Just write something …

Half full or half empty…

Posted in Fiction,My short stories by dearestfriend on May 23, 2007

Well life is best example for this phrase. It can be half full and half empty at same empty..
I guess mental eyes and grooming are the deciding factors, Which side the scale goes..

Ariya was always happy that she had uncle, who dotted more than any parents would dot on their kids. He worked 3 straight shifts in work. So that she could go to best school in town. 15 years with this routine has seen Uncle Abby wear out a bit. But never had she seen his affection for her reduce. Strange is the word, which defines her connection with uncle Abby.
Well way back, uncle Abby used to be a 20 something handsome guy living near to her late parents. Late..Indeed very late. They happened to meet a fatal fate while trying to save Ariya’s Granny. Granny was in hospital counting her last days. Ariya’s parents were rushing in cab to hospital. While the fate had different destination for them. They were desperate to meet granny. They all met .. but not in hospital. Perhaps heaven or any other such place. Now this left Ariya 3 years and some months old alone in a rented house.
Love marriages can be weird. I could say all marriages are weird to some extent. Her parents’ marriage was that of resistance and perseverance. They had to walk out on their respective parents to marry each other.
Parents can be unforgiving sometimes. She had no one who could claim her from paternal side. Maternal side was all well-off and healthy folks. But only if they had little heart, Ariya would have had different upbringing. But no one came.. Poor girl was told by neighbors why her parents would not come back. Neighbors’ sympathy also dried up after a couple of weeks.
Uncle Abby was the only one, who took pains to contact her maternal uncles and all. No one cared about the kid.
So uncle Abby, kind of was in deep conflict. Who wants an orphan kid at age of 22.Neighbours suggested him, he takes the little girl to orphanage and he can meet her there frequently.
Sometime the thought came to him as well. But something in him stopped doing this. He gradually helped this girl settle her education, food, lodging.. and so on… Before uncle abby could realize he had already functionally adopted Ariya.
Ariya loved his company too.. Years passed by.. Uncle abby’s life became ariya and his career..
Now ariya was also growing up to take care of uncle. She would get up in morning. Clean the house and prepare breakfast.. That’s too mature for a little girl. But for some reason she had this gratitude towards uncle. Probably that s nature’s way of growing kids faster.

Ariya was growing up to see her life half full than half empty.. Though at times, feeling of parents being snatched used to fill her with lot of wretchedness. But gratefulness to one and hatefulness to God would usually counter each other.
People would suggest Abby to get married and get settled. Abby was always like.. I have daughter without even marrying. Why you folks want me to suffer with a wife .. and it would usually end there.
Life was going on. Several Springs and several autumns . And Abby and his daughter were leading their lives as fate wanted them to. On Abby’s part, He s given up lot to make the glass half full to Ariya.
Ariya was dreaming to go to her college next year. And grow up fast to help Uncle with expenses and to buy him expensive gifts.
It was a usual evening, except one thing . They had third one to share their evening tea. Aunt Rose had come all the way from a foreign country to this small town to meet her long lost friend Abby. They seemed very good friends. Aunt Rose still remembered how much sugar abby would have in his tea. How he liked to look at birds indefinitely. First time in so many years, Ariya felt her glass being drained by someone completely. She was dying to send Aunt Rose back to her place.
Uncle Abby was also looking relaxed and happier than other days. Evening went by. Dinner time came in. Aunt Rose offered both regular cooks to take leave while she cooked. Now this was too much.
….Why she has to act this way.. She ‘s just here for a day or two.. Why she needs to do all this..Is she uncle’s lost lover ?.. Why uncle is not asking her when she will go….
When will she go.. why not now.. Please go ..we dont need you..
Lots of thoughts running in Ariya’s mind.

