A house filled with children making noise, the smell of warm samosas in the air, kids & parents alike holding small paper plates which barely had space for the large Punjabi samosa let alone some wafers and a small the portion of a Black forest flavoured cake.
In all this hustle Krish (short for Kishan) ran back to his grandfather from the balcony with a confused smile and expectations in his heart. Confusion because he had just asked his Dadu for his birthday gift and in reply, he was told that right after cutting the cake he had to go to his 5th-floor balcony snap his fingers once and only then would he be rewarded with his gift.
His grandfather with probably the biggest smile he could muster pulled out a large box covered in bright purple wrapping paper handed the gift to Krish.
The next year the same thing happened, amused, Krish did as he was instructed and was rewarded in a similar fashion but this time the wrapping paper was full of Red roses on the outside.
This continued for years and it almost now became a superstitious ritual even though he was away from home on his birthday and even after his Dadu had passed. Every time he would step out alone or on the balcony when at home he thought of his Dadu with joy and reminisced his memory.
It was probably now two decades of following this ritual but this evening was special, this time it was his daughter’s first birthday! Out of superstition or habit, Krish absentmindedly stepped out, spanned his fingers in the most nonchalant way he could and it struck him!
It was yesterday he was 9 when he did this the first time, it was yesterday he missed his Dadu on his birthday for the first time, it was barely a moment ago his beautiful daughter was born! And now, finally, after all these years he learnt the lesson only time could have taught him, a lesson for which the seed was planted long ago by a wise ageing man.