Category Archives: Story

Game of Blogs – Midway Through The Heart!

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TEAM QISSA

[ READ THE PREVIOUS PART OF THE STORY HERE ]

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ROCKING TO AND FRO IN TIME

He came. She clicked. He looked at her with questioning eyes. She smiled and held out her hand to him. “Hi! I am Jennifer Joseph.”

“I know.”

“How?”

He pointed towards the ID pinned to her tee.

“Can I have a word with you?”

“Sure.”

They both moved towards the bench laid out below the big banyan tree. The wind rustled the leaves. The cool breeze soothed their skin. A leaf or two parked themselves on her entangled tresses. She slowly plucked them off.The conversation flowed and before the hour was past they were the best of friends. Phone numbers were exchanged.

The microphone crackled. The amateur photography exhibition was now open to the public. Jennifer got up to go. Shekhar promised to join her in an hour’s time at the exhibition venue. He had some writing to do.

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The walls were a riot of colours. The lens had captured the length and breadth of India. Shekhar was mesmerized. Each picture was a story by itself. He dug into the sling bag and pulled out a dog-eared diary. Before long, he was lost in a world of his own.

“Hi! What are you doing?” The sudden ring of a female voice close to his ears startled him. He looked up to see Jennifer hand on hips, looking at him with intent eyes.

“Oh, nothing, just penning some thoughts,” he said. Before he knew it the diary was in her hands. She read and smiled. Shekhar thought, “Now there is something in her.” A plot was already taking shape in his mind.

“Why don’t you show me your clicks” he asked, gently taking away the diary from her.

“Come on. It’s there,” she said pointing her fingers to the center of the hall.

They moved till they reached the spot. Something caught his eyes. He stopped and looked up. A pair of eyes was looking down on them. He felt his heart connect instantly to the woman in the picture. He drew on his breath. The pain in those eyes told him a story, a story of neglect and loneliness. The rugged face bore the brunt of poverty, pain and hunger. The emaciated figure made his heart wrench in pain. He touched the picture with gentle hands as if to wipe the tears rolling down the cheeks. His eyes were moist.

Standing beside him Jennifer watched a variety of emotions play on his face.

“Click, Click, Click.”

Before he realized it Jennifer’s camera had captured his state of mind.

“What do you say about this one?” she asked pointing to the picture. His fingers were still caressing the rugged face.

“Awesome!” was all he could say.

“It’s mine,” she said.

He looked at her appreciatively. She felt a flutter in her bosom. He asked her whether he could have a copy of the same. She promised him one. They moved on all along seeing, observing and commenting on the various clicks adorning the walls. The experience was truly breath taking.

Coming out they bid goodbye to each other. Jennifer moved out of the gates and headed back to her PG in the first available bus. Shekhar lingered on. He knew he had to take a second look at that picture. He felt he knew her, understood her pain,her loneliness. He felt his heart go out to her. That night a story was born, a story that won Shekhar the first spot in the University Short Story Contest. Jennifer too went on to win. The story connected them in more than one way.

“Tring…., Tring….., Tring…” The dream was broken. Jennifer opened her eyes lazily and switched off the alarm. Slowly getting off the bed she headed for the balcony that looked down at the street below. It was bustling with activity. Hawkers were putting up their ware, children in uniform were making a beeline for the already crowded bus stop, a queue was taking shape before the public tap on the wayside. A passerby or two jumped out of the way of a rickety bicycle.The street of Fort Kochi was alive and buzzing with activity.

A red city bus bound for Alwaye slowly coursed its way through the busy street. Heavily laden with the early morning office goers it looked as though it would tilt any moment. The sight of more than a dozen people on the foot-board sent shivers down her spine.

“Oh Jesus! Have mercy on them,” she pleaded. Picking up the jug of water placed on the window sill, she moved to open the front door. The maid would be around any moment now.

She picked up the daily lying at the doorstep, tucked it under her arms and moved in slowly closing the door behind. The kitchen was a mess. Quickly doing up the dishes, she put the kettle to boil. The mobile rang. She picked it up. It was Cyrus. Her heart missed a beat.

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[ READ THE NEXT PART OF THE STORY HERE ]

Me and my team are participating in the Game Of Blogs at BlogAdda.com.
#CelebrateBlogging with us.

