So it was first long weekend of 2015 and it also coincided with my birthday. I wasn’t really excited about my birthday but one thing I knew for a fact that I did not want to be in Pune. I wanted to go out. Given the long weekend, tickets (train/flight/bus) to go anywhere were exceptionally steep. The accommodations were also no exception and were fully booked. With very few options left, decided to drive down to Goa and find some cheap stay. I was happy with this proposition for I love beaches, I can sit there for hours and second, I was excited to ring in my birthday in Goa and party hard. You see it was best of both the worlds:)
There are a couple of things that happened in Goa, which I want to share. This post talks about one incident that left me happy and thinking. I was on Anjuna beach in the evening and was lying on the sun beds outside. The sun had set in its glory and the sky was slowly wearing a darker hue. The waves were crashing on the rocks and drowning you in their sound. Thankfully we were at the rear end of Anjuna beach and away from the psy music emanating from Curlies. I was enjoying this scene and was gazing at the sky and the north star, shining in all its mighty. Suddenly I see a Chinese sky lantern in the sky and it looked beautiful. I literally jumped out of excitement and I was squealing like a little child- I want, I want.
I have had always wanted to light a sky lantern and was very fascinated by them. I hurriedly trotted towards the guy who was selling the lanterns on the beach. Ofcourse he quoted an insane figure for the dainty sky lantern, for he knew I am a tourist and like influx of tourists in Goa that weekend, his prices also increased. My face fell and I started bargaining with him. I am not very proud of my bargaining skills and it did not do me any good either. During the haggle, I told him innocently, “Please reduce the price bhaiya, it is my birthday” and tried my luck with the emotional saga. During this time, there was a middle aged lady from Gujrat who also joined in and started haggling with the seller and she was damn good. In the end we agreed for Rs150, which I thought was a steal. I ran hurriedly towards the shack to fetch money. I was beaming with happiness, and excitement was running in my veins. I came back and handed over the money to that guy and couldn’t wait to light that beautiful blue lantern. He said it is already paid for. I was a bit confused.
The lady who was my haggling partner, came with her husband and said ‘The lantern is on us, Happy Birthday ‘and she handed over the lantern to me. I was so overwhelmed with what just happened, that I gave a tight hug to that lady and thanked her profusely. It is not that the lantern costed a bomb, nor was I in a dire need of it. But this was a birthday present from a stranger I barely knew, I was very touched. We exchanged introductions and her name was Vinita. She again wished me Happy Birthday and left. The emotions were ambivalent, both happy and reflective. How many times have my random actions made a stranger happy? What was my last act of kindness?
I then lit the lantern (wrote a message on it) and left it in the vast abandon of the sky and watch it float slowly, without any resistance, in the direction of wind.
This post, I dedicate to lovely Vinita and all the people who selflessly spread happiness and smiles by their sweet, little, unexpected actions.
Here’s to random good doings 🙂