- A short story about, us.
Do you ever drift off to a dream land while performing the mundane every-day tasks? A place of your own, devoid of all that you consider maligned. To a beautiful place where your dreams are your reality and just one glimpse into that beauty, as you close your eyes, fills your heart with emotions and stomach with butterflies.
Norah, done with cleaning the house after her husband and kids, was standing by the window pane in the guest room upstairs, in what one could call a perfect house.
Outside, it looked like it would rain. Norah felt butterflies in her stomach. It was her favourite kind of weather.
The house had 4 rooms, 2 for the family and 2 for the guests. The guest, generally, were either her or her husband, Sam’s parents. Her place had a well maintained lawn in the front and a backyard for their dog to play in case they ever got one.
But more than everything, what Norah loved the most about this place was the lush green forest cover, their house was on the periphery of. Once done with the household chores, on most days, she would sit down with a cup of coffee on the backyard porch staring into the beauty of the magnanimous Redwood trees.
Today was one such day when Norah had drifted to her dreamland looking at the forest cover standing by the window pane. In all that silence, living away from the city life, her moments of mental wanderings had become more frequent than ever before.
Norah had been married for 12 years with two kids, Nathan who was 6 and Suzzie who was 4. She had known her husband Sam since 8 years before they got married. They loved each other and she thought she was the luckiest person in the whole wide world to marry him.
She was looking at an old memory in her mind while staring out through the window. The memory was more than two decades old, but still, as fresh in her mind as the wind brushing her face.
Every year, when they had the first rains of the season, her father would make her and her brother wear a transparent raincoat, a pair of gumboots and take them out for a walk through a woody trail that started a couple of hundred yards away from their house.
As they walked, they would talk to their father about everything that occupied their drifty minds as kids. At the end of the trail, her father would stop and ask her to close her eyes and ask God to make her what she wanted to become when she grew up. She would close her eyes with her hands folded and ask God for all sorts of things.
Every year she wanted to become something new, but one thing remained constant other than that woody trail. At the end of her prayer, her father would say — “Norah, you know why we come out here in the rains and ask God to help us become what we want to be? These rains, they are your witness now. They heard you praying to God. Now you can never forget these dreams, never let go of what you want to be, for the rains, they will come every season and remind you of your words.”
She could not remember when this tradition died. Was it because she grew old and stopped believing in God or grew old enough to stop believing in dreams? She tried, but couldn’t remember.
The sound of the wind outside suddenly grew silent overshadowed by a sound in her mind —
“Dear God. I don’t know you, but daddy says you can help me become what I want to be. So here is my dream. When I grow up, I want to take people out in the rains, into the jungle, just like daddy takes us. Our neighbour uncle Jackie, aunt Jane, their puppy, all other neighbours, kids from school and everyone in the whole wide world because rains make me happy and I want people to be happy too by making them hike across….”
She snapped out of it by the sound of the season’s first rains striking her window pane, arriving as if on cue. She closed the windows and went downstairs.
‘The kids could come any time, I must prepare the food’, she thought.
But as the rains poured down, it got too loud for her to hear what was on her mind but never loud enough to hear what was in her heart.
She took out her raincoat and gumboots and went for a walk in the woody trail behind her house, into her dreamland.