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Game of Blogs – Midway Through The Heart!

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TEAM QISSA

[ READ THE PREVIOUS PART OF THE STORY HERE ]

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THEY MET

“Beep!” “Beep!” The mobile sounded. Shrugging off all thoughts of Shekhar, Jennifer picked up the little device. A message! She swiped the screen selected “Inbox” and read. Oh, finally it’s gone through, she thought out aloud. The file had been accepted. The photos would now be available for the world to see and download at will.

A clock in the distant tower struck two. Net setter disconnected, she shut down the laptop. Gathering up her locks in a small bun on her crown, she picked up the toothbrush from the stand, applied some toothpaste and entered the washroom. The circular motion of the brush over her sparkling teeth had a calming effect. Splashing her face with cold water she looked into the mirror. Tired eyes stared back. Patting the face dry she stepped out and headed for the bed blowing her breath into her hands. The sweet fragrance of mint combined with a cool tingling sensation made her smile. How she loved it!

Her head hit the pillow. Within minutes sleep overpowered her. She drifted off into deep slumber.

The busy street of Karol Bagh in Delhi was teeming with thousands. Every inch of the footpath was occupied. Night had set in. Dressed in shorts and a cool tee, a camera dangling from the shoulder, she made her way through the maddening crowd at leisurely pace. Chains in colorful beads, corals and shells adorned her neck. Big, bright lacquer bangles clinked on her wrists, heavy metal ear rings tugged at her ear lobes. She stood out in the crowd. Heads turned as she made her way through them. Eyes took in her dusky beauty. A passerby or two made a passing comment. She was impervious to them.

Suddenly she had an uncanny feeling of being followed. Her ear lobes twitched. She looked around. The teeming crowd made it impossible for her to pin-point the stalker. Her feet gathered wings.

“Swishh….!” Something whizzed past her ears. Hand to ear she faltered and fell. Two pairs of strong arms gathered her. Jennifer felt dizzy. Blood trickled down her earlobe. “Who can that be?” she asked herself. The hands guided her to a Café nearby. She moved along in a daze.

“Are you Ok?” the stranger asked. She nodded in affirmation and thankfully accepted the glass of water he offered. Thoroughly shaken, she wiped off the beads of perspiration dotting her forehead with the back of her palm and touched the bruised earlobe.

“It just grazed and went,” he said examining the earlobe. “A minor bruise. Thankfully nothing to worry.”

The strong aroma of filtered coffee filled her nostrils. The haze clouding her brain slowly melted away. Color pervaded her face and white gave way to pink. “Oh Jesus! Who can it be and why?” she asked herself. But the answer was nowhere in sight.

“Would you like some more coffee?” the stranger asked jerking her out of her reverie.

“Oh no! I’m fine. Thank you” she said raising her eyes to meet a pair of bespectacled dark ones. The worry lines on the stranger’s forehead slowly cleared out. Putting forward a hand he said, “Hi! I’m Shekhar Dutta. Would you like me to drop you somewhere?” She noticed the half-grown French beard he sported. He reminded her of someone.

“No. It’s Ok. I’ll manage,” she said. He paid the bill. They moved out into the open air. A blast of cold air hit her. She shivered.

Her mind refused to calm down. “Who was it and why?” she asked herself once again only to draw a blank.

Shutters were being downed and hawkers bundling up their ware. She looked at the pendant watch hidden beneath the layers of bead. “Oh no!” she said to herself. “It’s well past 11. I must hurry.”

Shekhar looked at her with worried eyes. She seemed far from ‘Okay!’

“I’ll walk you up to the bus stop,” he said. The fighter in her rebelled and mouthed a “No.” But her vocal cords spoke something else. They moved on along the now virtually empty street. The 200 yards was filled in silence.

With a sinking heart she looked at the bus stop. The ever teeming stop was almost empty. The dogs had raided in pushing out the few male travelers who had called it a day and were ready to head back home. The clock at the stop showed 11.20. The last bus had left. She wondered how she would now reach her destination. “Oh Jesus! Help!” she prayed.

“Come, I’ll drop you,” he said slowly steering her to where his Bullet was parked. She followed him meekly as a cow.

“Can I ask you something,” he asked.

“If you are asking me who it was and why? The answer is I don’t know. I too am searching for the answer,” she said.

