The phone call . . .

“Why doesn’t he just call me up?” Salma quipped, exasperated.

“Don’t worry dear . . . He will call you up in a while. Must be stuck in traffic” said the woman seated beside her.

Salma let out a huge sigh. Things had always been the same for the past 35 years. He will never change, she thought to herself.

“He never understands how much I get stressed out thinking about him all the time! Isn’t it a son’s duty to call up his mother after he reaches home and let her know that he’s safe?” she questioned.

The woman beside her nodded her head silently and lay her hand on Salma’s lap.

“He’s having children of his own now  . . . but still, he is just like a little baby I gave birth to!” Salma continued nostalgically.

At that exact moment, the telephone rang loudly making her jump literally out of her skin.

“There he calls finally!” she cursed as she picked up the receiver.

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“Hello ma, I reached home safely!” Azad announced.

“Ah! Thank goodness, I thought you were lost dear”

“Don’t be silly ma, I will meet you next month ok?” Azad proclaimed. He had no time for sweet talks.

“Sure dear . . . I’ll be waiting for you beta” Salma said sadly.

“Ya ya . . . I know . . . I know . . . Quit all your teary talk, its just boring.” Azad warned. “Anyways, I have sent the money too . . . You will receive it on Monday . . . Don’t disturb me till next month then ok?”

Her smile faltered. She held back her tears.

“Ya sure beta . . . You take care ok?”

“Ok ok . . . Bye ma” Azad slammed the phone down.

“Bye  . . . ” Salma replied to the long beeps that were heard through the receiver.

And as she replaced the receiver, Salma gave a smile to the woman who sat beside her.

She smiled back understandingly.

She was an abandoned soul too.

“Come dear . . . lets go”

Salma nodded.

The woman stood up.

Salma held her hand in hers and they walked through the lawns of the old age home towards their rooms . . .  towards the sunset . . . towards an uncertain future.

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