It’s going to take a while before I come to accept that things won’t be alright by the swish of a wand, the turning of the calendar or the release of a prayer. I don’t want to dampen the spirits, but it hasn’t been a particularly jocund start to the year. I know that all the good wishes that are being sprinkled around mean well, but then again sprinkling of wishes also doesn’t immediately turn the tide around. All said and done, I must admit that life has gone on from one year to another and I haven’t done something spectacular than otherwise, but I feel that the days of 2013 have been better not worse.

Everything that could go wrong with the day went wrong today. As I made my way back to a bus stop (after leaving my office bus for the day) a hungry stomach ate itself inside me. I deprived myself of food all day and when I tried to buy some, I couldn’t find any. I picked my handbag and walked down the slope of my office, hailed a rick and felt the chill in the air reach my bones. I needed food and I could’ve done with a hug; neither was available. When I reached the bus stop to wait for the private bus, I met the lady I usually meet on such days. Last year, whenever I met her she always came to me as a breath of fresh air after the stench of suffocation. I observed that even at the end of the day, she had such spirit that it was impossible not to smile with all your heart when she smiled at you. In times when I was classifying people as warm or cold, she’s the one who compelled me to do it. I’d hardly met anyone as warm as her among all the new people I’ve interacted with in the recent past. I took my chance and asked her if she had something to eat. To my relieved heart and utter surprise, she handed me 2 vada pavs. She had just bought them, she said. All my heart could do was profusely thank her and bless her for being there at that bus stop. I don’t meet her very often, nor am I great friends with her, but our sporadic meets never fail to make me happy even at the end of a horribly exhausting day.

After I had my share of food I looked back at the beautiful day I had. I received a surprise new year present: assorted picture frames of horses given to me by a colleague. I shared the silence with K, over the phone and thanked God for having her around. I met a child who studies in a non-profit school; a child I became friends with last year. I ate food that was God-send to me at the hands of a warm lady. And I still have someone to talk to while I get home in this bus as I write this.

While I lay down my arms tonight, I’m weary from the battles of the day, but I’m happy that they’re not all that I see while I’m going through life.

I see the small, floating drops of orange twinkling in the dark. They tell me, it’s not over yet.

And then, indeed, it is a happy new year.

P.S.: January 1 was largely peaceful and happy. May happiness and peace abound this year in your lives.

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