“Akka” means elder sis in Tamil/Telugu/Kannada languages,that’s what Savithri used to call me.The moment somebody answered door bell for her…she will ask for “Akka” in her unique style ! A girl with dark complexion and typical south Indian rural attire,My owner had brought her to me since i was in need of domestic help in household. The only language she knew on this planet was “Telugu & Kannada”. And My struggle to communicate with her started on Day 1 itself, for few days we both communicated using sign language :-)) Later on,slowly slowly i started learning Telugu key- words used in day-to-day interactions…it was fun to communicate with her in little known Telugu words and sign language.
She was merely 14/15 yrs old.Her curiosity,liking for cleanliness and sharp memory were the strong parts of her personality. Also she was a brilliant observer. As a newly married,for some time non-working girl, i found good company in Savithri…she was the one who used to accompany me everywhere in day time may it be grocery-shop, to pay electricity bill or to purchase vegetables..the big advantage was, she used to bargain for me in Kannada :-))
I still remember on some South Indian festival she obligatorily made me put Rangoli in our porch :-)). Quite often she scolded me for not having proper breakfast/lunch.. just like any other beloved family member, who cares for us.In such a small age she was extremely mature, understanding and honest girl.Being illiterate she often amazed me with her wisdom.She had a preconceived notion about Boys..In her opinion all boys are MEAN..especially if they are Husbands :-))
One fine day when i asked her, she is so small then y she needs to work? and i was shocked by her reply….she is only sis of 3 brothers who are happily married and are staying in village in their ancestral house..her brothers and their wives abandoned Savithri and her mom..whom a generous family provided shelter in a city like B’lore..Both mom n daughter were working hard to make their life and Savithri’s future ( I meant Dowry here !!!! )..what ever Savithri was earning 2/3K /month..An aunty from that generous family used to deposit in the bank for Savithri.
Time flies like anything, Savithri became an integral part of my household for entire 2.5 yrs during our B’lore tenure, and suddenly the decision of Pune relocation came into reality..amongst few other things i was equally feeling bad for loosing out Savithri 😦 The one who never needed any kind of supervision….She also felt bad when i disclosed this news to her.However it was beyond her understanding that why am i leaving B’lore..On last day she came to bid me an adieu and uttered one sentence “Akka Meeru Ekkada ki vellina, Na lanti panimanishi dorakadu….” i.e.”Akka….wherever you go in this world..you won’t get maid like ME”..neverthless to say its True !