When I think deeply about women who work for improving the quality of life of their family members, I have to speak about the super maids in cities like Mumbai. I cannot but wonder at their tenacity and Bon homie . Not only are they the very pillars on which their families rest, they are the very source of values like hard-work, fortitude , adaptation and a passionately ambitious attitude so far as their children are concerned. Exquisite cooks, washerwomen , ayahas , nursemaids to the old and what not, they display a rare capacity to blend swiftness, sweetness and caustic wit to suit situations and people they serve.
I sometimes watch their madams stepping out in the mornings , with their office portmanteaus , laptops and an intent professional expression on their faces. I think of their house help who takes up the cudgels at home, preparing lunch and dinner, escorting their children to the school bus and again back in the afternoon.
A wide river of flowing humanity, keeping the soil of a vast city alive by their dedicated service, making the city flourish with variety and colour, takes strength and succour from the contributions of these maids. They keep their own home fires burning by burning themselves in the homes of their madams . And in the process , they bring so much prosperity to their own husbands and children .
Their children attend schools and colleges and emerge out of the chrysalis of darkness as butterflies flying towards light.