There’s a steady drip from the tap, dancing on the steel utensils in the sink. The sun is fast asleep, perhaps just fretting about a little before it wakes up. I switch on the lights, squinting to not startle the sleep I already broke. I gently shut the door behind me as I walk in, scanning the kitchen to locate the shelves I need. I glance to my left, at the daisy clock he’s put up. It was a Saturday afternoon, and I remember telling him about the geyser being left a few minutes too long, as I stirred the tea leaves, in the morning while I got busy in the kitchen. All he said was “Hm.” as he passed me the cup of milk. I’m not sure when he got the clock but I stepped in the next morning to find the daisy hanging on the wall.
We’ve made small talk
And bits about ourselves
Over two cups of tea
And one coffee
Along with three trays
That took the whole
Of afternoon to cook.
I’m wearing the maroon pullover
You gave me on our fifth anniversary.
It’s come straight from the dry cleaner’s
And it smells of rose
Instead of sandalwood.
Stay, they told me
Every relation goes through bad times
You can’t just give up
And leave, they said.
He checked the number of suitcases one more time. Checked the locks. All good. He glanced at the room, taking it in; the subtle changes in it. The addition of a new cupboard that was filled with a new set of clothes that belonged to someone else, the jewelry box that was settled in the lower drawer on the left hand side of the dressing table; the tiny studded silver box filled with vermilion on top. The change of sharing in the air, that someone else was also walking these wooden floors; brushed the switches with their fingertips accordingly; warmed themselves with the same blanket as he did; dreamt on the same bed. That he shared his life with someone else too now.
It was surreal, in ways he couldn’t fathom any words to express. But it was beautiful.
The soft tinkling of her anklets accompanied her as she took her steps on the petal-ed path towards her future. Wondering. Wondering if the path continued to be the same. Or would it prick her feet? She saw the kids playing around, running after each other oblivious to the brimming emotions. Perhaps they were playing Catch Me If You Can? She smiles remembering her childhood; running around in the garden, hiding behind trees, portraying her artistic skills on the freshly pressed lavender colour cotton frock with white frills her mother had so patiently cleaned the very last week, and how she always won with her brothers; how they’d just miss to catch her. She’s the youngest in the house. Her eyes filled with tears, threatening to spill. “No. No. Not now.” she moaned. The poor lady worked so hard on her makeup, and she was rather fond of the way she’d highlighted her hazel coloured eyes. No, she wasn’t going to drown the world right away. That could wait till the bidai. God, it’s going to be Noah’s Ark all over again. She’d heard the baarat come in all their glory; dancing, singing, celebrating. What’s that song the band’s playing? She can’t recall it now but she can’t stop her feet tapping to the beat, the anklets’ singing drowning in the celebrations sent to the heavens; they reminded her of the vacation in Dubai during the World Record New Year. The last New Year she spent as a princess. She took a few more cautious steps. A few more baited breaths.
Continue reading The New Beginning Jitters-Part I.