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Gulmohar in the Rain is a short story about unrequited love and hope.
Monsoon has just about entered and a few showers are just what the city needs to wash away the heat, cool the hot soil and bring a little respite to everyone. Bangalore, the city of trees and especially gulmohurs, is now eagerly waiting for those cool drops of pearls to fall on them. Not only plants but this summer has been very harsh on Amrita, fondly known as Ammu. She is heart broken and her dreams of living with Shekhar have been completely burnt to ashes. She is waiting for monsoon, monsoon that will lead to streams and puddles outside her apartment in which she can sail her boats with Shekhar’s memories, let go of his promises, those dreams that never make way to reality. She is eagerly waiting and is proud of being guileless and loyal to her own self by loving him unconditionally.
Ammu and Shekhar know it from day one that their relationship won’t survive. They are a very modern couple, always wanting their own space, living their own dreams and more than love and compassion they are together to test if they can withstand each other. For they always know that there can’t be two swords in one sheath.
Even though this is to be expected, it is hard. It is indeed tough to be separate than to be together. Shekhar isn’t ready to take a plunge into marriage and Ammu can’t be persuaded anymore to be in a live-in relationship. This is an impasse, both strong believers but of different traits. Without uttering a single word they let go of each other, with no arguments, no quarrels and no compromises. This is how two strong people dwell in a relationship, expecting the expected to happen one day, leaving a void very silently.
Today, Ammu is alone in her posh flat, she is low yet unbroken, firm in her decision. She always believes that the beauty of a rose lies in its thorns and her principles are just like thorns safely guarding her soul. Her soul is beautiful, her love is sacred and her intentions are divine.
Lost deeply in her thoughts, probably figuring what to do next, what a perplexed state she is in. She has lost her way out of this emotional mesh. The door bell rings and she is jolted back to reality. It is her maid Chaya.
Chaya knows about Shekhar and she has always warned Ammu but love is blind as they say and Ammu is completely drenched in his love, she can only see love, sense love and love was what Shekhar means for her.
Ammu pretends to be normal and asks Chaya, ‘ Have you lost something valuable Chaya, anytime in your life?’
Chaya exactly is aware of the context and decides to answer. She gazes out of the window and says, ‘ I lost my mother after a few hours of being born. My father blamed me for her death and never treated me well. My brother, a chauvinist, found the same reason and disowned me. Later, as a compromise and with nowhere to go, I lived with my father and one fine morning I found myself alone in our house, for me it was never a home. From that day I am all alone and having lost all my relations but decided to live without any guilt or sorrow. Life taught me that you are left with what you are supposed to own and then I realised that I never owned my mother, father and brother.’
Ammu is stunned and speechless, she doesn’t want to look into Chaya’s eyes. For the first time Ammu meets someone stronger than her own self. Ammu knows exactly what she has to do now, she doesn’t have Shekhar as she has never owned him.
Ammu stands besides Chaya, folding her hands they both stand gazing out of the window. It has started drizzling and the aroma of wet soil is mesmerising, with a little bird shedding beautiful droplets off its body, dancing rain drops compelling the soil to give away heat. The showers have washed away the dust layered on the leaves of gulmohar, completely metamorphosed it from dull to shiny and into a glossy new leaf. The gulmohar looks beautiful as never before, clean and ready to breathe fresh, ready to dream and ready to live.
I have always loved writing and strongly believe that writing can create social awareness . I
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