“I am sorry, Anbazhagan. It is a management decision. But I fought to ensure that you got a good compensation. You are not the only one.”
Sitting in front of his manager and HR head, Anbazhagan was hardly the figure he was ten minutes ago. This was his reward for twenty years of hard work – a lay-off when his son was just going to appear for his board exams. What will he tell his family? He was at a loss for words as he stared at the “pink slip” in front of him. He silently completed all his relieving formalities, took a sign off from all concerned, politely refused a parting gift, and walked out.
Anbazhagan could not get a similar job anywhere for the next 3 months, since the whole country was in recession. He had spoken to all his contacts, but no one could help him.
“Ennanga, don’t lose hope. Why can’t we start something new and begin life afresh?” Raasaati had spoken up after so many days.
She continued, “Please don’t get angry. I have spoken to some people nearby. Kolam podi is not readily available everywhere. There are people however who are willing to pay me for drawing kolam outside their houses. All we need is a big machine to make huge quantities of powder We can also sell them in bulk to shops. There is a good demand for it.”
Anbazhagan thought about it the whole night. Corporate culture was in his veins but he was already 51 years old. He could only survive for another 6-7 years in any corporate. Raasaati’s talent was unquestionable and was much sought-after during festivities at the local temple. He had saved some money and coupled with the compensation he received from the company, he had funds to start the venture.
In the morning, the three of them went to the Vinayagar temple and took blessings from The Lord.
Raasaati started with select houses in Annanagar, showed them her designs and drew kolam on the appointed days. Within a few weeks, she was advanced to houses on 2nd Avenue. Her work was appreciated by all. Anbazhagan purchased a big grinding machine for making kolam podi and started to sell to wholesale shops retailers. In the next six months, word spread about Raasaati’s designs and her business flourished. Their venture had turning profitable.
“What would I have done without you?” Anbazhagan said as he dug into Raasaati’s sambhar rice.
“I don’t know. Sulking somewhere maybe,” she replied. Anbazhagan looked at her. Laughter filled the house after a long time.
- Ennange – A way to address one’s husband by most South Indian ladies.
- Kolam – Rangoli
- Kolam podi – Rangoli powder
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