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Things That Money Can Buy

April 11, 2020 | By

‘কড়ি দিয়ে কিনলাম’
‘The things that money can buy’…and can’t!!

Artwork by Piu Mahapatra

কড়ি দিয়ে কিনলাম (Kori Diye Kinlam)
‘The things that money can buy’
Translations never do justice …but who cares!

There were only a handful of them left, faintly peach and pearly-white. ‘Kori’, nothing but shells, Budhdha’s shell, hidden in a woven basket, smeared with crimson and casually forgotten in the darkness that usually settles at the back of the shelves of grandma’s almirah.

‘So, these were coins? From which side?!!’

I was seven…or maybe eight or to be precise, had just entered an age when I didn’t deny, rather new things made me wonder!

Dida, also being in that ripe age to understand that all questions need not be answered, simply smiled back!

“Ok! They were coins then!”

I accepted, my fingers and my mind playing around with the tiny pearls.

“But what could you buy? Why on the earth would anybody give you anything in return for something which you can get from the seashore!!!? Didaaa..are you listening?”

My eyes were as round as the new striker of the carrom board! It was an ask, but deep down, I knew, the answers won’t be straight. Dida never revealed the mysteries of life, rather she kept on stirring them like hot milk on the stove, till it boiled and bubbled and thickened into sweet heady porridge.

“Your Dadu bought me with those!”

Surprisingly, I got an answer this time. But what an answer! Shouldn’t have asked in the first place, I thought. With that, she smiled, that very wicked smile which used to make me uncertain and a tiny bit uncomfortable.

“Bought you?! What if he returns you?”

“We are also returned!!”

Letter to Myself During the Days of Corona

Letter to Myself During the Days of Corona – LnC Series by Piu Mahapatra

Her eyes lost that twinkle and something sad settled around the corners. I was still seven, or maybe eight, or to be precise I had just stepped into an age where words started having double meanings and yet I was unable to read between the lines.

Dida, with her hairs all turning pearl like the little shells, was a ‘Buddha’ indeed.

She stretched her hand, touched my chin and kissed her fingers back, said, “Not all can be bought ‘didun’, but who will tell that to men!”

She pointed at the shells, lying helpless on the floor, “Look at them, they are just ‘Kori’, worthless with time.”

I read Bimal Mitra’s novel (Kori Diye Kinlam) much later. Dipu’s grandpa believed that all can be bought with ‘kori’ but then, he never had a grandma like mine!!

(Artwork: Piu Mahapatra)

Click here to read more Letters to Myself During the Days of Corona every Saturday.😊

A painter, facilitator, and art consultant by profession, Piu never let go the opportunity to work around and along with the ‘Curious little George’ of different schools in India and abroad. Her articles on art education and awareness have been published in different contemporary art journals of India and Virginia for more than a decade. She loves to let her hair go down and often makes pathetic attempts to write poetry and short stories for children. The only thing she has ever done good is letting her son soar high and low with his wings open wide and fear-free.
All Posts of Piu Mahapatra

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Today’s Motivation

<div class=at-above-post addthis_tool data-url=https://learningandcreativity.com/motivational-quotes-6/></div>In the rush of life, we sometimes are so focussed towards a goal that we forget to notice the little little things in life.  Eventually, they are these little things that makes our life, not just the goal.  So, Ursula K. Le Guin says...It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end<!-- AddThis Advanced Settings above via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Advanced Settings below via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Advanced Settings generic via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Share Buttons above via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Share Buttons below via filter on get_the_excerpt --><div class=at-below-post addthis_tool data-url=https://learningandcreativity.com/motivational-quotes-6/></div><!-- AddThis Share Buttons generic via filter on get_the_excerpt -->
In the rush of life, we sometimes are so focussed towards a goal that we forget to notice the little little things in life. Eventually, they are these little things that makes our life, not just the goal. So, Ursula K. Le Guin says..."It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end"