She shivered. He gave her his jacket. The smell of crisp starched khadi tickled her senses. She inhaled in the freshness, wore it and got in behind him. The bike started, turned and entered the now empty road. She looked across at the bus stop. It was empty except for a few canines.

The wind ruffled up her tresses. They danced wild. The neck chains adorning her slim smooth neck rubbed each other making a clinking noise. She moved closer to him. A sense of warmth and security pervaded her being. She looked up at the heavens and sent out a silent prayer of thanks. The Lord had sent in his savior to protect her. “Shekhar,” she mouthed his name. He did not respond. The winds howled. The heavy piece of metal, the Bullet sliced through them and moved ahead in the dark.

A crow cawed. Jennifer rubbed open her eyes, a smile played on her lips. Slowly undoing the bun, she swung her legs down by the side of the bed. The cold granite kissed her soles. Closing her eyes, she let out a silent prayer and made a cross on her bosom. Fondling the little cross dangling from a silver chain around her neck, she kissed it and got off the bed. Stretching out her being she let out a cry.

“Eeehh….!”

The muscles relaxed. She headed for the window. A streak of orange fanned out across the horizon. The water in the lake below sparkled in delight. The sun slowly started its journey up the sky bringing with it new hopes, new aspirations. Hands criss-crossed, Jennifer rubbed her upper arms in few vigorous strokes then, threw them up skywards. Her eyes locked with ‘It’, a reminder of her past. The sound of a distant hoot broke the spell; she pulled away her eyes from ‘it’ and with determined steps moved to the kitchen.

Quickly finishing her morning ablutions, she donned a saree. Not her kinda stuff but then Sunday mornings was church day. Casuals were a ‘no, no’. Quickly locking the front door she headed for the St. Mary’s Cathedral of Kochi. Mass began. Head covered she sat in the last pew. The next hour was for communion with the Lord.

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People filed out in silence. Slowly one- by- one the church emptied. Jennifer sat still looking at the Cross at the Altar bearing Jesus. She felt at peace with herself. A full ten minutes later she stepped out of the heavy brass- studded teak doors, inhaled in the fresh fragrance of the roses and jasmines adorning the flower beds at the entrance. A strand of hair escaped the small bun, at the nape. Slowly pulling off the hair pins she let her hair cascade down over her shoulders, shaking her head slowly she rustled them up. With fingers massaging the scalp she slowly walked down the steps and out of the gate into the narrow alley.

The aroma of hot steaming ‘puttu’ (steamed cylinder of ground rice layered with coconut) and ‘kadala curry’ (Bengal gram curry) wafting in through the small ‘chayakada’( tea shop) reached her. Her nostrils flared up not in anger but in delight. Entering Peter’s she looked around. Her favorite spot the broken table at the far end corner was vacant. Pulling up a chair, she sat at the table and waited for breakfast to be served. The mere look of the tattoo on her right hand took her back to the past once again.

‘She had invited him in. He had politely refused and disappeared into the darkness astride his machine. She believed she had seen the last of him.’

The scent of steaming ‘puttu’ and ‘kadla curry’ woke her up from her reverie. She dug her hands into them and placed the first morsel into her mouth. The taste felt heavenly. Slowly relishing the flavor she looked around. The eatery was filling up with strangers, tourists and local people. She studied their faces as she savored the simple dish spread out before her. They interested her. Each face, each minute expression fascinated her. She must click.

Finishing off her meal she washed her hands and dug into her purse. Out popped the Camera.

“Click! Click! Click!……” the lens captured the innumerable expressions, each a mirror of the mind. Paying at the desk, she stepped out once again into the narrow alley. Her eyes searched, the camera captured. With each click the smile on her face widened until finally something caught her eyes.

A chill ran down her spine. “How can it be him?” she asked herself. The height, the build, the crisp, cotton, starched kurta and the khadi jacket all pointed out to him. The stranger turned. Relief flooded her face. It was not him.

She looked across at the ships and country boats dotting the Kochi skyline. The sight was mesmerizing. Jenifer traveled back twelve years in time.

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He left her at the gate to her PG and drove away. The nightmare of the evening overpowered her in her sleep. She tossed and turned in bed. Finally unable to sleep, she got up and started reading the Bible. She read and read till her eyes drooped and her head hung over her shoulder.

