Malini, the name echoed in every hotel and wedding hall. She, being adept at choosing the right flowers for decoration pulled off in the field of horticulture. Her son, Manoj helped her in flower exports as well. Each and every flower that Malini touched matters the most. She had the knack of converting the least beautiful flower adorned so well in a line. Her workshops were much acclaimed by the students of colleges, entrepreneurs and women at home as well.
The fragrance she had in her personality was adorable. Every flower she touched was believed to be a Midas. Her "Malini blooms" spreaded its fragrance everywhere in the events. Fifteen years ago the half demolished panchayat school ran in a village where the importance of education was just sprouted. The bathrooms were open at the top and had a huge wall and a gate. Dhanampillai was a big shot in that village of poverty and casteism. The stench from the toilets can be felt during intervals. Only two people were assigned for manual scavenging, that too was on the basis of caste. Young Manoj was heading back to his home with his small bag containing tiny notebooks, passing Dhanampillai's house.
Reclining on the chair Dhanampillai was reading the newspaper. Dhanampillai's wife mumbled over the stench of fecal matter in front of the house. Her youngest son defecated in the morning and left the place. With the sudden drizzle of rain in the morning, the stench spread horribly, and people clipped their nose with their fingers while entering the house. Dhanampillai, observing the boy passing by, called him and asked him to remove the wet stool of human excretion. Appalled by the order, young Manoj hesitated for a while and stood confounded. "Take this paper and remove the poop from the place.What are you staring at eh? Your mother does this every day right?" Young Manoj felt helpless, his eyes welled up, with his hands he took the wet, abominable excrement, he felt nauseated but couldn't express his agony.
To his age, it was a horrible experience. While taking the filth in his hands, his mother caught him and grabbed the paper from him. She swiftly took the stick broom in the corner, cleaned the place and took his son back home. She beat him twice and sat in the corner of the hut and cried like a defeated warrior. Young Manoj went back to his mother and said, "amma, I won't do it again, ayya only asked me to do it., I don't want you to clean bathrooms amma." She grabbed his hands and said "Your mother's fate is written as such my boy" " I can't get over this pre-written curse. I don't want you to be like me. That's why I send you to school." Both Manoj and his mother were exhausted from crying all day long and dozed off without a meal. The next day Manoj's younger sister was playing in front of her hut. Her mother returned home with a plastic cover containing Jasmine flowers well tied in a string.
She called Mullai and adorned her braided hair with the flowers, said, " I chose the best of flowers, fresh and new and just plucked in the evening for you, my mother taught me to choose the best of them." "My life was destined to work among the stench, but I want both of you live like blossoms". Her words hit Manoj who was reading the lesson books, so hard and deep and he resolved to getaway from his status. He wanted to find a machine to knock out manual scavenging completely but his score in biology was more than the scores he received in physics and social science. His preference bloomed in horticulture and immersed himself more into that field. "Don't add carnation with the roses as they look similar in appearance. Cut the stem carefully, insert the small ones at the bottom of the foam like a ravenna, place carnation with limited no of leaves." While Ms. Malini was instructing the interns about flower arrangements. Her clients waited for her appointment outside with orders of dahlia, chrysanthemums, roses, lilies and carnations. Meanwhile, Malini dropped a line , "Mullai, your Jasmine flowers are ready, Don't forget to wear it for the event".