Good old Tom and Jerry!

Tom & Jerry! To me they are ageless. I grew up watching Tom & Jerry and their antics, the clever little mouse Jerry almost always scoring over Tom, the hapless cat. Their endless, meaningless squabbles made the Sunday mornings so much fun. Though they fought endlessly, devising innovative ways of torturing each other, they had each other’s back against Spike the bulldog. Their never-ending bickering has been often been equated with sibling rivalry, brothers who are forever getting at each other without intending real harm.

Tom & Jerry shows have also been criticised for excessive violence – Tom running after Jerry with a hammer or an axe, while Jerry would device diabolic plans of setting his tail on fire, might make the wrong impression on the children, feel many. For me, Tom & Jerry is just fun. I grew up watching Tom & Jerry, spent many weekends binge watching the cat & mouse chase each other even after I started working. They always gave me a good laugh and made feel so light & happy. Violence is not an emotion that I ever associated with Tom Jerry. 

My journey of cartoons started with Barbapapa, Barbamama and their family. Those adorable shapeless creatures I faintly recall, who never made an appearance in Indian television since the eighties. Then came Mickey & Donald with their entire entourage who entertained us for years. Tom & Jerry added a new dimension to the cat and mouse chase.  Each episode was so much fun, there wasn’t one boring moment with Tom & Jerry.

But then one day Tom & Jerry were gone. There was Looney Tunes, Power Rangers, Power Puff Girls and what not. Somehow, I lost interest in cartoons after stopped playing. I didn’t enjoy the newer shows as much.

Tom & Jerry did make a come back again, though they didn’t get the prime-time slots. I was excited, nonetheless. “So are you watching Tom & Jerry,” I asked my 9-year-old niece. “Oh, they are for old people,” she said wrinkling her nose. Really, have I grown so old!!

Of Home and Many Homes: A Soliloquy

The house with the thatched roof, with the old bakul tree by the gate is my home. I would pick up fragrant bakul flowers carpeting the ground below the tree and string them into garlands. Those garlands would adorn me and my little dolls on lazy summer afternoons.

In the fading light of the dusk I would run around the huge courtyard and play hide & seek with my siblings or just skip around happily. Many a night, I would sit quietly in the courtyard enjoying the calming silence. Many a rainy afternoon, pitter pater rain on the thatched roof would pour music in my ears. The cooing cuckoos in the morning, the buzzing bees, the humming cicadas at night filled my days and night with joyful tunes.

The thatched roof and the bakul tree gave way to a beautiful concrete house. With brand-new rooms in soothing hues the concrete house is my home. I would sit on my table by the window and gaze at the world outside with dreamy eyes. Lose myself in my very own world of stories and tales and poetry. Stubborn dream of conquering the world would keep me up at nights. I would spend many a quiet nocturnal hour on the terrace trying to catch a falling star or just gaze in wonder at the infinite sparkling jewels of the night.

The happy cocoon of my home that gave wings to many dreams. Ambition fired me, the world beckoned me, off I flew to explore the unknown. With fluttering wings and dancing heart, scared and excited all at once, I buzzed into the bold new world.

It was exhilarating, it was new, it was freedom, it was fun! It was long hard nights, it was me taking care of me, it was responsibilities, it was challenge!

Making my way through the opportunities and obstacles I made my home in a cute little one room set. With a mattress for bed and no air conditioning, it gave me cool comfort on hot summer nights. The lone blanket would keep me warm on long winter nights. I cooked my first delicious meal in the kitchen with sparse utensils. I dreamt of love, I fell in love, I broke my heart, I healed with love. Girly chats and sleepovers, late night movies or talking about dream lovers…

Fire in the belly, aspirations, desire to excel kept me flying. At times my wings were clipped by aching heart, snarky colleagues, meanness, rudeness and pettiness all around. But there was no keeping down the happy and wild dreams. The harder it got the higher they soared. They pushed me ahead on days I wanted to turn back or stop and take a break from the mad bad world.

