Aparna – A brave girl

Aparna, O! Aparna! come to the kitchen. Try to learn something, it will be useful for you when you will go to your sasural (in law’s house).”

What will you do with this book? Do you think these books are going to help you?” Said mother, furiously with a nagging voice. “Ma! I want to study. Why don’t you understand? I don’t want to waste my life in a kitchen. Ma, I have seen you do a lot. I know it is because of us only, but I want to achieve something. Please Ma, let me go to college.” Aparna urged her mother. “Please…..!” She pleaded. So that her mother would convince her father and allow her to attend the college, which was far from their village. Every time while saying all this, her eyes filled with tears.

She went to the river bank. She used to sit there whenever she was sad. Today, her mind was disturbed. “I am living in a village, where life is very hard. Girls are deprived of their basic rights and education. I have faced many challenges to get my primary studies but what to do now? Baba (father) will not allow me to pursue higher education as college is far from here. How hard it was to return home. Sometimes, when I returned home the weather would be rainy and foggy. My books and notebooks would become soaking wet. I would have to rewrite all my lessons and homework. Now, after so much hardship how can I leave my dreams? Baba never supported me or helped my Ma with my school expenses. He would rarely visit and I felt his absence even now. This feeling of loneliness and the sufferings of my mother made me stronger. I developed an eagerness to study and wanted to be successful in my life. I always remembered my mother’s tears and how she suffered, because of her early marriage. This empowered me to achieve the highest grades. So that I can stand by myself before marriage. That day thoughts were running in her mind as she stirred into the flowing water of the river.

She came back and found her mother sewing and mending some clothes. She sat beside her and spoke softly “Ma, you are a woman too, I can expect this from you only. You know our struggle for my education. Today with your support I am confident. Let me go Ma, for further studies. The girl inside you is the only one who can understand how desperate I’m today” she cried and hugged her mother.

Aparna was from a middle-class family. Her father had to work hard to earn their livelihood. So, he was reluctant to spend money on her further education. In the village, girls rarely joined college for further education.A wistful, dreamy child, Aparna was good in academics. Ms.Meena, her principal congratulated her parents. She gave her an award as she was among the best 10 students of the school.”Aparna! Congratulations and never stop your education. Fly high my child, you can achieve anything if you have a dream, a dream to do the BEST.” Miss Meena patted on her head and gave her the award.That night Aparna’s mother told her husband about Aparna’s wish.After many pleadings, her father agreed. They realised that their daughter’s dream and happiness was more important than to get her married at such a young age.”Baba maan Gaye Aparna!! (father agreed to Aparna), but he has a condition. If any odd thing happens, your studies would be stopped immediately.” Aparna’s face brightened up with a smile, she hugged her mother saying, “Ma, I will never let you down, have faith in me.“Next morning Aparna, a jolly young girl headed towards the college. She took admission and as college was quite far off, she had to walk and travel partially by bus.Brave Aparna was the only girl from the village who opted for this. So, her family was a hot topic in every house and among the villagers.

Once while she was on her way to college, few boys started teasing her and threatened her. Aparna told her parents. Her father got annoyed and angrily told her to stop her studies immediately. But Aparna strongly believed that she will fight back. With this mindset, she replied, “Baba, I will go. I want to study. I have a dream baba. I want to make you both proud. Believe me, Baba.” That day Baba kept quiet. He was against of Aparna’s studies but he could feel her heartening words tug on his heartstrings.Next morning again those boys tried to tease and made indecent gestures. Aparna decided to fight back. Aparna nabbed the harasser, one of them risking her life. She held one of them by the scruff of the collar till help arrived from the passerby’s. They had seen Aparna holding the boy’s collar. They came to her aid and thrashed him. They took him to the nearby police station. Soon, all the others were caught and put behind the bars. The officers appreciated her efforts. They praised her and asked everyone in the village to support her. Aparna raised her voice to other villagers. She dared to stand up for her dreams. She made others understand why it was important to support a girl’s dreams through education.She was happy today. She could continue the studies. By her bravery she led a trailblazer for herself and other girls in her community. And now the villagers are supporting her on every step of her way. Now she is not alone, many girls, like her, are going for further education and pursue their dreams.

Written for #causeachatter

Say “NO” to PLASTICS

Earth is our best friend. This is where we live. Our biggest aim is to save our Earth from hazardous plastics. We all have to make our Earth plastic-free. So that it will shine like a Kohinoor diamond. This planet will become safe for all.
REDUCE, REFUSE, REUSE, RECYCLE single-use plastics. Say “NO” to plastics. People should stop bagging the planet. Prevent the Earth from being laminated with plastics.


