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Happy New Year (2020)

Happy New Year (2020)

2 mins 380 2 mins 380

The party had finished at 2 am

My head was still reeling with the classical hangover of Solan No. 1

Yet I managed to get up early

It was after all the first day of the New Year and I didn't want to miss a thing

Outside I saw -

The sun had risen from the east

The first bus from Palampur was coming in on time

My neighbor's dog lay curled up

In exactly the same spot where the first rays of the morning sun always fell

The old soldier was returning from his morning walk

The tea stall owner was vigorously brooming the front of his shop

The milkman arrived precisely as ever

Just after the school bus had left

And measured out a pint of watered-down milk

From his old aluminum dalloo

Into our stainless steel milk container that I held out

My father came out into the courtyard

Characteristically, loudly clearing his throat

There was a clink of utensils in the kitchen

And I knew my mother had set the tea upon to boil 

The day unfolded and went by like clockwork

Punctuated by breakfast, lunch, and dinner

In the evening the sun set in the west

My mother lighted the kitchen fire and began to knead the dough

Then my father's phone rang

Which never does at the time

I could tell from his tone that it was his old childhood friend at the other end

Then I heard my father say

"Ah! Yes! A Very Happy New Year to you too!".

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