The many hues of the mad mad world took my breath away. The bright colours of love, life and laughter; the darker shades of melancholy and failure; the perplexing greys that defied all definition. I faltered, I stumbled, I fell. I was confused, I was upset, I was depressed. But most of all I was challenged. I picked my hues cautiously; I painted my rainbow with many shades of life.

I made a new home with a comfortable bed and brand-new furniture. Paintings and masks adorn my walls. Tick Tock clocks tell me the story of fleeting time. Sitting snugly on my new bed I miss my old homes. The starry nights, the rainy afternoons, the singing cuckoos, the buzzing bees. The hot summer nights that fired my dreams. The anguish, the impediments that kept me going.

Maybe one day I will leave my new home for another home, far away in a softer world where I can sit and reminiscence my many homes. Ponder upon what I have won and what I have lost, do they really matter at all? The many stories that I scripted, the lives that I have lived, because at the end living is all that matters…

Somethings Missing

The old Bakul tree next to our gate is missing
The mildly fragrant Bakul flowers that would be strewn under the tree through the year are missing
Missing are the garlands that I used to string out of those flowers as a little girl
The bedroom of our beautiful concrete house sighs peacefully where once the old Bakul tree spread its fragrant breath
Blog profile pic
My grandmother smiles peacefully from a picture in our living room, her loving warmth is missing
Missing are her many stories, her gentle touch, the many delicacies that she would dish out for us
I enter my old bedroom, the old box with many a colourful hair clips and pins are missing
My old dolls and toys are missing, and the box with all my old letters and greeting cards

The thatched tin roof of our old house is missing and the sound of the pitter patter rain
Missing are the lazy rainy afternoons, the paper boats, the deluged courtyard
The simple pleasures of kichudi and maaach bhaja - a rainy day meal
The stories, the laughter’s and the indoor games. The happiness of a day wasted is missing

Annual summer break to Dadur Bari in Lucknow is missing
Missing are those long train journeys with mom and sisters
The screeching, whistling steam engines are missing
Missing are the hawkers, hot tea served in earthen pots, the rhythmic, dreamy slumber in a moving train

Smiling Dadu waiting for us at the station is missing and the exited and chirpy tanga rides
Didun and her many delicacies are missing, the home-made achars and aam papads, sandesh, moya, nadu and nimkees
The sprawling bungalow in the Railway Colony with huge front yard and back yard is missing
Missing are those khatiyas, those beautiful long nights under the stars
The laughing, fun-filled afternoons with cousins are missing
Missing are those trips to the zoo in a tanga with homemade puri, sabzi and achar
The Eagle who swooped at my puri and snatched it from me is missing

Missing and resurfacing is the little girl who cried and chased the Eagle away
Who counted stars at night and hummed to the music of pitter patter rain, who dreamt for hours of sweet nothings
The girl in me who’s too scared to walk down the lanes of her childhood, lest the sweet memories go missing!

Those rain-soaked days…

Jhiri was reclining on the bed, face down, her cheek rested on a pillow and a book lay open next to her. She was staring out of the window watching the light drizzle, rain drops falling on the green leaves, water droplets like pearls falling from the leaves on the green grass, rain drenched trees that looked so green and beautiful. It was one of those days in Agartala when heavy rain brought life to a standstill. It rained heavily the night before. As the roaring thunder woke her up, she could see flashes of lightening before her mother rushed into the room and shut the window. She was awake for a while listening to thunder clapping, wind lashing, sound of heavy rain falling on the tin roof.

