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Every evening, before I go to bed, I set an alarm to wake me up in the morning. And the alarm, dutifully, wakes me up. Today too, as usual, it woke me up at 6:30am. The dawn had hardly come and the air outside, I sensed, was very cold. Thimphu was still sleeping; no sound, no movements. I did not want to get out of my warm blankets. However, I had to force out.
I jumped out from my bed, put on the heater and boiler and rushed to the kitchen to wash the dishes left out in the evening (if you have lived a single life, your experience would better explain this). I put on the rice cooker and peeled off the potatoes to prepare curry. I did it as fast as possible so that I would be in time to catch the bus. Like an experienced cook, I chopped the potatoes rapidly. I did not mind some potatoes being boiled without cutting. What I wanted was the so-called curry to take for lunch and have with the breakfast. No sooner did I finish cutting potatoes, chilies, tomatoes and onions, I put them on the electric oven and kept it for boiling.
Then I ran to the altar to make water offerings. I had to run in and out, taking and bringing water. After lighting the butter lamp, Karmey, it was time for me to make tea for my grandparents. I heard them chanting Bazar Guru and sensed that they have woken up. I ran to the kitchen, picked up two cups and reached tea at their bed.
The moment I turned back from there, I smelt the curry burning. I rushed to the pot with a bottle of water and poured into it, making a huge shhhh…. sound. My heart beat had increased tremendously then. I worried what my friends, at my office, would comment on my curry.
With the shhh.. sound minimized, and the curry assuming normal boil, I entered the bathroom with a bucket to wash my head. It took some minutes. Rinsing the soap, I started dressing. The first time I wore my gho, it had gone too much above my knees. The second time I wore, the two parallel lines behind appeared like an ‘A’ which I do not like. And the third time I wore, it was already time for the bus to arrive at its stop.
I flew nervously around the kitchen, opened my lunch bag and, putting in the half-boiled or over-cooked curry, I left for the office. I ran down to the road like a small school going-children with his bag over his head.
Alas! The bus had already left and I was late. I thought of walking up to the office but walking to Kuengacholing from Changjiji was not a joke. Nobody had played that joke and I did not wish to. I asked a Taxi and he said it was Nu 150. I asked my pocket and it showed only Nu. 120. Short of Nu 30. And how do I come home in the evening?
The only thing I could do was to walk where money did not cover. I wished if someone was with me to help prepare my breakfast and help me wear gho so that I could catch the bus on time.