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Bus painting by Glenn Knight Meera was very happy on that day, she sang, and danced with other devotees in the temple with all her energy. She took bus ride home, as soon as she entered in the bus a complete stranger (woman) smiled at her, touched her clothes and said, “Salwar, Kameez and Dupatta” (three pieces Indian dress which Meera was wearing).

Meera asked, has she been to India before.

She said, “No“, and continued, “My best friend was from Pakistan, therefore, I know everything about Pakistan. But unfortunately my relationship couldn’t last. Actually none of my relationships work“. (Lady must have presumed that Meera was from Pakistan) Well, she had just come out of the temple, and was in a complete Krishna consciousness mood. At that time (almost 10 pm at night) she was not expecting such a reaction from a stranger.

She didn’t knew how to react looking at her sad face. But she gave it a try and said, “this is how it is. You have spent good time with your friend that’s all that matter. Relationships with human beings are temporary, make a relationship with Almighty it will last forever” (Meera certainly had a strong temple and devotee association effect).

Woman looked at her and said, “You are right“.

Meera saw her sad face converting into happy face right at that moment. (This all happened in between two bus stops).

and continued after a pause of few seconds, “Its my stop, Khudahafiz

Meera also replied, “Khudahafiz“.

Woman left Meera in the bus, wheels started moving but her eyes were still staring at the door and her mind was thinking, Who was she? Why did the woman open her heart to a complete stranger? She didn’t even knew Meera’s name and she told her personal matters. All the why questions had surrounded Meera in the moving bus. She had absolutely no idea about the answers. She questioned herself, did universe wanted to  give a message to the woman through her or Was she thinking too much, unnecessarily. Well!! Until she got down on the stop her mind was occupied with Questions, Questions and more Questions?

While walking slowly towards her home she thought perhaps Eid is coming closer and that was at the back of the mind of that woman.  Meera felt very happy that she took that bus. She wished and prayed that night a lot about that woman. She hoped that  the woman could sleep without thinking about her past that night and the next morning she could think of meeting new people, only than she will be able to make new memories.

Meera again questioned herself, “Will my words have any effect on her?” Than she shared her future plans with her friend. She will save some money to bu clothes of different cultures. She had made up her mind to wear traditional costumes of different countries at public places during the weekend, she even convinced her friends to do the same. Her argument was quite strong, according to her, “Sometimes, cultures have a power to bring human beings together. If you can make any sad face smile you have done something good for the day….this is what she truly believed”.

Author: Rashmi R-R

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Notes

(1) Aarti (pronounced as Aarti): Form of prayer practised by Hindus / Vaishnavas practised in the temple or at home Altar (Deities) to remember Almighty.

(2) Krishna Consciousness – Krishna is a beloved Hindu/ Vaishnava God. Krishna consiousness in simple words could be described as remembering Almighty.

(3) Eid: Eid al-Fitr (Feast of breaking the fast) is a festival celebrated by Muslims all over the world

(3) Khuda-Hafiz : Allah Hafiz or Khuda Hafiz is a goodbye greeting mainly practised by Muslims around the Globe. It is also a religious statement which means “God Protect You”

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