In our office, there was a self-effacing Bengali clerk named Das Babu, a man of few words and quiet efficiency. We had never spoken to each other till then. One day, towards the end of April when I was about to leave, he stood up to draw my attention, and in the gentlest of tones asked somewhat apologetically, "Why not trust God, accept the Promotion and go?'. The words went home to my heart, till then adamant to pleadings and threats. It was as if "the hard rocky surface withstanding the repeated blows of the hammer and crow-bar readily cracked at last at the gentle touch of the tenderest of the roots of a tree to make way for its entry" (Thiruvalluvar) I now realise that Das Babu was the; chosen agent of Baba for the moment. The every next day a very high-ranking officer, friendly disposed towards me, beseached me in the sincerest tones to accept the promotion and go. Baba's method of choosing His messengers is impeccable. I sensed His will and, to the surprise of all, including those secretly indulging in malicious glee till now at my seeming stupidity in refusing fortune's proffered hand, I started for Jabalpur on the evening of May 2nd, much to the delight of the authorities who had been keeping the vacancy unfilled for my sake for three months, quite unusual especially, in the defence department. He who runs can infer from this that what God or Allah or Baba wants to give, no power on earth can take away. The converse is also true.
The next day as my train was leaving Raipur about noon, the Summer began to bare its fangs. It was only a fore-taste of its fierceness further on. I began regretting the decision I had impulsively taken, not withstanding an inward recognition of Baba's Omnipresence and Grace as 'Bhaktha-Paraadina'. The thought of abondoning the whole venture sneaked in. In this perplexed frame of mind, I reached Gondia at 4 pm, only to be greeted by scorching hot winds hitting the face. By 6 pm I was sitting rather bewildered in the compartment of the narrow-guage train for jabalpur completely at a loss. Baba alone could and must retrieve the situation, I felt and closed my eyes, half in prayer and half in despair.
Imagine my very pleasunt surprise when almost in a split second, as if some built-in-air-conditioner had been swithched on, the suffocatingly hot compartment