Saturday, May 15, 2010

recipe to happiness


This word has brought me innumerable memories,of tempting meals,of satiating aromas,of garnished foods,of mouthwatering dishes,but in all these there is this particular recipe that has been most close to my heart.
One recipe that I believe I would take with me to my grave.
One recipe that has somewhere somehow helped me be the way I am.
It was the year 2007.
I was working with a not so famous very small NGO(Non Government Organisations).

Aashray-Home for the abandoned.

Every morning we went to railway stations to pick runaway children,some lost and some whose parents had abandoned them and many more of these kinds.
They all were kept in this small 2 bedroom place-Aashray,their home cum basic school.
I went there to teach them,keep them happy and entertain them so that they could feel like a family and have the zest to grow.

They had a very simple transparent process of making food.Every evening the NGO personnel collected whatever funds and money they got and all children some 30 to 40 and the 4-5 people gathered as if like in a serious meeting.And then the staff told the children the exact sum they had and the possible variety of meager items they could buy.
And all after discussing came to an unanimous decision and that particular item was bought.
But whatever it was they ate with wonderful zest not once complaining.
I had heard that many a times they went to sleep empty stomach too.

But being from a reasonably good family I never believed that even now people could sleep without food.

One fine day I was there teaching these children acting.
Soon it was lunch time.The same meeting took place.
As it was birthday of a boy so all wanted to eat sweets.
The special dish at that part of the country was rice balls added with sugar and rolled into balls by using a lot of butter.

This was what the children desired to eat.

I thought the NGO people would surely say NO as this would require a lot of butter and hence would be very costly.To my utter amazement they din'y say no.
And then the preparation started.I couldn't hold my guessing for too much and went inside the kitchen to check how were they able to manage such a costly item when even basic food was a delicacy for them.

And then it dawned on me.

The NGO just wanted to keep the children happy.
I saw there that the balls were rolled using water-plain placid tasteless water.
And then the head told me that although we afford only this we can't make these small young children unhappy.
An hour later this dish was served.The children offered a prayer to the almighty and ate this dish as it was the most wonderful dish ever made.They offered one piece to me too.
Yes,it tasted like the worst thing I had ever eaten but still I yearned for more just because of the feelings that were served in the dish.

That day we friends gave a party to the children at Ashray and later gave them many more.
But it was one recipe that I never know and can never forget.

It was the recipe to happiness.



  1. O this is so very beautiful! Very quickly it reaches the heart and reminds us that we should be happy with our own lives and value what we have! There is always so much worse somewhere!

  2. Your post reminded me what the basic necessities of life really are. Thanks for sharing a very poignant memory.

  3. Guess what,me n my room-mate always plan on an NGO visit n we somehow dunno where to go n drop it....After reading this i have made up my mind to go there..
    Thanks for sharing this piece. Keep up de good work u doin helping these children :)

  4. This is a brilliant story. So much can be learned from it. It shows that so little can mean so much.

  5. This was excellent. What an inspiration those children are to show us what is really important in life.

  6. @Greyscale Territory
    Thanks dear.Yes,it reminds us that there is something even worse somewhere but also at the same time reminds us that even then there is happiness there.Thanks for your visit:)

    @Denise Moncrief
    Yes,Denise.Basic needs are what they are.And sadly many times there are instances where people still are unable to even catch their basic needs.
    Thanks for dropping by.

    Thanks dear for your kind words.

    Oh,that would be a wonderful option indeed.
    Even your single visit there would bring wonders to those children.Might be just seeing you once would make a child feel that he too wants to be like you and be inspired:)

    Thanks Anthony for feeling so.

    @Mama Zen
    Thanks Zen.It was one old incident revisited.Thanks for your visit.

    @Leonard Blumfeld
    Thanks Leonard for feeling so.
    Thanks for coming by.Hope to see you again:)

    Thanks oldegg.
    And this little in turn shows the greatness this little has.
    Thanks for your visit.

    Thanks Lisa.
    Sometimes inspiration can come from the most unexpected places.
    Thanks for taking your time.


  7. What an inspiring story. I hope my American born children will one day be able to understand this. Thank you for helping me to understand a little.

  8. hey man you are helping people to realize that they r lucky enough to have a laptop and net connection in place to read such blogs,realize the zest, praise the blog writer and then shutdown the laptop and think for it for a while just to forget it in their worldy affairs.
    @all- What you all guys can start which can impact the society as the blog writer have been doing from quiet a while.It could be anything...