What is single-use plastic?
Single-use plastics, or disposable plastics, are used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. These are items like plastic bags, straws, coffee or teacups made of plastics, water bottles, soft drink bottles, drink stirrers etc.

These are reused after drinking, it’s a very common practice we find at homes. But unknowingly it leads us to an unhealthy life.

Earth is beautiful and is gifted with resources to make life exist. Unfortunately we humans are ruining all the natural resources and destroying God’s creations.
Plastics are causing harm to flora and fauna. Every individual should take responsibility to stop using plastics. This will help make our environment cleaner and greener.
Plastics, such as plastic bags, which are used for carrying groceries and vegetables are easily available. But, it has become a big issue for disposing of these bags. They are non-degradable causing major land and water pollution.

Petroleum-based plastic is not biodegradable. These usually go into the land where it is buried or it goes into the water and finds it’s way into the ocean. Plastic will not mix or mingle with soil rather it will degrade (break down) into tiny particles in many years. In the process of breaking down, it releases toxic chemicals into the environment. Indirectly these affects us through the food and water we take, it leaches and enters the human body. These toxic chemicals are now being found in our bloodstream. The latest research has found them to disrupt the Endocrine System which can cause cancer, infertility, birth defects, impaired immunity and many other ailments.
Plastic bags are mostly made of polypropylene which is produced from natural gas and petroleum. Both of them are non-renewable fossil fuels. Their extracts create greenhouse gases, that are the leading agents of global warming.


This is the reason many countries have banned the use of plastic. Our Indian government has taken major steps to stop the use of single-use plastic which is harmful to the entire world.


It is very difficult to destroy and dispose of plastics. They can’t be decomposed by the soil and rather are eaten by animals or blown away by the wind, sometimes entering the oceans and affect the marine life. The marine creatures sometimes by mistake eat this plastic as food. This toxic substance can cause various health issues to the marine creatures as well as the people who eat seafood. If they eat these infected fishes, lobster or any other marine creature can suffer from illness.

Waste food materials, fruits, peels on vegetables are usually thrown away in plastic bags. Animals and birds may eat them. This can cause various illnesses. Even choke them or damage their digestive track which might kill them.


Plastics cause land pollution. The toxic chemicals which are produced by them make the soil contaminated. As they do not decompose making soil infertile and damaging the agricultural land. Hence hampering the growth of plants.


It’s high time we must stop the use of plastic bags and say no to plastic. We should think about the harmful effects caused by them. Rather than the convenience to carry something for just a minute. The use of cloth bags instead of plastic ones could be a lifesaver.

Some of our companies have initiated work to stop single use plastics in their premises, for example NTPC has taken steps in support of this campaign .A nice initiative to support this cause.


Say “NO” to plastic. Don’t get miffed when shopkeepers who tell you that ‘plastics are banned’. Government has taken this step for our betterment and we should follow it. We should carry a cloth bag. Join our hands together to switch on to eco-friendly alternatives of plastic.

CONCLUSION:-
We, humans, have caused extreme harm to our mother Earth. The environment has decreased day by day. We should make an effort to reduce pollution to save our environment. Let us take an oath which every single person, no matter what, should follow.
Let’s make our planet beautiful again…

Salute to womanhood——————————-


Who is a woman of substance?Is she the beautifully tall lady walking in the ramp?Is she the one flashing around on  social media? Maybe she is the one who uses what she has to get what she wants depending on the circumstance.

Who is a woman of substance?

Before the stages of aprons and kitchen gloves,We were girls to our parents,We strive to be something better and necessary to survive,This world before we join as homemaker,We strive to be women of substance.

