I was born and brought up in Bongaigaon, a quite well known town in Assam. Oh! It’s such a fascinating place and I’ve hell lot of memories about that place, stored in my brain’s hard disk drive. My parents stayed there for almost two decades and only when I was in my 4th semester of engineering, my father got transferred to Guwahati. Once they shifted to Guwahati, I always looked for some opportunity to visit Bongaigaon, but unfortunately I didn’t have much of them though. Once my parents left our home town, somehow their visit to Bongaigaon was also became kind of limited. My father already sold our nostalgic old house long time back and after his retirement about a couple of years ago, my parents preferred to settle out in Guwahati itself.
Life in Bongaigaon was quite different as compared to our present life. That was the time when there was no internet and perhaps, wireless mobile communication was a hot research topic those days. For us, our social networking was limited to schools, Sunday cricket matches and those regular kinds of evening sports at any damn playground. Our entire neighborhood was like a big family and every evening our house was blessed with one guest or the other. Quite often, even guests were also fortunate enough, as they had the opportunity to meet other guests as well, at the same time. Well, not only for our house, but it was the same story for almost every house out there. Being a house wife, it wasn't easy for my mother to have managed the house and the frequent guests. But like us, even our parents also enjoyed a lot those days. Life was simple without much desires and people felt so much united within the neighborhood, despite those minor disputes among some of the mommies. I still remember how we used to wait for the evening load shedding. Well, the power cut gave us the opportunity for hell lot of fun, specially during summer, as everyone in the locality used to come outside their houses and strolled on that narrow road and used to gossip. Wow! That was such a wonderful moment.
When I was in my 7th standard, my mom started to involve herself with an Woman Organization, popularly known as Mahila Samiti in town. Actually they worked mainly for the welfare and development of the children by organizing all sorts of competitions and cultural programs. That time my mom had the opportunity to interact with different sorts of people and one day, she interacted with one gorgeous looking and quite a fascinating lady. Well we used to call her Mazumdar aunty and she was gem of a person. Her husband was also quite friendly and they were blessed with two cute daughters. Maunder aunty was a very smart and modern kind of lady and she owned a famous beauty Parlor in Bongaigaon. Pretty soon, my mom got quite close to her. Well, they were kind of best friends that time and gradually both the families started to interact more frequently. Once we left for our school, my mom regularly used to visit her parlor and stayed there for hours. she’s very much impressed, as well as inspired with the awesome art of making someone look much prettier.
Mazumdar aunty always encouraged my mom and even used to teach her and kind of, prepared her as a beautician. It went on like that for almost a year and my mom already started to experiment with her haircuts and facials, whenever any authentic guest used to visit us. Well, some of my cousin sisters were extremely happy with that. Mazumdar aunty asked her to do a course, so that she could have become a certified beautician. She even promised her to help with the certification, but then one day, Mazumdar uncle got transferred to a different town and their entire family was about to have moved there. It was a well established parlor and Mazumdar aunty requested my mom if she could have taken the responsibility of the parlor? My mom was pretty much interested and also was kind of confident. But the only problem was that she wasn't certified for the job yet. But then, aunty said that she would take care of that and within next 6 months my mom could have done with her certification. Mom was so happy that time, but the real problem was something different.
Quite opposite to me, my father was always a very religious person. Even though, he use to pray 5 times a day, but he always had a much broader outlook and he didn't have any problem with my mom's decision. But many of our well wishers, both within the locality and far across, were not very comfortable with that. They tried to influence my mom, as well as my father, so that they could have backed off from the idea. It was too much pressure for my mom and I could remember one evening, when many people, including men and women, visited our house and tried hard to have had convinced my mom. I asked them "What is the problem? What’s big deal if she runs a beauty parlor?"
One of the uncles out there, started to laugh loudly and replied "Aree Baba, people will start to call your mom as BARBER. Would you like that?" Even though, I was in my 7th standard that time, but was matured enough to understand that was actually a big piece of shit.
Ultimately my mom had to back off and she couldn’t fulfill her dream. Well, after all, society also have it's own importance and Mazumdar aunty had to sell her parlor to someone else. Without her support, somehow my mom’s ambition gradually died out. But it seemed the aspiration was always there, somewhere deep within some corner of her soul. Time passed by and after almost 2 decades, my mom’s aspiration came out alive once again and that time it was much stronger. 3 years ago, when my father was about to have retired, my mom completed all the damn courses which was required for her certification. About two years back, she started her own parlor in Guwahati. Even though, it’s not a very big parlor, but my mom is happy and she also hired a beautician to assist her.
From our childhood, we've noticed our mom to be extremely hard working and energetic. Even now days, she manage her parlor and also the house, almost single-handedly. Well, there’s not much age difference between my mom and dad, but comparatively dad looks much older. Mom is perfectly fit and quite healthy and all thanks to her activeness. Well, to have started a parlor of her own was indeed a very bold decision for her at such an older age. But as people say "Better late than never" Even though, my mom usually have a tiring day, but she keeps herself occupied and the pleasant feeling of financial independence, boosted her confidence a lot. She is actually quite happy now and I'm really proud of my BARBER mom.