Rainy day

When Jhiri woke up in the morning it was still raining, their courtyard and the road along the house was waterlogged, at least knee-deep water. “Your school bus won’t come today, so just stay at home and finish your projects,” said her mother. Jhiri would have loved to venture out, wade in the water, get drenched in the rain, but the stern expression on her mother’s face made her go back to her room. She sat on her study table, opened a book and stared out of the window. Jhiri loved rains, she loved that it rained so often in Agartala. On usual rainy days, even in ankle deep water, she would head to the bus stop in her raincoat with her schoolmates who lived in the vicinity. She liked to feel the wet breeze with drops of rain on her face. She liked to splash in the rain water, soaking her Bata ballerina school shoes & socks, sometimes even her uniform. On such rainy days, after reaching school she and friends would remove their shoes & socks and leave them to dry under the fan.

Last night’s rain was however too heavy that left the city inundated. It was still raining, Jhiri could hear the steady pitter patter on the tin roof, breeze would sometimes carry droplets of rain through the open window. She moved her books away from the window and put her face on the window frame so that she could see, hear and feel rain. “It’s going to be a while before the rain stops and the water recedes,” she thought. Jhiri thoroughly enjoyed these rainy days, being marooned at home and losing herself in the lyrical beauty of the rains. Sometimes she would make paper boats and watch them glide away in the water.

Jhiri relished everything about rainy days, including kichudi & daler bora (khichdi & dal pakora) usually served for lunch. She could make out from the smell coming out of the kitchen that mom was making delicious kichudi. After lunch the whole family would sit together in the living room and play Ludo, Chinese checker or Carrom. She would sometimes play chor police or kata kuti (noughts & croses) with her sisters.

For Jhiri, however, favourite part of the rainy afternoons was when she would slip into her room, listen to the pitter patter rain, gaze at dreamy cloudy sky and the rain-washed trees in the garden. There was something mesmerizing about these rainy afternoons, and she knew she would miss them one day!

Savouring the flavours of childhood

Tiya bit into the murir moa (laddu made out of murmura and jaggery) with delight! She was visiting home for Pujo and her college friend had called her over for Lakkhi Pujo (Laksmi Puja). Goddess Lakshmi is worshiped in every Bengali household on the first full moon night after Bijoya Dhashami. As her mom didn’t do much at home anymore, she decided to go to her friends’ place in the evening. To her surprise, her friend Piyu had followed all the traditions in her adulation of the Goddess, right from the clay idol of Lakshmi to the rangoli to making naru (nariyal laddu made out of jaggery), moa, sandesh and all the other delicacies offered to the goddess at home.

Tiya hasn’t eaten a homemade moa or naru in ages. There was a time when they were served murir or chirer (chirva) moa as evening snacks, with a glass of milk of course. She particularly liked khoi er moa or khoir er upra (sweetened parched paddy) which was no less than caramel popcorn, and far healthier. And sometimes there would be muri makha or tel muri, narkel muri (murmura served with freshly scraped coconut) or chire bhaja (roasted chirva with onion and peanuts).

There was a time when her mom and grandmon would make moa and naru in the afternoon. She remembered the whole process of melting the jaggary to the right consistency, putting muri or chirva in the hot jaggary and mixing it well. She remembered them shaping the hot mixture into round laddus, their palms would at times go red. Her mom continued to do these alone for a while after her grandmother passed away. She probably she stopped after Tiya and sisters left home.

Mom would even make samosas at home, phulkobi samosas were her speciality, and green pea kachori (puri stuffed with green peas) served with aloor dum. Tiya remembered as a child her family would rarely eat out. Her mom made delicious food at home, there was always such variety. Even pickles and jams were all homemade. Her nani also made aam padad and chiki at home. The homemade moa and naru served by Piyu brought back the almost forgotten delicious flavours of her childhood.

poppins

Who eats moa and naru now, lost in the world of candies, popcorn and burgers do today’s kid even know what they taste like? When Tiya was a little girl she was so much easier to please, few orange toffees would make her day. Yes, round wrapped orange toffees that you rarely see now. Parle did try their hands on it but it wasn’t the same. And there was Poppins and Gems that came in different colours. Then came five stars and milk chocolates that were more expensive, and Tiya and sisters were allowed to indulge in them only occasionally.

