After the brain numbing scrolling of Instagram for 25 minutes, I finally got up this morning.
And the voice in my head shoots.
“Good Morning Vriddhi” (with fake smile greeting in the mirror)
“So, what are the plans for today- Make some good decisions today. It’s been already a year since you’ve become a CA- Do CPA”
“No just focus on your work”, shouts the other opinion.
“What did you learn from Corona? Have some passive income at least.”
And mummy interrupts the pointless noises: “Finished brushing? Have your tea”
“Vande…. Maataram….” We hear a group of student sing in a nearby building as we sip in the steaming cup of tea. And I asked mummy “Will you oil my hair after this?” She agreed.
Next moment she was oiling my hair and softly massaging my head. As she did that she also rambled about my sister’s childhood, her sister’s childhood and somewhere I heard her mentioning Aasha Tai. I waited for her to complete her stories. After a pause I asked her: “Mummy, how is Aasha Tai a relative to us? Why do you all call her Tai?”
“She is Nana’s so-called sister” Mummy replied.
As she said that I went back to my only memory with Aasha Tai.
To me spending summer vacation at my Nana-Nani’s place was a every day dream for whole of the academic year. One day on this dream vacation Aasha Tai visited us. Tall and lean as she greeted mummy and everyone in her soft voice, I was enchanted with her smile and the red-brown coloured hair nicely tied in a bun. She sat there smiling as an idol of happiness and deep satisfaction. I was hardly in my 7th standard then. While she sat and chatted with everyone I was moving around playfully- clueless of how to behave.
Before she took a leave- she called me. I stood before her, she turned to her purse and took out a brand new ‘Camel Scholar’ geometry box. I received that with both my hands and thanking her grinning in shyness. Little did she know that she was gifting it to the most notorious, fidgeting child of the whole family (then not now). I stood by mummy waving a bye as she left. For that moment it was just a magical box as I didn’t know to use it.
Coming back to today. I still have that geometry box. I started using it in my 10th Boards and used it till the last attempt of CA Final. I developed an inclination towards this box as it accompanied me year after year – during board exams, college exams and CA exams- nearly decade.
I looked for it and opened it to find the only tool from the original set being the Compasses. It also had a pen I received as a token of honour from my school principal, a gratitude stone- holding which I thanked for a good study session, a sharpener (I didn’t know I have so many sharpeners), a decade old eraser and the last CA Final exam hall ticket. It is rusted now and the other original tools of the sets were broken or lost on the journey. This unboxes a reminder to me of how far I have come in the journey of losing and gaining. And now all I need to do is to hold on to the sense of gratitude.
Having written that buys me some peace from the noises of my head.
Thank You Aasha Tai…