The flower-lady was back. The ritual of spreading out her shop on the pavement continued. Carefully placing the basket down from her head and a small broom wrapped around in a polybag and as soon as she could get the dog clear away her area she started cleaning the place.
Settling herself down in the place, she started off arranging the flowers in a particular sequence. Nothing had changed. Nothing appeared to be any different from what it was before. Probably I was in my reverie again when that happened. Or did something actually happen?
I finished my cup of coffee, which didn’t taste the usual, probably because of the milk, or God knows what it was. I had this urge to go and talk with the lady, not sure why, but I just did.
On the pretext of buying flowers, I went. This was the first time, I actually went there. Of course, she was a regular in my having-a-cup-of-coffee-and–staring-outta-my-window schedule, yet it never occurred to me to go and talk to her. To satiate this sudden urge, I went ahead.
I just handed her a 50 rupee note and took hold of a garland which was arranged in sequential order from the time she had arrived. All I could see were jasmine flower garlands around, wondering for a moment how beautiful they looked. She looked clueless, handing the note in her hand, and staring back at me with an answer. Her faced asked a question but I got lost into thoughts of the scars on her face. I got back from that when she finally asked, “Bhaiyya Change nahi hai ?” But again, I didn’t have any change.
I showed her my room through the same broken window and told her that I’ll come and get it the next morning. I thought of asking her, how she got those scars in her face, but couldn’t. Way back to the room, the only thing I thought of was those scars.
Only to be reminded of something else from my past, memories which I had always tried to forget.
“Leave Her, please leave her” I shouted as much as I could. Helplessly just hitting him with my little hands. Gathering all the strength I had, lifting whatever I could and throw at him, but only to find that his tall bulky body would resist it all with a hearty laugh.
My cries to the monster fluctuated from being one for being helplessly pleading to him to shouting with rage. But for kid like me, it all looked just like a cry.
I tried brush aside the flashback. The childhood memories were something I didn’t want to recall. Some things are better left forgotten, and this was definitely one of them.
I went inside and lock the door closed.
Read what happens next, in the broken Window in the next post.
In case you haven’t read the previous ones, here you go!!
Part 1: The Broken Window