The pink bubble gums came next. Tiya remembers chewing those gums endlessly till her jaws ached and blowing them, most of the times they would blow up on her face. Those chewed gums created lot of mess in the school – she would find them stuck under the desk, in the books, worst was boys sticking those gums in her long hair.

As Tiya grew up and went for tuitions with her friends they would occasionally indulge in chanachur (Bengali mixture with onion, mirchi, nimbu & stuff) or the roadside mutton chops. Tiya and her friends would walk to the tuition classes, saving on the rickshaw fare so they could feast on chanachur and mutton chop on their way back.

Probably Tiya’s generation saw the advent of fast food or junk food with the launch of Maggi, it was such an instant hit. Tiya still remembers looking forward to Maggi as school lunch or Sunday breakfast. When she left home, she was introduced to the world of pizzas, burgers, pastas, wraps, rolls, tacos and what not, and the humble narus, moyas and samosas were soon forgotten.

Once Tiya started working and living on her own she started cooking, in fact started enjoying cooking, but not the typical Bengali stuff. She would dish out international cuisine, sometimes Italian, sometimes Lebanese. She started baking and her cakes became quite a hit with her friends and colleagues. Looking at the array of traditional home-made delicacies laid out by Piyu, Tiya suddenly felt a twinge of guilt mixed with nostalgia. It’s time to dish up the traditional flavours and surprise her friends with naru, moa and jhalmuri and kachori!

Waking up to ‘Yeh Akashvani hai’

‘AIR to cut cost with shutdowns,’ I looked incredulously at the news clip in Sunday’s TOI. It opened a floodgate of memories. As a child I woke up every morning to ‘Yeh Akashvani hai’, my father would turn on the radio at 6.30 a.m. for the morning bulletin and that was our que to leave bed. Ameen Sayani’s Binaca Geetmala and various other music programs that my mother would routinely listen to, plays that were aired on the weekends and of course the matches. Be it test cricket, or Mohan Bagan vs East Bengal football matches, the AIR commentators brought them alive. We could feel the excitement in the air!

murphy radio

For a long time, Radio was the main source of entertainment and information, TV came only in mid-eighties. There were many AIR stations available at different frequencies airing variety of programs. I vaguely remember there was a room assigned to Radio back then – Radior Ghar or The Radio Room. The room had a table with a Murphy Radio plugged in. The whole house would gather in that room for important bulletins or football matches.

Mohan Bagan vs East Bengal matches were a big draw then. People would either bunk office or leave work early to listen to the live commentaries. Hailing originally from Bangladesh, every member of my family was a staunch East Bengal supporter. We kids were made to offer flowers to the Radio with a prayer for East Bengal’s victory. The excitement and the tension in air during those matches is something that I haven’t witnessed even in stadiums. My father, uncles and sometimes uncle’s friends would sit together to listen to the commentary – the Radio would be playing at full volume, the shouts and the cheers whenever East Bengal scored a goal, the tension and the dejection when East Bengal played badly or lost, are integral part of my childhood memories. The atmosphere would get further heated if relatives or friends from West Bengal (Mohan Bagan supporters) were visiting during those times.

philips transistor

Then came the battery operated and portable transistors (Philips I think), one for my grandmother who was hooked to the plays, and one for my mother for her various musical programs. I developed quite a knack for the plays and would sneak into my grandmother’s room on Sunday afternoons to listen to them. Those plays were really well made, the actors bringing the plot and characters alive just through dialogues. There was a special show for children as well – Shishu Mela where children would perform, recite a poem, sing a song – that we would religiously listen to every Sunday morning. There were informative shows like talk shows on agriculture and farming. My father who was a senior official with the state agriculture department would be invited often to talk on those shows. Sitting around the radio, listening to out father’s voice reverberating in the room, we would feel no less than celebrity kids!

