Aahva had run away from home at 17, packing nothing but some clothes, some food from the kitchen, her dead mother’s diary and three thousand Indian rupees that she had found while rummaging through her father’s drawers.
My husband was never there when I needed him. During our life together, he was away most of the time, crossing high mountain passes. He never really had time to spend with me, though his desire to have sons did rekindle the love we had earlier lost.
I stopped being insentient when I considered Bhauju’s life and began questioning my own mother, father and brother. In what way was my home different from the cemetery hill near the house? Why was it that my father – whom I saw as the most intelligent, good and loving person in the world – was like a frightening tiger to Bhauju?
I’m no good at accounting. But I’ve kept accounts of all the little debts owed me by the village in a box in my mind. And when people say they love the village, it makes me laugh. It makes me want to tear Bistini Bajai’s blouse in the middle of the night, and shake the village with my laughter.
Day One Location: Lanka Lanka is burning behind me. An entire empire made up of gold is now turning into ashes and a ghost. I try to calm myself, sink deeper into the leather seat...