyes at this point, betrayed her honesty. But the question was that why on earth did the thief run away without stealing? And, if Malati was to be believed at all, what was it that could’ve made him cry in such a manner? The others were busy pondering and chatting over these things, while my mom went to the room to unpack their stuff.

Suddenly, like a flash, she remembered yesterday’s dream of her seeing grandpa standing with a staff in front of the gate like a watchman, keeping out a watchful eye for intruders! She was overwhelmed with a strange feeling she immediately rushed in and broke the details of her dream to her family members. All were amazed. Most of everyone my Grandma. She sat in silence for a while, and then whispered in a somewhat strangled tone about my grandpa’s never ending duty towards the family.

How he had refused to take his eyes off the family, even from beyond! Mom was in tears too. My aunts were aghast, not knowing what to think. They, unlike my Grandma and Mom, had never been great believers in the Paranormal. After a while, my Grandmother, my mom said, had pulled her aside and confided her thoughts about what had happened that night could it be, according to my Grandma, that it was my Grandfather who had saved our house from getting robbed that night?

As for the mysterious shrieking of the thief for reasons unknown, well who knows what could have sacred him away from stealing that night? It will remain unknown forever. To everyone, but for my Mom and Grandma. They already know.