“my new footwear has come, you use the old one” Dan said tossing the Amazon wrapping on the living room floor.
Something within Sarah just snapped, it always the same, almost like she was a dustbin.
“one thali, one khichdi without Kadi, one aloo parata,” Dan took a breather, looked at his wife, and added, “one dustbin.” everyone laughed,
“what will you have Bhabhi ” he asked his sister-in-law when the laughter subsided. The order was placed, and very sagely Dan’s sister-in-law Naomi said, “it’s always like that with mother’s they eat the leftovers.” Forget about the nearly thirty years of married life, it seems like a life theme.
Aunt Moira’s university days since trends changed very fast there, the old of trend clothes came town to Sarah. When Cousin Jesse got married she was to have a trousseau, the old hand me down’s went to Sarah as Anna her older sister didn’t wear such clothes. Of course the elder’s in the family came up with such approval, yet there was a snigger in it,
“Anna is particular about what she wears, so give it to Sarah.” Often Sarah wondered if it was not unhygienic probably the aunts of the great united Family would give her Anna’s underpants as hand me downs too.
It was strange, that Sarah wore the hand me downs, yet comments like, “Sarah stop focusing on clothes and style do your studies.” Somehow the assumption that someone who is trendy has to be inadequate at work, like a Murphy’s law.
Suddenly the more subtle for form of leftovers seem to take over the less visible one frozen somewhere deep within, probably we would choose to call it memories.
“make shira for your mother-in-law, for you there are same rotis left from yesterday and I don’t have breakfast.” Sarah disliked rotis per say, left over dry ones were unbearable. At her mother’s place her mother was like “oh! it’s just the two of us, there is some daal and rice from yesterday, and sabzi for day before in the fridge lets finish it, off we can warm it in the microwave.”
Sometimes Sarah wondered if everyone took lessons from Michelle Osama who suggested that people cooked a little extra for the meal so that they could carry the left over to work. Giving the left over to the maid was a very urban middle thing, give the maid, leftover food, leftover clothes, leftover furniture, hail Mary you become the master of abundance that over flows to the impoverished maid. Sarah remembered her neighbour Mrs. Iyer telling her, “maids here are so hoity-toity mine refused to accept leftovers or old clothes.”
When was setting up her first apartment, every aunt and great aunt worth her salt offered things, from crockery to curtains. Of course the price coming down was an temptation.. hand out things to Jenny was a temptation too, that would allow fresh things into her life, but why burden jenny? Sarah went through life feeling like a dumpsite, she was not going to let that happen to her daughter.
It was over, it was time to throw the garbage out, it was time to let go, all those toxic stored emotions. Leftovers in the their non-visible form called memories, stored in the refridgator of the brain and the cupboard of the heart had to be cleared, the toxic growth that grew from it had to be tossed out mercilessly.
The truth was all things came to him that waits, but they were mostly leftovers from those who didn’t wait.