Our ancestors

Children, behold the Chimpanzee:
He sits on the ancestral tree
From which we sprang in ages gone.
I’m glad we sprang: had we held on,
We might, for aught that I can say,
Be horrid Chimpanzees to-day.

By Oliver Herford

It was a bold decision indeed. Had we not jumped from those trees it would have been a costly miss for us. Blue or yellow or orange or red would have made no difference to us. Coffee or tea would have wasted their special flavor in the air. Gold and silver would have remained unpolished underneath the earth along with crude oil and coal. Cotton would not have known its worth. Thunder and lightening would not have had any impact on us—we would not have known that light travels faster than sound. What would have been the fate of Darwin or Helen of Troy for that matter? Christopher Marlow’s immortal lines “was this the face that launched a thousand ships…” would not have seen the light of day. Apple would not have acquired the prime of place among fruits. Remember this oft repeated prescription by the physicians—an apple a day keeps the doctor away.

What would have happened to family relationships? Unthinkable…one’s grandfather could be one’s mother’s third or fourth husband as well. Thus far and no further, I leave it to your imagination.

Author: P U Krishnan

First things first. I am one of those retired chaps who are young at heart. I watch cricket matches and jump for joy when Tendulkar scores yet another century. I read newspapers and books too, though I am not crazy about them. I think I have a mind free from hatred and I owe it to the wonders of nature and music. I scribble something now and then and call myself a writer! Though I have settled in Ooty, a lovely hill station in Tamil Nadu—I must emphasize the fact that I was born and brought up in Tellicherry in North Kerala and studied in the good old Government Brennen College. Of and on, my mind goes back to my ancestral house at Tiruvangad in Tellicherry in front of an ancient Sri Ram temple. I am indebted to this wonderful place which inculcated in me a love for cricket and literature. But all said and done, I am an Indian first.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *