My New Friend – a short, short story

The house was a hundred years old.
I would be here for a year working on my latest project.
By the time the men helping with the luggage left, it was dark.
I do not remember when I fell asleep.
The sound of someone walking in the attic woke me up.
My watch told me it was two in the morning.
Picking up a cane, I crept up expecting to find a thief but found no one there.
Too tired to investigate, I went back to sleep.
The next day I was busy unpacking when I heard the noise again.
I rushed up the stairs that opened into the attic, prepared for battle.
In the middle of the room stood a cat. I wanted to shoo it away but stopped.
I realized that I was not alone anymore.
I had a friend.

Building a house – a short, short story

“Cut every one of the trees!” I said.
The men looked at me to check if I was serious.
I was planning to build a house, and the land needed clearing up.
In a couple of hours, they had cut down what had stood there for decades.
After paying the woodcutters off, I went to check if everything was in order.
I was satisfied. With all the tree stumps finally, construction could start.

Then I noticed something strange. All along the boundary walls, I could see birds. Crows, magpies, pigeons and even a kingfisher . All looking in my direction.
“You cut down our home to build yours!”
They seemed to be saying.
I felt uncomfortable under their scrutiny.
“Once my house gets built, I will plant more trees. I promise.”
I said it out loud.
Not convinced, they kept watching me.

Old wine in old …a short-short, story

“Are you lost?”
“There was a shop managed by an old man here. He used to sell oil lamps, ” I said.
“That was my grandfather. He died a few years back. Please do come in.”
“I am sorry. I just returned after two decades.”

The shop had a vast range of electrical appliances on display.
“Your father is still in Mumbai ?”
“He has settled down there. I like this village better,” he said.

As I walked out with a purchase, he said, ” I was a pleasure serving you.”
The comment made me smile.
The boy’s grandfather used to say that when a customer left.

“He taught me how to treat customers,” the boy said.
“You learnt well. You learnt from the best,” I said.

My village was more of a town now, but I was happy to see that some of the old world traditions had survived.