Thriving Mindfully


The walk back home from school was Lola’s time for discovery. The faintest of bird calls would send her eyes in search of the winged crooner. A kite fluttering on a high branch would slow down her footsteps. A puddle on the roadside was an invitation to craft a paper boat, and the scent of flowers would swerve her footsteps towards the pink perfumers.

But today, her curious search was of a different kind. Her teacher had taught her all about different be kinds of shapes.

Round, square, rectangle, triangle, diamond shape, star shape, heart shape…

As homework, the teacher had asked her to notice things around her home. The next day Lola had to tell the shape of her favourite thing at home to the whole class.

So, on her walk back home, all she was trying to notice was the shape of things around her.

The sunflower by the road side invited her eagerly. How she loved the bright yellow sun flower. How it smiled back cheerfully at the shining sun.
But what is the shape of a sunflower? She wondered.

It wasn’t square for sure.
It wasn’t a circle. It looked like a circle. But it wasn’t exactly a circle for sure.
None of the shapes taught at school matched the shape of the scented sunflower.

Lost in thoughts, she looked up in the sky to notice a flock of sheep floating amid the clouds.
Ah, a sheep shaped cloud!

‘Is sheep a shape?’ wondered Lola.

‘Ah and there’s a rabbit behind the sheep.
Is rabbit a shape too?’ Granny must know, she thought.

Ambling on slowly, she reached near her home. Lola’s little pup named Plato had smelt its way to her. Lola giggled and patted a longing chum. Plato wagged his tail with loving enthusiasm. She wondered, what’s the shape of Plato’s tail?

“It’s not a straight line. It is curvy. But what is this shape called? Half a moustache?
It is similar to my pigtails! But is pigtail a shape? Maybe Granny would know.’

She opened her lunch box and shared the half paratha she had saved as usual for Plato. She loved the wet touch of Plato’s tongue on her little fingers. She wondered if the touch me not plant felt the same when she glided her fingers on it.

Watching Plato eat made her happy. It also made her hungry.

‘What would Granny have made for her evening snack?
Could it be a triangle samosa?
Or a round Dosa?
A square cake?
A diamond shaped Burfi?
A Circle shaped Idli?’

All of her food fantasies had a shape all of a sudden!

With Plato leading the way as a faithful friend, Lola climbed up the stairs to her home. Plato’s nose reached for the slot underneath the door. His tongue wagged with ferocious intensity. He could smell cardamoms, and almonds, and pistachios. The look in Plato’s eyes told Lola that the snack had something to do with milk. Lola didn’t have to knock the door. Plato let granny know they were home with that familiar bark.

Granny opened the door. A whiff of condensed milk came streaming forth. Granny ruffled Lola’s hair as Plato jumped, longing to be treated the same. After a quick change and wash, Lola raced to the dining table.

A cupful of Kheer waited for her. A crust of shredded almonds and pistachios held the warmth of the dessert. The aroma invited Lola to dig in. She watcher Plato slurp his bowl clean in seconds.

‘Plato likes it Granny!’ she shouted to her Granny working in the kitchen.

‘And how about you?’ asked Grandma.

Lola took a spoonful of Kheer in her mouth. Her eyes shone bright and her brows arched up like a rainbow.

‘Ifts the befft Granny,’ she said with mouthful of kheer.

‘Granny, what’s the shape of Kheer?’

‘The shape of what?’

‘The shape of Kheer,’ announced Lola.

Granny let out a big laugh.

‘Lola my dear, today the Kheer is the shape of your little tummy.’

‘My tummy?’

‘Yes, once you drink all your Kheer, it will be the shape of your tummy!’

‘Really?’ asked Lola munching on shreded almonds.

‘Yes, indeed.’

‘And, Granny…’

‘Yes, Lola.’

‘What is the shape of clouds?’

‘The shape of clouds…hmm…the shape of clouds is imagination.’

‘And what’s the shape of Plato?’

‘The shape of Plato? What’s with all this inquiry about shapes? Did you learn this in school today?’

‘Yes, Granny. We have to notice shapes of things around us. And…and we also have to tell the shape of our favorite thing at home to our teacher.’

‘Okay. Now I get it. Well, go around and find for yourself!’

‘Yeff,’ said Lola with another spoonful in her mouth.

All evening, with Plato running around her, she looked all around her house to notice the shape of things.The wall clock in the front room was round. But the clock in the kitchen was square. Plato’s eyes were round, so were Grandma’s bangles. Her notebooks were rectangle, so was the baking tray…But none of these qualified as her most favourite thing.

Late in the evening, she had a filling dinner with Granny and Plato. She had more of the dessert than the main course. Lola was full of Grandma’s special kheer.

Sleep tip toed into everyone’s eyes. It was time for bed, half an hour earlier than usual, thanks to the wholesome meal. Within moments Lola curled up in her Grandma’s embrace and fell asleep. Plato dozed off next to the bed. His tail finally found some rest. Granny too submitted to a good night’s sleep.

All three whistled a gentle snore from their noses as they slept.

The watchman struck the road with his walking stick, assuring vigil throughout the night.
The sound woke Lola briefly,

‘What is your shape Grandma?’

‘My shape?’


‘I am the shape of love.’

‘Ah…so…I will tell my teacher….my favourite thing is my Granny and….. her shape is…’

The faint aroma of kheer still lingered in the room. Plato yawned. Granny smiled. Lola fell asleep in a safe, loving embrace.

1 Comment

  1. Ashwini nagarhalli

    So sweet

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