Growing up, I found the world of radio or the world behind it enigmatic and magical. Those voices in the air – sometimes deep, sometimes sonorous, sometimes sweet and melodious – transported me to a magical world. I would try very hard to give them a physical shape, to imagine what my favourite anchors and commentators looked like.

Then one fine day there were televisions, and music systems and VCRs and what not and Radio lost its place of prominence. My father still listened to the AIR bulletins and my mother to her select music programs. When I left home, Radio vanished from my life all together, the only form of Radio that I now know is the music system in my car that plays the FM channels, and also a few AIR stations that I rarely tune to.

But All India Radio still holds an iconic status for me, the news of AIR downsizing is like an era coming to an end. I really hope AIR uses this opportunity to reinvent itself and connect with the millennium. Waiting for the day when the tech savvy urban Indian will say, ‘Shut up Alexa, I am tuning into AIR!’

The Fountain and the Pot Affair

Pinky lived happily in her comfortable little box. Every morning she would go to Tutu the pot for a little chit and chat and to get her fill of the royal blue warmth that she would keep pouring out through the day. Over the months the friendly chit chat became more loving and earnest, Pinky would look forward to seeing Tutu every morning, they would hug each other affectionately and talk lovingly about the day ahead. Tutu would gently urge Pinky to script beautiful pieces with her royal blue fill and not to spill in the wrong places. For if Pinky spilled in the wrong places like Tiya’s textbook or her white shirt, Tiya’s mom would be really annoyed.pen & pot

Soon Pinky and Tutu’s affair hit a rocky patch, for there came Payal the pilot who was forever vying for Tutu’s attention. Payal was smart and witty, quick to take her fill of the royal blue warmth that she would never spill out wrong. Though Tutu would tell Pinky that she’s the one he wanted and hug her affectionately, Pinky could sense that his affection was clearly divided, sometimes more tilted towards Payal. Tutu’s eyes would light up moment Payal would walk in, he would laugh happily at her witty one-liners and compliment her for being so smart. Pinky would sulk standing in one corner feeling ignored. And to make matters worse soon there was chic and haughty Impy the parker.

IMG_20190104_130843.jpgImpy the parker made even Payal very uncomfortable. Impy was sleek, with a steady flow that never spilled, and Tutu was forever gushing over her and sometimes even failed to notice Pinky. Though he still affectionately hugged Pinky and apologize for the oversight, she would feel slighted and hurt. And not just Tutu, even Tiya started choosing Payal and Impy over Pinky. Though Pinky was Tiya’s first fountain pen and Tiya adored her even though she spilled at times, upon her mother’s insistence she started opting for Payal and Impy more often. ‘They write better and don’t spill, please stop using the clumsy Pinky,’ her mother would tell Tiya again and again.

IMG_20190104_130721.jpgThings went downhill with ball point Kim and cello Jill joining the fray. In fact, now even Tutu was worried for Kim and Jill didn’t need his fill. And Tiya preferred them over the rest as they were convenient and easy to use, she didn’t need to fill them every day, they lasted for weeks. Though Pinky, Payal and Impy wrote better, who cared about handwriting nowadays. Tiya had a lot to do and she had no time to spend on silly old fountain pens. Arch rivals Pinky, Payal and Impy were now boxed together finding solace in each other’s company. For Tutu it was even worse, he stood dusty and neglected in one corner of Tiya’s study table with no one to turn to.

Then one day the lid of the box opened, ball point Kim and cello Jill were dropped in. Pinky, Payal and Impy glared at them angrily and pushed them in one corner. ‘How dare you come here? You are the ones who boxed us?’, they growled angrily. ‘Please spare us, it’s not our fault,’ pleaded Kim and Jill, ‘It was Tiya all along.’ ‘She picked us over you, coz we were easy to use. And now that she has a fancy tablet and a laptop, she doesn’t need us anymore. We pens are out of fashion you see. Tiya prefers the use and throw kinds for her occasional scribbles, and smartly keys in the rest in her fancy gadgets.’ Pinky, Payal, Impy, Kim and Jill sighed together, held each other’s hands and lay down quietly in the box.

