It was thought that the gods blew on creative people, who would then inhale the god's breath and have an idea. This is the premise of "inspiration": inhaling divine breath and ideas.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Rosy Encounter

From that day on there would be electricity for us too but at that moment we were unaware of the fact that our lives were about to change. It was the day the prime minister visited our little village.

My mother dressed me in a pink frock, I looked like a 'English girl' with rosy cheeks and red lips. My hair was oiled and then plaited in a manner that even the strongest of the winds could not dare disturb. All three sisters looked so much alike that day. Everyone said we looked like dolls. I knew I looked the loveliest and the prime minister would only accept the rose I am going to present him. They said he loved roses, he loved children and the white dove. We all called him Chacha Nehru.

I had preserved a big red rose for him. Hiding it from my mother and sisters was very tough but I was determined to do it. I carefully removed the thorns, few of which had hurt me in the process. Covering it in a kerchief I followed my sisters to join the rest of the village in welcoming Chacha.

I had never seen so many people together. Only a few weeks before this event there was a wedding in a neighboring village and it was my first time to a wedding. Mom said now I am big enough to go to a wedding and feed myself, I was five then. I clutched my sister's hand tightly. She whispered into my ears 'What if you get lost here?' and it scared me like hell. My heart started racing and tears were beginning to form. I whispered back 'will you come to look for me?' and she answered 'No, I can play with all your dolls and wear all your frocks. Why would I look for you?' I ran to my father and asked to be carried.

I know I am safe in my father's arms, he will never lose me. Something soft in my hand started to crumple, it was the rose that I was carrying, I had already destroyed it. The stalk with a few petals was all that remained now. Tears began to roll down my cheeks. I silently cried lest get caught with the 'rose episode'.

Suddenly there was news that cars were already reaching our village. Huge groups of men descended from the first car, I could hardly see who they are. But they were big and tall with big mustaches. Then a tall man in white emerged wearing a white 'topi'. people started shouting slogans of praise. As we walked down the path many fell to his feet, handed him garlands and shook hands. It was a special day for all of us. We loved him even before we knew him.

As he walked past us, my father touched his feet in reverence I stood below and raised my torn rose high up. Chacha smiled at me and he looked like an angel. The rose remained in his pocket for a long time that day. I told all my friends about the rose. I still do, even after sixty years.......

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