The Yellow Door!


She had come again to the yellow door. It was final. It was meant to be. It was her destiny and she accepted the destiny. Yellow door had beckoned her again and she presented herself. If you saw her from afar, standing there in front of the door in a red dress with small white floral patterns on it, she looked like a decoration.

It was 8 in the morning. The grass was still wet with dew, birds were still chirping, sun was coming out lazily and the trees were being gently swayed by the wind. It was a lovely morning. One of the loveliest morning she had seen lately. She could feel it within her. Her heart and mind were as fresh as the dew and with each breath she took in copious amounts of the air , its aroma filling her lungs completely. She had not worn her watch today. “Not today”, she had decided while leaving home. Her hair kept falling on her face and she let it be. She let the wind play with it. She did not clip them tightly like other days today. “Not today”, she had decided. Her feet were naked. She had thrown her shoes away when she got down from the bus. “Not today”, she had decided. Her eyes had no kohl, her lips no lipstick. There were no earrings in her ears and no rings on her fingers. There was just one adornment which she could not have parted with even if she wanted to. And this she was wearing. It was a locket in a silver chain, shaped like a rose bud, carved in silver and gold. It shone whenever sun’s rays fell on it and she could see the reflection on the wall in the front. It pleased her to see different patterns. It pleased her greatly to just see the world around her and take it in as much as she could.

She had been standing in front of the yellow door for a full hour now taking in the simple but very real beauty all around her. But now, it was 9 and it was time. The sun was staring a bit harshly now. The birds had flown away. The dew had evaporated. The wind was becoming warmer and angrier and her feet were hurting. Her hair was tangled and rough. It was 9 and it was time. The yellow door stood there and she stood in front of it. It was time to go in. It creaked a bit and slowly started to part from the middle opening towards outside. For a moment, she panicked. Just for a moment but then something called to her from the inside and she started smiling. First, she moved her right foot forward, then left, and then right again and then left and then right and then left and then, she was inside the door. It closed. It closed just as slowly as it had opened. It was 9 and it was time. Sun beamed mightily and the trees continued to dance.

However, there were just a few raindrops here and there falling from the sky. Soon, there would be rain,a  thunderous downpour and the rosebud locket would come floating out from inside. It would flow with the water. It would flow all the way to the next town where a small girl would find it and take it to her mommy. They would admire the beautiful locket and mom would make her daughter wear it. Their lives will go on as perfectly as possible for the next 20 years and then it would be time again.

The door would call for it never forgets those who wear the bud. It cannot leave the bud. It would want it once again like every other time. 20 years from now, again it would be 9 and it would be time. The yellow door will call!

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Equal Rites – Terry Pratchett


This is the first book by Terry Pratchett that I have read. His reputation had preceded this as a funny writer and I say that in my eyes his level has reached only higher. He is so witty in his writing. The scenes, the satire, the occasional weirdness..all just work out amazingly.

Equal Rites is about an accidental female wizard and her godmother who is a witch. This is a major anomaly in the DiscWorld ( which is a world in the shape of a disc supported by four elephants standing on the back of a giant turtle !) . Women are supposed to be witches who should do household magic and headology than high magic like wizardry which has angles, numbers and “jommettry” which women cannot fathom since there is no clarity of thought. But here we have a girl who is a wizard and a witch and she is bent upon getting into the Unseen University. The turn of events which take place thus are hilarious.

A mocking take on fantasy as a genre, on gender issues, on stereotypes, on governments ( the wizards reached a consensus that the broken roof patching was not their job after all, the council of Liars in the Zoon tribe etc ) , equal rites is entertaining and thought provoking. However, it is lighter than the issues it deals with.

No doubt that Pratchett is a comic genius. I am expecting that I will be reading more of him hereafter.