Moods of Holi

They both moved to this new complex just a month back. Both their fathers had transferable jobs and hence this fate. While the lively Raj already made many friends, Raja hardly used to go out as he had no friends. They both attended the same school and studying in Class-V.

Then came Holi.

The recluse Raja chased Raj all over the ground to throw gulal/abir (colored powders which is used to play Holi) at him. All were shocked to see this as all expected the reverse to happen. Finally, when Raja succeeded, it was some achievement for him but Raj kept on sneezing. Raj had dust allergy and that’s why was so afraid of the abir. After the sneezing finally ended, what started was though one of the best bonds of friendship.

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It had been quite a while now that they know each other. Both had a lot of things to say but what they did not have was the courage. Their eyes expressed their feelings but their lips were sealed and senses were numb.

Then came Holi.

Gulping down 2 glasses of bhang (a popular intoxicate drink during Holi) Sooraj mastered his nerves to go and bare open his heart to Sandhya. But as he saw the playful Sandhya draped in abir, he lost all his words again. The mesmerized Sooraj just smiled and applied abir on her face. She ran away immediately in disbelief and awe, just after she applied abir back on him.

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It was her 1st Holi after marriage; the excitement should have been sky-high. But her husband was admitted to ICU for the last 3 days when a speeding car hit him. She had lost all her hope as her husband was in a critical condition. Swapna’s only constant companion was God but she thought her prayers would go answered.

Then came Holi.

She applied sindoor (red pigment made from powdered red lead, part of Hindu tradition for married women) on her forehead and then the hospital staff distributed sweets and abir to all the patients and their relatives. As she stood in front of the ICU door, her cheeks shone bright red with abir, Abir opened his eyes after 3 days. Tears rolled down her cheek whereas he fell in love with his beautiful wife, yet again.

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He was 80 years old, barely able to walk with acute arthritis. He had lost her wife 6 months back and his son was miles away from him working in USA with his family. He was living a life of mercy, with his nanny.  There was no meaning of his life anymore, at least he thought so.

Then came Holi.

Rajendranath had to wake up very early in the morning as the doorbell rang constantly. He was pretty disturbed to wake up so early but also happy as his doorbell did not ring much. As he opened the door after a long and tedious walk, he just heard “Happy Holi” from a kid’s voice and was smeared with abir. It was Payel, his granddaughter. His son had given him the best Holi gift. He again wanted to live.

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His day labor father was ill and could not go to work for the last week or so. The malnourished body needed proper diet which it did not get for the same period. His father somehow set up a makeshift shop to sell abir and colors on the eve of Holi but was not able to sell much with his weak body. The small boy tried hard but could not help his father. Another day with one-course meal was on the cards.

Then came Holi.

Babu shouted his heart out so that he could sell and accumulate money for food and medicine. Then came Srijon with his kid and his kid’s friends. He brought a lot of abir and the amount was much more than what Babu and his father expected to earn. Srijon’s son and his friends also applied some abir on Babu and happily went away. Elated were Babu and his father, content was Srijon.

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She cleaned the photo-frame for the umpteenth time. It was his son’s photo. He died in the battlefield in order to save his country but the loss of his mother was irreparable as he was her last straw to clutch on to. Her eyes were wet.

Then came Holi.

The entire locality came to her house to celebrate Holi. Pratap’s mother Neerja was no longer sad, she was overwhelmed and her emotions crossed all limits. Yes, tears still rolled down but they were of joy. She felt proud for her son. This was one Holi that she would never forget. Faraway in the sky, Pratap also smiled for his mother.

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