To me, a woman of substance is a woman whose life means something, who’s gone through every adversity and even if she didn’t “win” comes out on the other end stronger, smarter; a woman who supports others  — despite the cost. A woman who “uses” her life. . .she isn’t a spectator. She’s part of the solution, albeit only for her own small world of family and friends.We women have empowering powers within us,  Though we might not be that strong in terms of physical strength but we more than make up with inner strength.We can give birth to new lives and nurture our own kind and others. We may not be big in size but we sure can be big in heart, in giving out love and we are just the right size to embrace both man or baby.My journey being a woman is quiet struggling one but I chase my dreams ,I work hard to attain my goals.I think being positive with determinations are keys to success.Embrace your individuality and be happy the way you are.It has been two years now. I had come to live here in Korba, Chhattisgarh. Korba, the name itslef is unfamiliar to almost everyone. That it is one of the largest power plants in the country and generating electricity for nearly a quarter of the country. Notwithstanding these trivia, Korba is deep in the remote part of Chhattisgarh, far away from any other population centre and nearly a six hour bumpy ride away from the state capital and the nearest airport, Raipur..  There are hardly any better opportunities for work, education or leisure.My husband got transferred to Korba from Delhi, i left behind a lucrative career to support my family .I was taken aback and was in the throes of indecision. Whether to move in with him for the sake of my teenage son’s education or to weather it out solitarily in Delhi. After much discussion and mulling I let go off my reservations and decided to quit my teaching job and move lock, stock and barrel to Korba. That I was ill prepared for Korba is an understatement. In Delhi, while I was perpetually on my toes, here I was wondering what to do with the sunny afternoons, the large dilapidated bungalow overgrown with grass on its large lawns. I longed for professional satisfaction, to do something worthwhile and ofcourse, to earn my own identityI have a degree of Mass communication and journalism worked for public sector but have to switch  career to teaching for the sake of transferable job of my husband and to look after my son . I had gathered teaching experience in Delhi . I had worked hard to develop my skills. And then suddenly from the hectic life of Delhi to the idyllic abyss of Korba!Initially for a few months I flustered not knowing what to do and where to begin. Then I decided to begin at the beginning – my home. I worked relentlessly to convert the large overgrown lawn into a garden. I looked up gardening sites and you tube videos. I called up gardeners who were scarcely available and got saplings, manures and fertilisers from far and wide to populate my lawn. Slowly but surely, my lawn converted into a beautiful garden with roses, petunias, dahlias and marigolds. So much so that, passers by stop and take selfies against my garden now! In addition to gardening, I also started writing my blog. My journeys, stories near my heart, recipes and everything else. I poured my heart out in the blog. Gradually I got opportunity to write on several.large online platforms. I was honing my writing skills and getting invaluable inputs from my online band of small but loyal readers.  Articles were published in Hitavada newspaper,Nai Duniya and my favourite magazine, WomansEra Gradually my articles started getting published in newspapers and magazines. I just could not believe my eyes when I saw my name in print! Then, some one else suggested regarding self publishing. So, I collected all my blog posts and approached Notion Press. And they happily published my book, Heartfulness. I particularly liked the title and the cover design. It reflected my innermost feelings. The book has really given me wings. Meanwhile, my gang of mentors were working overtime. Unknown to me my work , writing and garden were being scrutinised with careful eyes. Suddenly some six months back I was offered the post of Principal in a school .While I had been a teacher for nearly a decade in a variety of schools, the post of Principal seemed a bit daunting. But I accepted it with a hope in my heart and a prayer on my lips. Being a welfare school, it has limited resources and bringing up its standard was a challenge that I am still struggling with. I put may heart and soul into it and now it has seen rising membership. So much so that this academic year, several well to do people have approached me for the admissions!!! Iam trying to give these kids and my teachers whatever I know ,new  technologies or teaching style etc. When I came to Korba i felt lonely ,I felt depriving  but iused the amount of time I had.I challenged myself. Today, I can say without regret that I am more busy than i ever was in Delhi with my garden, writings, book, blogging and school taking up my enwrgy and time. In return I have got happiness. Yes, Korba is a challenge that I took with both my hands and today I can say I have come out with flying colours!So, for every woman I would suggest that find your dream in life and pursue itFollow your heart…never give up…and you can do anything. We all have the ability to do whatever it is we want to do and fulfill any dream we want to fulfill; we just have to go and do it. When you find your passion in life, it creates a meaning in your life and gives you a purpose in the world: it generates happiness.Live up to your morals and values- always remain aware of them.
I saw this and fell in Love with it . 
So I just had to share it with you guys 🙂 
Never Forget your Worth!
A Woman’sWorth———————-A woman’s beauty is not only in the glow of her skin but the depth of her eyes.And the warmth of her heart.A woman’s strength is not only in the bow of her back,but the magnitude of her tears.

And the softness of her words.A woman’s wisdom is not only in the value of her words,but the knowledge of when to hold them.And the journey she takes to learn them.
A woman’s courage is not only in her determination to fight but her willingness to walk away.And confidence to say “NO”.
A woman’s grace is not only in the way she dances through her day but in the love notes she leaves .And the wonderful meals she prepares.
A woman’s love is not only in the kisses she gives ,but in the sacrifices she makes .And the moments given to you alone.
A woman’s worth is not only in the things she does ,but who she truly is and who she helps you become.

~ Mary Costanza -A Woman’s Heart And Soul 
         Love this !!!!!!

