House Magnificent

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Each house, however ordinary, has its own story to tell.

Stories which recount the mundane, sometimes interesting lives of the people who once called it their ‘home’.

It’s strange to even think about it, isn’t it? All that which transpired within those four walls…

Once with a beautiful half-timbered façade, now with an ivy-covered derelict frontage – Doesn’t it speak volumes of the years that have passed by?

All that remains now are memories – memories in bits and pieces. In trinkets and old cardboard boxes accidentally left behind by overly careful moms during relocation…

Take for instance, those Scrabble pieces that lie scattered on the basement floor.

Oh, those Sunday afternoons! How little Diya used to watch her parents play the game against one another, sometimes spelling more words than they said to each other.

After all, words sometimes aren’t meant for a conversation…

Then there were the Sharmas and their heated, verbose dinner time conversations.

Impositions over healthy food, contradictory political opinions and what not!

The debates used to then shift around their ancestral box of betel leaf out of which Mr. Sharma would prepare ‘paan’ for all interested members.

That ancestral, overpriced, now tarnished silverware sadly sits in the corner of a dusty cupboard, forgotten by all.

Speaking of the forgotten – old toys…

Old Lego pieces. Tired of being built into a new house each time. Ragged dolls with missing eyes.

Car tracks, the ones which formed the Hot Wheels oblong; now just lying there, existing without any meaning.

Lost in the depths of space and time…

Just like the bunch of those vintage childhood photographs that are now torn at the edges and faded white.

Carelessly tossed away along with an undeveloped camera roll; dying a slow inconspicuous death.

None of them are historic, funny or remotely classy.

One of those is the couple photograph of a husband and wife taken by their young son of 6 who was holding the camera for the first time.

Awkward angle, awkward lighting, awkward smiles pasted on their faces as they tried to put their arms around each other in front of their little boy.

Another one, this time, of two brothers. In their underwear, catching tadpoles by the murky pond surrounded by dirty puppies everywhere.

Funny though, now that both of them are all grown up and don’t even prefer talking to each other.

The overbearing silence of this empty house unfortunately mirrors their restrained relationship.

There are so many words they want to say to each other, but are perhaps too disconcerted to actually say it out loud.

After all, words sometimes aren’t meant for a conversation…

Stuffed up in a bubble wrap, a box full of cassettes from a bygone era lies in an unused cabinet.

Cassettes, which used to serenade a mixture of sweet and melancholic undertones on a rainy day…

A chance look inside the cabinet would also reveal a myriad assortment of such antiquities.

Posters, rolled up with the double sided tapes still carrying bits of wall plaster,

Broken doorknobs, still carrying the imprints of the last person who ever touched it,

An old diary, not carrying the secrets close to someone’s heart, but monthly budgets and balances of a typical middle-class family.

Small tidbits here and there, a little drama in the air…

Countless fights and meaningful romances

Fits of hysteria and lost chances.

Tragic demises and manic depressions

Overjoyed parents and wicked obsessions.

The monotony, the morning blues and tiresome drudgery

The frailties and wonders of human life in its full glory!

This house has seen it all.

Yet, it now stands derelict. As inglorious and rundown as it could ever be.

Poor thing…

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