Skip to main content

At home - short story

I can't sleep.
I have to board a train to Goa early tomorrow morning.
Is it excitement? I wish, I so wish for it to be excitement.
I try to analyse what I am feeling... Restlessness, anxiety and even, fear.
I am going with my college friends.

I met them almost three years back on Day 1 of college.
I, with my awkwardness and shyness, was dreading ragging from seniors. These friends of mine took me under their wing. All four of them were from the same school, and they had the confidence to get friendly with the seniors.
The ragging phase was bypassed for them. And for me too.
Though silent, I was accepted as a part of that group. And I was happy. After a long time, I felt I'd come home.

My actual home doesn't feel like home. I live in a joint family with many aunts, uncles and cousins. But no parents - my parents passed away years back.
I am told that I am lucky to have such a good family taking care of me.
I hate being ungrateful, because I am taken care of. But there is no one person in the family, for whom I am the most important person. In this big family, I am invisible.
I wish this home felt like home.

When did I become the punching bag of my college group? When did I become the butt of every joke. And when did I decide to smile through it, because I felt I belonged?
Everyone in college knew me, because I was part of a popular group of students. I was visible.

I get up to go to the kitchen. May be I will make myself some tea, sit by the hall window and enjoy the rare silence of the house.
As I open the door I see that the light is on in the hall. I take a step back into my room, when Tauji (my father's elder brother) calls. "Who is it?"
As I come forward, he smiles. "I can't sleep either, Beta. Come, sit".
He's sitting on the swing. His demeanor is royal as usual. I join him, taking as little space as possible on the swing.

I sit there, not knowing what to say. Tauji has never been one for talking too much.
He must strongly believe in 'actions speak louder than words'. Being the head of the family, he lives a disciplined, selfless life that everyone respects, and follows, at least in front of him.

"So what's your plan now?"
I hate this question, because I don't have an answer.
I sit, pondering over what to say, so that I don't sound as foolish and lost as I feel.
"Your father would have wanted you to do what you love", he continues, to my surprise. "He always regretted not following his heart to become a writer. He took up a job because that's what was expected of him. By the time, he realized what he really wanted, he had responsibilities. And now... Don't do things that you don't want to."

I have my head bowed and eyes on his feet the whole time. Now I look into his knowing eyes. No one ever talks about my parents when I am around.
Does Tauji understand my turmoils and insecurities, I wonder. I feel strangely at peace, at home.
He smiles, pats me on the shoulder and leaves.

I do sit by the hall window, minus the tea though.
As dawn smiles at me, I feel excited.
After a long time, I feel like I have something to look forward to.

And I missed the train...

Image Source




This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Comments

  1. beautiful. The smile of that insignificant kid

    ReplyDelete
  2. I so related to this Nimi. Thanks for sharing this. All the best

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Anupam. Since I like your writings a lot, I am especially happy that you liked this one...

      Delete
  3. Turmoil and the exchange of thoughts in ones mind nicely depicted in this post. Very well written Nimi.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot, Shweta. Glad you liked it...

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Absurd, yet so good (Book Review - David S. Atkinson's Not Quite So Stories)

Title: NOT QUITE SO STORIES Author: David S. Atkinson
Publisher: Literary Wanderlus LLC
Pages: 166
Genre: Absurdist Literary Fiction
The stories of David S. Atkinson's Not Quite So Stories are, for want of a better word, weird.
They are not your typical short stories and they are certainly not what I had expected.

So, the 'not quite so stories' are weird, atypical and unexpected. And I enjoyed reading them. Read between the lines and you'd be surprised by their depth.
Read them superficially and they are 'absurd'.

The author's dedication for this book is
"For Shannon, who graciously puts up with my absurdities and loves me anyway.
Also for every third person named Fred."

When I re-read the dedication after having read the book, it held more meaning. Thus my use of the word 'absurd'.

The stories are very well-written.
The humor, the emotions, the terror - it is all subtle.
The paradox is that everything is exaggerated and yet the underlying message is sub…

The right and wrong of choices #WriteBravely

"You can choose courage or you can choose comfort. You cannot have both" - Brene Brown
And it is ok to choose comfort. 
This is my first instinct when I read this quote. Not because I don't feel that choosing courage is the wrong choice, but because it is implied that one should choose courage.
Ideally, we would all choose courage and lead perfect lives. 
"Life is unfair" - such a clichè and so very true. As true as the facts that the world is imperfect, the destiny is not in our control, and that life is uncertain. "You get what anybody gets - you get a lifetime" - Neil Gaiman
I think my instinctive reaction of 'it is ok to choose comfort' comes from my being a mother. I have spent years counseling my kids that at times, you choose what is right for you. 
Many a time I feel happier waiting rather than taking any immediate action. And waiting takes a lot of courage.
So, yes make the choice between courage and comfort. Choose courage even.  But decide for…

Who watches Bigg Boss?

Who watches Big Boss?

I ask this question because it seems like hardly anyone I know says that they watch this show that made it to the Top 10 list of the most-watched Hindi Entertainment shows. So, no one I know, besides a couple of close relatives, who don't hide this fact (and me), watched Bigg Boss 11.

An acquaintance of mine recently told me about a male friend of hers who is on a quest to find a girl to tie the matrimonial knot with. She went on to passionately rant about how exasperated he is. One of the reasons for his not liking a female is if she watches Bigg Boss.
Now that this season is over, I was imagining this guy getting married in the next couple of months, and getting the shock of his life when, a few months later, his wife would be watching Bigg Boss every single night.

This rant continued to haunt me. The looking down on anyone who watches a Hindi TV serial, or God forbid, Bigg Boss seems extremely snobbish.
The English TV shows are great, I agree (at least, the few…