बाबुल


बाबुल के आंगन को छोड़ चली आज । कुछ लम्हें बस रह गए ।पापा की लाडली हूँ मैं, माँ की जान।चंद घंटो में अब मेहमान बन जाऊंगी।बिटिया तो हूँ इस घर की, मगर अब मेरा आना जाना ही रह जाएगा, इस घर को छोड़कर, विदाई लेकर मेरे सारे रिश्तों को यहीं आँखों में समाए जाना होगा।
बहुत प्रयास किया रोकने का, मगर नहीं रुक रहे यह आँसूं।यह आख़िरी पल कुछ अब बाकी हैं।माँ को देख रही हूँ, सुबह से लगी लगी हुई है।कभी रसोई में,कभी फूल वालों के साथ, कभी रिश्तों को निभाती, कभी मेरी और नज़र पड़े तो हंसकर सर सहलाकर चल देती।मानो कह रही हो मेरी लाडली की डोली तो धूम से निकलेगी।दुनिया देखती रह जायेगी।मगर दिल थम सा जाता होगा, उसका भी एक बार।क्यों सबकी लाडलियाँ अपना घर छोड़कर चली जाती है?अपनों को पराया कर ,चलती वक़्त के साथ पंख लगाकर एक दिन उड़ जाती हैं।
हाँ! बेटी हूँ मैं।बेटी घर की।जन्म लेते ही दादी बोली लक्ष्मी आई घर की।दादू के पीठ पर लदकर बाजार घूम आती यह लाडो।खेल खेल में उनको घोड़ा बनाती ,सारे घर में भगाती।चल मेरे घोड़े टिक टिक टिक।याद आते ही उनकी छवि निहारने लगी दीवारों पर। वो तो बस सितारों संग रोज़ मुझे देखते होंगे।आशीर्वाद दूर से ही देते होंगे।मेरी सिफारिश करते होंगे भगवान से की हमारी लाडो को खुश रखना।रोज़ सितारों के बीच उनको ढूंढती हूँ।
अब सब कहते एक नए रिश्ते में बंध रही हो,कुछ कायदा, कुछ मर्यादा है,जिनका पालन करना पड़ेगा।धीरे-धीरे बात करना ,धीरे से हँसना, सबके बाद खाना।सब आदतें बदलना।कुछ समझ नहीं आता।यह क्या है?क्या यह मेरे से हो पायेगा।कैसे अपनाऊंगी?अगर गलती हुई तो?इस कश्मकश में हृदय कांप उठता।
अब यह मस्ती न रहेगी।न रहेगी यूँ उछल कूद ,यूँ आंगन में चहचहाना,भरी दोपहरी में लूडो खेलना आधी रात तक मूवी देखना।यह रीनू ,मिक्की ,टिक्की संग कॉफ़ी बनाकर पीना ,मैग्गी के चटकारे लेना या देर रात को सबके सोने के बाद रसोई में जाकर फ्रिज से मिठाई का डिब्बा चुराना ..अरे! चोरी उन दिनों पाप नहीं, पेट पूजा की चोरी तो भगवान श्री कृष्ण जब किये हैं तो हम तो ठहरे अब सामान्य इंसान पीछे थोड़े रहेंगे और रंग बदल – बदल कर नेल पॉलिश के शेड्स लगाना।वाह री दुनिया इतनी आज़ादी के बाद यूँ कैद में रहेगी बुलबुल।तड़प न जाएगी।
माँ पापा की चिंता उनके आंखों से आज झलकती है।जिस बेटी ने एक गिलास पानी तक अपने हाथों से लिया नहीं वो एक घर की ज़िम्मेदारी कैसे ले पाएगी।एक परिवार की ज़िम्मेदारी ,इतने लोगों को अपनाकर चलना सबका मन जितना कोई आसान काम नहीं है।
हमारे समाज का यह नियम है कि एक बार बेटी विदा होती है तो बस अब मेहमान बनकर आती है।घरवाले आज जितना भी कह लें कि यह घर आज भी उसका है मगर सच तो यही है कि अब वो किसी भी वक़्त मायके नहीं आ सकती।पति हाँ बोले तो आएगी वरना अशांति करके आना भी ठीक नहीं लगता।उषा आंटी ऐसे ही कहती हैँ बेटियां विदा होती है तो हकदार बदल जाते हैं।लेकिन ऐसा होना नहीं चाहिए।क्योंकि जब एक लड़की अपने पूरे परिवार को छोड़कर आपके लिये आई हैं तो उसको उतना सन्मान देना उचित है एवं परिवार का दाइत्व।
इस विदाई और मेरे पराये होने का मर्म मेरे हृदय में बस गया है।
पर राजन ऐसे नहीं हैं।हम साथ है।एक हैं।यह यकीन दिलवाया है मुझे।दुनिया बदल रही है तुम मेरी अर्धांगिनी हो ऐसे कहते है राजन।यही कहा मेरा हाथ थामे भरोसा रखो।तुम मेरी हो अब।तुम्हारा हर सुख- दुख अब मेरा।भरोसा तो है मुझे तभी राज़ी हुई । मैंने राजन को अपनाया।
एक टक माँ को निहारती एक टक पापा को।कैसे काटेंगे दिन मेरे बैगर।सुबह होने से पहले मेरी विदाई है।दिल में भूचाल सा है।दिल परेशान।नये रिश्ते, नया घर,नया सामान हर लड़की के जीवन में यह समय तो आता ही है।फिर वो उसके ऊपर है कि वो यह संसार अपना कैसे बनाती है।आज इस मंज़र में मैं हूँ।
आँखे नम है।दिल में आस है कि राजन साथ देंगे।हमारा घर स्वर्ग से सुंदर होगा।घर एक और बनाने, इस घर को बेगाना किये, चल पड़ी ससुराल।
जिस घर में बचपन पला,हो रही उस घर से बेगानी,
दो परिवारों के बीच उसकी बसेगी ज़िंदगानी,
कुछ अजीब ही है हम बेटियों की कहानी।
दुनिया ने कैसी रीत बनाई,
क्या बेटियां होती है पराई?
ऊपर रहकर तू झांक ज़रा,
इन भीगी पलकों को तू देख ज़रा।
देखना रोयेगा तो तू भी खुदा,
जब होंगी बेटियां अपने घर से जुदा।

