It was just the other day I was really enjoying the morning, looking at the different greens, imbibing the monsoon smells of rain filled earth, when the gardener beckoned me, and handed a flower which had the most exquisite smell. I kept it with me and continued enjoying the fragrance. I decided I’d allow it to enhance my day.

However, as I walked home, I met a friend whose mother was not keeping well. Something made me hand the fragrant flower to her, “Would you give it to your mother?” I asked. She looked puzzled for a moment and then her face brightened up, “Thanks Bob,” she said and I saw her going in to her mother’s room with a smile on her face and flower in her hand.

I don’t know how the mother reacted, but I’d like to think she was happy. Happy that someone outside her door, outside her family had remembered her.

I felt happy as I walked to my home and then sadness filled me as I saw the headlines in the newspaper. A techie working in America had come home to visit his mother, found the door locked and nobody opening it, called a key maker, walked in and found his mother’s skeleton! I will not question the son today, who had not spoken to his mother for over a year, but what about the neighbours? Didn’t they ever wonder what had happened to her? Why they’d not seen her?

Have we become so closed? So indifferent? Strange! And then I thought of the flower again, and my mind wonders what could have happened if someone had rung the doorbell of that old lady before she was found dead, when she was lonely in her flat, and had offered her a Diwali sweet last year.

“You have come to the wrong house!” she would have feebly said even as she looked wistfully at the sweet box, “Nobody normally gives me sweets!”

“We just wanted you to have it, and why don’t you come down today evening, there’s a small get together in the grounds.” Suddenly that lonely lady is lonely no more. Suddenly it doesn’t matter if her son calls or not, life is worth living, somebody passed a fragrant flower to her.

It may not be a flower, it could be a phone call, just a ringing of a doorbell. Some small act, that has a fragrance that will lift their lives, and do you know something? I gave away that flower, but the fragrance is all around me, because even as you give your flowers away, the fragrance remains maybe for even a longer time..!

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