The ring of a cycle bell woke her up. She got up and freshened up. Hurriedly finishing off her breakfast of bread and butter, she slung the camera over her shoulder and moved to the nearest bus stop. The bus to the University campus arrived. She jumped in, elbowed her way to the middle of the bus fixing her eyes on a young girl. The bus neared the next stop. The girl got up to leave. Jennifer quickly slid in into the empty seat. The journey was by and large uneventful. Jennifer’s hands fondled the strap of her camera. Her eyes scanned for subjects of interest.

The bus stopped. Jennifer jumped out and hurriedly entered the University gates. She headed for the auditorium. The Arts festival was underway. She occupied a seat in the second row. The extempore was on. The feast was diverse. Humorous, serious, cynical, the takes were different. She listened with rapt attention.

Suddenly she spotted him on the sidelines. “Is it really him? Or am I hallucinating?” she asked herself. She rubbed her eyes and looked again. He was nowhere in sight.

“Respected members of the jury, my mentors and dear friends……….” A clear voice rent the air. Sounds familiar, she thought and turned to the stage. He was right there behind the mike, confidence writ large on his face. Jennifer could not take her eyes off him. Words flowed from his lips. She sipped and savored each one. If applause is the yardstick to gauge someone’s strength and his capability then Shekhar is truly far ahead of the rest, she thought. The crowd was in raptures. Jennifer knew she had to meet him. She got up and moved backstage hoping to catch him before he was lost in the crowd.

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[ READ THE NEXT PART OF THE STORY HERE ]

Me and my team are participating in Game Of Blogs at BlogAdda.com.
#CelebrateBlogging with us.

The Shock

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number fifty five

He came from the opposite direction. Her old, weary eyes took in his looks. He looked strange and ominous. They came face to face.

She felt a tug at her neck. At the same time a bike neared her and before she knew it the man was gone.

Her gold chain and pendant were gone.

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Walking down the road she felt a searing pain on her forehead as it came into contact with something hard. “Ahh!” the cry was out before she knew.

Two frightened eyes sought forgiveness. Suddenly there came up a pair of chubby hands from behind the girl and extended a red rose. Pain forgotten she hugged them.

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Day 6 at The The Third Edition of Write Tribe Festival Of Words is dedicated to nano fiction or “55 Fiction” i.e fiction in exactly 55 words. I am linking my nano fiction “HERE”along with the others. Do visit the linky mentioned above and read others too. You are sure to like each one of the posts there.

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

Quaint are the ways of life

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I'm taking part in the Write Tribe Festival of Words -3

Legs resting on the opposite seat, head on the window grills she sat there motionless unaware of her surroundings. The last few days had been wretched what with the fights, the tears and the pleadings. But Raghav had been unrelenting. Finally unable to take it anymore, she had packed her bags and boarded the train to Mumbai, her hometown; the place where she knew the medicine, the therapy to her wounds lay.

The sound of metal scrapping on the tracks, followed by a violent jerk and the train came to a sudden halt. Just above the din, the commotion she heard someone say, “Woh petsae thi.(She was pregnant).” Her heart missed a beat. What could be the reason? She got down and slowly moved to the spot of the accident only to find a pregnant cow lying dead on the track.

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Playing with words is real fun isn’t it? So I decided to be part of The Third Edition of Write Tribe Festival Of Words . Today is Day 1 of the festival and I am linking my 9 sentence fiction here along with the others. Do show some love to all the posts at the linky by taking a few minutes of your valuable time off and reading them.It sure is going to be a feast worth savoring.

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

The shoe

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The sun was beating down mercilessly. The ground below was hot and burning. But Navnita was unaware of the heat below and the heat around. The fire within her was over powering. The past one day had seen her go without food and water. Sleep was miles and miles away. Rajan wondered what it was that still propelled her on.

Aa jaa rey..” the caller tune on the mobile jolted her to the present. Quickly with feverish hands she pressed the button and held the phone close to her ears only to hear the usual advt. Tears welling up in her eyes she moved on. The graveled floor below hurt her feet. They were bleeding. Yet she moved on. Suddenly something caught her eyes. “Isn’t that Eshaan’s sandals?” She was sure it was his. She still remembered the day she had bought it for him.

