As Payal sat nervously on the chair, she looked at her watch. 30 more minutes to go. She had arrived early. Well, that’s good, she thought. She clutched her folder close to her heart and waited. In a distracted way, her hands seemed to reach for the pendant that was dangling around her neck. The receptionist at the desk was watching her closely. “Did a special someone gift that to you?”, the receptionist smiled slyly, raising her eyebrows, making them arch a bit higher than they already were.
“Huh? What?” Payal was confused. She had no idea what the lady was talking about. “I meant your glittering pendant. You keep touching it every few minutes. A special someone, right?”, she asked again. Payal returned a polite smile. “Yes, a special someone”, she managed to say. She smiled to herself thinking about that day when she received that as a gift. She remembered pestering her “special someone” to not leave out any detail that went into purchasing this gift for her. She looked down at her pendant fondly and memories seemed to rushed to her.
It was 2 years back. Payal was in her college, third year. And she had just been given news that she failed her Data Structures and Algorithms (DSA) exam. She felt miserable. To add to this, her professor’s attitude was downright bad. Her professor had told their class that those who failed DSA exam were not fit to be in Engineering. It made her sick to the stomach. Her friends came to her house to cheer her up. Their advice fell on deaf ears. Payal’s dad watched all this silently.
Later, he called aside Preethi, Payal’s bestie and asked her where girls these days shopped for jewellery. Without a second thought, Preethi had mentioned “Oh Stylori uncle! It’s an online site, www.stylori.com. It’s from the NAC family. They have an amazing collection of jewellery! Every single piece is exquisite! And they deliver within 2 days uncle! Oooooh! Are you gonna gift Payal?? She’s gonna love it!!”, Preethi was bursting with energy. Payal’s dad asked her to keep it as a surprise.
Later that day, he visited www.stylori.com for the first time. He was actually amazed. Everything seemed wonderful, so how do I choose, he pondered. Suddenly a pop-up came on his screen. “May I help you?” it was a Stylori specialist offering online assistance! Oh that’s great! Payal’s dad thought to himself. The online stylori specialist, suggested various items based on Payal’s dad’s needs. “That was a great customer service stylori, thank you”, Payal’s dad ended the chat happily. He had bought something for his Payal! That night, he slept peacefully.
Two days passed. Payal was lying on her bed as usual, when she heard her dad knock at her door. “Appa. I am not hungry..”, she began, but stopped herself when she saw the beaming face of her dad. “What’s this an intervention?”, she asked crossly. Her dad smiled. “You are watching too many TV shows! And by the way, just 1 person cannot make an intervention, champ” he chuckled softly. Every time Payal heard her dad call her champ, she melted a little inside. She was always his little champ…
Her dad began, “I have something for you Payal”. “Not more advice, hopefully..”, Payal mumbled. “Enough of that champ,” her dad laughed and threw a pillow at her. “Close your eyes now”, he said. “Appa! I am not six! Why do you always play this game?”, Payal wailed. “I said close your eyes”. “Ok, Ok”. “Now open your eyes, Tada!”, he said. And there right in front of her, she could see a beautiful pendant. “Wow..just wow!”, that was all she could manage.
“See, I knew my Payal will like it. Get up my champ, I am going to put it around your neck to see how it fits.”, her dad got busy now. When he finally tied it around her neck, he stood back and smiled as he admired it. “I think Stylori had just you in mind, when they designed this, my darling”, he said. “They called this piece ‘Jewel Bliss‘ champ, probably due to the blissful feeling it gives me to see you wearing this”, he mused.
“So do you like it?”, her dad’s eyes searched her face for a clue. “Like it? I love it! It’s lovely! And so trendy! How did you choose this pendant appa?”, Payal was curious to know.
“See, now, this pendant is just you! You have always been a free spirit, like the bird on your neck. This beautiful pendant, is to remind you just that. To remind you that the sky is your limit. You see Payal, the world is huge..there are possibilities everywhere champ! And you, my dear, were born to soar high, high into the sky, and reach heights that no one had ever imagined! And believe me, you will definitely do that! Don’t let anyone in the world tell you otherwise. Let this pendant remind you to let your wings out and soar high…even when you feel you cannot, and even when the whole world tells you that you cannot, this should remind you to soar high, my champ!”, as her dad finished, Payal had tears in her eyes.
“Shucks appa…I love you”, she choked back tears as she hugged her dad tight with the pendant glittering around her neck. “And I love you back, my champ”, she heard her dad say softly.
All this happened 2 years back. But to Payal, it was as clear as yesterday. Every time Payal had any doubt about herself, she touched her pendant, and she could feel her confidence soar high. And she needed her confidence now, more than ever. She was at ISRO. She was going to face one of the most grueling interviews ever. She had cleared the written test and was waiting to be called for her direct interview! “Payal”, they called her name. She got up from her seat. “I am going to soar high”, she vowed to herself as she touched her pendant one last time and flew inside the room with a confident smile.
This post is written for the Stylori contest hosted by Chennai Bloggers Club.
So many stories. So much love. Thank you Stylori.