A Single Blow

Hem Raj Khatiwada



Mridul (the head teacher of Green Field School)
Jita (a teacher)
Tulsi (Jita’s husband)
Sharad (Jita’s son)
Rishi (Tulsi’s big brother)


Scene I
April 17, 2020

(Mridul and Jita stand near a canteen. There is a tree there nearby. They have just started a conversation.)

Mridul: I don’t like being admired, madam. I am an ordinary man. I appreciate living a simple life.

Jita: That’s your greatness, sir. Here you look like an extra-ordinary person. Having listened to your speech, sir I got really excited. I want that you help me learn good things ahead of time.

Mridul: I know a little, madam. I am only fond of reading a few books. Being a teacher, I take my reading as a joy.

Jita: In auditorium, you have delivered a laudable speech today. I haven’t ever seen such a beautiful speech in my life before. You were talking about the glass ceiling, weren’t you? It was an important matter, sir. I agree with you that we should break the glass ceiling to help many females rise up in our society from domestic circle.

Mridul: Madam, it is one of the heated things of our society. Many females are behaved as weak from different home background. It is not fair thinking. Let it be. Well, I am surprised from having seen your inquisitiveness in study. I like it, madam.

Jita: Thank you for your compliment, sir. If only I could be a genuine reader, but I am not. By the way, you seemed to be a feminist in that speech. You had been talking about the talents and endurance of females of our society. What a good idea! Your perspective is broad, sir.

Mridul: Hey, let’s not heighten my stature. It is unreasonable here. Anyway, I always talk of things I see in the society. Never do I interpret an injustice for benefits. You know, we should always talk of equality and opportunity of the suppressed all around the country. It is our duty.

Jita: Yeah, of course. Now I am pleased to have figured you out, sir.

Mridul: Bye the way, where are you from madam?

Jita: I am from Kunaghari, sir. Our catchment area is different. You forgot it, sir?

Mridul: Oh, I see. How is your teaching going on, madam?

Jita: Good. I like teaching, sir.

Mridul: Do you mind if I request you to work with us in our Green Field School, madam?

Jita: No, I don’t but I have a close rapport with my present working place. I cannot break the special bond, sir.

Mridul: Madam, I am not trying to bring you here. (tempting) Let me say everyone gets equal remuneration here. If you want, you can join with us.

Jita: How much is the remuneration, sir?

Mridul: Equal to government scale. If you follow your progress, money follows you here, madam. I think you will make a good amount of money here. Let’s have tea now, shall we madam?

Jita: Yes, sure sir.

Mridul: (staring) how is your computer knowledge, madam?

Jita: I have a little knowledge as for that, sir.

Mridul: No problems.  You will get used to the computer. But having computer knowledge is essential for everyone in modern time.

Jita: I got it, sir.

Mridul: I think you can do it, madam.

Jita: Maybe I can. One thing sir, I’m a democratic person. I am saturated with it from my home soil. Does it make a difference here, sir?

Mridul: No. It doesn’t. I am also the same. You know, I always suggest that one not support selfishness, favoritism, and corruption in one’s life.

Jita: (sarcastically) if so, why are you supporting me sir?

Mridul: Hey, are you mocking at me?

Jita: No, no, no. I am just being a little critical here. Take it easy, sir. By the way, your speech is really unforgettable. I praise your eloquence. May I now part from you, sir?

Mridul: Yes, you can. Well, please do come tomorrow. Other things will be done then.

Jita: Sure sir.

(After a few minutes, they start a conversation again.)

Mridul: I suppose, you are going back home now.

Jita: Yes, sir.

Mridul: Well, come with me. I will get you to see my garden. It’s beautiful. For always, I am fond of working here.

Jita: (accompanying) you have a nice interest, sir.

Mridul: If only I could flourish my kids like flowers of my garden.

Jita: Listening to your perspectives, I am being more excited now. Sir, I was to have met you in past years but time didn’t favour me then.

Mridul: But madam, we are together now. We can travel in the same boat in the days that ensue if time supports us, madam. You can irrigate your knowledge in our Green Field School. You can help my flowers blossom in my garden.

Jita: I can do it, sir. By the way, how are the flowers in the garden?

Mridul: (pointing out on wall) nice. See these flowers. They are small but beautiful and innocent. I want that they grow spreading a sweet aroma in their life.

Jita: You are great, sir. I wish you the best ahead. Well, I am getting late now. I am always supposed to be home by 6 P.M. First of all, I will take some advice with my family for the job transformation. Then I will come here tomorrow, sir.

Mridul: It’s okay. Basically, I like your talking to me.

Jita: Thank you, sir. Now, I am going. See you tomorrow. Bye sir.

Mridul: Bye madam.


Scene II
April 17, 2020

(Having taken evening meal, Jita, Tulsi and Sharad go to the drawing room. Sharad switches on the television. Jita and Tulsi sit on the settee, and Sharad quickly lies on the low-bed.)