They had both gone shopping. The market was teeming with millions. She did not know which was more overpowering, the din, the dust or the crowd. She somehow managed to hold on to Eshaan once in a while cursing herself for having given in to his constant pleadings and having brought him along. But then it was no use crying.

They slowly yet laboriously traversed through the crowds till they reached the vegetable market. Still holding on to Eshaan, she bargained with the vendor. Purchase over, she turned to move but tripped on a stone and went crashing to the ground taking Eshaan along with her. Vegetable spilled all around she slowly got up and started picking them up only to be alerted by a wail from Eshaan. Picking him up she slowly shook his hands and legs, made sure the bones were intact. Collecting herself she made a move only to be dismayed to find Eshaan’s shoes stuck in the mud. She somehow managed to pull them out but one look at them and she knew they were useless. Slowly picking up Eshaan she made a move to the nearest shoe stall.

The shop was big, the shoes classy and fine yet Eshaan was not ready to budge. Shoe after shoe was shown. He refused to even look at them leave alone try them. Finally fed up she picked him up and moved on. Two more shops and she was tired.” Oh God! Help me,” she prayed. She moved towards the nearest available auto ready to leave for home, when suddenly she felt a tug at her hand. Eshaan slowly propelled her towards a small dingy store. She knew it was fruitless yet she followed him. Once inside she saw a row of colourful sandals on display on a side rack. The sales boy happy to get a prospective customer, was only too willing to pile up the entre stock for inspection. But Eshaan wanted just that one-the one with bright orange and off –white matted cover. It was big and his feet were small. The sales boy offered others in various colour combinations and of perfect size. But Eshaan wanted only the orange one. Finally fed up she yielded to him all the while taking shelter in the thought that his feet would grow fast and the shoes would fit him perfectly within a couple of weeks.

Picking up the shoe she slowly caressed it. She could feel his tiny feet within. Suddenly she felt a spark ignite within her. Quickly rubbing away the tears she moved toward the car parking lot. May be he was here afraid of her wrath. He must be waiting for her anger to die down. She searched the servants’ toilet, the driver’s rest rooms, and the parked cars. She turned things up and down, looked in the boxes piled on one side of the parking lot. Yet there was no trace of him. Hope waning she felt her body go limp. The loss, the void, the truth that Eshaan was missing slowly started to seep in. Her legs gave way. She went crashing to the ground.

Muffled, concerned voices could be heard. The sound of a car revving up, the wail of a child close to her ears brought her back to the present. Slowly opening her eyes she tried to get up only to find herself pinned down by a small boy. It was Eshaan there crying and kissing her, flooding her face with his tears.

Eshaan was back in her arms hungry and tired, pestering her for a chicken roll.

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Inspired by the above photo prompt at Write Tribe

Follow others on the same prompt at Write Tribe Wednesday Prompt-2014-3

Inviting you to also visit my other blog i.e. CANVAS

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

Love

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wowbadge

Image courtesy of tiverylucky / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of tiverylucky / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The door opened and he burst into the room. A hurricane accompanied him. He jumped onto her bed, put his face against hers and purred softly. Hands encircling him in a tight hug she slowly whispered into his ears, “Don’t worry, I am fine love.” He looked her straight in the eyes as though to assure himself, barked and jumping down from the bed ran away in search of the rabbits happy in the knowledge that his mistress was safe and sound.

Image courtesy of dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

This time we were required to a short post of five sentences including the word “love.”

Inviting you to visit my blog CANVAS too, to read the latest

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

It’s a small world

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April 1967

Flinging open the door two little bundles back laden with a bag full of books, ran in. Bags thrown to one side, shoes unbuckled and placed on the rack the duo ran into the kitchen. Before the lady of the house could gather her wits the two had planted a kiss each on her cheeks.

“Mom,” the two asked in unison, “Where is the parcel?”

“Whch parcel?”

“The one that Nani has sent.”

“Oh! That one. Well it may take another few days.”

Eyes downcast they went into the bathroom to freshen up.

This had been the regular routine since the past three days. Each day the duo would return from school eager to open the parcel and savour the “chakka varatti”( Jack fruit jam) that grandma had sent for them by post. The little ones could not understand the reason for the delay. The letter from Grandma had arrived four days back bringing with it good tidings, tidings regarding the parcel. Yet it was still far from reach. Mom tried to console them. She explained to them that a letter from Kerala takes minimum 4 to 5 days to reach UP; the parcel takes a longer time. After all it has to come by train. She reminded them that they themselves had to spend at least four days on the train to reach grandma’s place while on vacation.

