“No…Nos… Nost…”, the six-year-old Anusha struggled to read the word from her story book.
“Daddy… Daddy….”, she came running to her father with the book in her hand, who was drowned neck deep in his newspaper.
“Yes Anu”, he looked at her briefly.
“Daddy what is this word? I can’t read it”, said Anusha with struggle written all over her face.
“Let me help you, spell it for me”, he asked her, folding and keeping aside his newspaper. He always suggested her to spell words out which she couldn’t read, that would help her build the vocabulary rather than just pointing at the word and him helping her out.
“N-O-S-T-A-L-G-I-C”, she followed her father’s instructions and spelled out the word with impatience, her base characteristic.
“Nostalgic”, he spoke slowly and then broke the word into three for her to catch the pronunciation, “say it like this, NOS-TAL-GIC”.
“NOS-TAL-GIC”, she repeated after him.
“Good girl, now repeat it five times”, he said.
She followed the instructions like an obedient daughter that she was.
Before continuing her story further she asked, “Daddy what does Nos-tal-gic mean?” Still struggling to say the word fluently.
“When a person longs for the good memories of the past, then he is said to be feeling nostalgic. For example, you remember your last birthday party when you had enjoyed a lot and today something reminds you of that event, and you want to go back to that event”, explained her father patiently, his base characteristic.
“Is it like missing the good times of the life?” she questioned innocently.
“Yes, exactly”, he smiled at her.
“Daddy I’m also feeling nostalgic”, smile has vanished from her face.
“Yes, tell me”, encouraging her to share her feelings. She had become quite reticent, which was unlike her chirpy self. He had started noticing this change a few months back after first dismissing the changes in her behaivour when they had moved to Seattle almost an year ago.
“I miss mom”, she spoke, her voice hardly audible but the but word ‘mom’ was enough to bring him back from his thoughts.
“I miss her too”, he reciprocated and pulled her into a quick hug, making her sit on his lap.
“Why are we here and she is not”, she asked, tears almost welling up in her eyes. She never told anyone that she had smuggled a picture of her mother and slept holding it in her hands every night.
He never had an answer to her question, how can he possibly explain the reasons of a broken marriage to a seven-year-old. He just embraced her closer to his heart as the memories started to burden it.
How did the things go so wrong, he wondered thinking about the drastic changes his life had been put through in the last 18 months. To everyone else, things had seemed to settle down but he knew better for the constant reminder of him not being in his own country, the lost chirpiness of her daughter, his parents nagging him for re-marriage, his lack of interest in socializing and most of all, the inexplicable reason of her absence from his life.
“Come, let’s have your favourite chocolate fudge”, he told her trying to cheer her up and also himself.
You can never escape some memories, his mind reminded him that it was Anusha’s mother’s favourite too. He let out a sigh as they walked to kitchen where his mother had made them the chocolate fudge. She had been trying hard to be a mother to Anusha than just a grand-mother but nobody can replace her mom, he was now beginning to understand.
I am taking part in The Write Tribe Problogger October 2017 Blogging Challenge
Prompt : Nostalgic