I wake up abruptly. The cool winds and the peace of the orchard make me want to sleep some more. But the string cot is uncomfortable. I open my eye’s and look up at the mango tree under which I am lying.
The mangoes are still raw. It would take another couple of months for them to turn into sweet juicy goodness. I see two birds on this tree. They seem to be fighting. I turn my head and see the litchi trees around me. The worker’s are picking up the fruit that we need to take back home with us. I’v had my share of litchi’s today. Climbing up trees all day had left my legs sore.
I close my eye’s again but sleep deceives me. I get up and start walking around. The orchard belong to my grandfather. There are litchi and mango trees. We are here after nearly a decade. It’s been so long but the tree’s are still the same. Nothing has changed here. It’s like time has stood still.
The chief of the worker’s that we have employed at the orchard is still here. He’s supervising the work. Making sure that the fruit is not harmed while picking it from the tree’s and is packed correctly. Litchi is a delicate fruit. He know’s it can go bad in no time.
I look at him working away. He has aged a lot. But his voice still has the same booming quality that was there 10 year’s ago. That hasn’t changed.
We have to go back today. I feel sad about leaving. The peace of this place make’s me want to stay here for some more days.
It had rained yesterday. That is the reason the worker’s are here working overtime. Rain’s are not good for the fruit at this time.
But the heat has been wiped away with the onset of the monsoon. I take off my flip flops and walk bare feet on the wet grass.
My family is at the other end of the orchard. They are putting the boxes full of litchi in our car.
It’s time to go. I look around one last time and take in the serenity of the place, promising myself to not wait for another decade to come back here.