There was a 2.5 hours halt at the Black Sea which was part of our Sile-Agva Bus Tour. Sufficient time probably for people who wanted to enjoy the beach. But when we reached the place, there were two sides to it – one that was too crowded and the other one quieter.
We had already lost an hour figuring out the way and a place to sit and relax. Finally, we gave up and thought to just stay at the beachside cafe and enjoy a hot coffee. There were all sorts of sounds I was able to hear apart from just enjoying the view – the laughter of kids playing with their parents, the waves crashing against the shores, squawking of seagulls, people walking on the shore, cycling, and whatnot.
All of a sudden, I could see the crowd’s attention move to a young lady who is accompanied by a guard. What I notice later is a little girl, on a wheel-chair. I don’t know what to assume what she might be suffering from – all I could see was a Mom carrying her child in her arms and sitting aside the seashore allowing the little one to feel the water and let her soak the light of the Sun.
As I got back to my sight-seeing, all I could think of was the life I should be grateful for. There are so many reasons to be happy which we fail to realize when we get into the tangles of our daily routine.
Last month I got an opportunity to participate in several events organized as part of our company’s Community Impact Month.
One of which was a session for the budding women entrepreneurs from rural background. The objective was to provide them an overview on the ways they could promote their products through e-commerce. There was an overview on Paytm, Netbanking etc. Post introductory session we dispersed into groups with each volunteers leading one and showing the practical aspects of the session.
I sat down with a group of seven to eight women from different age groups. This was my first experience of this kind. I took my phone and assuming they know about smart phones, started showing them the different apps.
Before I could go any further they all had a reason to share why this learning wasn’t fruitful for them – some didn’t own a smartphone, some didn’t even had their bank accounts, some belonged to traditional families that didn’t allow girls to go out fearing the society, no one knew how to create an email account or access the internet.
So what was supposed to be a practical session for them turned out to be a motivational speech. Instead of showing them the apps, I convinced why it was important for them to invest in themselves. All the women came from different backgrounds and had their own struggles and thus it was important to let them know that it is ok to spend some on self to buy a phone. At the end of the day it makes you feel independent, more confident and connected to the world.
To all my comments they repeatedly said it was not in their budget. I just had one question for them, “Where do you manage to get all the money on your child’s wedding day? Isn’t spending on a phone much less than that?”
They were dumbstruck. They did not have an answer and agreed that I was right. All of them promised to take these learnings and bring them into action.
I spent almost an hour with two batches. I don’t know where those words of wisdom came from. But when they blessed me while leaving, I couldn’t have asked for anything better. I came back energized and content with what I managed to give back to the society in a simple form.