 

Ushering festive cheer with Greeting Cards!

Christmas cardIt’s Christmas time again and then new year, parties to plan and dos to attend!  As Tiya busies herself planning the festivities she suddenly remembers the Greeting Cards that used to be central to festive seasons and special occasions. Christmas, New Years, Birthdays or Diwali celebrations were never complete without greeting cards. Tiya remembers spending hours in Archies & Hallmarks stores browsing through the cards, carefully choosing the ones with the right image and text (needless to say very ornate most of the times) for each friend and relative. Then came the part where she would take out her best pen, address each one and write a few lines in each card before stamping the envelopes and posting the cards.

There was a greeting card for every occasion – festivals, birthdays, anniversaries, father’s day, mother’s day, teachers day and what not.  There were cards for friends, special friends, husbands and wives, for every feeling and mood, separate sections devoted to each. Tiya remembers spending hours in the card stores browsing through the cards. She would sometimes glance through the sections even when she didn’t need to buy one.  She fondly recalls giving and receiving carefully chosen cards to her friends and loved ones.  Tiya treasured the greeting cards people sent her, she would often take out the old cards and go through them again and again. The words (that seem a little silly now) meant so much then!Picture3

Then one fine day, before Tiya could even realise, the card stores were gone. People switched to e cards, GIFs and what not. Birthday wishes are sometimes just HBD, and Diwali and New Year wishes are mostly WhatsApp forwards. It seems folks today have no time for personalized greetings.

Tiya chanced upon an Archies store at the metro station recently and walked in to see if it bore any resemblance to the card stores of her childhood. Though the card section is far smaller now with only a handful of cards, she was happy to see them holding their own. May be this New Year she will send personalized cards to all her friends to remind them of the ‘good old greeting card’ days!

The Post Man

Postman

In a small town surrounded by hills there lived a postman named Shyam. Without fail, rain or shine Shyam would go out on his bicycle every day to deliver letters and mails. For there were many eagerly waiting for a letter from their loved ones. Dropping letters in the letter boxes outside each house and clearing the post boxes of the neighbourhood on the way back was his daily routine. In those days people would write to their friends and relatives living in faraway places and drop those letters in the post box, it was Shyam’s job to collect those letters and take them back to the post office to ensure that they reach the right person.

Whenever Shyam’s bicycle passed the neighbourhood people would peep out of their windows hoping that he had a letter for them in his bag. A little girl Tiya would come out running at the sound of his bicycle and ask him sweetly he has a letter for her. Sometimes Tiya would run to the post box with a letter in her hand while Shyam would be collecting that day’s mail with a smile and a request to send her letter to her grandparents at the earliest. Yes, for Tiya Shyam was the symbol of her connect with the world outside the little town. He was the one who carried her letters to her grandparents, cousins and relatives in far away places and brought back their letters to her.

inland letter

Tiya loved writing letters. At first, she wrote because her parents asked her to, then she started enjoying it. Letters were the only means for her to stay connected with her cousins and relatives and learn about what’s happening in their lives. Though they had a telephone at home making STD (outstation) calls were expensive then. She could only call occasionally and had to keep the conversation very short. Those were the days before emails and mobiles. People had no idea that something called ‘digital revolution’ would take their world by storm. Of course, digital revolution has many positives, but we are talking about Tiya and her letters here.

On lazy Sunday afternoons Tiya would pour her heart out over letters. Writing about how hard she’s been studying to her grandparents, telling her cousin about the boy she likes in school. She would post the letters and look out for the post man Shyam everyday eagerly awaiting a reply. And when she would finally get a letter, she would read it several times over before putting it in a box where she carefully kept all her letters. Post cards or inland letters from her grandparents, stamped envelopes from her cousin and sometimes a picture postcard. Shyam would fondly hand over the letters to little Tiya, smile indulgently at her request to ensure that her letters reached her loved ones soon.

