You don’t really know what you’ve got till it’s gone.
Sigh. So true.
I’m sitting here alone in my living room. The house feels so empty. And dusty. No familiar smells coming from the kitchen. Dishes piled up in the sink.
I miss her so much.
I remember the day she told me, it was a couple of months ago. I was lounging on the sofa, flipping through a magazine.
”Didi, main do mahine ke liye gav jaa rahi hu “
I looked up from my magazine.
“Achcha”, I replied. “Wapas kab aaogi?”
“Do mahine”, she repeated.
“Diwali ke baad?”
She promised she would send a replacement.
Great! I thought, and went back to reading.
A week later she brought along a friend who she said would substitute for her till she returned. She showed her friend around the house and explained what needed to be done. Before she left, she wished me a happy Diwali and smiled the brightest smile. I was happy for her since she would be spending the festive season with her family.
Monday morning dawned and my new maid showed up bright and early. She got to work immediately. Things were going smoothly so far, I thought.
After about ten days, the new maid disappeared. She just stopped coming. I was foolish enough to have not taken her phone number, and so couldn’t contact her. I waited for a couple of days but there was no sign of her.
That was 6 and a half weeks ago.
Chores started to pile up. I started asking around for a new temporary maid – I asked my neighbours, the watchman at the gate, the shopkeeper downstairs, everyone. Days went by and no one came.
In the meantime, I was struggling. One day, the week before Diwali, I tied a dupatta over my nose and mouth and got to work – I swept and washed and dusted and mopped from sunrise to sundown. After the gruelling day’s work, I slept like a baby for over 12 hours.
Diwali came and went, and the house was clean. But then the dust returned. And so did the dishes in the sink. The kitchen counter developed a thin layer of dust. And the floor wasn’t spotless anymore.
I couldn’t take it anymore. I plonked down on the sofa exhausted and at my wits end.
And then my phone rang.
Hello didi, said a familiar voice. My heart leapt!
Main wapas aa gayi hu, kal se kaam pe aa jau?
I felt as though the heavens had opened and I could hear the angels sing!
Yes please! Kal se kaam pe aa jao!
And now, as I write this – it’s 7 a.m., I’m sitting on the sofa with a happy heart, writing this funny little blog post. The doorbell rings, it’s my maid. She greets me happily; she had a good trip home. I smile and tell her I’m glad she is back.
And boy am I glad! I’m about the happiest person in the world right now!