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Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Shade of Life

I just sneaked out through the curtains of my bedroom to see if it was too hot to go out.  All I saw was this beautiful scene through my window. Two tired women labourers having a siesta on the construction site after hard laborious work for hours before lunch. As the sun was straight up, all they could manage was a little shade of the adjacent building. Atleast the dead building had some alive mercy for them. All day they fill concrete mortar with the spades lying next to them and carry it to build houses that they would never inhabit. Once the construction gets over the security guard would not even allow them to stand outside its gate to admire their own sweat and blood.   They would be clearly outcasted from its premises. The people who would enjoy the luxuries and comforts of this apartment building would not let these poor women to even enjoy an eye full sight of the legacy they built baking under heat and dust. These women would go into oblivion on the very first day the building would come into existence. 

But they still work. Not that they do not feel the pain for their plight, but for they have stomachs to feed. So they work and work from dawn to dusk.
Spicy Saturday Pick
So here is a poem I exclusively dedicate to them.
From dawn to dusk
From home to work.
Under the heat of the day               
They sweat and sulk.

No regards, no appreciation.
No love no recognition.
Only for the sake of bread
They shed sweat with dedication.

A break from work in the mid day
to bring back strength for the remaining day
to carry bricks and sand on their body
they eat first meal of the day.

Tomorrow when this would be over,
They'll only get pity wages to shower
For its owners to recognize 
Once a bare land but now a paradise.

These women would go into oblivion on the very first day the building would come into existence. 

This post is a part of Blog Adda' s coveted Spicy Saturday Pick. 
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Monday, August 19, 2013

The Tradition must continue...

I always grew up with the idea that whatever we get from the world should be duly returned to society to complete the cycle of gratitude. I would not credit this piece of thought alone to my parents but also to those numerous good people who invested a lot of physical efforts to make it pragmatic for me. There is more we learn through books than we see it happening in reality. If all the good moral values were just a part of good books, nobody would have believed it amply to follow it in real life. But God gifted me with people worth emulating a lifetime. I was in IX std and Mr. & Mrs Saju were newly wed couple. Their interaction with my father prompted them to call me for guidance in English language. They were Malayali couple and had excellent command over English language. They dedicated one hour in the evenings to teach me English and never allowed me to return the favour through any means. One Alam Uncle too impressed by my performance in the school offered me to teach mathematics free of cost. They were real life heroes for me. Inspite of their busy professional life they dedicated time to teach me without any monetary benefit. One fine day when I was about to leave the place because of my Dad's transfer, I went to Saju Uncle s place with a Gift. But he did not gain the guts to accept it. And he said a touching line " Teach anyone you find in your life who is in need but cannot afford. The tradition should continue". I was not enough matured to understand the real depth of his words then, but I carried his words in my heart in the form of an emotion.

                                                         I still remember the English lessons on Modals that he taught we with sheer passion and chutzpah.After completing my education and acquiring a job I was on a look out to find someone who was in short of money but wanted help and tutorial guidance. On my very first posting at a remote place in Rajasthan,  I found a boy named  Rahul. It was in a restaurant where he worked as a part time waiter, I met him. I did not know then that he was also a day time student. It was a month later while returning from office, I saw him in School uniform. I stopped at once and asked him astonishingly, " Do you study in this Kendriya Vidyalaya ? " . He smiled and hesitatingly said a  yes. He told me that he has a lot of financial problems at home. So to make the ends meet he works in the restaurant in the evenings. I felt respect and compassion for him that very moment. This was the time for me to continue the tradition that Mr. Saju had taught me years back. So i offered him to come to my place after school for tuition on any subject he had problem with . He was more than happy to get that proposal. 

The very next day he was there at my place of residence to study. I loved every moment of teaching him. I felt an aesthetic pleasure in teaching him. Over the months we worked hard and a time came when he stood second in his class. It was a very emotional moment for both of us. He was very weak in English and mathematics when he came to me. Moreover the work in the evenings at restaurant made him even tired to concentrate on studies. But we utilised the one hour in the afternoon so efficiently that inspite of being second in the class he topped in English and Mathematics. It was a kind of tribute to Mr & Mrs Saju and Alam Uncle. That night I did not sleep. I recollected almost every moment with the Saju couple and Alam Uncle. My respect for them grew manifolds. For one they helped with my studies at a time, when I needed it the most and two for giving me that satiated feeling after Rahul got second rank in the school. A year later when I got posted out from the place, Rahul came to see me off at the Railway Station with a bunch of flowers that he collected from the restaurant premises. And at that moment I told him the lines Mr. Saju gifted me years back. I told him to continue the tradition of kindness and compassion for people who are in need. The tradition is mutually beneficial to both the recipient and the giver.     

This post is exclusively written for Do Right Stories an initiative by TATA Capital to reinforce the  moral values of Kindness, Honesty, Respect, Compassion and Integrity. 

I am sharing my Do RIght Stories at in association with Tata Capital.
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