इस कहानी को पढ़कर मेरे दो ब्लॉगर दोस्त अपने कमेंट्स में यह लिखे जिसको मैं अपने ब्लॉग में शामिल कर रही हूँ उनके रज़ामंदी से।मुझे बेहद पसंद आए यह कविताएं।


मेरी आत्मा तक को छू गई ये कविता

2 पंक्ति मेरी तरफ से भी

फूलों सी नाजुक होती है बेटियां

थोड़ी सी भावुक होती है बेटियां

हर किसी को अपना बना लेती हैं

शायद विदाई पर इसलिए रोती है बेटियां।

अनुराग

चहचहाती चिड़ियों सी
घर की रौनक बेटियां
आज़ाद पंख फैलाये हुए
माँ पापा की दुलारी बेटियां
लोग कहते हैं अपने घर में भी परायी हैं बेटियां
काश पराये घर में भी अपनी बन जाएँ बेटियां

Alubhujiablog

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Benefits of Coconut Water

Coconut water alias “Nariyal Pani” in Hindi is a miracle drink. Everyone knows about it. A green young coconut which has soft fleshy cream (copra) i.e coconut pulp fill inside with coconut water in it. Coconut water is a clear liquid which has a sweet and nutty flavour. Don’t get confused between coconut milk and coconut water. Coconut water is clear liquid found inside of green coconuts. Whereas coconut milk is made from water and flesh inside of a mature coconut. Over 95 % of coconut water is water.It has lauric acid in it which treats acne, fresh copra (flesh of the coconut)heals wounds.Around the world, it is found in tropical areas. It is sometimes given as ceremonial gifts in these regions. Since centuries people are consuming coconut water. In India, it is very popular in coastal areas. These areas are gifted with plenty of coconut trees.We can have coconut water at any time of the day, there is no such perfect time to drink coconut water. But if we add this to our daily routine on certain timings it will be more beneficial mainly on health ground.

1) MORNING INTAKE – It contains lauric acid. If we take it empty stomach early in the morning, it enhances the metabolism of our body and boosts our immunity. It also helps in weight loss and in fighting fatigue and exhaustion.


2) PREGNANCY– Pregnant women are often advised to take Coconut water. It fights dehydration and constipation , that they commonly suffer during pregnancy. It helps relieve from morning sickness and heartburn.

3)PRE and POST MEAL-Taking a glass full of coconut water before a meal will make you full. This prevents from overeating. It works wonderfully for treating diarrhoea. It acts as digestive, low in calories (only 45 calories in a cup). It prevents bloating after meals. It contains less sugar and carbohydrates than other juices.Presence of potassium helps in maintaining the electrolyte balance in our body. So, when it is added to our daily routine it controls blood pressure and improves digestion.

4)BEFORE GOING TO BED-If we take it before going to bed, it flushes out all the toxins and clean our urinary tract, prevents kidney problems, kidney stones and infections. In Ayurveda, it is believed to enhance semen production.The pleasant aroma of coconut is known to have a psychological effect. It controls anxiety and slows down our heart rate, presence of antioxidants prevents from oxidative stress and calms the mind.

