by Idle Muser
Sometimes our love for others blinds us, and other times we use our love to blind others.
|Alarm rang; it already was 6:00 am and here she was thinking how time flies away. She pressed the button on the top the alarm clock to make it stop screaming, an alarm clock which Tanya and Jay had gifted her. She drew the curtain aside from the window beside her bed and put on her glasses, even sun seemed lazy to come to its duty on time, though sparrows had their schedule which used to start early in the morning, daily. “So disciplined are they”, she appreciated them every time she saw them. Having a look at the clock again, she realized it already was twenty minutes up; she slid her feet in the soft winter slippers which Jay bought for her last year.
She took her bath, and went towards her wardrobe. “Which saree should I wear? Peach one is Tanya’s and Jay’s favorite, while he was fond of yellow one.” It took her ten minutes to decide and she ended up draping around a simple yet beautiful, peach colored silk saree. That color suited her. I personally had witnessed her that day.
After getting dressed up, she went for applying some cosmetics, here and there. Taking a pinch of vermilion in her fingers, she thought if it would be acceptable to adorn oneself with vermilion after becoming a widow. Probably not. She took a glance at the black-and-white photo of a man kept on her bed, “I wish you were here. I would have worn yellow saree then.” Continuing with the procedure of getting dolled up, she applied an extremely light tint of a nude colored lipstick on her lips, lipstick which Tanya had gifted her, probably two years back. Occasionally she used to use it, on occasions like this, like the birthdays and anniversaries. Having a head full of grey hairs, she braided them into a long plait, which gave her the look of Rapunzel in the later years of her life. She stood up from the stool, gave herself a thoughtful look for a few minutes in the mirror of her dressing table, and then moved out of her room slyly without disturbing her room-mates. She put on her new sandals after getting out the room.
People had started working around; sun was shining brightly, giving the sufficient warmth needed in the mornings of early December. With a bronze plate, which had few worshiping items, in her hands and a polythene bag full of fruits dangling in her arm, she headed towards the nearby temple of Lord Shiv.
“It’s my husband’s seventieth and my daughter’s thirtieth birthday. Please distribute all these fruits to the needy people”, she said to the priest sitting in the temple. She prayed and asked for the well-being of Tanya and Jay to God, and came back to her room.
Hour’s hand was at twelve and minute’s hand at eleven. Her room-mates were wide-awake by now and having their breakfast, with chit-chat on.
“Both of them must be reaching here at any point of time. I should ask Meera to get food ready for them. After all, my children must be tired after such a long journey of two hours.” She called me, a young woman of twenty-seven who has been here since past six years, and said, “Meera, both Jay and Tanya are coming today. Prepare Biryani for them, it’s their favorite. Also, don’t make it too spicy, Tanya doesn’t like spicy food. If possible, please prepare lemonade too, Jay loves it.”
I didn’t say a word as it would have sounded anything but ominous, and turned around with a sense of sympathy, as I knew what was going to happen, thinking of which wrenched my heart. I was about to close the door of her room when she called me again to ask how she was looking. Seeing her all dolled up after such a long time, I was really happy. “Her age of being sixty-eight is not at all reflected through her countenance. Her wrinkles reveal her old age, but that cheerful smile of hers makes her the youngest in the room.” I thought to myself. “You are looking your most beautiful today, Miss” I told her with genuine admiration.
She responded with her same jovial smile.
After winding up kitchen’s work, I went to her room with a dusting cloth and broom to tidy it up. Doing dusting in a room with three Lilliputian cupboards, four small beds and a considerably small stool kept in front of a long mirror, a mirror with a long hairline crack on it, was a ten-minute job. While sweeping the floor, I put her almost tattered winter slippers below her bed.
Clock struck seven in the evening; sparrows were headed back towards their home, home which Miss. Bhatt used to long for, a home she had been yearning for four years now.
As usual, like every other time, an apology letter collectively from Jay and Tanya walloped the letter-box, letter-box which was at the receiving end of many letters, letters which did no good but kept Miss. Bhatt’s hope dangling on a string, of ‘Sanskriti old-age home’ the next day. It was the same receiving end which received a pair of slippers, an alarm clock and a lipstick too.
“I didn’t ask for a new home, but a room in your home and your heart. This home doesn't feel homely”, Tanya’s and Jay’s mother mumbled in her dreams.
They offer their love and care for us when we need it without us asking them, but we turn our deaf ears and blind eyes towards them when they need it.