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An old story of two old women

Two old women, one fair, fat and fondly, the other dark, sharp and skinny came to my mind, while going to bed last night. Very rarely do women, especially old, appear in the mirror of my mind, while going to bed, to be more truthful, any time of the day, any time of the night.
Mittaikkari patty and Rukmani .
Mittai ( sweet- that was how people used to address her), as per the legends, was from a remote village in Rajasthan. How and why she came all the way from there to Okavakkode, a suburb of the Palakkad city, was a mystery, though all sorts of stories were in the air. Some said she belonged to a royal family, lived a luxurious life and when all was lost, unable to stand the condemnation of her kin, escaped from her village and came to Malabar.
One thing was certain. She made muttais, Rajasthan sweets and sold them from her house. When I saw her first, as a kid of 3/4/5, she was a chubby, fair, fat, sweet lady, full of grace in her face and full of fair wavy skin folds in her hands, sweet, tooth- less smile in her face and a colorful parakeet in a cage hanging near her, repeating, ‘Rukmini, saapiitiya?’ Or ‘Rukmini saappidu’
Like a queen she used to sit on the thinnai, raised platform of her house, smiling at her own charm, at her own bangles- dangling fair wrists , laughing at us children playing on the floor below and talking to the pet bird, addressing her affectionately as ‘Raasaathi kannu’ .
Before dying, she sold her house to a shopkeeper from whom my father bought it, renovated and extended by construction a big hall adjoining it and started his business. We children grew in that house.
Now comes Rukmini. she was the elder woman’s house and cattle keeper. Along with Mittaikkari’s house, we inherited her other possessions too including Rukmini and the cattle wealth. The legend says that she too landed in the Olavakkode Railway station, not from Rajasthan, but from Pondicheri along with her husband who was a Brahmin. The popular story was he was washed away by the unfamiliar waters of the Kalpathy River, when he accompanied the cattle stock, which Rukmani took for giving a body wash. I have heard my Appa saying that both the women were very kind in nature.
Rukmini, after completing all her chorus, used to pull out buckets and buckets of cold water from our pond – like well, pour over her head and used to sit beneath a neem tree in our backyard and smoke, spreading her black locks wide. I remember her posture, clad in a blood red sari, smoke emanating from her mouth through a pipe filled with raw tobacco wrapped in a particular leaf, which added to her, ‘dhum’ ‘ in her language. Don’t know what it was.
I remember a few lines of her song, too, which confirms the story regarding her husband’s death and her love for him.
Aathulae vanda thanni aditchikkittu potchae, Saami.
Ayyarae vittuppittu hai, haainnu poyittiyae.
Athaalai pola onnai kaappaathi enna payan?
Anchukkum Melae viral thanji enna, thevarAsaa!
( she had one extra finger in each hand)
ஆத்திலே வந்த தண்ணி அடிச்சுகிட்டு போச்சே, சாமீ,
ஐயரே, விட்டுப்பிட்டு ஹாய், ஹாய்ன்னு போயுட்டியே.
ஆத்தாளை போப்ல ஒன்னை காப்பாத்தி என்ன பயன்?
அஞ்சுக்கு மலே விரல் தஞ்சி என்ன தேவராசா ?

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