Sunday 25 October 2015

Bhairav falls into a well.

It’s been two days since Bhairav has not returned home with the rest of the gang.  He is still too young to play truant like his older ‘cousin’ Balaram who is now two and half years and already a young bull. So whilst we are not unduly worried when Balaram does not return home for a day or two, we were concerned about Bhairav.

  Manjunath searched for him on both the days with no luck.  On the third day, he arrived looking rather tense – “Bhairav has fallen into a well”  he said.  Oh no! What kind of well – fully or partially dug? Was there no embankment? How deep?  How much water is there?  My questions tumbled out before he could answer even the first.  “It is a dry well and not too deep” he answered.  Oh no!  A fall onto hard ground could mean broken bones.  I was almost in tears, but Manjunath assured us that he wasn’t hurt.

 We rushed to get a good length of strong rope from the boot of our car, Manjunath hauled the ladder onto his shoulders and led the way across the fields which were now dry post the rice harvest.  Some  had the rice stubble in them and some of them had been ploughed for a second crop.  From a distance, the fields look so perfectly level, you feel you can run over them, but the stubble, the upturned clods, the narrow embankments made it impossible to even keep pace with Manjunath and Revathi who had joined in to lend a hand.   They walked briskly – it is a similar path that they walk every day from their home to our farm.
Manjunath and Revathi leading the way.  

We soon came to a clump of bushes and Manjunath set the ladder down. I was looking all around for a well when I realised that the clump of bushes itself was growing out of the well.  A perfectly camouflaged natural ‘trap’! 

Would you believe this clump of shrubs is concealing a well?

  I could not see anything in the dark depths, but when I called out to Bhairav, his plaintive voice echoed out and I could see his eyes gleam as he raised his head to look up at us. 

Manjunath got busy wielding his sickle and cleared out a place so that the ladder could be lowered and he could climb down.   

Our 20 feet folding ladder was luckily long enough to just reach the bottom of the well. That meant Bhairav had fallen to a depth of 20 feet!! It was just the dense growth of shrubs in the well that had saved him.  But I couldn’t be sure he was perfectly okay till I could see him properly.


By now Manjunath had climbed down and Vivek had lowered the rope into the well.  Mahaveer, who was working in his field nearby came to assist us.

 Manjunath tied the rope around Bhairav’s belly like a harness and Bhairav panicked. He had never had a harness around his middle ever and this was too much for a frightened, starving guy to bear!  He went crazily in circles in the closed confines of the well, the ladder started toppling over and we were worried about Manjunath. 

But luckily he paused for a while and Manjunath untangled the rope from around the ladder and swiftly climbed out. The ladder was hauled out before Bhairav decided to run a few more crazy circles. Now the need for brute strength!    Four pairs of hands hauled the ropes up and a kicking, protesting Bhairav was dragged out of the well. 

We had to hold him down to undo the makeshift harness of ropes and barely was the last one removed when he broke free and tried to run. 

  In all the excitement I just realised that he was perfectly fine – no broken bones – just a terribly hungry, thirsty young bull with a mightily bruised ego! He almost ran all the way back home, back to the safety of the cow shed where an extra large bucket of feed and a pile of freshly cut fodder  awaited him.  

Back home finally!

Visit to discover Indian blogs