I would not go as far as to call ourselves culprits, for it was not an earnest crime at all. It was more like a tradition here, at our University.
“Thrill seekers” would be a word which would appease all the partners of this heist. Adventurers do not wait for a perfect time or a vacation to start their adventure. They are rather spontaneous and make up their mind easily.
It was a team of a five valiant bachelors. Members included myself, A.C. Mandal, Gopal Dev, Kiran Roka Magar and Umesh Thapa who all turned out to be single….. A light discourse was going on when we planned this unplanned idea of looting mangoes from our generously supplied University orchard. Without a second thought, we carried our bags, dressed in a cosy way and headed for the orchard at around 9:15 P.M. The night was cool as monsoon had already begun and the sky was grumbling for a while indicating a downpour in a short period.
I was thrilled, agog, overwhelmed and at the same time intimidated by our decision. We had carried a torch to help ourselves inside the orchard. I was longing for a camera to capture our deeds(which unfortunately was not available). So, we went inside the orchard with all our enthusiasm while remaining vigilant of security guards, if there were any. Once deep inside the orchard, we selected the richly supplied tree. I climbed up and started shaking the boughs and mangoes started falling on the ground like hailstones hither and thither. Well, the boys filled the bags pretty much soon and we returned to our dormitories momentarily. We had collected almost 25 Kgs of them fruits and we were quite satisfied.(Or we only thought so?)
Soon we realized, it was not all we wanted. 3 bags full of those fruits and we wanted more. This thought was provoked by Mr. Gopal, the humble one. Normally, he wouldn’t hurt a fly but today, his adrenaline level was pushing him against his better judgment. So, we took it to a whole new level. We brought a tripal(a large plastic mat), 2 zebra bags and headed towards the orchard for a second round. The deluge had already started, accompanied by thunderbolts. We brought a rather larger torch producing radiant beams making our deeds conspicuous in pitch dark. We carried our heist in a more confident manner.
The experience was one to remember and share. We lay the tripal on the ground. Kiran bhai and I went up to the tree tops and started swinging the branches as if we were monkeys. DRRRRRAAAAAA …………………came the sound as substantial amount of fruits fell on the mat. Kiran Bhai(lili) was more apprehensive than others as this was his first experience. He was getting on everyone’s nerves commanding to turn off the light every 5 seconds. The pros however were suave. By the time we finished our job, we were all wet, exhausted and excited too.
It was a petty crime but the moments we enjoyed during the heist were all that mattered. The emotions running in my brain when the raindrops slapped my face, the ephemeral flash of light during the thunder stroke guiding our way into the orchard, the apprehension and intestinal fortitude at the same time, the sweet taste of raw mango and raindrops on top of the tree, the yell of the partners deadened by the spluttering rain, the enigmatic emotions rushing through the whole body while carrying 25 kg’s of mango at the middle of the night will never expunge from the grey matters of this brain.
P.S.:-The events described here are true to writers knowledge and experience. I would love to hear from you all. Constructive criticisms will be highly appreciated!!!