Illustration: Arati Kumar-Rao
Illustration: Arati Kumar-Rao

A Family Outing

Shortlisted in the Himal Short Story Competition 2019.

It was my last weekend at home before I went back to college. So, when my father asked me if I wanted to go to Marine Drive, I said yes, despite everything. I put on the best polo T-shirt I owned; Rishav put on his clean shoes; Ma tied her hair into a bun and Dad slung the car keys from a notch in his jeans.

We congregated in the compact Swift just as the clouds above us began to churn and rumble. As Dad reversed us out of the parking spot and put the Swift into first gear, all around us the sky, the buildings, the cars and the people dissolved into a watercolour blue and slowly the patter of raindrops began hitting the windshield. Dad lit a cigarette and began smoking it, his elbow jutting out of the open window.

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Himal Southasian