"Jesintha..." Someone was calling loudly in a mall. With that came a sea of memories. Memories so old that it feels as if it was in some other life. When looked in that direction, it was definitely not her. For a moment I liked to believe it to be her.

She was my classmate when we were studying in second standard in a small village called Javali. My father being bank manager used to get transferred to different kind of places every now and then. Even at that tender age she had a very strong liking for studies. She always used to come 1st. At that time I never used to care and preferred more to roam around the forest. Soon came the summer holidays.

My aunts kids had visited our place for summer holidays and we had a blast. This place is very scenic. Everywhere green with coffee and tea estates. There lies a tea factory which is called as Kelaguru tea factory. Aunts kids were very very enthusiastic to visit the tea factory and we decided to go to factory the next day. It was an excellent trip in & around the tea factory, till I saw Jesintha in the tea estate. She was there among hundred's of people, with a long basket hanging at the back of her head. Yes, she was employed there to pluck tea leaves.

Initially I was shocked to see her. When I went and spoke to her, I got to know her schooling is also stopped. She wont be returning to school after summer holidays, to attend the 3rd standard. She will be one of the breadwinners of her house. I missed her very much after the school commenced. In the same year, my dad got transferred again.

Many a times, her thought plays peek-a-boo. What if she were to be born to some other parents like mine, where she would have had the opportunity to study further, to do whatever she wanted to, at the appropriate age. May be she would have been an engineer or a doctor or MBA grad or a scientist. She would have had endless opportunities to pursue her career or to build her life. If she were to have an opportunity!!!

In all the little things achieved in life, we would like to believe everything worked due to our own effort. But somewhere at a very basic level we are far more gifted to be born to people who could give us at least the basic education to think and shape our lives. Today she might be happy with her life or she may not be. But in any case, to decide the path of our own life is something which every human being should get!!!