Jita: I am not being able to make a huge amount of money from my job, Tulsi. I see no change from it.

Tulsi: What happened to you, dear? You had never talked such a thing before.

Jita: Nothing happened, hubby. But sometimes life is closely imbricated with income, and money becomes a pressing matter to fulfil family exigencies. You know, our economic situation is not so strong.

Tulsi: Well, take no worry. One day we will strengthen it. Why are you talking like this now?

Jita: Tulsi, I am thinking of changing my working place. One offer has recently come to me. It is an opportunity for me. At the same time it is a risk too. To change or not to change the working place has just become a moot point for me at this moment.

Tulsi: What can I say about it, sweetie? I am really out of experience. You had better choose a safe way rather than money. Take advice from son too. He knows more.

Sharad: (quickly) what’s wrong with you, mom? Father said I knew more. What is that supposed to mean?

Jita: I have decided to change my working place, son. Mridul has called me to work in his Green Field School. It is short in distance from our home, and there I’ll get a handsome salary too.

Sharad: Mom, Mridul is a fair man. He always follows the path of righteousness in his life. Go there if you can. Well, mitigate your doubts. You can advance your teaching career there.

Jita: I have honest friends in my present working place. Should I leave them, son?

Sharad: You are not leaving them at all. You are just changing your working place. Wherever you go, friends are always friends. Love them. Keep them at your heart. As for good job, if I were you, I would easily change the working place.

Jita: The son is right, isn’t he Tulsi?

Tulsi: I have no idea about it, darling. If only you could take an advice from Rishi now.

(Sharad calls Rishi, and Jita instantly asks him about Mridul.)

Jita: Brother, I have made up my mind to work on Mridul’s Green Field School. Comparatively, this institution is better than others. Do you know how Mridul is?

Rishi: In fact, I like him. He is soft inside. He is rough outside. I suppose he will never create an impediment for anybody who works and thinks positively.

Jita: Life is a journey towards an unseen alley, brother. I am a meliorist in that journey. Let me be adamant here. I decide I will go to Mridul’s Green Field School.

(meliorist:  a person who accepts the belief that the world can be made better by human effort)

Rishi: Choice is yours, sister-in-law.

Sharad: Mom, take no qualms. He is a good person.

Jita: (dubiously) I will meet him tomorrow, son.



Scene III

April 18, 2020

(Of many chairs in canteen, Mridul is sitting on one and having tea. Jita is sitting on the next chair. She is also having tea. On sitting together, they get talking ahead.)

Mridul: Have you made up your mind to work in Green Field School, madam?

Jita: Yes sir, I am positive. By the way, what all should I do here, sir? Is my job secured here?

Mridul: Yeah, of course. Green Field School is located at heart of town. It has kudos in the society. First of all, it is important that you make English environment among teachers and students here. Well, I think I needn’t instruct you more. Sure, your job is secured here.

Jita: Sir, I have a small daughter. I have an old mother. I have a family. All people depend on my income. Think about it properly, could you? I want that you give me a true word now. And I will try to make English environment here, sir.

Mridul: Take no worry about it, madam. This institution is the best place for everyone. You are safe here.

Jita: Is it real or a lip-service, sir?

Mridul: Real, madam.

Jita: What about my Dashain advance, sir?

Mridul: You will get it. We are equal for all staff. In our institution, we always give up injustice, biasedness and favouritism. This is our sole purpose.

Jita: Nice sir. Well, how are the kids here sir?

Mridul: What to say? You will see later.

Jita: May I get an appointment letter from the institution, sir?

Mridul: Well, that’s not necessary here. Payment is sent via bank account. Enough!

Jita: When shall I start teaching here, sir?

Mridul: Today is Saturday. It’s impossible today. You know it. So, you ought to join from Sunday onwards.

Jita: Okay sir.


Scene IV
February 27, 2022

(Jita and Tulsi are cleaning the fences of gate at home. Sharad and Rishi are playing badminton in the courtyard. It’s evening time, and Jita’s mother-in-law is cooking food in the kitchen.)

Jita: Our good days are starting, Tulsi. At present my work is nice so is my salary. Green Field School is one of the reputed schools in our locality, and I am a teacher there.

Tulsi: Yes, it is reputed but Mridul is a different man. So always ready yourself to complete your responsibilities in the institution.

Jita: (assuredly) I am all the time careful about my responsibilities. You know, my joy is in teaching. I have been starting my teaching works for many years. Never do I escape from my teaching responsibility in life.

Tulsi: I know you are a curious teacher. You are an industrious teacher too. I suggest that you be a good teacher for always.

Jita: Take no qualms, Tulsi. I will always try to do my best in Green Field School. My head teacher likes my teaching to children. Once in virtual meeting, you and Rishi also know he has appreciated my performance among all teachers.

