It is on a Saturday evening during rounds of arra that we decide to visit Chorten Kora. I have been there many times but my friends haven't. So we make plans for the next day.
The next morning as I wake up at 8, I can smell delicious aroma from the kitchen. Serious must have already prepared tea as he is almost dressed up.
“Wai… get up. Aren't you going to Chorten Kora?” He always makes tea and puts the rice in the mornings. And I hear someone in the kitchen. It must be DB sir. He usually prepares curry in the morning. It is because of them that we, the other lazybones, get breakfast so we don't have to run to the class on an empty stomach.
I grab my tooth brush and paste, and go out of the room. I see DB sir outside, brushing. I peek inside the kitchen. It is UT. He is frying something… he is great in the kitchen; his cooking are an art itself… mmm… delicious even to think. Pema is already groomed, warming in front of the heater in their room. I seem to miss someone. Pampa. He is not here.
“Where is Pampa?” I ask Pema.
“Don't you know? He went home yesterday evening”.
So it's five of us then. Five friends. Five gents, away from home, sharing a flat. We are in Kanglung. Some of us miss our wives. Especially Pema as he is newly married. Some, children. Some miss their girlfriends. I miss my parents, and brothers and sisters, and nieces and nephews. And friends back home. But not others. Because I have none.
“Wai… wash your face” he says to me. I go to the bathroom and do my thing. As I come out, someone says “Breakfast is ready”.
We have breakfast. UT kids that since we don't have time to prepare breakfast and lunch he has only made one curry, which should suffice both for breakfast and lunch. “So be economical in breakfast” he adds. We laugh. But it is true.
Still the rice is sufficient. One rice cooker for breakfast, the other for lunch. After breakfast there is a rush as everybody begins the final grooming.
But still we are late. It is almost 10 as we lock the door. We take DB sir's car as it the only clean one. Along the way Pema calls Pampa, asking him whether he would join us. But he says he has some work at home. Instead he says he'll be waiting with arra on the way.
And he is. He makes us drink arra… lamchang… as he puts it. It is strong, his arra is always strong. He is the main supplier as his home is near.
After that we continue. When we reach Chazam it is already 11 am. Crossing it, we turn right… on our way to Chorten Kora.