Happiness v/s Money

“Is this food, mother? Is this? It’s the same old preparation of chicken and rice. Why can’t you just change it? The other day I was at this posh restaurant and the chicken there tasted so yummy. I can’t eat the same dish again and again. Please change your style of cooking. How do you think one can even eat this? I don’t like this food at all. I am eating this one last time; if you don’t prepare a new dish with chicken the next day, just tell me. I would rather eat outside.” And he ate with a frown covering his face.

“Mother, I am so happy today. I have been able to sell all the flowers and save two hundred rupees even after paying all the money to the owner of the garden from where we collect flowers. I have bought rice, some vegetables, oil and salt. Finally, I can feed my ailing father and scrawny sister. I am so happy.” And a drop of tear lit up his satisfied face as the starving family enjoyed their dinner.

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“You know I am so disappointed today. I went to this big mall today and there was this dress which cost 5K. It was such a nice dress but I did not have the money to buy it. Sometimes I curse my luck that I should have born to a wealthy family or should have got some more pocket-money. I did buy something else and it cost 3K. You know it’s sexy, it’s backless. The boys will find a hard time to keep their eyes of me. But I still feel devastated; I so very wanted that dress.” And she put down the phone wishing she could have bought that expensive dress.

“Mother, see my new dress. The shopkeeper wanted 200 rupees for this shirt. Can you believe that? But I did some good bargaining and bought this for 150 instead. I have to go to the marriage ceremony of my friend. Don’t you think this will look good on me? I know it’s slightly cheap but it’s ok, right? Oh! I also bought this shari for you. Please try it and throw away this one. It’s already tattered.” And a sense of fulfillment lit up his already glowing face.

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“We need to buy an AC, it’s impossible to sleep in this heat. Ok, we have the ceiling fan and the table fan running but the AC is required. Look at all our neighbors; all are having at least one. This will also upgrade our status. We have become a laughing stock to them. When in Rome, we need to act like Romans. My mother was also saying the other day to buy one. I have seen there’re few offers to buy one and we’ll go to the shop on the weekend. Is it ok for you honey?” And she slept worrying which one would she buy.

“Mother, can you pass on this hand fan to father? He works all day and night to feed us and he deserves a proper sleep. You also work very hard, I have saved some pocket money and will buy a hand fan for you tomorrow. When I grow up, I will buy a fan for us so that we all can sleep peacefully. Good night, I need to wake up early for school tomorrow.” And she slept serenely with her mother feeling content that she had given birth to a gem.

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“Why are you disturbing me, you little imp? Move from here, run away. Else, I will whip your skinny ass. Dirty, grimy beggars, always behind us and trying to suck our hard earned money. If you don’t move now, I will crush you under my car. Don’t you dare touch it with your filthy hands, or else I will kick you away from here. Guards, can’t you see that this kid is disturbing me?” and he went inside the parking lot of the multiplex shouting more expletives.

“Mother please give me some food, I am so hungry. I did not eat my tiffin today, please don’t scold me. The tiffin that you packed for my school, I gave it to and old man who begs for food nearby. He is so old that he can’t even beg properly. Every day I give him some money and he smiles at me. Today he looked ill and I gave him all my food. The food gave him new lease of life and I am so happy for that.” And he washed his hands to eat another of those hard chapatis.

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Mixed Emotions

“A new bag”, they both exclaimed with joy. A glittering smile lit up their faces. They wanted a new bag for so long and they finally had one. They hugged their fathers as their delight crossed all limits. Most of their friends have new ones but theirs were special. They were more attractive and colorful, more spacious and very easy to carry. They could not wait to show off them tomorrow.

The next morning, while one packed books and copies from his study table the other accumulated plastic from the garbage bin.

 

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It was just a matter of seconds, rather milliseconds. The national championship was going on and it was the coveted 100 meter race. He came 2nd by just 3 milliseconds. He was dejected, disappointed. So much of preparation and struggle and yet all it mattered was 3 milliseconds. It seemed to him that the world has come to a devastating end, all his dreams were crushed. He could barely manage to smile towards his friends and family who gathered to cheer for him.

In the stands, a young girl whose constant companion was her wheelchair suddenly stood on her feet in delight and exhilaration as her brother stood in the 2nd place in the podium.

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It was his 10th birthday. Every year it was celebrated with much pomp and grandeur and there was no exception this year either. All the guests were having fun, well except for the birthday boy. He was lost in the middle of the splendor and his eyes were searching only one person, his friend. He wanted to run away from this showiness to him who was not allowed there owing to their class difference. He was not old enough to learn to cover sadness under a fake smile.

In the servant’s quarter someone was happy that his friend was having a great birthday party. He was sad not to be able to stay by his side but was genuinely happy for him.

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It was the 3rd time that month, what an unfaithful bitch! She had again escaped. So much was spent for food and clothes and welfare and yet she always ran away. The master was thanking his luck for tying up the GPS enabled chain just the day before. It did cost a bomb but people praised his taste and he could boast about his wealth. She was found easily this time.

The bitch was peacefully sleeping in her lap in the old age home. Well she was her actual master, the mother of her current master.

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He saw the death of so many people. Well all of them were killed by him, though he was merely executing court’s orders. He was the undertaker at the national jail and was famous for his deeds. But he always hated his hands as they took away the lives and his eyes as he had to tolerate the pain of the convicts during their dying moments. As he grew old, he told his son to donate his eyes after death. One day out of sheer depression, he committed suicide.

At the city hospital someone wanted to thank the person for whom he was able to experience light and see the happy faces of his family for the 1st time in his life.

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Once Upon a Time

One upon a time lived a blind old man,

Told me thrilling tales of kings and fairies.

Bemused and overwhelmed, his wondering fan;

How could he read his fantasy diaries!

 

Once upon a time lived a street peddler,

His cart was filled with balloons and toy’.

I freed the balloons as they flew up higher,

The small artifacts became my sources of joy.

 

Once upon a time lived a forlorn musician,

Played the flute as he hummed soulful melody.

Reached my dreamland to the tune of this magician,

My pain of loneliness was healed by this remedy.

 

Once upon a time lived a funny candy man,

Sold colorful candies screaming mimicry.

Life was content then devoid of any plan,

Like the candies, the mind was also free.

 

Gone are those days, those cheerful people;

Life has now become a monotonous rat race.

We spend our leisure with gadgets like cripple,

Greed and fake smiles darken our miserable face.

 

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