The parcel arrived two days later.

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5th March 2010

Ananya (one of the duo) was on a official trip to Delhi. It was Rohit’s birthday. Yet she was not with him. He was there in Trivandrum and she was here in Delhi. This was the first time after marriage that they were not together for his birthday. She wished she could be with him, prepare his favourite dishes, make that special ‘paysam’ (Sweet dish) he loved so much. Only the previous day she had called up an online store and ordered a gift for him. He was passionate about books so why not one for him she thought. The Sales Manager had assured her the book would be delivered to him via express mail delivery at his office, at sharp 10 in the morning this day.

Yet, she wished she could do something special, something unusual. Suddenly it struck her, “How about a bouquet of red roses?”

Fingers tapped vigorously on the keypad browsing the net for the number of the famous flower shop at Palayam in Trivandrum. Number ready she quickly dialed the store.

“Hello, Spring Flowers. What can I do for you?” a female voice answered the call.

“Hello, Can you take an order for a bouquet of red roses to be delivered at Thycaud sharp at 10.00 am today .”

“Sure Ma’am, could you give me the address?”

Ananya relayed the address over phone and left necessary instructions with the lady.

The next half hour dragged on. Every now and then she looked at her watch.

10.05 am

The phone rang. Ananya knew it was him calling.

The gift and the bouquet of roses had made his day. However they were no substitute to her presence.

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Inspired by the theme “It’s a small world” at Write Tribe

Do read what others too have to say on the topic at Wednesday Prompt#2

Inviting you to also visit my other blog i.e. CANVAS

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions.
Your words mean a lot to me.

Dhanya

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wowbadge

Image courtesy of Tom Curtis / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Tom Curtis / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The bell rang. A siren sounded .The train slowly chugged out of the station. Dhanya flipped through the pages of the magazine with disinterest. She put the magazine down and gazed through the window. The cool breeze gently caressed her cheeks. The fleeting sights of fields’ lush and green, coconut groves and rows and rows of tiled cottages transported her to her childhood, years she spent with her Grandpa and Grandma. She closed her eyes. Her ears shut off the din around. She moved from the present to the past.

The house was abuzz with activity. Everyone was busy. People ran helter – skelter. The ruffle of silks, the clink of bangles and the strong scent of ‘mogras’ and “agarbattis” added to the excitement. But in the midst of all this there was one person who was lost and lonely – Dhanya. Just a kid of six, she sat there all alone in her room on the first floor not knowing what to do, cry or laugh? Cry at her sorry state or laugh with joy for her mother?

Suddenly the door opened and there was a flutter of activity. A bunch of teenagers rushed into the room and before Dhanya could collect her wits she found every inch of the room occupied by them. In walked Priyanka Di and the door closed.

“Hi Dhanu! Meet my friends Arathy, Vidya, Reena,………”

Dhanya muttered a “Hello” under her breath. She wanted them to go and leave her alone. But Priyanka Di and entourage were in no mood to leave. She tried to keep aloof but before she knew it she was drawn to them. What followed was mesmerizing. The foundation, the rouge, mascara, eyeliner…….. transformed the damsels into fairies. Dhanya could not take her eyes off them.

“Now how about dressing you up little angel?”

Dhanya turned to find Priyanka Di close behind, a beautiful pink dress in hand. Dhanya protested but Di was not one to give up. Finally dress slipped over the head, Di took her to the dressing table and sat her down. A pair of downcast eyes stared back at her. Tears rolled down her cheeks.

Taking the small chubby hands in hers Priyanka dabbed the nails with acetone and cleaned them. With dexterous moves she started to apply nail polish on them. Mixing and matching she worked on them for the next ten minutes.

Image courtesy of nixxphotography / FreeDigitalPhotos.ne

Image courtesy of nixxphotography / FreeDigitalPhotos.ne

“Wow!!” Bewildered Dhanya looked at the faces looking down at her and then the nails. Her eyes lit up. Ten lovely faces, faces of different hues looked up at her. She smiled. Her little hands wrapped themselves around Di and her lips planted a kiss on Di’s cheeks.

