Suchi fell in love with the hotel room instantly. The glazed window overlooking a lush garden and the skyline filled with high-rise apartments gave her a sense of liberty.
Taking out her mobile, she saw that there was no message from her husband Subhash.
She brought out the most cherished possession of her life – a pair of ghungroos from the bag.
‘Girls of respected families don’t become dancers.’ Her father had thrown away her ghungroos after she turned fifteen. She was married into an equally conservative family who didn’t consider dance to befit their families daughter-in-law.
It was her teenager son Trihan who had discovered Suchi’s passion. Last month, he had sent across a video of Suchi’s dance to a national level dancing competition. Suchi made it to the list of twenty-five shortlisted candidates.
Both the families refused to support her decision. But it was Trihan who stood by her like a rock. He didn’t want his mother to give up another dream for her family. She smiled at the message that he had sent her,
“I believe in you. Win the competition and make me proud.”
Her upbringing had managed to bring a crack in the walls of patriarchy.
This is the 8th post written as part of the #MyfriendAlexa campaign as per my theme ‘Shades of Perception’. You can read the other piece of fiction based on the same photo prompt here and the first six posts here.
For this challenge, I am using four photos as prompts to weave two flash fiction stories and one real story behind the picture. This is my second picture prompt.
I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with Blogchatter
The sound of azan from the mosque nearby woke up Pratim. His body was tired from the extra load that he had to carry yesterday. But he knew that he didn’t have the luxury to sleep any longer. Pratim got up from the floor. He looked at the exhausted frame of his mother lying on the floor in another corner of the room. Pratim went outside to wash his face and attend to nature’s call. Gulping down some water from the tube-well, he went inside to get ready. He took out the only pair of second-hand running clothes that he had managed to buy from the cheap Khanna Market. They had cost him his weekly pay but he knew that they were a necessity. Then he took out his most prized possession – a pair of blue running shoes.
The street outside was still dark. His lane was darker than the rest of the town. The town municipality cared about the downtrodden only when the elections arrived. Until then the lanes didn’t even exist in their books. Pratim crossed two streets and then started running. Even the wee hours of the morning brought along heat and humidity. Barring a couple of street dogs, there was no other form of living creature visible on the road. Lewis Sir had told Pratim that he would be waiting on the beach by 5:30 am. Pratim couldn’t afford a watch. But he had learnt to adjust his daily timing to the morning azan. The beach was a 10km run from this area and Pratim had been covering this distance every single day for the past two and half months.
While running alone, Pratim always thought about his father Anukul Saha and their village Shyamlapur. They had owned a small tea shop near the village bus stand. His mother Radha also assisted in the shop whenever the crowd grew in numbers. The room adjacent to the shop was their residence. Pratim studied at the municipality school. He managed to just – about pass in all the subjects but had been marked as the best athlete that the village school had ever produced. By the age of twelve, he had already won all the sports awards in the district related to running. Life would have gone as usual until the last panchayat elections a year back.