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Wednesday, 1 April 2020

A new beginning

To own a house, is a dream of many. But very few achieve it. Vinay was one such lucky chap. Vinay was an IT engineer and had worked for a decade in the Silicon valley. The dead lines, work pressure and long working hours of the IT industry had sucked all his zest for life and turned him into a zombie. 'I can't take it any longer.' He said to Sulabha his wife. Sulabha clasped his hand and said, 'Whatever decision you arrive at, I am with you.' Vinay was visibly relieved. He was lucky to have a spouse like Sulabha. 'Thank you,' He said.

From that day onwards Vinay started planning towards an early retirement. 'I wont work after forty.' He said. 'Then what will you do?' Someone would ask. 'I will build a house at the foothills of Himalayas and will spend my rest of my life sipping coffee in the pristine cool air, watching the snow clad mountain ranges. A life full of peace.' He would say.

True to his words Vinay retired at forty and returned to India. The fact that the couple didn't have any children made the return easier. But there was a slight change in plan. Neither he nor Sulabha had ever lived in the mountains. Weather in the hills is unpredictable. No doubt when rest of the country is facing sweltering heat, the climate in the mountains is soothing. But the rains and the winters are harsh. There are landslides and you are cut off from the rest of the humanity for days together. The hail storms and snow fall make life even more difficult. It was one thing to spend a few days of summer vacation in the Himalayan mountains and another to stay there permanently. So the couple gave up the idea of living at the foot hills of the Himalayas with a heavy heart.

However, that did not mean that they had given up their dream of living in the hills completely. They found an alternative – Ajara. Ajara was a town situated at about 60 kilometres from Kolhapur on the road towards Sindhudurg. It is known for three things – heavy showers, pleasant weather and local fragrant variety of rice known as Ajara ghansal.

Vinay and Sulabha fell in love with Swarg Niwas, the moment they saw it. Leaving the town behind, the winding path through the green carpets of paddy fields on either side of the road took them near their new house. Soon they found themselves on a short stretch through a thick jungle before they broke out into what was paradise on the earth.

Who couldn't fall in love with such a location. In addition, the house was comfortable and cozy. It had a spacious drawing room, kitchen and two bedrooms on the ground floor and two guest rooms on the first floor.
'Wow, until now I had seen such extravagant staircases on in the movies.' Sulabha said admiring the sprawling staircase that opened in the drawing room.

The big windows in every room ensured that there was ample air and light in the house. Also the house was facing the east. This was a huge plus point for Vinay who believed in vastu. Reading books about astrology, vastu shastra and palmistry was his past time.

Vinay and Sulabha stood mesmerized in the balcony. The cool breeze, the gorgeous valley and the scenic beauty - what more could have they asked for? They stood there for some time with Vinay's hand resting on Sulabha's shoulder. 'Let us buy this property.' Both of them said in unison. Within a month the formalities were completed and they moved in their dream house.

The investments which they had made ensured that they lived comfortable early retirement life. Sulabha loved plants. Having a garden of her own was her dream, which was fulfilled after they moved into Swarg Sadan. She had a small kitchen garden too which supplied vegetables to her kitchen. Both the husband and wife spent most of their time in the garden tending to the plants.

Taking a morning walk through the short stretch which connected the property to the main road became a routine for Vinay. Sulabha was slightly asthematic and hence avoided the morning walks. Vinay on the contrary loved the mist in the air. He would get up early, change into his track suit and jog from the house up to the main road. Everyday opened a new surprise for him. One day he saw peacock with its splendid fan unfurled. He wished Sulabha had accompanied him. The other day he saw rabbits hopping down the path. Once, he even saw a herd of bison crossing the main road.
The nature was at its best - the fog, the early sunlight, the greenery and the chill in the air - everything added to the atmosphere. Vinay started carrying a camera with him on his morning walks. Clicking pictures and sharing it with his friends became his hobby. His friends were envious of him. They longed to visit such pristine, untouched destination. They had money to buy the tickets, but what they lacked was time. 'Surely, we will visit you both sometime. Maybe after our retirement, after our children are settled.' They would say. The reference to children was uncalled for or that is what Sulabha felt. Thereafter, they didn't invite any of their friends and relatives and chose to live in blissful company of each other.

One day when Vinay was returning from his morning walk, he saw silhouette of a woman standing at the gate. He wondered how come Sulabha had rose so early. As he approached near the gate, he could clearly see the woman and she wasn't Sulabha. She was dressed in a white saree and her long jet black hair ran freely up to her waist. She serenely smiled looking at him. That is when their eyes met. Her eyes were alluring and her presence intriguing. Hypnotized by her beauty Vinay was drawn towards her. She was at a hand's distance from him and then she disappeared. 
Read the next part here
Read my short read My Spiritual Journey 


  1. Very interesting story .... Would love to read what happens next!

  2. What an interesting read! I can't wait for the story to unfurl. Looking forward to the next chapter.