|A Cup of Tea|
That evening she was the unexpected guest. She disliked me and in return all I can tell about her is I had distaste for her.
It was 4.22 in the evening when the doorbell rang. Never expected anyone at this time of the evening. My hair was uncombed and I had just got out of my bed after finishing a few pages from the book I was reading. Eyes looked like I was just out of a dreamland and searching for reality. I knew I had to go and see who was there.
As I looked out, a strange air filled all around. Surprise came calling at me to see Prativa standing there with a smile on her face. Returning a smile took the keys and opened the gate. As we came face to face with one another, she hugged me tightly and released her clasp soon.
Prativa was my neighbor when I stayed in the flat next-door to hers. At first we had friendly relationship and she would spend most of her spare time in my house. She had someone to do all the housework and she was so fond of gossip that she had befriended me to be her gossip-friend.
Individual characters differ and I as always busy looking after my home, my books were my best companions and gossip would stay miles away from me.
Her gossips put me into trouble one day and that was the reason I had asked her to give me more time to myself and not disturb me at odd time. Being sharp with words, that’s my nature, I had bought an enemy in her without profit but loss and loss.
Disturbed and hurt Prativa started telling things against me and we stopped seeing each other except for exchange of a smile or a hello on meeting.
That day I was so happy when we bought our own house and shifted. I felt relaxed and never got a chance to meet Prativa again.
Her presence that evening astounded me. Yet I welcomed her. As was her nature, she went around the house and observed each and every nook and corner with all the precision her eyes could catch. This time I saw a different sparkle in her eyes…I guessed it was not of hatred but appreciation.
She suddenly said, “Lily dear, I know how nicely you decorate your house. You know how to keep different things at the right place and that gives your house so much perfection. We have bought a new house and I want you to come and help me do the interiors for me.”
I looked at her shocked, for it has been about eight years we had seen one another.
She went on to say, “That day I made a mistake and lost a good friend like you. I know you will forgive me and help me.”
She followed me to my kitchen. I made two cups of tea and served some home-made snacks. And after that we spoke to each other like long lost friends.
She said, “I will always remember this day we spent over a cup of tea.”
Smiling she took leave and I promised to help her with the interior designing of her new house.