Dinner was ready, It smelled really good. As expected , Uncle abby was all praises for aunt’s cooking. They had a walk after dinner. Lots and lots of talks. Aunt Rose Talks a lot.. thought ariya.
Now the next day. Breakfast time. Before anybody got up, Aunt was all in kitchen and other stuff.
…Hunn what the heck.. How long she is here..
same jigsaw of questions in mind. Ariya Nibbled her breakfast quickly to rush to school. While Uncle dropped a bomb.. “Ariya, Show aunt local market in evening. She would buy some dresses and other stuff..”
Ariya found it right time to ask..” Is aunt going to live with us for long?
Uncle abby and aunt smiling..Yeah she would be probably be here a month or two.. She is just taking time off ..said Uncle.
“hmm Oh so good.Sure I will show her around.” muttered Ariya while rushing out of home.
Now suddenly the life has turned upside down.. Last time God snatched her parents from her.. And now Aunt Rose..No please no.. I will not let you do that…
She rushed to school. Here life looks better than at home.. At least people don’t take her place. She was quite upset .. She chose to remain quiet.. weeks passed.. Ariya was losing the whole grip on house.. Aunt was doing most of mundane things. Uncle was happily passing so many chores to her. and she was rather happy to do it..
Ariya was spending less and less time at home. No one seems to complain also about it.
Life can be dry and scary when no one needs you. Sometimes for one thing we seem to lose all we have in our hands. Ariya was well ahead in her education, She had big plans of going to college , working hard. Doing part time.. Now it looks useless to her
.. What the hell… life is going to be as this is right now.. It matters to no one, if she grows up to be some highly qualified big shot or just an average girl…
Uncle and Aunt had chosen to go to nearby hill station. They wanted to take Ariya too. But she feigned about studies and upcoming tests. She remained in house.
Other day she was walking to her school. Her old time school friend just came running behind her. She realized it was her 6th standard friend, who had left school to work for her family. She was bustling with laughter. She told her, her younger sister had stood first in her class. So she s very happy. They chatted their way to school. She could catch Ariya’s disinterest about everything. She asked more and more and Ariya burst into tears. She was like life can be harder at time. “My suggestion to you would be, Be selfish. You focus on your studies first. Your sister coming first won’t help you in future.” ,said Ariya.
Her friend said, “You are hiding something, what s wrong.” Ariya told her everything about Aunt Rose. Her friend smiled and said Oh my! you are upset about such a small thing. If they like each other you should be happy. You are going to have complete family now.

Ariya , “what if they throw me out after they marry each other”. Now this was unlike of her. She never spoke like that. Her friend said, “what uncle did for you is, something rare and praiseworthy. But you need to realize one thing. So far his life has been just your responsibilities and you. What happens when you go out for your career and your life. You need to make sure he has someone to be with.”

This got Ariya wondering… Uncle’s glass was empty all this while.. She never realized that he may have yearned for a family or a regular life.
Ariya wiped her tears and thanked her friend. She was going back to home and make sure house is all decorated before she make the announcement..


With affection

Posted in Fiction by dearestfriend on April 10, 2007

This was a teacher we all knew who had given us so much more than education. In retrospect, It was whole 10-11 months in 9th class. Whole year, We really behaved bad for her. In the end she made it all so sweet and memorable for us. Okay so let me begin with her first day..
She came in class looking very idiotic and nervous.. Her hair style was funniest of all. She had two loosely tied braids which had stupid curls done to it. Otherwise her hair were good, long black.. she just messed it with untidy curls. Then her smile was so awful. I mean you could feel her teeth would fall off if she laughed one second more than she did..
We all mocked about her sense of dressing. We thought she wasn’t all that ugly as she looked. In the chic school we were , it was all but essential to be well manicured and pedicured. You have to look ” hygienic ” 🙂
yeah it was called “unhygienic” if someone didn’t have money or time to wax the legs for those smart skirt which was in our uniform. Not that school authorities called it “unhygienic”.. but so called ‘hi-society” gals called it.
She came to teach us physics. And when our senior teacher introduced to her, She said she was gold medalist student, Who opted teaching out of her desire to share her knowledge and kind of platform teaching provides to reach out so many energetic minds. It sounded to us, as if “who cares” why she opted what in her life.
First few weeks, gals were too outrageous for her.. No one listened to her. Everyone continued their non-sense chatter well past lunchtime. Her period used to be after lunch. Other would just put the head down and sleep. She tried every possible thing, she could. She tried to speak with each one of us. She asked personally what we don’t like about physics. But no one seemed to respond. She finally had to escalate to senior teacher about it. Senior teacher has the right knowledge, where to hit it to get gals working. She just asked everyone to have no lunch until her class is over. Faster people responded, faster they will get their lunch time. Else no lunch time.. You got to wait till the all classes are over.
And Big Deal.. She would personally sit in the class for few weeks and take a test. On this test basis she will allow annual fest participation. Now that was tough one. Annual Fest was the only time , these rich gals had time to show off their expensive dresses and music and dance sense. So initial hiccup was cleared for Physics Mam..
We would sit and listen to her.. Though no one really cared for all the practical work she would bring along to explain those principles in action. Once she got a huge water tub filled with water and some stupid heavy object to explain Archmedies principle of byoancy

