Happiness lies in the simplicity of giving love and appreciating what we have—not in materialistic pursuits, says Vidya Murlidhar.
Imagine yourself at the venue of the National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. You are in the audience seated at the edge of your chair, palms sweaty, brows furrowed, and heart thumping. The air is rife with nervous excitement. It is the final round and your child is up on stage with a handful of other voracious spellers. He walks up to the microphone with eager, confident steps. As a parent, all you can do for him is say a heartfelt prayer in desperation and hope that when the soft voice of the ever-smiling Dr Bailly pronounces the word, it is one that your child knows. What you want is for your child to win.
Except you are now told that this next round of the spelling bee is unconventional. Whaaat? The child must not only spell but also define the word. He cannot question the origin or the root of the word. There are no alternate pronunciations. The child is judged on the profundity of his answer.
The stage for this round is sprawling. It is life itself and the voice that announces the word is not of the charming doctor, but it is the gentle voice of God. You still want your child to win.
“FUN”—the divine voice announces. Your child looks perplexed. Such a simple word? The clock ticks away and your 13-year-old child, initially hesitant goes on to describe his interpretation of the meaning of the word.
“Fun—F-U-N. It is a vacation with my family and friends to beautiful seaside locations. Fun is a trip to Hawaii or the Bahamas.”
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