It was the winter of 2000 and I had just started my career in a popular post-production film studio in Mumbai.
I was 21; was heartbroken, messed up and had scars of a fresh separation from my beloved. I used to listen to this sad Hindi song, like 1,000 times in a day. I made it my breakup anthem.
I was a filmi lad, and the grief was also full of drama—everything was super-exaggerated.
It was just a week into the new job and I was alone in the room listening to the breakup anthem when this middle-aged charming lady entered the room with a roaring laugh. It must have been a trail from a previous conversation. She looked at me for a minute, heard the song, and came near me. She inquired about my sad face and the breakup anthem. I acted like a zombie, as I had no clue what to say.
She seemed like a motherly figure.
I also remember seeing a golden halo around the face and some white rays coming from behind her.
Like a mother, she understood the depth of the moment and shared something in my ears upon which I laughed loudly. In a second we both were laughing aloud like mad. She transformed the blue into a vibrant yellow—the color of joy. In a spur of the moment, she turned the situation from grief to joy. Later, I told him about my story and the reason for listening to the breakup anthem 1,000 times day.
The charming motherly figured lady is Pushpa Koshal.
With more than 25 years of her journey in Bollywood, she’s one of the rare humans in the industry who’re well connected to everyone. I have not anyone in the media and entertainment industry; especially the film industry—who doesn’t know her.
For young and amateur professionals like me, she’s the epitome of fame, success, dedication, networking, hard work, compassion, and a pure heart. She’s shaan of any social gathering and jaan of the moment.
Honest good humor is the oil and wine of a merry meeting, and there is no jovial companionship equal to that where the jokes are rather small and laughter abundant. Washington Irving
She’s a senior citizen—biologically—but her passion and dedication are unmatched. I haven’t seen anyone like her in the film industry. You can pick up any of her photographs and you’ll see the same joy on her face. You know why?
Because it’s true and for real.
I remember she coming to visit all the rooms in the studio and sharing jokes with staff. This was a daily routine. It was her ritual and I never saw a day that she didn’t do this.
I quit that studio in 2001, and after that never met her until 2017 when I went to meet her in her workplace in Mumbai. We had a good two hours conversation about various things in life. I was even fortunate to get her autograph.
Not all humans are blessed with the gift of spreading joy and laughter. Pushpa is one of those blessed ones.
PS: Please pardon me not attaching aunty after her name. Neither she likes it, nor me!