Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pay it forward - the Flag

[As the newly free nation watched, the Union Jack was symbolically lowered, and the Indian Tricolour hoisted at the historical Red Fort. This is to celebrates sixty-three years of Freedom for India and Indians.]

I was a reedy, bespectacled boy; the kind bullies always picked on. From the edge of the crowd to which I had been shoved, I watched in wonder as the dignitary prepared to hoist the flag. What a great man he must be to be accorded such honour. Rope in hand, he paused and took in the crowd. He beckoned me to assist him. Knees trembling, I did.

Thirty-seven years later, I am at the flag-pole. My eyes scan the crowd, and alight on a boy who could have been me. "Will you help me hoist the flag?", I ask.

A drabble is a story told in exactly 100 words. This is a work of fiction.

A Random Act of Kindness always sets off a chain, which may or may not circle back to you, but which makes the world a better place to be in. See it play out in our Pay it Forward feature, exclusively at the Burrow.


Ann Best said...

This is beautifully written!

And I love the photograph. The sight of a flag, any flag, quickens my heart as it symbolizes so much that is great, such as loyalty and unity.

Thank you for this post. I'm glad I came in to see it.

Ann Best said...

p.s. I live in Virginia USA, but I will never forget my wonderful friend from India, Gurdeep Singh, who lived with me and my daughter for a while and did some amazing therapy - acupressure - on her spastic body. We loved him!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That was wonderful, Rayna!

Clarissa Draper said...

Speaking of India, my husband has been thinking of moving the family there. I don't think he's really thought it through but I have a question for you: What language do they speak there (besides English)? Is it Marathi? I have to say, Marathi looks like it's written in Punjabi...Also, is it inexpensive to live?


RosieC said...

Oh, I love this, Rayna! Well done!

Jemi Fraser said...

It's amazing what a little touch of kindness can do! Lovely :)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Now that is really sweet!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

A wonderful post Rayna, you always give your best, day in day out, Thanks for a wonderful read.


slommler said...

Fabulous post! And sweet!!

Mary said...

Loved this post.

Al said...

Lovely story about a great day.

My Grandfather told me about that night in 1947. He took the British buttons and badges off his uniform at midnight and sewed Indian ones on.

Laura Eno said...

Paying it forward is the best way to live one's life!

Theres just life said...

What a great way to pay it forward, and what a great story.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Ann- I so understand what you mean. I love my flag and my national anthem. But I get goosebumps when I see any flag or hear any anthem- they have so many aspirations sewn into them. And I do know about the gentleman who did so much for Jen.

@ Alex- thank you. Wonder if it ever happened?

@ Clarissa - reply in the mail.

@ RosieC- thank you

@ Jemi- it always multiplies, doesn't it? I keep trying to tell the kids that- they are young enough to understand.

@ Diane- thank you. When I was a kid, I always wanted to hoist the flag one day- never have, and it is now going out of style :-(

@ Yvonne- thank you.

@ SueAnn- thank you.

@ Mary- thank you

@ Al- I remember we met on Jan 26, which is the Indian Republic Day, and you told me the story of your grandfather in Jabalpur.

@ Laura- it is. And I have had so much paid to me, I can spend a lifetime trying to repay it.

@ Theres just life- thank you.


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