Every leaf is a flower

Written By

Runali Basak

Every leaf is a flower Loading

Arjun, his sister Misha and his parents Sona and Gaurav Mukherjee, lived in a posh locality of Vadodara. In this proposed Smart City, Arjun was already a gadget freak and loved his PSP and smartphone, the most. Ofcourse, Misha was the unparalleled contender of his affection and attention.

“Beta, come on. Have your lunch. It’s been on the table for 15 minutes now.” This was the fourth time Sona was calling out to Arjun. Arjun was busy on his smartphone playing the 2nd level of Candy Crush Saga. He had been challenged by his next door neighbour’s son, Bunty, the previous evening to match with the so-called proficiency he had in the game.

After a while, a furious Sona walked into the room. “If you are not hungry, just tell me. I will wind up the kitchen for the moment.” O.K, said Arjun, lost in his game. Sona, feeling a little upset over her little boy not showing interest in having lunch, starting winding her kitchen.

“What did you have for lunch at school?” she enquired while cleaning. “Idli sambhar. It was really yummy. You should, someday, come over and taste it. It’s awesome. I had many. You know I was told by Masi (the lady serving the brunch) that other students also need their share”, said Arjun laughing.

“Achcha, would you like to have some cold chocolate shake?” asked a concerned Sona.

“Oh no, Ma! I am not a baby. I am about to appear for my final exams a few weeks from now. I’ll be promoted to class 6 then. I am your big boy.” Saying this, Arjun came and stood next to her, comparing his height to his mom’s. Sona was relieved that at least he had taken a break from the addictive game, though for a few minutes.

Days kept passing by. Sona, like a typically concerned mom, would keep on with her monitoring job. Here, the work was nothing but keeping a tab on her son Arjun. Every now and then, she would see a new app being downloaded in his 3G mobile. Arjun was a topper in his class. He was an extremely polite and disciplined student according to his teachers’. There was no doubt about it, either. His mom was sure that he would download the apps pertaining to games and nothing beyond it.

Soon, his exam dates were declared. “Ah. Finally! I’ll be in Class 6. Chalo, let’s study for a while before mommy dear calls out for dinner.” Thinking so, our adolescent warrior sat down towards setting his target. He worked very hard during this period vis-a-vis preparation and attempt.

Eventually, Chandan, Nayan and Arjun began planning for their summer vacation. “I’ll be joining the handwriting class followed by drawing, painting and then may be skating or karate”, said Nayan. Let’s see what mom decides upon.” “How will you manage so many?” asked a surprised Chandan. “Are you a robot or a zombie?” “My mom will zoom past the various places with me pillion riding. You don’t know her, she’s like a helicopter.” “Oh, so you mean to say that aunty is a helicopter mom,” smiled Chandan. “My story aside, tell me about your vacation plans.” “I guess cricket academy. A short trip to my mama’s home at Ahmedabad is also on the cards.”

“Mom, are we going somewhere this summer vacation?” asked Arjun very casually. “I am thinking of buying myself a PSP from a good electronic shop nearby.”

“First, finish with your assessment, then we will discuss about it.” Sona replied trying to pose as she was very annoyed. The attempt to do so went in vain as Arjun smiled and hugging her said, “Your wish is my command, Aka.”

Two papers later, at the Tasty Vada Pav Center, famous among the youngsters, Chandan and Nayan confirmed their plans to Arjun.

When Arjun reached home, he saw his mom waiting for him at the door.

“I wish to share something with you, beta.” she said. “I understand and appreciate your liking and proficiency for the online games and gadgets such as the mobile and computer. I want you to spend the first week of vacation in a slightly different way. Would you like to give it a try?”  Sona asked Arjun very lovingly.

“What is it, Mom?”

“Ramakrishna Mission is organizing a week long summer camp for different age-groups. You also fit in comfortably into one of them. There would yoga, meditation, devotional songs, watering a sapling, rangoli and art and craft activities. You will also get nutritious snacks there.”

“Mom, do you think I’ll be able to sing devotional songs, perform yoga and water a sapling?”

“Why not? You can definitely do it.” said Sona in a highly motivational tone.

So, began the vacation. Daily at 7 a.m. Arjun would wake up and get ready for the camp. He would get ready by 8.10 a.m. and wait for his auto to arrive. The auto driver was a bit too punctual and would always arrive half an hour before the given time.

The first experience for Arjun was very different. Here, he was concentrating on Vedic Chanting. Then he was into meditation followed by yoga. On his return, he was a little surprised. He wondered about the efforts to be simple in an age that has attained a lot in terms of science and technology. No mobiles, no gadgets; only connectivity was with nature and music!

Five days passed by.

“Mom, do you know that we made a rangoli today. You must come and see it tomorrow!”

The next day Sona reached the venue. Her pride knew no bounds to see a beautiful and colourful rangoli sitting pretty on the floor.  Arjun came and stood beside his mom. His face shone with the happiness of an achiever.

“Your son has added the brightest colour. Congrats, Arjun. You have done a wonderful job”, said the swamiji standing nearby.

“We have also made crafts from used bottles. Tomorrow being the last day of the camp we would ask the children to present their talent on stage before all of us. Be prepared, Arjun”, smiled one of the volunteers.

That evening at his residence Arjun sat humming a tune. On paying closer attention, one could make out; it was a hymn that he had learnt at the summer camp. His smartphone lay next to him unattended.

“Mom, I wish to enact a story from my school’s text book. I want your opinion.”

“Why not? Go ahead, beta.”

The next day Arjun seemed excited while leaving for Ramakrishna Mission at the R.C.Dutt Road. He returned from the camp elated.

On the seventh day, when Sona alighted from the auto rickshaw, she saw a smiling Arjun with a twinkle in his eyes. He was holding the flower pot with the tiny sapling in it.

“Wow! Who is this little baby?” said Sona with a smile.

“She is the one whom I watered daily. My little sister.” Arjun looked lovingly at the sapling.

“Yeah. Misha is at home,” said Sona.

“Mom, from today I have not one but two sisters.” He held the flower pot close to him as the auto rickshaw sped towards his home.

Nature had signed into his tech-savvy lifestyle.




Runali is a multi lingual person with knowledge of English, Hindi, Bengali, Gujarati, making her multi cultural too. Her hobbies are writing, teaching, watching movies and listening to music. She believe that the most difficult thing to achieve in life is simplicity. She also endorses the fact that if you can make at least one person smile, it's a great feat.

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