Winter cometh. The days are suddenly shorter, and the lips definitely drier. The air has a feeling not very unlike a moist blanket, insulating yet so very cold. The daily bath becomes a necessary evil. But the coldness improves after the initial shock.
I know there will be no snow where I go. The white sugar I see in movies that floats down from the sky and coats the earth with white. But come December, I shall go home once again, my yearly pilgrimage to home and hearth. Across the miles, in a plane I don’t trust, piloted by a man I cannot see. But I shall be brave and fly across land and sea, putting my faith in God, in fate, and also the fact that even rickety planes rarely crash.
I will faithfully eat the plastic food they serve, smiling as I refuse their strong coffee. I’ll take a nap, and wonder how it will be. My parents will be there to welcome me. Smiling, wanting to hug but not quite sure if they should. My mother will study me for any change, whether I have lost or gained some precious weight. If her ‘baby’ has become a young woman, corrected and composed. I will study them too, and note how time has carved new lines on their faces. Parents age before we can become used to the idea of change.
We will drive home from the airport, my father managing to hit every pothole along the way, while Jim Reeves croons a deadly slow tune. I’ll admire the sheer greenery and see again how narrow and twisted these roads of ours can turn. By the time we reach the city, I will no longer be even mildly afraid. I know that cars and trucks, buses and bikes will all somehow manage to pass each other. It just takes a little bit of expert maneuvering.
Home and hearth, nieces and nephews and all things nice. The bath will be delayed, until it’s almost time for dinner. Tonight we shall have peace and goodwill. A general sense of happiness will prevail. We will all feel blessed, reunited at the time of Christmas and New Year. For tomorrow is time enough for little fights and spars.
There are no McDonald’s in this place, no multiplex with the newest releases. But if you should look up at the sky, there will be more stars than you can count with your naked eye. And the local station makes up for the Hollywood offerings, and friends and family will make up for everything else. There will be oranges, ‘zo chhang’, basking in the sun without doing anything else at all. I shall forget once, twice, thrice, the promise I had made not to lose my temper. I would be filled with helpless remorse, but know I will be forgiven once again…….I cannot wait to be back home.
- White tie
- Facial expressions are inherited, not learned
- Do you have The Bible with you?
- Love the reason For all Unreasonable action