Atithi tum kab jaoge

Atithi tum kab jaoge

It started as a good day, until it took a turn.

A loud knock and continuous ringing of the bell startled everyone in the room who were peacefully watching Sudhir Chaudhary talk about something.

The matriarch of the house opened the door, and there they were, the uninvited relatives. The mood of the house changed, and the TV's volume was lowered. The guests were ushered in, though a look of confusion shadowed the matriarch's face.

If there were any societal clause preventing you from inviting relatives into your house, the matriarch would have used it to kick out the relatives, but "Atithi Devo Bhava."

When uninvited guests arrive, it is the matriarch who has to take all the responsibility: food, cleanliness, chatter, etc. The patriarch can simply keep lying on the bed.

The matriarch wasn't prepared and was caught off-guard. Nevertheless, dinner was served, and everyone ate their share, though the guests had some complaints (as they always do).

After some time of useless chatter, a question was brought up indirectly, "When are you going to leave?" and it was met with awkward silence. The departure date was three days in the future. The matriarch panicked, and the patriarch seemed conflicted, but there was a feeling of unwelcome in the air.

The next day brought chaos again. Matriarchs don't like when other people rummage through kitchen drawers or peek into refrigerators, yet the matriarch woke up to exactly that. However, since directness wasn't an option, things were subtly brought under control through advice and comments.

It was hard to adjust to the disrupted schedules; the routine was broken. The nuclear host family was hesitant, the matriarch was tired, the patriarch was unbothered yet conflicted, and the child frowned.

After three(?) days, the departure date arrived, though it turned out to be after midnight, making it more like 2.5 days. The matriarch breathed a sigh of relief, the patriarch still struggled with conflict, and the child tried to ignore everything.

And then they were gone. Prayers were answered, and the family relaxed, though an intervention was in store because the guests were close relatives of the patriarch. The feeling of a storm lingered in the air.