It was a late summer evening and my maa sat on one of the chairs in the patio, listening to soft music, adjusting her reading glasses and reading Gurudev’s book; eagerly waiting for my papa to come and join her for hi-tea. I had been swinging on the swing for quite a long time now. I could feel the cool breeze on my face and my bare skin; seems like it rained somewhere. Along with the breeze, came the sweet fragrance of the marigold plants that maa had planted in the balcony. By now, maa had already asked me thrice to get up and make chai for her and papa, as he might be arriving from office any minute now. Regardless of what maa asked me to do, I lay like a dead body on the swing. The thought of leaving home after the vacations and going back to the usual routine killed me. My heart sank a little with every passing minute. Even though I was sulking, I was aware of everything going on around me. No sooner did I hear papa’s voice from downstairs, I got up and rushed into the kitchen.

Though I was making chai, my attention was on reminiscing the beautiful days that I spent at my home in the vacation. The flashbacks of my hectic life made me sadder. I was obviously not very happy with the amount of pressure that my college had been putting on its students. It bothered me how dull my life had become. However, when chai was ready, I poured it in the new ceramic cups that maa had got from the departmental store the other day. I also took out some biscuits from the jar and placed it on a saucer. Then I put them on the tray and walked down very gingerly.

As I was pacing towards the patio, I overheard maa talking to papa about me and my brother and how she’s going to miss us. I somehow managed to not break and put the tray on the table and left. On my way back to my swing, I heard maa telling papa how she likes the tinkling of my anklet and how that makes her happy and this tinkling is something that she’s going to miss the most.

And I felt once again how simple and minimal a thing is happiness.

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