Learning never ceases. One remains student forever as every unfolding moment ushers in the opportunity to learn something new. Sometimes the lessons are repeated if not learnt well first time. It so happened that met a teacher on a busy street, recently and that’s the reason behind all this rambling.
One of my friends had some work at the town side and I was free. Rather I was waiting for an opportunity to explore the lanes and the by-lanes of the town side. I had nothing specific in my mind when we landed at the corner of the busy street. My friend and I parted ways with the understanding that once my friend finishes her work, she would contact me.
I love to explore the places with ‘me-myself’ as company. Whether it’s a nature trail or busy street, I am equally comfortable at both the places, wandering and exploring. I thus started my sojourn on a happy, free note!
Soaking in various sights and sounds, I was going ahead with snail’s pace. Clicking photographs, munching “Khari Sing*”, I was none less than Alice in wonderland. Watching hustle and bustle of the place, standing right at the center of actions…unaffected, made me feel like a sage. How I wish I could look at the thousands of the thoughts that crowd in the mind with same dispassion?
As I was clicking the photo of a tired worker relaxing on the hand cart, I heard a call. There stood a shop-on-feet vendor. He wore a genuine smile. His simple yet clean white pyjama and shirt, stood out as the symbol of his uprightness. He carried a big blue bag stuffed to its maximum capacity, on his left shoulder. Its weight, made him lean a bit to right side. While I was busy noticing him, he inquired in very persuasive tone, if I would like to buy handkerchief.
My attention now turned to stuff in his hands. He held neatly sealed packs of hankies. I recollected that I had to purchase the hankies for my son. Its another story that this young boy needs two hankies a day and they last with him for not more than three to four months. At times, I feel, the factories producing the hankies should honour, the-likes-of-my-son, with mementos and trophies. My mantle will be full in no time, in that case!
I enquired about the price. It sent the bells ringing in my ears when he told me the price of the packet. A thought of checking the material prodded me to pause my purchase. The ‘hanky’ seller happily agreed. He opened one pack and I pulled out some for inspection. All the hankies were good enough for the price quoted. Upon my satisfactory inspection, I decided to buy a pack. He then politely offered me another sealed pack as the pack that I was inspecting was in complete disorder. That made sense. The pack of hankies and the money exchanged hands in no time.
Soon my friend called up and I returned home content with outing. While keeping things back, I recollected my purchase. Handed over the pack to my son, who was happy to receive it. As a practice, he opened up the packet and was about to soak the hankies in water before using. As he got busy in bathroom, I sank into sofa.
Five minutes went into bliss. Suddenly I was startled to see the shocked face of my son as he neared me. He held few hankies in his hands. One was torn, other was of odd shape, one had stains and another was a patch work! A frustration gripped my soul as the feeling of being cheated engulfed every inch of heart. Felt miserable and helpless. And then I burst out in laughter! Laughing at own mistakes lessens the burden and lets me appreciate the lesson learnt better. My son joined me too.
Once the laughter subsided, new lessons washed ashore. Out of many lessons learnt from the incident, one that stood was… Learning never ceases and I continue to be a student in the classroom of life!
*Khari Sing: Hindi for roasted and salted pea-nuts.
Linking this post to #MondayMusings by Corinne