5) BEFORE or AFTER WORK OUT- Staying hydrated is one of the most important things during the workout for athletes. Coconut water is a great natural sports drink. It mainly hydrates our body, gives energy during a workout. It is low in carbs and sodium which helps in long workouts. The electrolyte in coconut water treats muscle cramps. After workouts, this helps in replenishing the lost electrolytes while workout session. It is one of the best energy-boosting drinks.
6)CURE HANGOVER– Dehydration is caused due to intake of alcohol which leads to headache and nausea the next morning. coconut water helps to restore the electrolytes which are lost in the body and makes you feel better.
Coconut water is a power packed drink, rich in minerals and electrolytes like potassium, manganese, vitamin C, Calcium and dietary fibres. Calcium promotes bone health of our body. Its a nutritious and refreshing drink which has swept off the nation.Coconut water wards off cancer by cytokinins which are found in coconut water. It has anti-ageing properties, it’s a blessing in every way.It contains L-arginine (compound knowns for its antidiabetic property). L-arginine reduces blood glucose levels in diabetes. So it’s wise to add coconut water in diabetes meal. It contains fibre and low carbs ,which make it perfect for a diabetic person. They are recommended for unsweetened coconut water. Package coconut water may contain artificial sweeteners. So, one should be aware of before consuming.
How much coconut water can you take in a day?: Why do we need to keep a check on the amount of coconut water we consume in a day?If a person has high potassium levels and is taking eight-ounce bottles of coconut water in a single day, he may suffer from abnormal heart rhythms. This may lead to temporary unconsciousness. Excess intake may lead to severe hyperkalemia (potassium toxicity).One coconut yields about 206 gms of water. Kidney disease persons or diabetic persons must take care before consuming it. Having one coconut in 2 days is idle for such persons yes of course after consulting doctor. There is no upper limit of taking coconut water but precaution is always better than cure.

Let’s have a recipe to make this more exciting.

Ingredients: 1.Lemon Juice and lime juice 2 tbsp each2.Coconut water 1/2 cup3.Honey 1tbsp4.Grated ginger 1/2 teaspoon 5.Sea Salt a pinch

Method: 1. Blend all the ingredients in a blender.2. Serve it or you can store it up to 2 weeks.
Best coconut to buy: 1. Shake and gauge the coconut water content.Go for a green fresh coconut. Young green ones contain more water Hard brown shell indicates it’s maturity.Enjoy a fresh, refreshing green coconut every day. It just doesn’t quench our thirst, it is a miracle drink which has got lots of benefits.

