Growing rich with grace

PHOTO PROMPT - © Ted Strutz

Shanti came from a humble background. Grew up on the border of being poor and middle-class.

Life got better with each passing year and decades later she was on the border of being middle-class and moneyed-class.

On her retirement day she hit the jackpot on the lottery and found herself smack in the middle of the moneyed-class.

You can spot her easily. She’s the one in backyard summer parties sweating under the folds of her garish silk dress and a network of gold jewellery wrapped around her neck when all around her lounge in plaid cotton and laugh at her.

— end —

This exactly 100 word story was written for the 100 word photo challenge. More details about this challenge can be found at:

PHOTO PROMPT – © Ted Strutz

Click on the Froggy below for other amazing takes on the same prompt by fellow “Friday Fictioneers.”


35 responses to “Growing rich with grace

  1. i guess money can’t change everything. some things stay the same.


    • Money can’t change fundamentally who a person is I guess. A poor person who fundamentally wants to help others may become a philanthropist when they stumble upon a pot of gold. Some stick out like a sore thumb in their communities and become arrogant.

      Thanks for reading.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Should that be plain cotton?


    • Plaid was a deliberate choice. Plaid is associated with casual wear; working class men like lumberjacks used plaid flannel shirts like a uniform.

      Plaid is used here to represent the status of the circle of friends the main character revolves and their mindset and how she is now out of place in many ways.

      Thanks for reading Neil.


  3. Dear Ansumani,

    Perhaps it’s her style and people should mind their own business. Or maybe she’s eventually go for comfort. One note…I think it should be “On her retirement day” rather than “One her…” Easy typo to make…easy fix. 😉 Good story.




  4. Good for her. They can laugh all they want. She’s the one with money.
    Silk is hot in the summer and cold in the winter. I’ve worn it, and I don’t even have money. A good semi-rags to riches story.


  5. I guess she’s over-compensating, poor woman.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yes… money does not buy style… then again, who is anyone to judge anyway?


  7. I get the feeling that she’s trying so hard and hoping money will fill the void of her unhappiness. Maybe it will dawn on her that material wealth isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I like where you went with your story!


  8. You convey her new-found elitism very well. Struggling up from way down is very hard so she does have my sympathies despite her allures.


    • Most readers sympathize with this character and so do I. I wonder if the reader would feel the same sympathy if she didn’t struggle earlier in life?

      Thanks for reading Gah!

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s a good question. I don’t think so. She’d have my sympathies if she tried to fit in with the poor people around her, and did something for them. I guess being out of your league always gets you sympathies if you’re not cruel or criminal.


  9. Helena Fox Dunan

    I love the way you describe her transition into the moneyed-class. It’s a lovely use of repetition. I have to admit, when I first read your piece I thought Shanti was attending parties of the moneyed-elite, and was trying too hard to fit in. I felt so sad for her! (I read the ‘plaid’ as ‘plain’, which was a blip on my part). Then I read your comment about the ‘plaid’ cotton, and realised her social group had not changed at all and that Shanti was pitiful in a different way. Shanti’s alienation is clear here; it’s a very poignant story.


  10. She should buy some new friends.


  11. I quite liked her, you know, and maybe she’ll have the last laugh on them. Whatever, I think she’ll be happy in her own way.


    • I have conflicting feeling for this character Sandra. On one side I feel sorry for her poor childhood and think she deserves to enjoy her wealth and on the other side trying to show off her wealth to those not than fortunate shows poor character.

      You are right though – she can still be happy as what makes one happy varies from one person to the other.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. To each their own, I guess.


  13. Everyone has a comfort zone, hers is just a bit different.


  14. When I win the lottery I too might wander around covered in gold like a rap singer;-)


  15. Good story, Ansumani. Shanti is trying so hard to show she fits in that she stands out. She has the wrong idea about how to dress and needs advice.from a true friend not to be laughed at. Well done. — Suzanne


    • Thank you Suzanne. This character is still amongst her working class friends showing off her new found wealth – She’s not trying to fit in. She needs a friend for sure – one who tells her that it’s not nice to show off wealth in front of those who can’t afford it.


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