Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Day I Won a Lottery

I have always been very fond of buying lottery tickets. The moment any state declares a lottery scheme I am here to buy tickets of the said lottery. For a very long time say for almost a decade. I have been contributing to these lotteries, but aha! I have never had the luck of so much as getting even a dime as, Lady Luck has never cared to smile on me in the last decade of my eager participation in the hobby.
It has been my hobby to, not only buy tickets of different lotteries but also do a lot of day dreaming and planning in quite some detail what I’d do, if ever I’d win a lottery. My blueprint of plans for spending the lottery money has been ready for the last so many years but alas! Where is the lottery money? It is really depressing when we find that plans for a take off of a project are ready but the propelling force, which is the money in this planning to put a stop to this extraneous and useless hobby of mine. Though it did not cost me much financially, it did cost me a lot of mental agony with continued disappointments in so many preceding years. I had so loyally and honestly bought all State lotteries but of no avail.
While this gloom of frustration and disappointment was reigning high in my mind, I decided that it was high time that I put an end to this foolish effort of being lucky. I decided that now, after seeing the results of the ticket I had, I would completely stop this frustrating hobby. Determined as I was to stop it all, the newspaper came, flung at me. That day the Delhi State Lottery result was to be announced, and this was the last ticket in my hand. I just realized that this was the last time I would be facing the torture of disappointment, I opened the paper, which was lying rolled in front of me. Lazily I opened the paper and being sure that there was to be no miracle in luck, I decided to read through the paper first and only then go on to scan through the result of the lottery. As I was reading through the news items, advertisements, editorials etc. my heart was continuously thumping within me and making me feel very very uncomfortable. I wondered why this peculiar feeling threatened my heart, was it a heart attack, was it a blood pressure? All these thoughts pervaded but, I continued reading the paper as if most unconcerned with what was happening with me, and my heart continued to throb harder and harder and hit the walls of my thorax.
The wonder I felt was as to why this feeling of upsetting, was I doing something unusual that hit my very inside. With this peculiar and exciting feeling, I read the paper till finally I decided that now, it was tome to read about the sealing of my fortune with lotteries. I opened the page on which the result was printed and now what a shock I got. I felt as if a current of electricity ran through my body. What had happened was that the very first number in the A-Series of numbers was mine. Did I have to believe it, or was I seeing a dream with my eyes open. I just could not make myself believe it as, it must surely be a misprint. I to come to me at once. She, worried at the unusually loud shout, came rushing to me, wondering what could have happened to me. As soon as she came and stood near me, I looked blankly at her, and she was “What’s wrong. Shall I call the doctor? How are you feeling”. Now I realized how I had spread panic in her, and cooling my nerves, told her to read the first number in the A – Series of the Delhi State Lottery printed in the newspaper and compare it to the number on our ticket. I told her, “just compare the two numbers it seems that the first prize number announced in the papers is ours”. She read the two numbers, compared them again and again and believe it or not YES, the two numbers were identical, and I had won the first prize of 50 lakhs. I decided to sit for my heart beat stopped. After a few moments of being dazed and fact that, finally after all, luck had smiled us, and it was now time to enjoy the fact of our having won such a big unanticipated amount of money.
This was the happiest day of my life not only because I had got what I had been yearning for, for long years. It was made clear to me that we should never be totally disappointed with life, for, life is not completely unkind to anyone. I felt that at some stage of life, everyone has the pleasure of lady luck smiling at him/her. It is only true that, for some people the time of disappointment may be less than for others but, everyone has a chance at luck, for some people less effort yields result while for others more effort is required but, all do get luck sometime or the other Efforts always yield results, this is now my understanding of life by this little incident.
Now, after having come out of the maze of indecision, and accepting our fate, we, my wife and I now gladly sat down to decide how we should plan to spend the money, once we get the cash in hand. One thing was decided even in the blueprint that had been prepared long time back that, most of this money would be spent in our long cherished project of social service.
That day was the 27th of July 1995, and I still remember the sequence of event of the day – a red letter day of my life. I could not believe my eyes, my luck and of course God’s grace. That was the day when, most of my dreams took substantial shape. One dream of getting a lottery further substantiated my other dreams of serving humanity with this money and of course, also improving my own standard of living. That day was a red letter of my life and I do wish such days come more often in my life and in the lives of my other friends and relatives.
We are even to-day reaping the harvest of the seeds sown on that day. A mobile hospital has been started for villages, a small free school has been started, which now has a strength of 500 children, who come from the nearby villages also. A Nari Niketan has also been started for the downtrodden and suffering women. That day has brought so much thrill and purpose in our lives. Oh! what a day it was.

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