“Wohi toh maze ki baat hai Nani!” Khushi was maha excited and glanced happily at Arnav, he rolled his eyes and sank back into the armchair while Khushi settled herself comfortably beside Nani on the bed, “Dekhiye Nani, humari Arnav se baat ho gayi hai, we have it all sorted out,” she faltered a bit Arnav’s expression.
“Oh really Khushi?” he raised his eyebrow, “All sorted out? Kab se keh raha hoon din main sapne dekhna bund karo…”
“Haan,” Khushi too raised her eyebrow defiantly, “Aur hum aapko kab se samjhane ki koshish kar rahein hai, ki sapne dekhenge toh hi sach hoga na! Waise bhi kisi ne kaha hai, ‘the real tragedy is not that your dreams don’t come true, but that you don’t have a dream” she looked slyly at him, “Humare bahut saare din wale sapne poore huye hain,” she looked pityingly at him, “Oho,” she commiserated innocently, “Aapke nahi huye kya? Or dont you have any dreams?” she fluttered her lashes at him.
Arnav lips twitched as he looked ruefully at her, thankfully Nani intervened, “Uff, phir shuru ho gaye tum dono!” she interjected.
Khushi raised her hands, “Achcha theek theek hai, well almost everything sorted out, I have thought it all out, Arnav agrees with me,” she frowned at Arnav’s silent protest at this allegation, “Humari baat hui thi ki nahi?” she asked dangerously.
“Kahan?” he denied, “Mera matlab hai,” he hastened to add at her darkening expression, “TUM baat kar rahi thi, aur main SUN raha tha!”
“Haan toh,” Khushi shot back, “Iss main kaunsi nayi baat hai! Hamesha aisa hi toh hota hai Nani,” she turned to Nani, “I talk and if he listens to me then I can safely say we have had our conversation and that we are in agreement for otherwise he just vanishes from the scene!”
Nani hid her face in her pallu, not having any such protection, a sheepish smile crossed Arnav’s face, Khushi crowed in delight, “Dekha! Humne theek kaha na Nani!” she turned to face Arnav, “Ab hum baat karenge aur aap sunna, please.”
Arnav made a wry face and looked away hard put to control his smile again.
“Haan toh hum kya keh rahe the Nani,” she steered the converstation back to the original topic, “see this is how it works, Jijaji ka office jahan par hai, ussi office complex main unka store room bhi hai. Usko ko khali karke wahan par ek sewing class shuru kar sakte hain. Initially we can start small and depending upon the response it can be expanded and if necessary shifted out elsewhere,” she looked appealingly at Nani, “Aapko toh pata hai na, Jiji is so good in ‘chikankari’ work and there is so much demand for such kind of designs, aur waise bhi, ARD can buy up the stuff they make at bargain rates and it will be a win-win situation!” she waited expectantly for Nani to give her blessings.
Nani was unconvinced, so Khushi tried again, “Actually Nani, one of the main problems is that Jiji and Jijaji don’t get enough time to spend together and most importantly Jiji’s self esteem is very low and she feels cut off from the world,” she looked at Nani and said convincingly, “Dekhiye Nani, if Jiji starts this work, puts her talent to good use, see how it benefits people, she will feel good! She will be contented and at peace; this in turn will have a soothing effect on everybody.” she paused to take a breath.
Nani nodded her head a bit doubtfully, “oo sab toh theek hai bitiya and indeed I really think all women should be working women. Humare zamane ki baat aur thi! Today every woman should think of getting out of the house to give back to the society in whatever way they can, at whatever point of their life that is comfortable for them; It is not only a question of financial independence but also works wonders for ones self-confidence and self worth,” she smiled at Khushi, “Anjali bitiya ko hi dekh lijiye aur aap ko bhi; par kya yeh sab Payal bitiya ke liye sahi rahega? Ooo ke paas abhi there is no time, two children to manage, she is already so tired and most importantly, just as you said, she already has no time with Aakash toh yeh problem kaise solve hoga?” she objected.
Khushi readily nodded her head, “Ji Nani, aap sahi keh rahein hain, but this is the best part of the idea!” she exclaimed triumphantly, “Aapko pata hai, each day Jijaji spends about 3-4 hours commuting to and fro from his office and if Jiji agrees to take up this work, she would get to spend that time with him while traveling!” she looked at Nani trying to gauge her expression, “Sochiye Nani, Jijaji traffic main kitna pak jaate honge and if Jiji is there I am sure he will enjoy her company, may be talk and slowly they will re-connect and find each other, sooner or later,” Khushi made an impassioned and convincing plea.
“Three four hours in traffic everyday?” Nani was astonished, “Itna time?
“Ji Nani,” Khushi nodded her head and reiterated, “Jijaji ko roz do ghante lagte hain traffic main! One side!Tabhi toh unke paas bilkul bhi time nahi hota ghar par, subah saath baje nikal jaate hain aur raat ko toh aane ka waqt hi nahi hai!” she sighed, “Is it any wonder that Jiji and Jijaji don’t get any time together aur Mamiji also misses her son’s company. Tabhi toh sab pareshan hain.”
Nani shook her head, “Haan bitiya yeh traffic toh bahut hi bada problem hai, agar aisa hai toh sab pareshaan toh honge hi, kitna time waste hota hai aise,” she sighed.
“Wohi toh baat hai Nani!” she clapped her hands excitedly, “the beauty of my idea,” Khushi was all praise for her own brilliant solution, to the problem, “if they commute to work together, sochiye kitna samay milega ek saath! They can discuss work, home or just relax in each other’s company, hai na Nani?” she looked expectantly at Nani.
Nani nodded her head reluctantly, “oo sab toh theek hai bitiya, par Manohar bhi toh saath jawat hai na office Aakash bitwa ke sang?”
“Haan Nani,” Khushi nodded her head, “but only sometimes, most days he prefers to go in his own car as either he or Jijaji have to visit the workshops, go for meetings etc, so it is more convenient if both take their own cars, unless of course they have a conference or meeting at the office and they know neither is going anywhere.”
“Achcha,” Nani nodded her head thoughtfully, “Kya Payal dono ghar aur kaam manage kar payegi?” she expressed her concerns.
“Ji Nani,” Khushi agreed and offered her two bit, “I know that is a valid concern and we were thinking (she studiously avoided meeting Arnav’s incredulous expression at that outrageous WE!) that initially, jab tak Palash chotta hai aur NGO has not taken off in a full-fledged manner, Mami and Jiji could take turns to go to office with Jijaji,” she suggested hesitantly, “I mean Jiji could teach the girls one day and the next day, Mami could supervise them and look after the administrative aspects, that way it wouldn’t be an added strain on either and each will get to spend a couple of hours with Jijaji, hai na badiya idea?” Khushi looked excitedly at Nani.
“Par Manorama karegi kya kaam Payal ke saath?” Nani has serious doubts.
“Haan Nani, that only time will tell, but I am hopeful that it will work out well. If Mami is genuinely keen on starting an NGO, she will have to depend on Jiji’s talent and expertise in this field and Jiji knows Mamiji’s nature so she shouldn’t have much difficulty in adjusting?” Khushi looked hopefully at Nani.
Nani looked at Arnav, “Chotte what do you say?”
Click here for Chapter 227