All we could do was laugh incessantly. And later on enact her words. She was growing fast with our syllabus. She almost did whole of year syllabus in 5 months. That helped some girls to avoid otherwise Tuitions. So we were growing to realize her sincerity. Now her human angle never came in picture. Until one day, when a gal didn’t come to class. She knew that gal had come to school that day. Then why not in her class. Her concerned self had her calling her home , and finding out if she was fine. Now that was height.
Since this gal was obviously out without her parent’s knowledge. Next day that gal blasted her in front of whole class.
“How dare you call my parents. If I am not present in your class. You are not supposed to bother my parents. Anyway who listens to your classes. these front seated 8-10 oils headed gals. You know what s your problem.. Your problem is … you should be married by now and bothered about your life.. Than taking life out of other’s lives.. Next time you do this to me; remember your job is still ad-hoc here. and my dad gives fattest donation in this school…”

First time we saw that teacher not spreading her ugly smile in our class. She was quiet, she said sorry to the gal and took her books and left. Whole class was more than grim.. Nobody could guess that someone would actually speak so much back to a sincere teacher like that.
Now that gal was big bully gal. So no one complained anything. The teacher didn’t come to class for couple of days. We were all relived to have longer lunch break.. After two weeks, everyone grew worried bcos teacher had given her resignation and Senior teacher had come to class to ask about what has happened. No one would say anything.. Senior teacher knew us too well. So she started singling each one out.. Who said what to her..
After 2-3 hours of futile effort, she sat in despair.. And said.. you kids dont know what you have done to an innocent person.. This gal is a gem,and anyone hurting won’t feel good if I tell you. This gal was an orphan and she raised herself out of making baskets, working as maids …and you know what she s much better person than you all are. She didn’t say anything about you folks.
All this was too much to hear for one of us. She came out and told what had happened. Senior teacher knew the knack it taking from there. She called gal’s parents and told how badly behaved their daughter was. Principal and Senior teacher were going to suspend this gal, When the teacher came and rescued her saying.. She is like her younger sister. If she ever had younger sister, She would imagine her to be as bubbly and as outspoken this gal was..
The gal got to stay on. and teacher got endeared to us bit more. From there on, we never did anything to mock her.

Today after so many years of class 9th, I sit in class teaching folks the same physics principles she has taught me once. And I still wonder what made her so enthusiastic about all she taught us, Was it just her radiance or the tough childhood she gone through gave her that extra charm and grace which sometime most of us remain unaware of whole life.


Posted in Fiction by dearestfriend on March 19, 2007

When I sat in it yesterday night, I realised. it was n’t just darkness. It was my real self reaching out to me. And frantically telling i have been forcing myself it to do things which It don’t want to do.

I always grew up as well-behaved , well performing kid. Then suddenly i was thrown in frame of fame and money. I thought I deserved everything I had. Those who were poorer and inferior was born so for their deeds. They deserve where they were. I soon collected hordes of like minded people around me. They always said good things about me. They always made me feel royally. Life was fairytale to me. Helplessness, wretchedness and pain dint seem to touch my materialistically full life. Every day i found new interesting company, New promotional sign-up. Loads of money, Loads of good looking people and loads of vacuum , which i never realized anyway. Life in fast lane of fast city was never fast enough for me. I was running faster than it.. so it always had things for me to get engaged in.

 Until i met that little beggar gal on local railway station in Bombay , India. She was by far the most bubbly kid i have seen. The rags she wrapped herself in, defied her grace. The innecence in her eyes made me stop by.

You would wonder what a reigning music celebrity was doing in local railway station on Bombay. Well It was on the way to my trip to Goa. We had some nice Casino opening. I was playing chief host to it. And Bombay had worst rains that year. It just poured way bit more than city could handle. I was caughtup in that rain. My car has collapsed. And I hired a cab. Cab person was not kind enough to tell me, we may get stuck in water If he tried the other shorter route to airport. There I was 6 hours drenched in water. And my assistant trying frantically to arrange a private plane.. Things were just stuck at that point. But now I would rather thank that moment to open my wisdom.

