Thursday, 2 April 2015

Jack and His Beans

Fee – Fi - Fo – Fum! The devils bowed down before the Jack..and he lived happily ever after.

We all know the story of Jack and the beanstalk. How he went to sell his cow and came back with the beans and the elderly of the house was disappointed and threw the beans out of the house. Rest is history. The beans grew; Jack climbed and became immortal in the pages of fairy tales.

I have a theory about these tales – they can be interpreted the way we want to. So I always see this story as follows

Every child in this world is Jack. He has a cow which is the family inheritance he gets. Now he can milk the cow and the story ends. But for any reason he cannot milk the cow, he goes in the market and comes back with the beans. The beans are his potential. At this point an elder who can be his parent or teacher plays the most important role. The original story simply overlooks this and focuses on the struggles Jack faces all his life. What if we fine tune the story there?

So, once Jack opens his palm and shows his beans to the elder, they can -

1. Throw the beans just like the story. But not every story is a fairy tale ending. So the beans can grow or simply dry up under the heat of life.


2. They can help the child to sow the bean deep; nurture it with compassion; water it with the sweat of their hard work and make him strong enough to climb up all the way without stumbling and be strong to make the devils bow down before him. The result will be a new story written for every Jack with the ending...he lived happily ever after.

Let the child explore his potential; just guide him to nurture his passion and work towards shaping it as his future. I am sure we will not only see a happy and successful child but a better and more prosperous society.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Safe @Home

Words - mainly created to help us understand this world better. Every word has a designated meaning, which authenticates its own existence. Some words as uttered, also evoke emotions, we are conditioned to react in a particular way, the moment we hear them. For instance the word SAFE – we feel protected, secure. It soothes our senses, as we hear “you are safe now!” wow! What feeling!

Once I accompanied a friend of mine, to a button shop. As she chose different laces, buttons, borders, I couldn’t resist my temptation and bought a few, without knowing what I will do with them. Since I had some change in my pocket which sufficed the amount I had to pay, I cleared my bill and looked at her. She was busy in her treasure hunt, looking for the change in her wallet, which was open wide on the counter of the shop and a thick bundle of green notes peeking out from the opposite side of the wallet. It was the attention grabber and as I looked up, an odd bunch of people were looking at it as well, including the shopkeeper. The moment froze for the moment, while I felt the chill. Now damage was done, and pin pointing her mistake there would not only made it embarrassing for her, but could highlight it even more and create more problems. So without reacting, I waited for her to clear her bill. Although we were supposed to buy few more things, I insisted to go back home.

It was odd one km walk from that button shop to home, but I can say the longest distance I had ever felt. I wanted to sprint away from her, declaring she is not with me, but friends don’t do that. I just insisted her to walk a bit fast down the deserted alley. My anxiety was clearly reflecting on my face, she noticed and asked “stomach problem?” I looked at her, thinking of a very good reply, but just nodded so she could cope up with my speed. Every bike or walking shadow, as passed by, made me skip a beat. I was so scared that day that if any stranger had stopped me to ask the time even, I would have given him all my valuables and begged him for mercy of my life. The last thing I wanted to do was to die because of someone else’s stupidity!

Finally we reached home, and I started breathing again. After cooling down my nerves I calmly explained the situation to my friend, and she realized her mistake. May be it will help her in future, but yes, I was safe now. I was in my home. A place I have secured and I am comfortable and not scared of anyone or anything. Whether it is irregular maid, or non satisfactory service by electrician, plumber or carpenter, I can grab the collar and make him understand his mistake fearlessly, as it is my area, my home, my authority. Don’t mess with me here. Yes, I hear and read all the time, how someone was brutally murdered in their own home while they were sleeping. I have even shared the grief of a family friend who was in Dubai for his job assignment and his two toddler kids were waiting outside the play school, waiting for their mother to pick them up, while she was brutally murdered in her own house in daylight by a computer service man over a dispute of non satisfactory service. Which brings me to question “Is home really a safe place?” or is it a blind eye optimism we are living with. With time, I have realized that few things can help you avoid some unpleasant incidents, and I am practicing those. A lady alone at home is not at times safe. I am sharing it here, in a hope it might help someone:

  1. If a serviceman is entering your house – do not hesitate to check the ID card. Don’t bolt or close the main door. If possible inform your neighbor about his presence.

  2. Keep a kitchen knife or something similar handy or in your range.

  3. If more than one serviceman are there, request and permit only one to enter. If they are logical, they will completely understand and co-operate with your request.

  4. For maids, many things are suggested by police, depends on you how you judge and comply.

A few might laugh reading above. Yes most of us don’t give a sh*t till we become one. We cannot change the destiny. Anything can happen to anyone anywhere, but surely it should not be because of our carelessness or stupidity. We are safe wherever and whenever we feel we are. It is a feeling we sometimes create for ourselves and for those we love.