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MY FAIR LADY

The sun was setting on the purple pink orange horizon. Pritish was busy in the kitchen, a row of pies sat cooling on the wire racks. “It is done! Yeah! I can have it before I can go for a ride on the shore.” Pritish was a cool guy. He was fun loving, yet generous and modest.
After having food, I locked the door and walked towards the beach. I like full moon nights on the beach. As I reached the beach, the waves were crashing on to the shore with the rising tide. Drops of salt water hit my feet. I walked through the soft sand; overhead birds were flying to their nests, and the wind was whooshing everywhere with the sound of tides as they were moving fast.
I reached the boat. I wanted to launch it into the water. Suddenly, a hand helped me. I turned and looked up, “Shall I help you?” A pretty young girl looked into my eyes and giggled, “Amy! I am Amy! I saw you were not able to do it alone. So, I came to help you.” Amy came closer and we both dragged the boat into the sea. “Do you want to come with me?” asked Pritish. “Yes! I shall if you allow me to join you! Can I know your name?”
“Absolutely dear! I am Pritish! Stay as long as you like my company. I don’t mind!” I took her on the boat. Amy couldn’t imagine a more adventurous and wonderful day than this.
A wave of cool air engulfed me. I have always loved such blue horizons, water everywhere. Amy tucked her hair, behind her ears and paused for a second. She inhaled deeply. “It is so beautiful! Everything looks divine.” “Can I get you something, miss?” I asked her by flashing my best smile. Her piercing blue eyes were twinkling and sparkling with excitement. “No! Nothing!” She smiled showing a deep level of happiness and contentment. Many thoughts were bubbling in my mind. I was staring at the horizon. The sun was still creating myriad colours on the horizon. It was a beautiful sight that brewed emotions, deep inside me. I felt Amy’s warm, soft hands slip into mine. I saw, that she too was watching the sunset and the sea. Suddenly, I found myself staring at the most sensual creature alive, Amy.
Amy was wearing a half linen white shoulder top that had been tied in a single knot at the back of her neck and a printed blue skirt that reached till her knees. Her beauty was more revealing with her sense of dressing and my eyes were stuck to her .
Her face was glowing with myriad colours. Her eyes had a sparkle of naughtiness. Her lips were moist and smooth and covered with red lipstick. They begged for my kiss, I wondered. Everything about her was so appealing. I found myself completely enraptured by her beauty. Till now, I had not noticed her carefully. But now, standing close to her, I found her so lively. Her smiles and laughter were unlike anything on earth. I felt attracted towards her like a magnet. I felt addicted to her genuineness and simplicity. I just watched and thanked almighty to have such a blissful moment, where I could cherish each second of time.
We chatted and became familiar and comfortable with each other as the sun bid us goodbye at the horizon.
“Let’s go inside our cabin, it has become dark.” “That would be great”, Amy nodded in agreement. “Let’s have a cup of strong coffee!” Every time she spoke a tingling sensation ran up my spine. Amy was hot. She was hotter than the cup of strong coffee. The cabin was decorated with roses and ice-cream cone shaped dim lights. “It is so beautiful inside,” Amy said while sipping coffee. She looked at me and our gaze locked. Despite cool air conditioning I felt, the temperature inside the cabin just shot up. My heart was racing like a horse in a derby. At that moment, I knew, what I wanted – Her!!! But what should I do? Do I dare to make the first move and risk losing her forever? I gathered courage for the moment.
“I am glad that you enjoyed my company!” I said nervously and slowly leaned closer to her. She was aware of it as if she was greeting for my embrace. Suddenly, Amy gathered her courage, stepped on her tiptoes came closer and planted a soft kiss on my cheeks. “Thanks for everything, I loved it!” she said. “Amy, you know, I love you!”
I wrapped my hands around her and enveloped her in my arms. I gently tilted her head back and leaned forward to meet those God sent lips with mine. He shiny lips were shivering. I could feel her as I gently kissed her. I let my hands fall around her waist and pulled her body into mine. She responded by putting her arms around my neck. We kissed deeply and passionately. I felt the warmth of her body. There was a sweet fragrance from her body, intoxicating me even more. I came closer to her. My first kiss, the kiss of passion, I kissed Amy! It was heavenly! My fingers moved to her neck, where I released the knot that held her top. I started kissing deeper n deeper, . She pulled me towards her and we hugged . As the night grew, the full moon gave a soft light. With the lyrical tones of the sea waves, we kissed and made love for hours. Our hearts pounded and our bodies throbbed with passion. She closed her eyes and we could feel the warmth of each other’s breath. We held each other for hours in a tight embrace with a sigh of contentment. I played with her blonde hair, mesmerised by it. The night was complete. When I woke up with the cool breeze of the dawn, I looked at Amy’s face, cuddled in my arms. I knew that from today onwards my world would be a better place to live. I had got my love.
The boat reached the shore. “Amy! Let’s get back to my place. Let me take some drinks and we will go.”
We spent some blissful moments together. I felt beautiful, loved and desired.
Amy had a quizzical smile on her face and nodded her head. I went hurriedly and picked up cans of beer and came back.
“Amy! Amy! Where are you, Amy?” I called out loud many times. But she was nowhere to be seen.
I saw two fishermen coming. “Sir whom are you searching for?”
I narrated them everything. “Oh, sir! She must be that girl whose soul is still wandering here for her soul mate. A few years back a newly married couple came here to spend their honeymoon on this beach. One night a horrific tide engulfed the sweet girl and some people say that they see her on full moon days. See this! That was their fate before beginning a life their desires were dumped into this sea. I turned numb! My mouth was dry in dread, my legs were shivering and sweat erupted on my forehead.
That night, while lying on my bed, I was not able to sleep. I got up and went to the garden area to cool my unwelcoming thoughts. I sat on the swing in the garden contemplating. Suddenly, I hear a faint noise in the rear. Turning back I saw a figure, Amy! She was walking towards me. I didn’t know why but I was expecting her arrival, a premonition!
Amy came near me and stood silently. There was a faint smile on her face. She seemed as if she floated away.
“Amy! It’s you!”
“Where were you dear?”
“I love you!” I kept my hands on her neck and kissed her soft pink lips. I could smell her fragrance and breathe deeply. I just kept on kissing her all over.
“Please come back. I was so alone without you, my sweetheart! Please come back!”
“Darling! I love you too”
I couldn’t hold my tears which were welling up from my broken heat.
She held me as if I felt everything. Neither of us spoke, the moment spoke everything.
That night in the garden and from the illumination from the streets I could see her face, looking like an angel. I was emotionally drained out and with a teary eye. She wrapped her arms around my shoulders and buried her face into my chest, listening to the rhythmic beat of my heart and letting it heal her soul. She unfolded my palm and placed something in it. It was our wedding ring. She kissed me passionately. I was about to hold her but she moved away as if she gained an eternity of love. Drizzling drops fell into my eyes. With a flash of blink, I was left again alone with tears in my eyes.She is my Amy ,my love,my wife oh! again I lost her.

