As I parked my vehicle at the Tailor shop, a little girl wished me, “Happy Kissmas, Aunty.” When I turned to her, I was surprised by the new look on her.
She is the youngest of the children at the orphanage home that’s next to the building where I had parked. I’ve quite often seen the children play in the open ground that’s opposite to their home. Though I’ve not interacted with them before, a few of their faces remain familiar to me. As a matter of fact, most of us in our vicinity are familiar about the home and the children. Some celebrate their close-ones’ birthdays at the home, some give donations and some spend time to play and teach the children.
It took me a while to recognize what was new on her. Yeah, the frock she was wearing. It appeared new and and looked pretty on her. But wait, it looked like something else too. Yes, the same purple little flowers on the white satin cloth! I had purchased a cloth material exactly of the same pattern which I had given to the tailor for stitching, sometime before. Coincidentally, I’ve come now to collect the stitched dress at the tailor shop.
I smiled to myself and wished the child back as I entered the tailor shop, thinking about the strange coincidence. I guessed least that the tailor lady would have noted the expression on my face.
“Yes, that’s the salwar material you’d given for stitching; the one the small girl is wearing,” she welcomed me with a mischievous tone. Though I was taken aback, I hid my consternation to pose a puzzled look on my face.
She continued to explain me further, “Last week, while I was noting down the measurements of a customer, one of the children who live in the orphanage home, requested if I can measure their sizes too. I asked the girl for what purpose she wants me to do it. In reply, she asked for what purpose I measure for others. I answered that others bring cloths to me for new dresses to be stitched for them. I could sense the immediate disappointment on her face. After a moment’s thinking, she made her mind to do the measurement anyway. To acknowledge the little feelings of the child, I did.
“Soon, one by one, all the nineteen children stood in a row, waiting for their turn for the measurement thing. Nevertheless, I did. While I was doing the seemingly-long task, I observed them talking to each other of the colours and designs they liked, pointing to the stitched clothes that were on the display. I could perceive the varied desires, longings and sadness that they subtly communicated to each other.
“Of course, they receive used dresses from many of us living here. However, they’ve never been showered with the excitement of wearing new clothes. Moved by this incident, I decided to collect all the remnant pieces of cloths that I pile-up for discarding. With the measurements I had with me, I spent three nights to stitch new wears for all nineteen of them, which they are wearing today,” she concluded, recollecting the events that sure warmed her heart, and mine too.
Just then, one of the big children came in, wearing a multi-coloured chudidhar, artistically designed out of cut pieces of fabrics. It was her first day at the private tailoring class, generously accommodated by the tailor lady. The child, being the oldest, has accepted to shoulder the responsibility of stitching new clothes to her other home inmates and also for distribution to other homes in the city.
It may seem a simple incident. But when I contemplate on the depth of the human feelings it relates to, it astonishes me. It reminded me of the hours we spent at the designer showroom to choose a pair of dress for my son, last Diwali. I confess, I’ve never before thought of gifting a new dress to someone who can’t afford it.
Here, I introduce, Kadambari, an ordinary woman working as a tailor round-the-clock to earn her living, but has the intention to empathize with children who are in no way related to her. Not only she gifted them clothes but also has began to train one of them with a skill that shall help them gift others.
Like a stitch in time saves nine, a stitch for joy can spread joy too!
The best of inspirations from my 2015’s journal!
Photo Courtesy: www.prettyprudent.com