Morning found me sitting in my favorite cranny under the staircase leading to the terrace. Bent over the crossword, with the morning hot chocolate steaming its encouragement.
Since I was a kid, I always thought that was the best place in the house. It was always cool, with the guava tree bending sagely over, blocking the sun. With the humming air conditioner blocking the way above, I used to fancy that this place was the perfect hideaway for people like The Three Investigators. And insulated from the prying neighbor's eye, who could always tell if I was reading Malory Towers or Middle Age history. However, not from the neighbor's dog who would yelp his disapproval every time he met me there. Everyone knew that I could be found there, whether for a game of badminton or for a late lunch.
As I sat cross legged, bent over the newspaper, I realized that many things have changed. One, the plants around me where dying a slow death of neglect and pollution. The neighbor's dog was missing. Nobody was going to call me for a game of badminton or carrom. However, the guava tree remained, stoically giving me shade. Swaying gently with the knowledge of the past, nodding its branches as if it understood what I was thinking.