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From A Chrysalis to A Butterfly....A Journey

Sudha madhuri dash is a published author of many novels. Along with photography she loves horse riding and practices odissi dance.

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MY beginnings

I would like to thank everyone; that includes the milkman...the fishmonger...our house helps...the guards at the gate...our one-eyed cow named Moti and Barnacles. Their contribution to my growth and development as a genteel-woman is immense...such as can be only compared to way beyond the frontiers of space. I want to thank my father for making me lose all cohesive thoughts-of-ever becoming independent or confident about myself in this world. I want to write a few lines of appreciation for my brother, who has always sheltered me and made me an imbecile, unfit for this real world. I am grateful to my husband for his support and encouragement that has always set me off like Lancelot Gobbo seeking out new adventures upon strange-paths. My hubby has always been there to lend me his strong shoulders to cry upon, after I have made a complete fool of others and a mule-of-myself.

Lastly, I want to thank Sudakshina and her umbrella for putting their trust in me and making me her personal ‘guru mata.` My daughters have always thought-of-me as some kind-of-a primitive hunter-gatherer, who would never-ever return empty-handed from a hunt. My mother-in-law and her scheming ways have made ‘a clever fox out-of-me’. I am grateful to my teachers, who have always put me in detention at the ‘drop-of-a-hat’. I learnt to be tough and made some very solid friends in that place (that place refers to the portico in our school that was used for detention). I am grateful to my brother’s wife Dolly, who has always tried to backstab me...getting me battle ready and developing in me, the instincts required to fight the hyenas of this world that follow the rules of the jungle. All said and done, when I married my husband I signed in to get trained for guerrilla warfare...more or less my life as an infantry wife has made a commando out-of-me.

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I was in a dream and all dreams have the rough and savage side

My first blast of my new environment gave me the chills. The army ladies knew how to carry themselves and I was a total newbie. I looked in awe as they glittered like Christmas lights. Soft hues of delicate chiffons and delicate sleeveless blouses. the heady smell of channel no. 5 filling the room. I sniffed at myself...hoping i smelt good as well. My husband was a young Captain and he was the ADC to the General. The army mess ballroom was lit with a hundred lights. Delicate crystals glasses twinkled along with diamond studded fingers and well coiffured buns.

I was in a dream and all dreams have the rough and savage sides and with the great comforts of life, one is also bestowed upon with lots of responsibilities. I learnt to take my responsibilities well and take care of our soldiers families and school going children. I learnt to do shopping and cooking at the drop-of-a -hat party in my house. i still remember fondly to this day how unmarried young officers of our unit would walk right into my house after midnight and demand food. i miss those days.

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learning as we on the go.....

our versatility comes from our capability to learn new things...and learning it very quickly. I learnt how to make wine and grow my patch of vegetables. packing in a a ziff. My home made wine from seasonal cherry tomatoes was quite a hit among the ladies. it was a bit too sweet for the officers. my trunks have now grown bigger and more in number. when ever I open my household it has these wonderful things from every corner of India. Our homes are like pages from the national geographic channel. I fear and raise a prayer when my husband is stationed in difficult areas and places. I remain back in family stations in SAFA quarters. I am a chef. and chauffeur and teacher for my children. Now my children have grown bigger, my life is more settled and more steady. my household help has been in these servant quarters for the last twenty years and seen many army officers come and go but she is always in awe of every lady that comes. she once said," memsahib you are terrific," that was the best compliment ever. I had to hug and kiss her but she being a memsahib's ayah wouldn't have liked that hence i said a thank you to her.

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 sudha madhuri dash

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