Yeah So i was there near railway station. I was walking with couple of my folks around. There i saw these beggar kids giggling and laughing. I paused for a minute and saw this gal, Barely 7-8 years old. I don’t think her face showed she had enough diet for ages. But there was something magnetic in that gal. That I could n’t help noticing. gal was co-ordinating 6-7 kids and teaching them some newly coined water game..

The girl was shouting at those who dint conform. I was amazed at oblivion and matter of fact attitude of these kids had for situation. I stood there to watch their game. Little did i realise That in few minutes, I became their next game. Seeing some foreigner watchingthem is something they haven’t quite got used to. I heard someone making joke on my “Too pink” complexion.

I went up to those kids and introduced myself. I am John andrews, What s your names. There was louder laughter. My assistants came running to me.. Sir, these are street kids. You shouldn’t talk to them. They are very dirty. You might catch some infection blah blah…

I instructed those folks to just leave me with kids for some time. Being the secuirty agents they have to listen to me. so they stood by.

I went up to the gal. And asked her I am staying in that Hotel Taj near Gateway of India. Please visit with your friends on friday. We will all go have some nice food and will go to some theme park. The gal was looking askance to me. As if I am fool and she doesnot care. Kids dint say anything. they just ran away with her included giggling rather badly. I told secuirty agents to find their homes and tell their parents to get them to my place. I just wanted to spend some time with the kids. Such an absolute grit to live under such harsh reality and that too with a verve needs lots of guts. I wanted to learn, what makes these kids so happy and giggling. Why I was not giggling enough with best of toys in my childhood.

Next day I wainted in my hotel lobby. My trip to Goa had got postponed for a week. My assistant could get finally find a way to safely drop me in hotel back. Here I was in my abosulte luxurious suite wondering about that kid. Nobody came next day. I kep waiting for few minutes and then i called my assitants. Ordered them to rather be quick and find those folks. They did tie up with hotel folks and further to some other agents. Finally they could figure the address. they hired a local girl to convince thier parents. And finally I had those kids next day morning in my hotel room. There was only one problem., the girl had got her stray dog also inside a 5-star hotel. And hotel folks definitely found it little less pleasing.

But for the fact that kids were visiting me, Hotel folks had to allow that dog. I asked the kids to have breakfast with me in my executive suite. Kids were way too bemused to be around such luxury. they were little quiet initially , after two hours they were all over the room. The gal was as usual leading the group. She told her name surkhi. It meant red in english. And she was aware of it. I asked if she knew how to read and write. To my surprise she did. She said she has one old masterji in her slum area. He teaches these kids in evening when these kids are not doing their job.

We just completed our breakfast. And one kid asked..”Abhi kya karne kaa hai uncle” (means what to do now?) I told, we are all goingto “essel world”. Its entrainment park in bombay. Kids were too amused to react. They asked if they will go in local. Local?? what is local? its train , came the reply. I said, No we are going in our car. Thought of air condition Bus dint amuse kids much. but more or less they were happy . Here we reached entertainment park. continues………

Here comes the fiction

Posted in Fiction,My short stories by dearestfriend on February 8, 2007

I thought of jotting down the couple of characters , bunch of short stories.. what keeps going in my mind. This is truly a fiction, not my real life. But this just surface in my mind..

………………….You Scare me!

A small picturesque Village, nice little home, dusky evening and an old lady. She is sitting quietly in her armchair. The body which seems to have seen some half a century of springs, still has its grace intact. If you look at those eyes, they may as well remind of last angel you dreamt off. In this age, when your desires and actions don’t vary much. There is something very strange about this woman. Having  led an amazing celebrity status career,  there is no trace of luxury and opulence at this house. There is dense and thick simplicity woven around all over the house. The house which has it urbane cum ethnic look doesn’t boast more than ten pieces of furniture in the whole  house. You can’t see single photo frame anywhere. There seems no trace of past. Probably the owner wants to run away from its past. Just one little corner might grab your attention with its empty cage. Look like the cage seems to have occupied some bird in past.

