Sunday, 26 October 2014

Dhanteras

Story shared from my FB page

DHANTERAS

It was already 10 pm when she finally put away the heavy iron, sprinkled water on the smouldering embers and retired for the night.

For the last one month Rehana bi had been working harder and longer than usual. The festive season was approaching, there were more clothes to be washed and ironed. By the end of the day, tiredness would seep to the core of her bones, after all she was not
 as healthy and energetic as she was in her youth but she didn't mind the long hours because of the extra money extra work brought.
It had become very difficult to make ends meet with ever increasing prices.....she had lost her husband two years ago when a firecracker shop had burst into flames in the nearby market, and some of her neighbors too.

She would do anything to arrange enough money for the forthcoming festival, she had to buy new clothes and some sweets for her three children. Her heart ached when they went hungry half the time. This time she was determined to give them at least one good meal and one set of new clothes, even if cheap.
That day also she had literally fought with the '10 number wali Sharma madam' when she refused to pay her according to the prevalent rate for curtains' washing and ironing. And pleaded with the '17 number wali bhabhi' to give her a bigger bakhsheesh on this Diwali. When she went to deliver the clothes of the 'paanchve maale wale bhaiya' who always addressed her politely by her name 'Rehana bi' instead of calling her 'presswali' as others called her, she had once again reminded him of his promise for giving his old bicycle for her eldest son.
Squaring her sagging shoulders, she pressed her swollen feat as she lay down on her 'bed' still hot from the ironing it received everyday. With drooping eyes, the aging widow saw the same dream again..... to provide the best for her neighbor Rajni 's three children Asheesh, Archna and Anil whom she had taken under her care after their mother Rajni perished in the same fire which had claimed her husband too.

This Dhanteras, she hoped, would fill not only the hearts of children with the wealth of her love, but their shrinking stomachs with enough food too.

Wishing all friends A Very Happy And Prosperous Dhanteras
May your lives be filled with the wealth of smiles 

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