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Remembering That Gentleman

Pic: Mizan in His Youth

Pic: Mizan in His Youth

Once upon a time, there lived in a small town in Bangladesh, a young guy named Mizan who was about to go to University. In the district he lived, there was a good university. He enrolled there, but his Dad soon came to know that his son wasn't paying attention to his studies and only spending time idly with backbenchers. His Dad commanded him to go to Dhaka and enroll in the University there. He was fed up with his son. He was a successful businessman, but he doubted his son would ever amount to anything.

At Dhaka University, Mizan did become serious about law and studied law. He knew he had to become someone worthy. He was in his final year when he heard the bad news that his Dad passed away. He was a strong and handsome bachelor. He didn't wait and started his way on the train to his hometown. It occurred in the '60s.

After the funeral prayer and laying his Dad to rest in the grave, Mizan went back to Dhaka to finish his studies. Soon he graduated with a law degree. He went back to his hometown and practiced law. He would take any of his clients’ cases, and he was sure to make it win in court. People had immense faith in him.

Somewhere along, he lost touch with the law and started getting interested in the properties left by his Dad. They were large sums of money and acres and acres of land. He soon had friends coming to him who needed money, and he helped them out generously. As the years slipped away, his brothers and sisters settled down, and he had spent a large portion of the inherited wealth on his family, friends, and outsiders. His sisters were backed up by their husbands. His brothers got settled down in life as well, but they would have liked to inherit some of the wealth too. But Mizan was strong and over-powering.

He wouldn't give a single penny or land to his siblings. Mizan wanted all of his Dad’s remaining properties. His rational logic was that he spent for his original family's needs and education, including his brothers and sisters, and he deserved all that was left.

Pic: Mizan With His Newly Married Wife

Pic: Mizan With His Newly Married Wife

By this time, he had married a woman with striking features, but after their first child was born, she had schizophrenia. She got a little better, and then, after three years, when she gave birth to their second child, her schizophrenic symptoms returned. The children were healthy. They grew up to be promising adults. At eighteen, the elder daughter got married. The son pursued his studies, went abroad and settled there, and married his girlfriend from the home city. Their mother remained schizophrenic, and Mizan looked after her.

It was a sad life on the part of Mizan. His wife was ill, and he had spent most of the inherited wealth, and now he needed money. He still owned acres and acres of land, but he didn’t dare sell them. He wanted to retain some property.

He started practicing law again in his hometown, and soon, he was popular again, winning all his clients' cases. However, he didn't much enjoy his profession at this stage, but he was grateful for the money he earned. Soon, the years rolled away, and he kept earning. But he saved very little. He was always philanthropic and gave a big portion of his earnings to his friends and anyone who would ask for money in his hometown.

He was a gentleman, once so handsome that any girl’s Dad who met him would be willing to ask for his hand in marriage to his daughter. There were countless proposals and good ones too. But he joked about all of them and ignored them all until he fell in love with only one woman who turned out to be schizophrenic all his life.

He had heart attacks and his strength failed him though he never drank or smoked. He lay dying in his bed among his relatives, daughter, and ill wife. His son was still abroad.

Mizan started weeping. He was sad that at 75 years old, he was leaving the world. And then he took his last breath and passed on. I remember that gentleman today from one of my circles. He could have been rich, yet he died poor. He could have a healthy and sane wife. So many good marriage proposals had come in his early life. Yet, he ignored them all.

His son was doing well abroad and catering to his family well enough. His daughter grabbed all the documents of the acres of land, owned them and got hold of jewelry and money that remained in his Dad’s home. She looked after her ill mother and brought up her sons. She was wealthy and didn't waste money like her Dad but saved them. Her hubby had also acres of land and sources of income from agricultural lands.

So, that way, both son and daughter lived well off till date. Remembering that gentleman, their father- what a tragic end indeed!

© 2022 Rosina S Khan