LOVE

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Love

                is in The

                   Air

————————————-by Team Coffee Bytes

The presence of the e m o t i o n called love, or the lack of it in our existence, creates myriad experiences in the journey called life. The emotion that is an integral part of any intimate relationship, is love. It becomes an elixir of life, a fountainhead of all that is good. In Odissi classical dance the nine moods or ‘Nabarasa’ play a major role in enacting the songs in abhinaya. Shringara Raasa, depicts the mood of love and our temples are full of exquisite sculptures relating to this. But is love only for young people and confined to buying cards, candies, teddy bears, having candle light dinners on Valentine’s Day???

I guess the simplest answer for it is that ‘Love’ is a celebration of life. It permeates the heart with an emotion which spills tears, brings in the smile, cuddles warmth, provides sustenance and is an evergreen spring which does not discriminate on the grounds of age, sex, caste and more.

The links in the chain of love are varied. The colours vary; the texture and the ingredients are definitely different. Love is a word which is not only about passion but encompasses a world of emotions.

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” – Anatole France You just have to ask a pet lover to realise this truth. The love for animals is not for all, but for those who definitely believe that the colour of love is not red but pink: it is unconditional.

55 year old Minu says, “ Jeanie is my confidant, my bestie and she loves me for who I am and not for anything else.” Jeanie is an eight year old ordinary pariah dog whom she had picked up from the streets. Rout bhaina of Old Town area in Bhubaneswar comes as a messiah for the dozen odd dogs that live in his neighbourhood. They crowd around him, their tails wagging furiously as they wait in a disciplined way for him to feed them. The sight of this wrinkled old man does not repel them and he is a welcoming sight with his walking stick and a tray filled with broken pieces of chapattis. Possibly, he yearns for unconditional love from his children as much as these voiceless animals do. He celebrates love and how! It is said that animals have a sixth sense and love conquers all senses.

“Every love story has a hero and a heroine and for me my mother and
father represent that love story,” says an emotional Rupam. He further adds,
“Valentine’s day for me is the day when I celebrate my love for my old parents and I feel that Saint Valentine never segregated this day to be celebrated only by young lovers.”Lovely thoughts which can be shared and practiced by all!

Max goes hysterical with joy as he can sense Uday’s footsteps even as he is waiting to get into the lift of his apartment complex. Uday means the world to Max, a Labrador who had been deserted on the streets of Hyderabad when he was found by Uday in a state of trauma and in very frail and feeble condition. “Max may not be able to thank me with words, but his unconditional love and companionship has transformed me as a person and has given me a new zest and purpose in life, a sense of fulfilment!” says a beaming, but emotional Uday. Well groomed at a pet spa and pampered with love, Max looks his cool canine self now!

“Every love story has a hero and a heroine and for me my mother and father represent that love story,” says an emotional Rupam. He further adds, “Valentine’s day for me is the day when I celebrate my love for my old parents and I feel that Saint Valentine never segregated this day to be celebrated only by young lovers.” Lovely thoughts which can be shared and practiced by all!

Malini, who’ll turn 35 shortly is the backbone of the Mohanty family. Her busy day starts at dawn and the whole family revolves and rotates around her. It does not make any difference that she is the maid of this house.“I’ve been with this family since my teens and everyone calls me Nana,” she smiles. “I have polio and used to hobble with the help of a bamboo stick in my village. My parents sold me to my husband who was 20 years my senior and I was barely 16 years old,” she reminisces with a faraway look in her rheumy eyes. She is lucky to have been rescued by the lady of the house,who has also allowed her to move in with them. Life for her is the love that she gets from this family which is reciprocated manifold.

Mehak and Viraj are best buddies
for the last 25 years.
“My first memory of Viraj dates back to
school when I had to share his book
because I had forgotten to bring mine.
Just as I leaned towards him to look into
the far page, he jumped out of the seat as
if I was going to molest him!!”
giggles Mehak.

The ‘Swaccha Bharat Abhiyan’ was a master stroke in which every person who loved cleanliness gave him 100%. The spic and span roads, the clean garbage bins and a lot of greenery is what we need desperately and we have to fall in love with and share the overarching dream of a clean nation.

Padmashree starts her day at dawn, walking through her new found love – her garden. “My husband was in the armed forces, so I could just manage a terrace garden owing to our repeated transfers. He has taken a voluntary retirement and we have settled in Bhubaneswar. Life is now very peaceful, as my day starts early at dawn with soiling my hands in mud and manure, tending to the plants and nurturing the flowers. I am totally in love with my garden and am learning organic gardening,” she dimples.

Mehak and Viraj are best buddies for the last 25 years. “My first memory of Viraj dates back to school when I had to share his book because I had forgotten to bring mine. Just as I leaned towards him to look into the far page, he jumped out of the seat as if I was going to molest him!! giggles Mehak. “I was shy of girls then but Mehak is my comfort zone and I can tell her anything without any inhibition,” says a smiling Viraj as they share a high five celebrating a bond of 25 years of friendship.

And then, we have Suraj and Akhil. The old adage ‘Like poles repel’ clearly doesn’t hold true in this case! “I realized that being with Suraj helped me discover a different side to myself, something that helped me be at peace with myself ” said Akhil. Being in a same sex relationship may not be looked at with the same amount of mundaneness, to say the least, but it has always been perceived to be a precocious relationship for every era. Different societies have formulated their own rules to define such an equation but none has been able to confine it!

Another thread in this fabric of love is the most critical form which manifests itself in every other form since it acts as a pre requisite. Have you ever been counselled by a close friend during the lowest ebb of your emotions? Have you ever felt like a loser in life who has not served any purpose? These are troughs in life which everybody goes through! How you make a comeback depends on the magnitude of love you have for yourself.

Self-love is a virtue that propels you ahead in life and you refrain from belittling your own value. “This close friend of mine, was burning inside with academic failure and the fact that he did not share his state of mind with anyone, allowed his emotional upheavals to engulf his ability to value his own life. He dissociated himself from this world”, shares a rather inconsolable Anshu.

This may come across as a disclaimer, but we’d like to mention that this is not an exhaustive compilationof the various colours of love which blend together to emerge as a beautiful depiction in the canvas called life!

Every shade is as important as the other and as we go along adding the experience of more and more shades to this fluid painting of life, it firms up on the canvas to evolve into an endearing image to behold. Cheers to the spirit of love! ❏

 

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