Heart of gold

Amal Chatterjee
6 min readSep 4, 2017

Source: A painting that has some resemblance

Synopsis : She was born with a heart of gold and has grown into a beautiful girl who helps the poor in many countries overcoming their social difficulties through her expertise in the information technology.

She was born on an auspicious day because it was the birthday of Jesus and decided to be born coming out of her mother with her feet first as if she proclaimed that she was to be on her own feet as soon as she was born. It was a joy to see her soft brownish and curly hair that was softer than the down feathers.

Her beautiful face with pencil sharp eye brows, tulip red lips and aquiline nose foretold everybody that she will grow into a beautiful woman someday and did not disappoint. Her parents considered her birth as a blessing because she came right on time and did not give her mother too much trouble.

Her grandmother who had raised many children during her long life time took her on her knees and rubbed her tiny body with mustard oil under the sun to make her limbs grow strong while she blinked.

She never cried during the night as most babies do and was content to suck the milk bottle and ignored her mother’s milk. They watched her grow day by day into a plump baby while her brother who was just two years old played with her.

She was only two months old when the parents took her to Mali in West Africa. Both kids were ideal that parents dream of having because they gave no trouble flying such a long distance. She slept in her hammock on the plane that the stewardess put up on the wall in front of the seat and sucked her milk bottle contentedly and mostly slept. Her brother was also a trouble free child who only cried a little feeling the air pressure on his ears when landing.

The heat of Mali was terrible and their tiny bodies grew heat rashes that helpless parents tried to sooth with hand fan but still they did not cry. She was rocked on her father’s knee gently so that she could sleep and later slept in her crib.

The maid took her on her back the African way that she enjoyed enormously and steadily gained weight. Soon she was upright and learning to walk and ride at the back of her brother’s tri cycle. She gave her most beautiful smile for the camera when her father took her photo even though she was running a slight temperature. She was a joy to watch but so was her brother who was learning to talk in his most childish way and memorized the story of Trumpet the elephant.

When the parents moved to their new home in a village far from the town, the villagers fell in love with them. The maid took her on her back and wandered everywhere and the village women put some food in her mouth. The old villagers kept an eye on them and one old man came every morning to wake them up calling them softly to wake up.

By this time she was able to speak and memorize the nursery rhymes by imitating her brother and said I know papa I know and would repeat Ba Ba black sheep and other such rhymes .

Her parents moved to India again where she attended the nursery school and her brother attended the kindergarten. She liked her nursery school although she could not speak their language; she imitated their nursery rhymes and enjoyed the company of other children of her age.

A few years later her parents moved to Haiti where they started schooling. By this time she was almost five years old and her brother seven.

Her parents took them to many countries .They climbed the stairs of Teotihuacan pyramid in Mexico excitedly, wandered gleefully through Chapultepec park riding horses, watched the carnival at Zocalo and in the Guadalupe church with curious and exciting eyes and wandered through the Anthropological museum. They saw the Niagara Falls in New York state and Air and Space museum in Washington, D.C. They shared their stories with anyone who would listen. They played with snow in a rural village in France and climbed the stairs to see the Coliseum in Rome. Later they would experience Haboub in Khartoum and watch the Hippos in the Lake Tanganyika in Burundi.

They had been to Mali, India and now Haiti and were growing up with wide cultural experiences that very few children of their tender age ever got the chance to experience but this was laying the foundation of their character that they were both developing. Now a new country was added to their list where they were to grow up. It was the Philippines where they captured the heart of everyone who saw them. They were two lovely children who had lived in many countries and visited others at their very young age.

Now in high school, these two kids were miles ahead of their classmates in their knowledge and the fluency in English. Both brought home first prize medals in extemporaneous speaking contest and she brought home a medal she won in her science contest. Her parents proudly display all their medals in glass frames.

She was now a young lady and a leader. Her teeth needed some help from an orthodontist so she wore braces for a while that made her teeth beautiful. She also wore a brace to straighten up her spine a bit but she never complained and got through high school while her brother developed leadership in his school and did quite well. Both were getting ready for college now.

The parents watched them with joy as they grew into their teens. Both developed excellent characters and were always helpful to other students. No task given to them was too much. They visited their father who was working in Burundi and then Sudan and also spent some time in India.

The young lady was now in college and was chosen to be the beauty queen of the University but that was no surprise to anyone. Anyone could see that she was a very beautiful girl and had a sterling personality that charmed anyone.

Her brother grew tall and handsome and became a scholar in the agricultural economics department while she took to development communication like duck to water.

Then one day she announced that she was going to Canberra in Australia where she will study information technology for a master’s degree. The parents were overjoyed and brought her to the airport with some trepidation as she was travelling abroad alone for the first time.

The rest is history. The brother went to the United States to study at an Ivy League college and got a good job there after graduation.

She got a government job in Australia after her graduation and became Australian. They both were now independent and have moved away from the parents in a way that they know as predestined still they miss them. Children grow up so fast, it is unbelievable.

She became the darling of her office mates no matter where she worked. She got many awards and accolades for her work that included giving presentations to CEOs of large corporations and business leaders on various subject. People who were impressed by her fluency in English did not know that it was her first language but she also learned the language of the Philippines just like her brother.

She taught her father how to make power point presentations and many other computer tricks and was never impatient. She brought him a Kindle e reader so that he could read hundreds of books. She brought for her parents the Samsung Galaxy pad so that they could talk to her on Skype and e mail her. She brought to her father paints and brushes because he had some interest in art.

There is nothing she would not do for her parents, for her brother or for his two children. Her helpful nature has impressed people around the world. She helped out a teen age girl who had psychological problems. She helped old people learn how to swim. She helps people out with money and advice.

That little beautiful child is now a young lady who travels around the world by herself helping poor people in many countries using information technology as a tool to bring social services to them.

She has a great sense of humor and often gets into all sorts of mischief as well like changing the letters of the keyboard in her office on the sly and watch the confused office mates having a hard time. She also hugs cheetahs in Africa claiming they are tame and does all kinds of naughty things.

But she has a heart of gold just like her mother. She is the most unselfish, kind hearted, generous, empathetic, honest, hardworking and very educated young lady one can ever meet anywhere.

She is our daughter. We are proud of our children.



Amal Chatterjee

I am the village bard who loves to share his stories.