The Balloon Girl

Smile. It doesn’t solve our problems, but it does give us unassailable strength to face them.

Saturday evening 7:15 P.M. Paradise signal. Gridlock as usual. The bus came to a halt. I was strap hanging and the laptop bag, behind my back, made its presence felt. 10 minutes slipped by. Looking around, realization shook me that I was the sole passenger standing.I started looking out of the bus window to find something engaging.

The street was all lit up. The cars, stuck at the traffic jam, effused yellow and dim red light. The showrooms had its buyers coming in. People relishing the mineral water pani puri at Dadu’s. Peeps waiting at the bus stop to head back home.People selling inflated minions, the neon ceiling stars, pens and balloons.

A young girl immediately caught my attention. Her ruffled light brown hair were on her dusky forehead. Her sloe eyes mirrored the yellow light emitted from the car’s headlights. She was selling colorful polka dotted balloons.They were beautiful. But it wasn’t the balloons that made me notice her, it was her child like, carefree smile. Smiling her way through the street, selling those balloons in  120 secs, not for a second her lips went flat. Her smile was contagious. I found one forming on my lips.

Signal went green.Bus was in motion now.She had crossed the road and started walking in the opposite direction of the bus. As the bus moved forward, I saw her disappearing.

She dominated my mind for the left over journey. For sure, she wasn’t someone who had no problems or was born with a silver spoon in her mouth, but she had one thing, the courage to face her situation with a wide smile, reminding me of the old adage –Smile, it costs nothing. 

                                                                     

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