In my subculture , during a festival or gatherings , people are served multi-course meal ; each time the first course is something bitter made of either Indian Lilac or bitter gourd ; and through starters , main course ,extended main course there is a long wait for desserts.
When I was 8 years old I questioned my mom , “Why can’t we begin with sweets? That tastes the best .Why do we have to wait so long for my favorite thing ? “
“That’s the magic . The best thing always comes at the end. Only if you try hard and finish eating everything , you can reach the end to taste the sweetness . ” she continued, ” It’s similar in our life. There is a magic waiting for you at the end. A sweet magic . You just have to be patient and keep walking. “
I nodded like I understood everything and waited for dad.
That evening ,I told him about the displeasure of eating bitter , salty ,spicy , oily , green-y , flesh-y ,curried versions of food to reach desserts and also mentioned what mom explained about magic.
“Why can’t we see magic in the beginning ? Why do we always wait so long ? “
“There is no magic. It’s all about Science. I’ll get you a book that explains all. ” he said , ” But for now , let’s do one thing. Let’s save a portion of the dessert for the next meal so that our next start is always sweet .”
“Wow! Why didn’t I think of this?” I noted .
“It’s okay. Why am I here? To help you to think .”
He danced with me and we planned not to share this trick with anyone .
Slowly our secret became our truth ; we started our meal with a spoon of dessert and went on to taste the bitter thing as per traditions. Within some time , we got followers and fans and my dad named his invented tradition : ” Magic starter” .
Last week , during our holiday travel ,I was waiting for my husband outside of a country home. The place was surrounded by long green pines and filled with chirpy songs of birds. There was no human being within miles or as far as I could see. There, I saw this board hidden behind a tree.
At the end of 2013 , along with the baggage of a long year , I was trying to plan many new things for 2014 . This message seemed quaintly placed, as if someone wrote it only for me and forgot in the forest. It reminded me of the taste of desserts during our traditional meal , it reminded me of all the good and bad memories 2013 made . It made my memories tedious and dreams more pensive. It reminded me of the magic of life my mom kept telling me.
Suddenly , I remembered something important – a picture. I took a picture of it. You know why? Because , I wanted to save the message and use it as a “Magic starter” for 2014.
This is how I am going to begin my new year!
[My dad is a Science geek and a lover of General Knowledge , quiz programs. He has answer to almost everything . My mom is a magic- chasing butterfly ; she believes that everything happens for a reason and magic to her is all about a happy ending. I love Science but still believe in magic.]
Do you love dreams more than your memories? Do you begin your year with a message ? What kind of starters do you prefer to have ?
Published for Weekly Photo Challenge