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Independence Day

Today is the 15th of August. It is India’s Independence Day. “Happy Independence Day!”

Mr Acharya shouted while entering the house. Mumma Acharya smiled and replied, “Happy Independence Day to All”

“Mumma!!!” Ruhi and Rohan said in unison. They were still in bed. Ruhi opened her eyes and was surprised to her parents all dressed up on a holiday.”What are you both wearing?!” She quizzed as she noticed the white and tricolour dresses that her parents had worn. Rohan had also woken up and he was equally puzzled. “What’s that Mumma? Oh! A cake! A tricoloured cake!” Rohan said excitedly as his imagination ran wild.

Mrs Acharya put the cake carefully on the table and replied to her children, “Today is India’s birthday! It is Independence Day! Get up fast! We will celebrate! And it’s a holiday!” She brimmed with a smile.

“What is I-N-D-P-E-N …?” mumbled the five-year-old Rahul.

“I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-C-E” Mrs Acharya corrected the pronunciation. Ruhi and Rohan both repeated and spelt back.

“But what does it mean?” quizzed Ruhi and rolled her eyes.

“Independence means that you can do things as per your own will and understanding. Not as orders from someone else.”

“Oh! Does that mean we are free to do anything?” Ruhi retorted with an impish grin.

“Yes beta! But it also means owning responsibility for our actions. We got free from British rule after a long struggle. It required sacrifice from millions of people all over the country. The Britishers had dominated our country for years and years. They used our country and people for their benefit. We were under their rule and they treated us like slaves. But we got freedom on this day. And today we are free and not as slaves. We can do things independently for our good and not for anyone else’s.” Mrs Acharya explained in a serious tone.

“And why is that important, Daddy?” Ruhi asked Mr Acharya, who had been standing behind his wife all this while.

“Now it makes us proud to see you people take steps towards your independence. Like brushing your teeth. Combing your hair. Tying your shoelaces. Choosing what you want to draw in your art class. All this makes you independent. And we are proud parents when we see you doing these things on your own. Making decisions and acting on them! That is why it is so important!” Mr Acharya replied, trying to make his daughter understand.

“15th August is the day when got our independence from the British rule. Come on kids! Every year we celebrate this day. We remember our freedom fighters, soldiers and their sacrifices. Today is the 73rd Independence Day. We pay our tribute to them. Let us go downstairs to the community hall of the housing society, We will celebrate our independence!”

Everyone reached the community hall. A big gathering of families was already present. They were all dressed up in various shades of the tricolour. The tricolour cake was cut with great enthusiasm and distributed among all.

Ruhi and Rohan were happy to see the flag hoisting. Of course, they liked the laddoos and toffees they got as part of the celebrations.

They moved to the play area. Rohan tried his hands at putting rings on various items to win them. He tried one after another. But he missed all!

“Ah No! Oh! No!”

Ramu Kaka stood watching amusedly. He offered to help, “Let me show you how!” But Rohan resisted, “No! I want to do this Independently!”

“Wow! That’s great Rohan! Try and you will surely succeed!”

Megha was on a see-saw. She was watching Rohan. She also wanted to do her see-saw by herself.

Mrs Mishra asked Megha, to sit opposite Adi. To balance the see-saw. But Megha insisted on sitting alone. “I am independent!”

“It’s a bit tricky to see-saw alone!!” Mrs Mishra said smilingly.

“It’s OK aunty! Let me try!”I N D E P E N D E N T L Y !!!!

All the children tried various games by themselves. Suddenly Rohan fell from the swing and hurt himself. Kapoor uncle quickly took out an ointment from his pocket and applied it on the bruise.

Rohan’s parent came running and took him to the nearby clinic. Rohan noticed that Kapoor uncle helped his father.

“Rohan! Are you alright?” His mother hugged and kissed him.

“Mumma, I am alright!”

His wound was dressed in the clinic. Mrs Acharya took both the kids back.

“United we stand! We all help each other. Though we are independent to do our duties, we love each other and care for each other. Both her kids kissed her. She was happy. Today, they had taught an important lesson to their children about Independence.

Mr Acharya took a selfie of everyone standing united as a family. Each of them holding the Indian national flag, that they had got from the community hall as a return gift. And they screamed, “Happy Independence day!”

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