Duburee

Weekend Stories by Trishikh

Atop a small hill, on the banks of the mighty Damodar river in the steel city of Durgapur in the Bankura district of the state of West Bengal in the Indian subcontinent stood a rickety little mud cottage. In front of this tiny earthen adobe towered a metal and concrete two-way vehicular bridge atop a colossal barrage, stretching across the ancient riverbed. At the break of dawn, every day, from this flimsy shanty emerged a bald old man with a long silver beard and a massive chest. No one knew his real name and called him Duburee, meaning a diver in the Bengali language.

Wearing only a tightly wrapped loincloth around his waist, he would spend the next hour applying a strong-smelling mustard oil all over his old but firm skin, especially inside his ears, naval, and on his colossal chest. Following this, he would perform another hour of yogic…

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