One day when Shyam went for his daily rounds he could see Tiya no more. She wouldn’t peep out of the window or rush to the post box with her letters, for Tiya has finished school and left the town to pursue higher studies. She was staying in a hostel now and would write back regularly to her parents, letters that Shyam would deliver to them of course not knowing they were from Tiya.

Tiya finished her studies and picked up a job in a big city. She had a telephone now and an email account. In few years she got a mobile. She would now call her parents and relatives and email her cousins. Soon there was skype and WhatsApp and she forgot all about those long letters. Messages have now become short and sweet and nobody had time to indulge in the eloquence of letters.

Then one day when Tiya went home she chanced upon the almost forgotten box of letters. Going through those old letters with faded ink she felt the same rush and excitement that she used to feel as a little girl. She asked about Shyam, oh he must have retired she was told. And anyway, the new post man was hardly to be seen for people didn’t write letters’ anymore. Everybody has a mobile, it is so much easier to call. And the younger generation has moved to WhatsApp and Snapchat and what not.

Letters that were so important to her growing up are now gone, thought Tiya with a sigh. May be the generation next will never know the joy of receiving a letter. Letters that had once been an important part of our lives have also been central to many a great works of art and literature – Tagore’s masterpiece Strir Patra (Letter from a Wife) or the acclaimed play Tumhari Amrita where the protagonists’ read out the letters that they have received from each other – Tiya wondered whether these will make any sense to the gen next!

The Princess & Her Tinder Tales!

Little princess

Once there was a pretty little princess who grew up in her little kingdom where everything seemed perfect. Though loved and pampered by her family and friends, little princess was not a lazy girl. She worked hard and planned a perfect future in which she would conquer the world and live happily ever after with her prince charming!

The little princess grew up to be a fine young lady and one day met her prince charming, or she thought. Enamoured by the handsome and intelligent prince, the princess gave him her loving heart. But alas, he carelessly tossed her heart away! The princess was shattered for he was the one, her true love, she had believed. She cried for months and hoped he would come back, but her prince charming was gone for good. Finally, the princess wiped her tears and went on a journey to conquer the world. The journey was lonely at first, scary at times, there were times when she felt alone. At times she missed him and wept for her prince, but he was just a memory now.

Princess 1

As the princess moved on the journey became exciting, challenging and beautiful. She conquered many obstacles, touched many milestones and made many friends. She ruled her world, was loved by many and was not lonely anymore. But at times she would miss that ‘someone special’. Go find him, her friend whispered. So, she looked for him in the garden, on the road, in every city and town, but alas he was not be found. But did you create your Tinder account? her friend quizzed.

Though the princess didn’t know much about tinder, she lost no time in creating an account. Just swipe right and swipe left it’s that easy, or she thought, and she was wrong again. In no time our princess was matched with many a young and handsome men. Then sang her praises and wooed her their intelligence and charm. The princess was flattered and happy, sure of finding her special one among her many matches.

But her happiness was short lived, for some of her matches were already ‘happily’ married and looking a ‘good friend’ or looking to network. Some were looking for casual intimacy, some confused not knowing what to look for. Though our princess was no prude she was shocked by the direct overtures of one-night stands and no strings attached intimacy. No not for me she thought, I am happier on my own!

Then one day out of her nowhere, one of her forgotten tinder matches reached out to her. Let’s have coffee tomorrow he said. Not expecting much she agreed out of sheer politeness. On a rainy winter evening she walked up to him waiting outside a coffee shop. He was charming and polite and as they started talking it was as if they have known each other for a while. So, they kept meeting and talking and meeting again and felt very happy to have found each other.

Nothing’s perfect and there are no ‘happily ever afters’, the princess now knows, she’s not a cynic though! She will take each day as it comes and make beautiful stories’ as she goes along!