Mummyji dusted away the cupboard stretching her right hand to the top and making a semi-circular sweep across and bending down to reach the bottom panel resembling a yoga posture while nonchalantly jabbering away, “Arrey, kya hua? Why are you sitting like this? I ask you to help me that you won’t do but sit all day on your bed like a moron”. Holding and pressing her knees while coming back to normal position, she continued with her accusations, “I am growing old. My knees pains when I bend down but no one is bothered. Everyone is busy in their own world”. Then she loudly banged the duster on the bedsheet nudging Tanvi to move and thereby creating a thunderous impact to break her trance.
“Arrey, what happened? Atleast move your bum so that I can set the bedsheet properly”. She shouted loudly almost on Tanvi’s ears.
“I have been fired from my job”, said Tanvi as a matter of fact still concentrating on pink nail polish on the thumb finger as if that was the last colour remaining in her life.
Mummyji registered this shocking news a few breaths later. On realizing the impact of this news, she thumped her big bum on the bed, her bosoms moving up and down in a pendulous movement, her lips locked in complete silence for a few minutes. Finally, she didn’t have anything to say, one of the first since morning.
Mummyji tapped her shoulders and said, “Don’t worry! Everything will be fine”. This is the closest mother and daughter could come physically and affectionately come close after years of communication gap and lack of understanding each other poised cogently in between. “Come and finish your breakfast, I have to clean the kitchen and prepare for lunch…” Mummyji’s voice trailed as she resumed her mundane chores.
Tanvi was experiencing mixed feeling after initial shock was over. It was strange that she was feeling a sense of freedom as if the cycle has broken and there is a glimmer of chance to fly away. Shouldn’t she be stressing over job search? Why at one corner of her heart there was joy? These contradictory feelings kept her awake through the night.
Next morning Tanvi knew what she wanted to do. She finally woke up!
Mummyji was sipping her green tea in the hope that this miraculous drink will melt all the rajma-chawal and pakodas she has been happily eating over the years while Papa was hunched over reading his newspaper with his world’s slimmest and funniest reading spectacles resting over his mountainous, blackhead covered nose.
Tanvi entered the drawing room. She was wearing her regular jockey pyjamas with a single coloured stripe at the corner. She cleared her throat to grab attention and declared, “I have decided to go on a road trip”.
“Where to? With whom? When?How long? Won’t you look for another job? Who will finance this preposterous idea of yours?” Mummyji bombarded her with questions in her irritating, high-pitched tone.
All Tanvi could say and think of was “I don’t know”.
Read the previous chapter here – Chapter 3- Earthquake Jolting Impact
Read the next chapter here –Chapter 5- Fine Tuning Life’s Navigation