Home; though he has been married for almost ten years now, the first thing that crosses his mind when someone mentions “home” is his childhood home, where his parents still live. His wife was a wonderful person; she tried really hard to keep him happy but she couldn’t stop him from missing his parents and his craving for the life that he had left behind for her. No, he never blamed her for anything because he was the one who had chosen her over his parents and even she had left behind everything so that she could with him; however, she never complained or displayed her despair, so even he never mentioned his parents in front of her. Neither he nor she ever spoke about it because they understood that it was already hard enough for them, even without knowing how unhappy their partners are about the coldness that their parents have maintained since many years; ten years was a very long time, really long.
He wondered why they could never forgive him; he hadn’t done anything that others hadn’t done already. He wanted to ask them what was so wrong about falling in love with someone and wanting to spend the rest of your life with that person; it is very natural to fall in love when you meet that right-one, isn’t it? Why didn’t they realize it too? He would have never left home and them if it wasn’t for their stubbornness; only he knew how badly he had wished that they had just accepted his decision of marrying the one he loved, than a long lost relative. He just wanted to know “why?” but his why-s remained why-s because he never asked them; he wasn’t courageous enough.
Why? he wondered again. He also wondered if they missed him too or had they moved on and learnt to live without him. Didn’t they want him around? Didn’t the memories of presence in the house haunt them and make it impossible to not want him around? He wished that they would just accept their fault and ask him to come back to them. He hadn’t even exchanged greetings with his parents since ten years, but he knew that they were doing alright, at least, decent enough. His father had invested all his savings on a local business and that kept enough cash flowing that he could even afford a holiday to Singapore; his mother always wanted to go to Singapore, he still remembered it and hoped that his father hadn’t forgotten it too.
Every year, on his birthday, on his parents’ birthdays, on their anniversary and on every possible festival day, he would drive to his parents’ house-his previous home-and park his car somewhere from where his parents wouldn’t notice him but near enough for him to watch them. Once, he caught his mother feeding a dog; how much he wished that he could taste her cooking once more; her curries were the best, quite mouth-watering. His parents always spoilt him by granting his every small wish yet they rejected his love and that hurt his ego. He wondered why they couldn’t just trust his choice and why they valued their egos over his happiness; he wished that he could understand them better but what he failed to understand the most was that even he chose his ego over them.
Today, it was raining heavily; the heavy raindrops that hit his car’s window-glass was making it very difficult for him to see anything. He could barely see the house, let alone, his mother whom he wanted to see very badly; even a glimpse of her would have made him happy but the sky showed no mercy upon him and he knew that it wouldn’t calm down anytime soon. Cursing his fate and the pouring sky, he continued waiting in the car. He even kept the windows and doors closed because keeping them open would only dirty the car; it was raining cats and dogs. He sighed at his luck and tried calling up his wife to inform her that he would be late but he couldn’t get through; he supposed that was because of the rain too.
“Damn you, rain!” he cursed.
“Of all the days this week, it has to rain today”
He didn’t realize when he dozed off but when he woke up, it was still raining; it was raining so heavily that lowering the window-glass only wet the seats. He decided to return some other day and drove away. In his eagerness to see his mother, he failed to notice the emptiness that was haunting the house; he didn’t know that he would never see his parents again. They were gone, to never return. If only he had sincerely apologized instead of waiting for them to realize their mistakes…