Buddhi The Bonehead
Collected by Maya Thakuri
Once upon a time there was a village. It was a small village where people
were happy and content. They lived a comfortable and happy life because
everyone was hard working.
In the village lived an old lady with her only son Buddhi. Her husband had
died when Buddhi was just five years old. She worked at a landlord’s house
as a cook and was the sole bread earner of her family. As a single
parent, she had gone through a lot of ordeal in raising her son. She
always dreamt of a comfortable life in her old age, when Buddhi would act
as a pillar of strength for her. She also dreamt of a good daughter-in-law
and many grand children. This little hope of a better tomorrow was the
only driving force that had led the old lady through all her difficulties.
With the passing of time, the old lady started to realize that her dream
had very little chance of materializing. Buddhi was nowhere near her
expectations. In fact, he was an exceptional case in the whole village in
terms of his indolence. Everyone felt sorry for the old woman but when it
came to Buddhi, everyone despised him. Buddhi’s mother tried her best in
getting Buddhi to do some work, but in vain. There were many people in the
village who had gone through the terrible and nightmarish experiences of
some kind or other by allowing Buddhi to work for them. So people believed
that apprenticing Buddhi would be sheer foolishness on their part.
Buddhi’s demeanor was very much in contrast with the meaning of his name
which actually meant wisdom. In fact he was a total bonehead. It was not
that Buddhi did not like to work. He tried his best to work properly and
meticulously but he seemed to be always destined to failure. He was very
dumb and he would always end up doing something ridiculous.
Once, it so happened, that a businessman from the city came to visit the
landlord. He very much enjoyed the good food that Buddhi’s mother had
prepared. During the course of their conversation, the old lady moaned and
groaned about her jobless son. The man then asked her to send her son to
him the very next day and promised to help her in some way possible. So
the next day, an ill-fated day for the businessman, Buddhi arrived at the
landlord’s house early in the morning. The businessman talked to Buddhi
for a while and soon realized that he was a good for nothing fellow. But
as he did not want to disappoint Buddhi and his mother, he offered to help
Buddhi. He instructed Buddhi not to let anyone disturb him while he slept.
He further said that he would reward Buddhi with a fifty rupee currency
note if he did his job well. Buddhi was very pleased with himself. He
made up his mind to give his best to this work.
The businessman then lay back on his bed and soon started to snore while
Buddhi kept a vigil. He was doing his job very well when, to his horror, a
fly came and sat on the tip of the man’s nose. Buddhi tried very hard to
shoo the fly away but the damned creature seemed to be very stubborn.
Buddhi went inside the landlord’s house and got himself a knife. He then
carefully and quickly brandished the knife in the air targeting the fly at
the same time. The next moment the businessman’s nose fell on the ground.
He ran out of the room screaming and cursing trying to stop his nose from
bleeding. Buddhi’s mother was sacked out of her job in the landlord’s
house as a price she had to pay for her son’s folly. As for Buddhi, he
was scared out of his wits and he remained confined in his house for a
week. Incident of Buddhi’s foolishness spread far and wide and no one kept
him for work anymore.
His mother worked hard and she too started getting old. Her grief
increased every day and one-day she was completely bed ridden. Buddhi and
his mother now had nothing to eat. Some people pitied and gave them some
food. Buddhi went around in search of work but to no avail.
One hot day, Buddhi woke up to find his mother not being able to talk.
She lay in her bed wet with sweat. Buddhi could not understand that his
mother was suffering from fever. Buddhi remembered an incident. He had
seen the blacksmith dip the hot iron rod in water to cool it off. This
gave Buddhi an idea.
He carried his mother to a near by pool. There he dipped her in the water
until she turned cold with death. Buddhi then carried her back home and
put his mother in her bed. Just then one of his mother’s friend dropped by
Buddhi’s house. On hearing what Buddhi had to narrate about the whole
incident, the lady shrieked and fell on the floor unconscious. When she
gained her consciousness, she ran out of the house screaming and crying
telling everyone what Buddhi had done. The villagers soon gathered in
When Buddhi realized that his mother had died, he cried bitterly. He no
longer had the heart of staying in the village. In the silence of the
night, Buddhi left his house and his village. No one till date knows about