Tulsi: That was a nice thing, dear. Having said it, you should be clever in your working and keeping relation with your colleagues.

Jita: I have kept a good relation with all teachers there. Most of them are helpful and intellectual. But a very few seniors are jealous at me.

Tulsi: What? Who all are they?

Jita: Well, he is no other than Umakant. He had borrowed $ 300 dollar from me at Dashain. He has not returned me that money yet. I guess he is so stingy.

Tulsi: Darling, he may have hard times at home. Understand it. When his economic situations improve, he will return it. You had better not make it hot issue.

Jita: Okay, I understand it. I haven’t told him anything about it yet. But in every meeting, his face looks so sad. You know, hubby he has a honey tongue, a heart of gall.

Tulsi: Be careful in relation, could you please?

Jita: Yeah, I will be.

(Rishi and Sarad stop playing badminton and get talking to Jita and Tulsi.)

Rishi: How is your performance going in Green Field School these days, sister-in-law? Are you satisfied?

Jita: It’s going well. I am satisfied there. But at times one or two teachers try to vilify me by asking futile questions.

Rishi: What do you do instead?

Jita: Nothing, brother. Instantly, I don’t respond them anything. Rather, I keep quiet.

Sharad: Mom, it’s a piece of cake. Accept their ideas. After that, you won’t cope with any problem there.

Rishi: Sharad, it’s not good idea. One should never agree with false notions. If I were you, sister I could forbid them to ask me futile questions.

Jita: They are different, brother. They think they are superior. They always become united to belittle me. Even if I am right in a discussion, they dominate me by using power.

Rishi: Well, you had better be polite with them. Always speak less, and listen to them more. To some extent, their arrogance may reduce.

Jita: I got you, brother.



Scene V
April 19, 2023

(After three years, one day Mridul calls Jita on the middle of ground in Green Field School. There, they stand face-to-face, and their talking starts. Umakant is watching them talk in the ground from canteen.)

Mridul: Excuse me, madam. I have a private matter with you.

Jita: What is that, sir?

Mridul: Do you have an education license, sir?

Jita: No sir. I am from humanities faculty. Well, why is it necessary sir?

Mridul: You had better fight in The Teachers Service Commission, madam. In this institution, some of the students didn’t like your teaching. You ought to ready yourself for that, madam.

Jita: (desperately) Up to three years, they liked my teaching. Now what happened, sir?

Mridul: We didn’t get any outcome from you. So, think about it.

Jita: Sir, I’ll try my best to satisfy them in coming days. Give me an opportunity again. Rather, help correct my shortcomings, could you sir?

Mridul: It is impossible now.

Jita: Why do you want to drop my teaching career in peril, sir? What about my past achievements?

Mridul: I want to help you, madam. You are a genius. You are a sedulous teacher too. Your English is good. If I were you, I would try in Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Nepal).

Jita: Don’t cut a joke with me. You gave this dialogue once to Murali sir. Now I know your intention clearly.

Mridul: I don’t really know him. But I think you figured me out, didn’t you?

Jita: No, I did.

(Jita and Mridul go to primary block, and sit on the bench together. No one is around there.)

Jita: The decision is unfair, sir. If only you could tell me it before the session. I am going to be jobless this year, sir.

Mridul: We had advised Umakant to inform you about it. Didn’t he inform you about it?

Jita: Yes, he didn’t. Well, Umakant is a feudal man. He took $300 dallar from me three years ago but he hasn’t returned me that money yet. In your institution, he never raised his eyes up when I was next to him. Sir, I had supported him in his hard times. He was my friend and I did that. Shouldn’t he return me that money?

Mridul: No, he should return. I also loathe such a person.

Jita: But he is in your institution, sir.

Mridul: It’s a personal matter. I can’t speak on behalf of it, madam.

Jita: You slayed a justice, you slayed a political wisdom, and you slayed your honesty too. I knew you clearly now that you are one outside and another inside. I always land a single blow on your showy character, sir.

Mridul: No problems.

Jita: Now I am extremely sad to have listened to your voice. You fired me. You stole the milk of my baby-daughter. You snatched the fruits of my old mother-in-law. You mutilated my repute. You are the sadist, sir.

Mridul: (pityingly) by the way stop this talk, madam. I can rather settle you in another place. I have my relatives in Shahid Smarak area. He will help you in his institution. If you make up your mind, I can easily settle you in +2, there.

Jita: No, I can’t go sir because the place is very far and I don’t believe you, either. Come what may I am always ready to confront the challenges in my life.

Mridul: I trust your capacity. You are a hardworking man. One day, you will find yourself in a new form. I wish you a good luck ahead.

Jita: It’s just a consolation. I don’t need it in my tearful parting. You played a clever ploy with me, sir. Never do I forget it in my life.

Mridul: I don’t care about it, madam. It doesn’t hurt me.

The End