Quickly un-entangling herself from Dhanya’s embrace, Priyanka set about readying her. The next fifteen minutes saw her work on Dhanya’s little face and hair. The transformation was awesome, simply mind-blowing. The dull, sad face was radiant; the limp long hair was recharged, silky and flowing, the shy little girl looked every bit an angel. Looks of admiration and words of appreciation lit up her face and the happiness radiated to those around. Priyanka Di then slowly led her out of the room, down the stairs to her mother’s side.

Dhanya looked up at her mother. She was dressed up like a bride. Standing beside her she looked into the glass covered pillar. The reflection winked at her and said, “You are the most beautiful angel I have ever set eyes upon. You are more beautiful than your mother.” The tiny eyes winked back, tiny hands covered the mouth trying to suppress a laugh. She forgot the marriage, forgot her mother and ran in search of her buddy, her grand pa.

The rituals over mom came over and hugged her. The hug was scorching, she wanted to push her away, but then let it be. Grandpa came along with Priyanka Di and took her to the waiting car. She jumped into the seat beside the driver. The car moved. She looked into the rear view mirror. Mom was there along with her new husband waving to her. She shifted her gaze, turned her head and looked straight at the road ahead. The second phase had started.

Image courtesy of franky242 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of franky242 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Dhanya was suddenly aware of a flurry of activity around her. Slowly opening her eyes she looked out. An old man and and woman entered the compartment along with a small girl of six. Dhanya looked at the girl and wondered, “Another Dhanya?”

The train slowly chugged out of the station and gathered speed.

Image courtesy of Sura Nualpradid / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Sura Nualpradid / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda. This time we were required to include “nail polish,””awesome” and “rear view mirror” in our post.

Inviting you to visit my blog CANVAS too, to read the latest

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

The treasure of life

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Memories are treasures that we take out from the deep recesses of our mind once in a while, wipe, polish and then put back to take out some other time. Memories can be happy ones, sad ones, emotional, fleeting… However I personally prefer taking out the happy ones, the ones I can share and enjoy, ones that bring a smile to my lips and not a cry. Celebrating ‘The festival of words’ on Write Tribe’ here is mine inspired by the theme -‘Memories’

Image courtesy of adamr at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of adamr at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The mirror looked at me and said
My! You have left your youth behind
You are not what you used to be
Bubbly as a child could be.

I looked at the mirror and said to it
I have left my youth sure behind
Not at heart or in mind
Just in looks that’s there for you to see

I am till day, young at heart and in mind
Living life as I enjoy
Worries and tensions are things of past
Today I am a carefree bird

The mirror asked me how it could be
Age was catching up on me
At fifty, how could I be young
It was time I came to terms with reality

I laughed at the mirror a carefree laugh
And told it I was still young at heart
The looks it saw was but a façade
The real I was in my mind and heart

I still have a treasure within
Something that keeps me young and fit
A treasure I guard with all my might
Something I take out once in a while

The treasure of memories of days gone by
I take out off and on at will
Polish and show and share with my kin
Laugh at things I did as a child

The treasure reminds me of wonderful days
Days I spent with my Dad great
It keeps memories of him alive
The love and care of a wonderful being

The treasure reminds me of the things I owe
To a woman small in height yet big at heart
A woman I can always turn to
A woman I do call my own- my mom

The treasure reminds me of my days as child
Days I spent with my sis bright
The fights, the pranks all are there for me to see
Remind me I was lucky to be me

The treasure reminds me of all those wonderful beings
Who entered my life as friends, philosophers, guides and colleagues
People who taught me life’s lessons each
Things that helped me make me, me

The treasure reminds me of a hand above
Reminds me that it was it that shaped my destiny
Lead me through thick and thin
And helped me lead a life worthwhile

The treasure reminds me of days I spent
Caring for my child along with my man
Enjoying each bit of parenting
Feeling lucky to have both him and her

The mirror looked at me and said
Sure I am wrong and you right, my friend
You opened my eyes to a world new
A world of memories that make you, you

You are young, I must say
The memories are there to stay
The body I see is just a myth
The soul in you is the real you

You are young and beautiful.

************

I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words 8th – 14th December 2013 at
Write Tribe

Linking to Poets United too.

Inviting you to also visit my other blog i.e. CANVAS

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

Who wins?

