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Woman of Essence

Woman of Essence



This is a story about a woman of essence who finds love on her own terms. She is not dragged down by any social dogmas or patricarchal chains. She finds true love in trying circumstances and comes out a stronger person with a partner who loves her for who she is. Set in the current time, this is a story of a business woman who is constantly facing obstacles towards personal and professional success. Her parents don't support her professional desires and just want to marry her off to the first remotely eligible bachelor. In her business efforts she is constantly reminded that she is a woman as if that is a burden. Even in her social circle she does not get any escape from unfair expectations. However she powers through these obstacles to achieve her goals finding a pure love along the way.
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  'Jamilaaaaa!', calls her mother from the kitchen downstairs. 'Come quick! There are onions to be cut for the curry, they won't be chopping themselves!'

  In front of the mirror upstairs, a 28-year-old slender, dusky beauty is putting her hair into an elegant Swiss roll. She fixes her dupatta, wears her traditonal leather slippers, and adorns her ears with the baalis her father had gifted her last Eid. She awaits an important interview today, one that can help her shape a bright future for herself.

  As soon as she hears her Ami's voice she hurries downstairs. Her mother is sweating in their kitchen. There are varies cooking utensils all over the place; vegetables to be cut in a corner, oil and rice in big clay bottles and a charpoi on which her mum is sitting in the center of their kitchen; it's all looking a little chaotic.

  She rushes to the corner where the vegetables are lying in a straw basket, picks it up, pours water over the vegetables and carries it to the charpoi in the centre of the kitchen.

  She sits next to her mum and starts pealing the vegetables right away. Once she's done, she puts a large pot on the choola, adds oil and starts to prepare the masala for the curry.

  Her Ami smiles. Jamila is indeed very skilled and tactful in the kitchen. She gets the work done quickly and effectively, without spoiling her clothes or breaking a sweat.

  Once done, Jamila walks towards her mum and announces she is leaving for her interview. Ami places her hand on Jamila's head and wishes her good luck.

  Outside their house a Rickshaw Wala is waiting for Jamila. He greets her with a Salam and starts the Rickshaw. They swirl through the traffic like bandits escaping police and reach Sadar, the downtown area of Karachi city. By this time she is a little sweaty and her hair has been reduced to a messy bun. It is impossible to say that she is the same elegant person who was sat in front of the mirror with her elegant bun. She sighs heavily and pays the Rickshaw Wala.

  The tall building in front of her is inviting and intimidating at the same time. She says a little prayer and enters the building with a heart full of hope.