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The Homecoming Guest


Months of living all by myself has left me very lazy about the household regime. I lived as I pleased, not caring about the daily cleaning, washing and cooking. Weekends are spent sleeping, watching favorite movies and reading, more often than not, Harry Potters. Yes, you may laugh, but I love Harry Potter. Selective reading of Harry Potter still helps me a great deal to recover the past week’s stress and to endure the one ahead.

But this post is not about that, it’s about the occasional cleaning bug that attacks me. This one was caused by the impending visit of a relative. As my mom reminded me over phone, that I should maintain the impression of a married lady and keep the house clean for at least the days when she would be staying with me, so that she does not have the chance to go back and tell others that my mom didn’t teach me anything, I eyed the laundry bag, full of clothes, at least two weeks’ worth. My gaze darted the kitchen racks where all the utensils lay in a haphazard manner, the open cupboard hangers where hung piles of clothes, the shoe rack which resembled the ones outside any temple and finally the bed which had very less free space left being mostly covered by books. The A/C had slight greasy deposits on the vents and cobwebs, if not plenty, were not hard to find.

But this was my space.  I am never messy, but being impeccably clean was never my forte. So when this job came up, I felt a little irritated and lazy. Also letting someone in my own space for two weeks rendered me a little uncomfortable. I guess that was bad on my part.

So when I finally pulled myself up to the task, I found there was more than met the eye. When I was done with all the neat-i-fying of the house, the floor was a mess of dirt, papers, and plastic wrappers. Again another round of sweeping and rubbing followed.

Finally a staggering three hours later, when I finally completed my mammoth cleaning undertaking, I was exhausted, but nevertheless very proud at my achievement.

But guess what happened? When the aunty came, her scrutinizing eyes still found stray cobwebs on the ceiling and stresses of dirt on the floor. The arrangement of kitchen stuff was not proper and the bed sheet was not tucked properly under the bed.

Two weeks later, when she has left, I now have a house which is so clean that it might not require cleaning for another month or two. I now have a TV soap addiction. My fridge is so stuffed with good homemade food that I am completely spoilt for choice. My meager one-two course meals are now replaced by lavish five-six course meals. My clothes are fragrant of naphthalene and my books are arranged alphabetically on the rack.

Who says, “Atithi tum kab jayoge?” I would rather, “Atithi tum kab ayoge?”

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Riot of Random

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