On this day :
1884 First roller coaster in America opens, 1738 Patriot printer publisher and postmistress Mary Katharine Goddard born, 1903 Ford Motor Company incorporated, 1862 Union thwarted at the Battle of Secessionville, 1961 Russian ballet star Nureyev defects, 1999 SLA member captured after more than 20 years, 1896 Tsunami ravages Japanese coast, 1958 Leader of Hungarian uprising executed, 1963 First woman in space, 1977 Brezhnev is Soviet president, 1943 Charlie Chaplin marries Oona ONeill, 1904 James Joyce meets his future wife Nora, 1965 Bob Dylan records Like A Rolling Stone, 1890 Alaskan explorer Fred Fickett leaves Army, 1858 Lincoln warns that America is becoming a house divided, 1968 Lee Trevino wins his first US Open, 1961 Kennedy agrees to send instructors to train troops, 1965 More troops to be sent to Vietnam, 1970 Communists isolate Phnom Penh, 1918 Battle of the Piave River, 1940 Marshal Petain becomes premier of occupied France,

Essays

Autobiography of a flower

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I was a rose flower. I am referring to myself in the past tense, because I think I am no longer a flower. Now I am piece of plastic kept in a box. The secret behind this is my life story.

I was born on a rose plant in a garden in Shimla. There were several flowers around me that time. I thought they were my brothers. There was a man in the garden, whom we used to call ‘The Gardener’. One day he came to me and said, “you are a very nice and pretty flower. I wish I could take you along with me. But then you would die if I removed you from the plant.” No sooner had he said this, his eyes gleamed with surprise. I was a rose flower on a jasmine plant. My siblings were not roses, but they were jasmines!

Soon I grew up to be a beautiful rose. One day the gardener came running in the garden. He picked up all the plants, potted them and left with garden with all of us. After a little while I heard the noise of gushing water. Someone shouted something and I realised that there was a flood in the city. The gardener carried us with him until he could no longer hold on to us. All the pots dropped in the water. It made the gardener so sad that he died. All the flowers drifted in the water and came up to the ocean, including me.

At the shore I saw a couple fighting. The man suddenly picked me up and gave me to the lady. But the lady threw me on the street.

There was a dog on the street. It grasped me in its claws and took me to a bridge. There he gave me to his master and then went to sleep.

After a while the dog and his master were walking on the bridge, with the dog holding me with his teeth. Suddenly a car came from nowhere and hit the dog. The dog dropped me and I fell off the bridge. I landed on a train that was running at full speed below the bridge. This train couldn’t stop because the driver had forgotten about the brakes. But when the driver saw my red colour, he remembered to press the red button and the train thankfully stopped.

The driver then took me to his house. Soon after I started wilting. So he covered me with some plastic sheet so that I could be preserved. Since then I am in his house on his mantle.

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