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Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Free Bird part 3

Read the previous part here
Juggling the cake in one hand, Sneha unbolted the gate with the other hand. All of us are adept at opening the gates of our houses bolted from inside. The house was quiet. It meant Sandip was not at home and their father was all alone in the house. If it were not for the lights in the drawing room, it was hard to believe that the house was inhabited.

A knot formed in Sneha's throat. She felt terrible that her father was left alone on his birthday. She had a contractual job, which meant a very few leaves. But Sandip, he had graduated a year ago and was whiling away his time. If anyone asked him as to what he was doing, he would promptly reply, 'preparing for civil services.' However, his only preparation lay in squeezing a few thousand rupees from his father and buying expensive study material. Sneha was sure that he had not read more than ten pages of any of those books. He would be busy playing cricket with other good for nothings in the colony, watching movies on his computer or simply sleeping like a baby.

Sneha always disapproved of his ways, but today she was angry at him. How could he leave papa alone on the day of his birthday. She rested the cake on the parapet and tried his number. But she heard a voice message stating that his phone was out of coverage area. She was about dial him again, when her father emerged at the door. Hastily she disconnected the phone, wore her trademark smile and greeted him.

'You have got a cake... for me?' Her father said with a childlike enthusiasm. She remembered him saying on one of his birthdays that he had never cut a cake until Sneha had bought one for him. At that time Sneha was studying in fifth grade.

Sneha rushed to the kitchen and started cooking the meal. When she uncovered the lids she found that her father had already cooked her favourite kurkuri bhindi and bundi raita. Most of the times he prepared dal, rice and Sneha would roll chapatis on her return from her office. Today she had specifically instructed him not to cook anything. 'Today is your birthday and I want to make it special. Simply take rest, watch your favourite movies and enjoy your day.' She had told him in the morning.

'Papa, you never listen to what I say. Hadn't I told you not to enter the kitchen? Hadn't I said that I would manage everything once back from the office.' Sneha said.
'You are my daughter, don't speak like a wife. Yes, it is my birthday and I felt like treating my children. That is the reason I cooked your favourite kurkuri bhendi and for Sandip I made some bundi raita. Believe me I had a great time cooking for you guys.'

'You feel about him, does he feel anything about you. Let him come home, today I am going to give him a solid lashing.'
'No, not today.' Her father said.
'It is your pampering that has spoiled him papa.' Sneha expressed her displeasure. Her father didn't say a word. He simply smiled. Every parent knows not all children are the same and they come with their inadequacies. 
Read the next part here 

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