Do I have to go that boring mass yet today, arose a question in Aiza’s mind. Being an immigrant sometime leaves you at the crossroads of two different cultures , where you don’t seem to take either road. She shrugged her mind. I wish Thebey comes today also. At least I can talk about my last shopping venture. Lot of thoughts, yet one recurring thought , what to do about this mass. There is mass for Late Mr Edward, who lived near to her house. He occasionally said hello and whats ups. Nothing more than that. Except one time, when he collapsed on his door. That time weather it was fate or some weired luck. I was just parking my car after a boring grocery shopping. I just heard some noisy sound of someone falling and shouting. Living alone in old age , can be scary. I rushed to his door. Just reached little late. He was almost unconscious. He being some fifteen years older than me, I got worried he may have had some cardiac arrest. I just dialled couple of health services number. One ambulance came up in few minutes. Doctors told he had his second cardiac arrest. It could have been fatal, if he didn’t get help in time. I didn’t know what to think of it. I felt a bit wretched about the whole concept of individuality. Living for oneself is good. But so much that there is just no one , you can rely on in your last hours is really scary.

Gradually Mr Edwards were showing signs of recovery. He would address me , fat lil angle, FLA for short 🙂 kindda funny. I never opposed it. So I was fla for him for couple of months and then two days back, Edward called to say , “I may be seeming very busy and very occupied. But the truth is I find this is time to say good bye to all around me. It may sound formal, but I really want to thanks for these extra few months I could get because of your generous help.Thank you” I kind of found that formal. But that s what his life was. So i just said, “dont talk like that. Life has many more years for you.” Next day morning there were couple of cars outside his house. Out of curiosity I too went to know whats going on. Came to know Edward called each and everybody till middle of night and then last call he made to his only son Robert. And he told him to come early morning next day. Robert did come on time to find Mr edward sleeping forever.

“ahh, not again.” my head is so heavy. Kind of loaded. “What I am scared off?” ………..Ummm may be a similar end.. life can be scary when you don’t have diversions. Ahh lord, thank god ! I have Thebey walking in my home. She is some twenty something charming Girl from Botswana. I find her too cool for her kind of experience. If you know what she has gone through.  You would wonder too. Anyway, I am trying desperately to get some comforting words for me too.

Hey  Thebey, I missed you terribly… I said.

Thebey with her as usual big smile said, “I know you little Old lady, you missed me for those dirty dishes..”

Well kind of, we both missed you. She is wearing a  nice olive green skirt today. Is there something special today? I muttered..

“Well you want to know everything, don’t you?”

Yes, today is my Kid’s dance rehearsal, And you know she doesn’t like if I go in regular clothes.. So .

Life has different troubles for different people. I am scared of meeting Edward’s end for me. Thebey is scared of her toddlers’ anger. Her daughter is scared of her peer’s reaction..

Oh lord, why you made this world so complicated..

Just then, There is door bell. I always appreciate these doorbells in day time. But who can this be.

No one called in to meet. Well it turns out to be Lizzy. A widow with her kid , she comes sometimes to see my health. She is practicing nurse. But usually she calls beforehand. what brought her like that?

Good evening Aiza. How are you ?

Hey Nice to meet you. I am good. Its pleasure to see you here. But i kind of suspect something. I hope everything is fine.

Yeah Aiza, You are right. I kind of keeping away from my home for today. Got an really bad landlord. He thinks he could try his luck in return of his stupid house. He wants to give the house to me. And he thinks I am all too poor to pay for it. So i could do something else for him.

What?? What rubbish is this? Why you didn’t complain for him in community? You gotta vacate this house. Oh lord. Where this world is going?

So what have you thought next? I asked.

I don’t know , thinking of going to some small village where I can pay up the rent without owners realising its hard to meet the ends for me.

umm.. thats too much to think.

Suddenly Viyan gets up from her sleep and starts wondering where she is. Hello My lil doll , you are at your old aunt’s place. Come we’ll play for tonight. we’ll go for a walk.

Seeing her twinkling eyes, I don’t know how to stick to this empty individuality of my privacy. After having conflicting thought for a while . I put forward my thought, How about this, you folks can stay with me, as regular tenants and need not pay anything. Just the meal 🙂

Lizzy was like, No way.. i didn’t come to burden you. I just came to have some relief for day or two. I will sort out something.

I dont know if Lizzy decides or not. But i have kind of made up my mind to live in hope than in fear till I live. So what.. yes I am getting ready to go the mass. 🙂