09 March 2014

A Million Smiles.

Hey you all, there is something I’d love to share with all of you. My friends and I visited a mall here in Delhi today to celebrate the end of our exams and hang around. We caught the new movie, 300: The Rise of an empire (which btw, wasn’t as good as 300 because of Gerard Butler’s absence. *coughs*) and were on our way to the food court when we came across this gallery of pictures. All of these pictures were in black and white and were of women and their beautiful smiling faces. Some were genuinely downright wacky and interesting while some were absolutely gorgeous. 

The kind of facial expressions we humans are capable of making blew my mind away. Girls being girls, we started perusing around the photographs and started taking in every photograph. Like I mentioned earlier, some were downright wacky and ooooh, it was so tempting. We started imitating some of those facial expressions and were on our way to click a picture, when a woman came by and asked us if she could take our photograph. 
(You guys, I’m a model now. I’m free to give autographs anytime. All you need to do is ask.)
Just kidding. For a while, I really thought that this woman was onto us for being obscene, but in my defence, we were not obscene and disrespectful! We were just living in the moment. Anyway, it turns out that she really did want to take our picture. (Model, I am.)

 Soon we all started interacting and found out that this woman was one of the organizers and photographers who had clicked these pictures.

What I gathered after talking to her:

Ashok P. Kochhar, a renowned photographer here in India, and his team came up with the idea of A million smiles initiative which basically involved taking pictures of women in their natural habit to commemorate the spirit of womanhood on the eve of women’s day. It was beautiful and actually possessed the ability to bring a smile to all our faces.

Women worldwide are an inspiration for the other inhabitants on this beautiful planet. Our mothers, aunts, grandmothers, their sisters, our sisters, women entrepreneurs, women as homemakers, women as child bearers, women as caretakers, women as scary aunties who love to pry and gossip and the list goes on. There are a million roles to play and a million things to do and amidst social evils, gender roles, patriarchal douchebags, male chauvinists and rapists, when I meet people like these, people who truly care and just want to make people smile, I still believe that we haven’t truly lost ourselves and our humanity.

What touched me the most about today is the idea behind this initiative. How many people do you think actually do this? How many people actually get up every morning and invest their time in their professions for others?
A smile can brighten up a gloomy mind. If an apple a day keeps a doctor away then a smile day keeps doctors away.

I don’t think that I have the eye for judging art but being as amateur as I am when it comes 
to art, I can whole heartedly with absolute certainty say that those snapshots were a thing of beauty and gems one must truly preserve and maintain for the world to see. 

I never got around asking that woman her name. I wish I did. I was too busy acting spastic and weird. Not one of my finest moments but I wish I did. I wish I could’ve used better words of praise. I wish I could’ve thanked her. I wished that I had told her how she made my day even better with the click of a button and a million smiles.

Belated happy women’s day to all you beautiful women out there. Saying that you inspire the world is an understatement. You are our world.


  1. What a lovely post, Devyani. Wish I could see the show.
    You just made my day. :*

  2. It really was, Nea. :)

    Thank you, Zemira!
    It's always a pleasure. :*