Friday, 6 May 2016

Unsung Heroes!

Be it a movie star or a sports star or some other celebrity rising to fame, the media and everyone else celebrate them and acknowledge them. They become the headlines of every leading newspaper, and every radio station talks about them. The news on T.V also flash information about these heroes. We get to know so much information about them, even censored and unwarranted information about their personal lives. But have we ever wondered about so many other unsung heroes, who are struggling in their day to day life just to provide their family with two square meals a day.

One such hero is a man in his late 70’s, who I have been observing for close to 2 years now. He has a mobile cycle puncture shop at the footpath. All that he owns is an old rusted trunk with tools and other essential things for his business. He toils hard day in and day out. Be it sun or rain, he is there sharp at 10.30 AM in the morning. I have never once seen him take leave, at least whenever I take that route I always see him there standing tall and attending to his customers with a smile. I have to pass through this road every day on my way to office.  There is a traffic signal on that road, and I spend at least five minutes daily observing him. A series of questions swarm my mind like bees. For instance, how much does this man earn, as there are very less people who ride cycle these days. Is he only earning member of the family? Are there no children of his who can support him as he seems to be too old to be working? Or is he a self-made man who doesn’t want to depend on anyone for his needs? There are many more questions, yet I find no answers to them. I just wonder in silence about all this, till the signal turns green.

One such day, I was driving to office mumbling to myself about the traffic, the scorching heat, the work lined up to be completed etc. etc. In the midst of my thoughts, my eyes happened to look in the direction of this man, who was sweating profusely. He had no shelter, as his shop was on a footpath. Yet, he had a smile on his face, whenever he came across people. There was no trace of any frown, or disappointment. He was content It was then I realized that I was cribbing for no real reason, as even if I had work, I could still sit comfortably in my cubicle with centralized AC and complete all the work. I realized that I had my head gear on to protect myself from the heat, whereas the man had nothing covering his head. He just gulped down water from an old bottle and got to his work as he saw a customer approaching him. With his signature smile he attended the customer with ease and completed his work. These are the real heroes!! They are not acknowledged by anyone for the hard work they put in to survive and provide for their families. Nobody writes an article on them or no flashy headlines displays their names. I know there are many more people like this. But how often do we really go ahead and think about these people and plan to help them. These are the ones who do not beg on the streets. They work hard to survive, in spite of their age or health conditions.

This post is dedicated to that man and all the other people who toil hard to fulfill their basic needs and lead life with their head held high and a charming smile which reaches their eyes. Their smile and dedication is an inspiration to people to work hard and realize that nothing is impossible if we decide to do it. Such people also teach us to be happy and grateful for all that we have and to stop cribbing and take life as it comes!

A big salute to all the ‘Unsung Heroes’ all over the globe.


Friday, 29 January 2016

A Peppy Day of my Life!

Why Peppy? Read on to find out….

There was a Carnival held in our college to raise funds for the neighbouring Old Age home. A group of friends including me, decided to participate in the Carnival and put up a stall, so that the proceeds can be donated for the cause.

The question was what stall can we put up? Numerous suggestions were received by all, and many were rejected with stares, shocked and surprised expressions. Finally, we zeroed in on the ‘FOOD’ stall. Wow! Yummy! Peppy food was the first response we were getting from all.
We made arrangements to put up a stall and divided the responsibilities among us. Finally the D-day arrived. The stall was put up effortlessly and we were selling our food items (procured from the caterer) to the students who visited the carnival.

Everything was going on well. Our cash box was brimming with currency notes and coins. We had more customers coming to our stall and the food vessel was getting empty. There was this one particular guy who ordered food and kept coming back to order more things. In the rush and excitement, I did not concentrate much on his face, but got used to his voice, and whenever he came to order, knew that it was HIM.

In the meanwhile, one of my friend suggested that we procure more food from the nearby restaurant as there was much time left for the carnival to get over and we could earn more this way. After much talking, the onus of getting food came upon me. I agreed. I quickly went to the parking area where my bike was parked. But, my Peppy Pep (Scooty) decided to ditch me and hence had a flat tyre. Oh God!! I was disappointed. I kicked the tyre in a filmi style (influence of hindi  movies) and was moving towards the gate, when I heard a voice say ‘Excuse me’. The voice sounded familiar to me. I turned and recognized that it is the same guy who had been visiting our stall. I gave a puzzled look. He walked towards me and asked if I needed any help. I narrated my ordeal to him.  He flashed a big smile. Ah…that smile! That peppy smile, that killer smile…………I still can’t get over it even today.
I looked into his eyes and was mesmerised for a second. Finally I came back to my senses when he asked if he could take me to my destination. I was reluctant. But something in me told me to accept the ride. I said ‘YES’. 

We went to the nearby restaurant. We did not talk much on the way to the restaurant as it was the first time we had met. We came back on time and the entire food was sold. We were happy that we could collect a huge amount for the charitable cause. Our whole gang did a silly dance and gave a hi-five to each other and were about to close the stall, when I noticed the same guy standing at a distance and looking at me with the same smile on his face. I froze. That smile combined with those eyes sent me into a trance again. I saw him walking towards me. My friends were busy packing stuff and did not notice him. I went towards him and he passed on a chit with his mobile number to me, and said that if I felt that its right, then I can contact him. I was doing cartwheels in my mind. Something in me told me that he is ‘the prince charming’. I silenced all the voices in my head and took the number and ran back to my friends. 

Finally in the evening, I mustered up all the courage i had and messaged him. He messaged back. We became good friends. And one fine day, as destiny would have it, he proposed me. And I said ‘YES’. We got married after 3 years of courtship. And are living happily ever after………………!!

Thus, the peppy food in the food stall left a peppy taste not only on our tongue, but also a peppy memory in our mind that will last until we depart!!

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.