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It was hardly over a month since we had moved into this beautiful little cottage a masterpiece built in true Victorian style, when I had this desire of trying my hands at gardening. Not that the place was without any plants and trees. No, it was just a pure desire to try my hands at something new, something exciting. The fresh air, the crystal clear water and the greenery around me were heady

It was months since Dad was unwell. The air pollution of the city had taken a toll on his health. A chronic asthma patient, there were days when he was in extreme pain. All this and the idea to buy a new house propelled me to consider purchasing something in the hills, something in Nature’s lap. That is how we had chanced upon this masterpiece.

Well coming back to where I left off, one fine morning unmindful of the biting cold I moved out to the backyard sickle and shovel in hand. The cold was literally biting off my finger tips, but the resolve to make my very own garden, a garden full of herbs and fruits something I could call my creation, my masterpiece was more overpowering than the cold. I started off humming a tune. My hands worked frantically. Removing the overgrown weeds I cleared a small patch in which I intended to plant some saplings of gooseberries, saplings that I had bought the previous day from the nearby Agri. Depot. I watered the clear patch to soften the mud. The smell of water mingling with mud charged me further and I started to shovel and dig deep into the earth.

Ammu my daughter brought me a glass of tea. Reluctant to stop the task I was involved in, I refused the same only to be scolded by her. Finally, I gulped the tea so fast that I scorched my taste buds. Ammu reprimanded me. The ‘dadi maa’ in her quickly brought some sugar and applied it to my burnt tongue. Thanking her I turned back to my “Mission Garden.” The rising sun, the rising temperature combined with the exertion slowly started telling on me. My hands ached, sweat beads lined my forehead and I knew it was time for a break. “Ha! Just another ten minutes,” I said to myself. “After that I will stop for an hour.” I had hardly worked for five more minutes when the shovel hit on something strong. I dug again and again but the thing would not yield. The sound of metal striking metal sent the blood racing in my veins. “Is it a burial urn,” I thought to myself. Only the other day an old lady passing by had said that there was a time when the adjacent plot was used as a burial ground. “Should I stop?”

The investigator in me suddenly came to the fore. “No, you must find out. Who knows it can be something unique, a piece of antique or an urn full of golden coins and ornaments.”

“But, what if it is something insignificant? Won’t I be wasting precious time and energy?” The simpleton in me asked.

“Even if it is so, you have nothing to lose,” the investigator said.

Finally after thinking over all the pros and cons I decided to investigate. But then I must have my entire family by my side. “Who knows it could turn out to be something scary. I need witnesses, people to support me should I faint.”

The entire family around, I started to dig. My husband joined me in the endeavour. Meanwhile Ammu and my sister’s daughter Meenu placed a bet. While Ammu said it would be a chest of gold or precious stones, Meenu said it would not be anything of significance probably something discarded by the previous owners. The wager was a treat at KFC. “Ha! Here I toil and the treat goes to someone else,” I thought and smiled.

The minutes ticked by. Thirty, twenty nine, twenty eight, twenty seven…………… and suddenly it was there exposed a beautifully carved chest in silver, something the like of which I had never seen before, something enchanting. I could not take my eyes off from it.

“Mom, come on open the chest. Looks like I am set to win,” said Ammu. Slowly with shaking hands I pried open the box only to find it filled with trinkets and toys, things that clearly stated it belonged to a child. I wondered how it had reached here deep in the soil. Suddenly I remembered my childhood days. Days when my sis and myself had this habit of hiding our valuable possession our trinkets and toys in rabbit holes and trunks of trees so that the bully next door would not lay his hands on them. I smiled and said to myself, “Probably there was a bully here around too or else why would anyone bury this beautiful chest and their childhood valuables in the earth.”

“Massi , it looks like someone lost their child and so buried this chest containing painful memories in the earth.” That was Meenu. Yes, it could be true I thought but then shirked it off. I wanted to believe only the best in this beautiful land where I planned to build a garden of my dreams. I wanted to see the earth as a giver of happiness and not as a receiver of sadness.

“No dear it’s a treasure hidden by a clever child to protect it from an invader, a bully,” I said.

But the question that remains unanswered is, “Who wins Ammu or Meenu?”

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Inspired by the theme ‘TREASURE’ at

Write Tribe

Inviting you to also visit my other blog i.e. CANVAS

By the way don’t forget to leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.