“The small town of Dullu couldn’t have a better festival!” asserted my father.
“This year is special. It will be a year to remember!” my mother added.
Those same words every year. I could even predict when they would say it this year; on the dining table during breakfast. After discussing the dishes that we could make for the festival, I sat contentedly in the living room waiting for Father to come back with the ingredients from the market. Being the only child was never really a problem for me; all decisions start and end with me.
While sitting down, staring into space, my mother snapped me out. “Dhitri! Start with the drawings. We want to make the Gods extra happy this year. You know your father might be made village chief if the Gods accept.”
I started doing as she said. Swirls there, stripes here, dots there; it all came together like a puzzle. After three hours of hard work, I clapped my hands together as I looked at my masterpiece. I then thought, “Why isn’t Father back yet?”.
No time to procrastinate. He is never late. I grabbed a few things and left the house before my mother could ask me where I was going. “The market isn’t that far”, I thought. I went with mother and father several times, but never alone.
After an hour of walking, I reached the marketplace only to see chaos. I could hear rumbling sounds from the mountains and people were running in all directions. I searched for Father among the lifeless bodies. His sight brought tears of confusion to my eyes; it was unbelievable. I ran back home to tell Mother. She said the only way to live was to leave. Festival: Canceled. Panic mode: activated. So many things were changing right in front of my eyes.
Within days we were in the capital, Kathmandu. It was a tiring and stressful journey, especially without Father. This was my new life, in the blink of an eye. Mother became a religious teacher at my school, where I continued my studies. We pray to the Gods to send Father to the heavens every day. I could still remember that day vividly.
But I know I helped. I saved the family. Mother and I are safe. We can live in peace again. An undisturbed kind of peace.