HEAVEN ON EARTH

The two brothers shared a unique friendship. During the Navratri[7] festivals, the local community organized a drama depicting the life of Lord Rama. When Dadubhai was 7, and Babubhai 9, they enthusiastically watched the play together. Dadubhai would make way in the busy crowd to reserve a front seat for Babubhai and himself. At home as well, they would dress up and mimic the kings in battle. The scene in which King Dashrath[8] dies remained in Dadubhai's memory so later, he asked Babubhai, "What will happen to King Dashrath after he died?" Babubhai replied, "He will go to heaven." When Dadubhai asked, "What is heaven?" Babubhai replied, "It is a place where there are neither troubles nor misery, nor sense of yours and mine - there is only happiness." Hearing this, Dadubhai exclaimed, "Then we will bring that heaven to earth!"

Dadubhai and Babubhai also took part in a school play based on the story of King Prithvi and Samyukta.[9] Babubhai helped all the actors play out their parts, while Dadubhai played the role of King Prithvi. The day prior to the show however, the classmate who was to play the role of Samyukta fell ill. Knowing all the lines, Babubhai said he would take the role of King Prithvi, if Dadubhai played the role of Samyukta. Without considering what others would think, Dadubhai made sure that the play was a success. He disguised himself in the princess's role and even mimicked the voice of a woman. When the characters were announced at the end of the play, the audience applauded Dadubhai's marvelous acting!

Large carnivals also came to the town of Nadiad. During the time of Maha Shivaratri,[10] one such fair was set up next to the Santrama temple. Rides and games were put up along with food stalls and merchant booths. Dadubhai and Babubhai decided to open a stall called "Paan[11] House." First, Dadubhai dug up the ground and plotted a tall flag that attracted passerby's attention to the young entrepreneurs. Dressed in traditional Indian attire and an angled hat on his head, Dadubhai voiced the unique quality of paan being sold. Onlookers irresistibly recognized Dr. Nathabhai's bright sons.

As was the custom at the time, at the young age of 10, Babubhai was engaged to Kamlaben Patel, daughter of Ambalalbhai of the village Parbhani, on May 25, 1927. Five years later, she moved in with the family while Babubhai completed his studies.

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