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City Lights
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TITLE (EDIT)
City Lights
DESCRIPTION
To my grandmothers who are no more; though the story has nothing to do wirh them.
[858 words]
TITLE KEYWORD
Relationships
AUTHOR
Upasana Datta
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hi! i am sixteen year indian girl .i love to write. i will really appreciate some reviews.
[October 2005]
AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (1)
The Wall (Short Stories) The story has been set in a serene Indian village once under the British reign.The story is basically in the form of a dialouge between the protagonist of the story , an old villager, and a city-base... [815 words] [Humor]
City Lights
Upasana Datta

Thirty-six hours. It had been raining incessantly for the past 36 hours. Behind the gray, gray clouds that spread over the sky like ash-colored cotton wool, was the sun. But we children had been quite convinced that the wolf in the story grandma told us last night had eaten it up. Sometimes the patterning of rain lessened and a crow would fly in and sit on the windowsill, shaking its sodden feathers; but the sun was still missing. Lost, perhaps.

Meena Amma, our grandmother was standing by the window (We called her Meena Amma because our grandfather called her Meena and our father and mother called her Amma) gazing outside as the dark night spread its velvet fingers through the sky. She had been lighting lamps on the windowsill but now she was lost in some faraway alley of memories. She looked beautiful, I thought, as the golden flame of the earthen lamp shone in her brown eyes.

We were nagging her to tell us about her childhood, when we were informed that she had moved to Shantipukur Village only after she was 39 and my father had completed school and Aunty had been sent to boarding school.
“But why did you come here?” I would not help but ask.
“It is warm here”.
Warm?” I was puzzled. “But it is warm in the city too. There are glowing orange lights of the shops and the streets are practically hot, full of busy people”
“There is no warmth of love there. Things are too fast you can’t sit and talk. You are always on the run. There is no happiness, no time to smile. It is dark and fearsome” she sighed.
I was puzzled more than ever. Why, I laughed and talked with my friends! I was always happy. I liked to go shopping in the crowded bazaars. I liked the busy streets. I liked the fast life. True, I liked the village and the colorful butterflies and the cool green grass too. Though this holiday, the cold rain has stolen even that away from us but I have always liked the city, with its warm golden city lights.
                                                                      
*

It is raining again incessantly. The sky is gray and the sun is lost again. But it is not the same time. I am not the same. I am taller, my face caked in make up and my hair tied tightly in a high ponytail. Sixteen years have been flown by, occasionally interrupted by my school final exams, my graduation, my coming to London and getting a job in a prestigious business firm in an important position. The scenario had changed; I can no longer see green grass and pink flowers through the window. Just brick giants promising to reach the sky. I can’t hear the pattering rain; the soundproof glass wall separated me from the curtain of water. No, it wasn’t the same rain even. It was cruel, harsh.
“Hey Pinky?” Liz called out, coming hurriedly over to my desk, overturning the waste paper basket in her haste. “Violet” I corrected her. She always called me Pinky when she knew my name quite well.
“Oh, I like ‘Pinky’ better you know, people go violet with rage and pink with happiness and as you are quite a happy girl, I think Pinky suits you better.”” But”, she added uncertainly, “Today you look quite gray”,
“The sky is gray”
“You are not a mirror”
I remained silent
“What happened? I never saw you so forlorn! Oh, never mind, I forgot to tell you. You were supposed to send some report three days ago and it ____”.
“She was right,” I said, stopping her in mid sentence.
“Who was right?”
“Meena Amma”
“Now who on earth is Meena Amma? And what did she say that was right?”
“My grandmother. Life is too fast here”
“Liz looked quite incredulous, but said ” What! Listen I think you ought to finish the report, or you are going to be in a lot of troub------------ “
“I want to go” I had caught her in mid sentence again.
“Where? It is raining crazy and even a mackintosh would be useless!
“I mean I want to go away from London. To India. To Shantipukur”
“But you can’t! You have responsibilities here, and a bright future. You are quite successful at your age. “And”, She added matter of factly, “you seemed quite happy till last evening”.
I looked away from her, facing the window. The rain had stopped. One golden ray of the sun was kissing the window.
*

“We’ve won!” Shouts of victory and joy filled the entire stadium. I was sweating with pleasure, hurtling my hockey stick above my head, while getting lost in hugs and kisses of the swarms of teammates. Our team had won the local women’s hokey championship. Spirits were high and high-pitched laughter dominated the atmosphere. “Well done, Violet” Liz shouted jumping up and down. It seemed so silly now that only seven days ago I had thought of going back to Shantipukur. How stupid! I am successful and the captain of a winning hockey team. And then on the horizon, where the stars fade, are the city lights. I’ve always liked the city lights.


 

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COPYRIGHT NOTICE
© 2006 Upasana Datta
STORYMANIA PUBLICATION DATE
January 2006
NUMBER OF TIMES TITLE VIEWED
1705
 

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