We were delighted to have with us Gulyora Shermatova, Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher (CLYT) from Tashkent, Uzbekistan. She is the sweetest person we have ever met. Her laughter is amazing. She can laugh anytime, anywhere for no reason. What surprised us was the effortlessness of her laughter. She could continue laughing for hours together. We have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that she is one of the finest laughers in the world!
Ever since we did our CLYT training together at Bangalore, we kept in regular touch and planned to visit each other’s home. She teaches Hindi at the Institute of Oriental Studies, Tashkent and was invited by the Indian Council of Cultural Relations to New Delhi recently. She took an early morning flight from Delhi to Indore.
The members of Suniket Laughter Club were eagerly waiting for her arrival. She greeted them in chaste Hindi and won hearts instantly. After exchanging pleasantries, we started an unforgettable laughter session. Our club is specially known for doing the four steps of laughter yoga – clapping, deep breathing, childlike playfulness and laughter exercises – in a structured and meticulous way. But her very special and infectious laughter intermittently left the members bewildered and spellbound. Her laughter is so unique and spontaneous indeed! People could not believe what they were witnessing.
After affirming ‘very good very good yay’ a few times, we chanted ‘bahut achche bahut achche yay’ in Hindi, followed by ‘horosho horosho yay’ in Uzbeki. Suddenly the air acquired the fragrance of joy. She conducted greeting laughter and milkshake laughter in her inimitable style. She watched with deep interest as our members performed tak-jhoom laughter, cricket laughter and NTR laughter. She was amused by ‘follow the leader’ game played by the club members. This was followed by singing-dancing-playing and laughter. The lyrics chosen were old melodies from Bollywood – mera joota hai Japani, sajan re jhoot mat bolo and bambai se aaya mera dost. It was undoubtedly one of the most memorable sessions we have ever had! All those who were present in the Suniket Park that Sunday morning will cherish the memories for a long time.
In the evening, we went to the regional park and had a fantastic time. We would sit on a bench and laugh incessantly oblivious of bewilderment on the faces of onlookers who found it difficult to decipher what was so hilarious around that made us go nuts.
The next morning we remained at home to spend some quality time together. We sat in our balcony with the morning cuppa of tea. Lo and behold, Gulyora started laughing. How could we refrain? We also joined her. Many rounds of laughter followed during the day. We laughed and laughed and laughed.
Her husband’s name is Kakramon (which means Hero). She has named him ‘Mahaveer’ in Hindi. He is an introvert and previously worked for the army. But now he is also bitten by the laughter bug. He takes a CD containing 40 laughter exercises to his office and plays it for the staff. And then, he gives a command in true military style, “Kulila!” (That is, “Laugh!”) And, surprisingly, it works!
In the evening, she conducted an exclusive session of laughter yoga for ladies at Suniket Community Hall. Upon their asking, she explained to them how one can laugh from the diaphragm effortlessly and continuously. The ladies enjoyed her laughter and felt inspired.
Next morning, we went to Rotary Paul Harris School for the Mentally Challenged Children. She was touched by their simplicity and warmth. Tears started flowing from her eyes and rolled over her cheeks. She addressed them after gaining composure and then we had a fun-filled laughter session with the special kids. They gifted a decorative art piece of ‘natkhat’ (naughty) Krishna which they had made especially for her. She was touched by their gesture.
We visited Chokhi Dhani in the evening. It is a resort on the outskirts of city in Rajasthani style with folk dancers, singers and magicians. She simply loved it and enjoyed dancing with them.
Gulyora is such a noble soul. She is unbelievably good hearted and positive. We feel privileged to have spent precious moments in her enchanting company. The laughter still lingers on.
We shared with some of our friends that Gulyora visited us and we had great fun. Our good friend Duncan Cook, Laughter Ontario had this to say, “In Guelph, where I live, the laughter club members are visiting each others homes now. Bless this house with laughter...haha!”
Our home has been blessed with laughter! Thank you so much, Gulyora.
Radhika and Jagat Singh Bisht
Certified Laughter Yoga Teachers